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Can I get Gibson to make me one like this?

Melodyman

Member
Joined
Aug 11, 2012
Messages
189
Not sure why but since the 60's Gibson hasnt made the reissue 335 like they did back then despite the many claims that they are exact copies.. Mostly it has to do with the shape of the arching on the tops. Here you can see the "smile" of the arching that goes from the left horns blister under the neck PU and then to the right horn blister.. This tilts the pickup towards the neck and allows it to be closer to the strings than current production does..
63-335-copy.jpg


Also, the angle of the neck joining the body is much less pronounced allowing the action to be set lower and not causing the pickups to have to be raised so far out of the cavity which also allows them to have more influence from the resonance of the wood surrounding them as seen in this photo of a 63..

original-copy.jpg


So my question is, why did they stop making them this way and would it be possible for them to M2M one of these for me? IMHO they should return to making them all this way as these were the most sought after models of all. I think this now forgotten construction has much to do with the sound of those old ones compared to the new construction these days.

Heres a recent reissue to illustrate my point..

gibson-es-335-figured-memphis-2014-vintage-sunburst-5.jpg
 
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oldog

Member
Joined
Nov 28, 2003
Messages
201
It's hard to say at this time how responsive the restructured Gibson Company will be to customer requests. What you are looking for is a shallow neck set. Since '58 ES 335s were known for their shallow neck sets maybe you need to be looking for a '58 reissue. The neck set angle has always been a range on Gibsons not an exact angle and it will vary from guitar to guitar. Many people dislike shallow neck sets since it can lead to difficulty getting the bridge low enough to get the action they desire. There are a lot of ES style guitars where someone has taken a grinder to the bottom of the bridge to gain room to lower the action.
 

P.Walker

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Joined
Apr 17, 2007
Messages
941
The last picture is a dot neck reissue from memphis (late 50s style-save for the PG) you are comparing the 60s ES's to.

It means you are comparing the best of one era to the worst of another era- at least in terms of historical accuracy.

While not a 60s, the nashville historics of 59 ES335s are good, as are the memphis 63 (with nylon saddles) and memphis 58 (which plastic strap buttons).

Of course, all guitars can be built with sloppy craftsmanship regardless of how accurate the specs are.

Unless you are the type of guy who has to have the 50s mickey mouse ears, this is really not a complaint I understand- at least it hasn't been since a few years ago.

"not causing the pickups to have to be raised so far out of the cavity which also allows them to have more influence from the resonance of the wood surrounding them as seen in this photo of a 63.."

Wood is not magnetic- if that's what you implied. If not, then that statement still needs backing up.
 

1jamman

New member
Joined
Feb 28, 2013
Messages
610
I get what the OP is asking about ... IMO , I'd say NO . Highly doubtful (about the carve) ... You could try asking through dealer , but I don't think it would happen .
You might have better chance of "finding" 1 that is more to your liking by trying and testing as many as possible ,until you find it or not .

IMO , You should consider the 2013 Memphis run of Blister topped '59 RI's ... Those are special and with mine the only 1 I took extra time to set up as best as I could get it to ~ the same things your looking for in the setup part of your question . I worked it's setup over months . IMO , that paid off in the end result . Great guitar ,, that I'll never sell ...

I can't say ,for sure it's this run ,,, but these were built with an eye for getting it real close .

I have seen a few (recent) CS 335 '59 RI's Built to the same specs and now some even have BRW Fret boards . All hide glued and all maple ply ....
I do know as of a few months ago , these could be M2M ordered .... I was thinking about getting 1 made with P-90's ... But ,,, Not gonna happen anytime soon ....
 

Melodyman

Member
Joined
Aug 11, 2012
Messages
189
The reissue pic while not a 63 was just to show the drastic change they have made to the top arching, increased neck angle and its result. Having studied several originals and offered exact replicas as they say, nobody has been able to explain why they changed the design from the 60's and havent duplicated the original body tops and back construction since reissuing these?

As far as the pickups sitting way out of the cavity as compared to older vintages that sat lower in the body, while wood isnt magnetic, pickups are like small microphones which transfer the resonance from the wood and channel it thru to the amp. Ever try turning your guitar over and putting your mouth over the pickup and speaking? You will hear your voice thru your amp. its this same effect that the wood surrounding the pickup has when you play and it is affected the same way as your voice by the resonance of the wood that is surrounding it. When the PU's are way up out of the body, you dont get as much woody tone influence.

Just once I would love Gibson to actually do a true replica of any of their originals. Theres always something missing...While I understand that certain materials (wood electronics etc) are not available like they once were, there is no lack of availability of materials needed for duplicating vintage construction..
 
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deytookerjaabs

Well-known member
Joined
Nov 6, 2016
Messages
1,483
Take a straight edge to the back of a batch of Les Paul bodies then you'll get an idea of how much wood shifts as those bodies leave the factory dead straight....point being, wood moves a lot.


AFAIK, they brought the original ES steel laminate press molds to memphis and still use them, no? They'll retain the original shape far better than the actual guitars. As for the neck set, they still vary guitar to guitar by a good margin but new guitars do tend to lean more "stout" on average with the additional possibility of the fretboards being a hair thicker.
 

P.Walker

New member
Joined
Apr 17, 2007
Messages
941
The reissue pic while not a 63 was just to show the drastic change they have made to the top arching, increased neck angle and its result. Having studied several originals and offered exact replicas as they say, nobody has been able to explain why they changed the design from the 60's and havent duplicated the original body tops and back construction since reissuing these?

As far as the pickups sitting way out of the cavity as compared to older vintages that sat lower in the body, while wood isnt magnetic, pickups are like small microphones which transfer the resonance from the wood and channel it thru to the amp. Ever try turning your guitar over and putting your mouth over the pickup and speaking? You will hear your voice thru your amp. its this same effect that the wood surrounding the pickup has when you play and it is affected the same way as your voice by the resonance of the wood that is surrounding it. When the PU's are way up out of the body, you dont get as much woody tone influence.

Just once I would love Gibson to actually do a true replica of any of their originals. Theres always something missing...While I understand that certain materials (wood electronics etc) are not available like they once were, there is no lack of availability of materials needed for duplicating vintage construction..

1. The point was that you made an example of that through the worst specimen possible. For what it's worth, a 63 memphis is more accurate than a 63 nashville, despite the higher prices the nashvilles usually command.

2. Also, the change needs no explanation in some sense; it just happened. It's not like an explanation would bring back everything to the 50s. Not even all the specimens back then were the same either. Also this peculiar setup of pickups buried under pickup rings is a byproduct of the guitar's setup from relief to even the size of the frets and neck angle- which varied.

3. Pickups are like only microphones in analogy only- in technicality totally different. They don't both transfer resonance. The science is wrong. Only one of those two does that. You even just said wood is not magnetic- hence the relative location of pickup itself which picks up only signals in the magnetic field, is irrelevant, as if it were not already- since the pickup ring itself is above the wood anyway.

4. "its this same effect that the wood surrounding the pickup has when you play and it is affected the same way as your voice by the resonance of the wood that is surrounding it." This is not true either and it's not the same effect as you shouting into the pickup. First it would be affected if it were coupled, and not just surrounded. Second screaming into the pickup and you hearing it is the sign of a microphonic pickup (or defective) and while it is a rare case of a pickup not doing solely what it was intended to do, props to you if you can find your tone in that microphony, and god bless at high volumes.

5. Despite how I come across, I totally sympathize with your queries because I often have the same thoughts- but if I want Gibson, the only option is a real vintage, or a m2m model. Same would apply for the 60s ES. Look out for an issues model which can be fixed up. The journey is the bulk of the enjoyment I find.

6. In short, what I am trying to say is, temper expectations, let the good times be, but rest assured because there are some very good guitars still being made today. If it's really the "arc" and the mickey mouse ears that you really gotta have, then you are really out of luck I'm afraid, but that's not the ingredient to good tone (or even a good looking guitar I may add).

If I were you, I'd hunt down an issues 60s ES335, or get a memphis 63 cherry ES335TD reissue (a reissue of the one you posted from lark street), level the frets a little lower, set the neck flat and the action low, and you will (in a way) be forced to have the pickups right around level with the pickup rings.

It's never going to be the same I'm afraid. But it was close enough for me, someone who is into this stuff just as you and we all are.

Good luck! (call up wildwood for this 63 ES335TD in cherry).
 

fakejake

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Joined
Sep 3, 2010
Messages
1,251
For the price of a M2M, I'd rather get an early 60ies Epi Riviera (if the wide nut would be a must) or a 65/66 335 ...
 
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