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70's Les Paul Custom Confusion


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Hi guys


New to the forum. I don't know if this is the right place to post this question, but hopefully somebody here can steer me in the right direction if not O:)


I have a Les Paul Custom definitely from the 70's with a 6 digit serial number of 969186 with made in usa stamped under it. The serial number doesn't seem to be stamped as deep into the wood as the "made in USA" part. It almost looks inked on (black on black number, guitar is ebony). However, it's not a sticker or obviously inked like the later 70's models. Could this be one of those FON (Factory Order Numbers)?


There's all kinds of serial number info out there, and i'm not sure what's correct. I now know i'm not the only one with this problem, haha!


Can you guys please tell me ROUGHLY when this guitar was made? The pot codes are definitely from 1974 but the 969186 serial number doesn't match up with a 1974 model.


All serial number info is pointing me in the area of 1971-72, but the pot codes are clearly from 1974. Could this guitar BODY be a hold over from 1972, then electronics/hardware was added in 1974? Possibly from a weird area/transition when the Nashville plant opened up in '74?


The guitar definitely is a real Gibson, that's for sure. I didn't buy it off some guy in China O:)


Any guesses from you guys would be great. I'd appreciate any info/insight greatly!




Chicago, IL.


=P~ =P~

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Nobody may ever solve the mysteries of Gibson serial numbers from that era (70-74), including and especially Gibson. My information shows that number coming up during that dark period, and if the pot codes date to '74, that's probably as good of information as you will ever find.


If it was wired and shipped out in '74, I'd say that makes it a '74. I don't think you will ever be able to verify anything else.

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