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What year is my Gibson?

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by JeremyBTT, Mar 5, 2010.

  1. JeremyBTT


    Feb 10, 2009
    Orlando, FL
    Hey all,

    I have a Gibson Ripper that I can't figure out what year it was made. The serial is 968999.

    Ripper's began production in 73' but Gibson serial info says that the the 6 digit 900000's stopped in 72'?

    Anybody with any knowledge in this area? Any help would be greatly appreciated!






  2. your idol

    your idol

    Oct 13, 2008
    Murfreesboro TN
    i cant answer your question but that sure is pretty sweet. i love those P90 lookin pickups. of all the gibsons of that era i say this one nails the gibson "look" the best with the varitone. p90 style pups and the open book headstock. hope you love it (and have a good chiropractor)
  3. JeremyBTT


    Feb 10, 2009
    Orlando, FL
    thanks man, I love it :) and if by chiropractor you're talking about weight, this actually weighs in at 8.4 lbs....it feels great!
  4. your idol

    your idol

    Oct 13, 2008
    Murfreesboro TN
    wow! 8.4. there was just one at my local GC and i swear it broke 11. it was like a peavy t40. really nice score then
  5. Devil Musick

    Devil Musick

    Jun 13, 2009
    Los Angeles
    Endorsing artist for Schecter Guitars
  6. JeremyBTT


    Feb 10, 2009
    Orlando, FL
    I looked here, but nothing answers my question :-/ Thanks though.

    I've got an email into Gibson, hopefully they'll be able to help me out.
  7. coreyfyfe

    coreyfyfe Supporting Member

    Nov 19, 2007
    boston, ma

    Returns this:

    Your guitar was made at the
    Kalamazoo or Nashville Plant , USA
    approximately in: 1970, 1971 or 1972

    So I'd say, since they started shipping in 73, it was probably made late 72 for 73 release, which is pretty cool since it means that was one of 19 shipped that year.
  8. aquateen


    Apr 14, 2005
    I'd check the pot codes and see what they say.
  9. Fly Guitars

    Fly Guitars

    Dec 29, 2008
    No, not that early. The first ones had a wider body and slightly different horns. Plus they were not black. They changed to this body style in mid-late '75, then started having decals rather than stamped serial numbers in 75/76 (this happened gradually with overlap)

    So yours should be late '75/ early '76 in my opinion
  10. coreyfyfe

    coreyfyfe Supporting Member

    Nov 19, 2007
    boston, ma
    The shipping figures indicate 19 Ebony models were shipped in 73, so there were black ones.

  11. mikeswals

    mikeswals Supporting Member

    Nov 18, 2002
    Seattle / Tacoma
    Beatutiful ebony Ripper.

    The pot codes read the same way you do as a Fender.;
    first three digits is the pot manufacturer, second two digits is the year, the last three digits is the week.
    This would get you closer and obviously the bass would be made sometime after the pots were.
  12. P. Aaron

    P. Aaron Supporting Member

    Cool lookin' bass. Very nice pictures too. Thanks for posting!
  13. lc12345678


    Jan 20, 2005
    The earliest Ripper bodies were manufactured from maple, though in 1975 to 1976 alder was used before going back to maple in 1977. (Info from www.flyguitars.com) You said that the bass weighs in at 8.4 lbs. Sounds like alder to me.
  14. JeremyBTT


    Feb 10, 2009
    Orlando, FL
    this would be pretty incredible. Im planning to check the pots tonight, and ill let you guys know

  15. JeremyBTT


    Feb 10, 2009
    Orlando, FL
    here are my photos of the pot codes....not quite sure if I'm reading them right?




    (same pot as the first..just for good measure)
  16. The Growler

    The Growler

    Jan 26, 2008
    You could try this. Got it from Gibson and posted it before. It has helped a few others.

    The purple "fur" is a great colcr for that basss, BTW.


    Attached Files:

  17. JeremyBTT


    Feb 10, 2009
    Orlando, FL
    well, I guess it looks one pot was made on the 52nd week of 74', another pot was made on the 42nd week 75', and I can't tell on the other. But still what doesn't make sense to me is the 968999 serial number on the headstock? Unless the neck was replaced, in which case it would've been replaced with a neck from a 73' ripper that has a 72' serial number???

    so confused.
  18. coreyfyfe

    coreyfyfe Supporting Member

    Nov 19, 2007
    boston, ma
  19. Hi.

    IMLE, the Gibson serial numbers of that era are next to useless to accurately identify the year of mfg. Even more so with limited production models.

    The pot codes are the best bet, unless there's a handwritten date on the shielding foil or pickup cavities.

  20. Primary

    Primary TB Assistant

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