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Can anyone help me understand a serial number?

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I own a beautiful Les Paul Classic and I am trying to find its date of manufacture. The serial number is as follows: 72198546. Any and all help would be much appreciated, thank you.

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What you have may be a classic Les Paul, but not a "Les Paul Classic".

Is the serial number stamped, or inked?

Les Paul Classics have inked serial numbers 4 to 6 numbers in length and no "Made In USA".

Also, I believe the first year for this model was 1989.




"Les Paul Classic: This model features an ink stamped serial number with no "MADE IN USA" (just as we used on the original 1952-1960 Les Pauls). Most will be 5 to 6 digits in length, but the earliest examples feature 4 digit serial numbers. There should be a space after the 1st digit with the 4 and 5 digit serial numbers, and no space with the 6 digit numbers.


The 1st digit indicates the year of manufacture for the 4 & 5 digit serial numbers, these were used from 1989-1999. The 1st and 2nd indicate the year of manufacture for the 6 digit serial numbers which we've been using since 2000.


Examples -

9 xxx = 1989 (4 digit number beginning with "9" used only in 1989)

0 xxxx = 1990

9 xxxx = 1999

00xxxx = 2000

05xxxx = 2005


Those beginning with "94":

In 1994, Gibson's Centennial year, many instruments have a serial number that begins with "94" for the year, with the remaining 6 digits indicating the ranking number."

An example of a `91:


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