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My list of known original '58 through '63 korina Explorer serial numbers

Joe Desperado

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there are very distinctive grain features in the Korina lumber that look identical to the Dave Rogers (La Crosse, WI) 1958 Explorer that is said to be, "original."

having a stepped heel with a replacement neck would not particularly be considered 'original' by most folks, would it?

Just asking but details would be interesting to know.

I traded a few emails with Dave many years ago and told him that one year I would like to visit his store; never have.

I'm in Saint Paul which is a 1 1/2 hour drive to La Crosse. Maybe I could finally go visit Daves and check out 9 1995 for myself, in person. :unsure:
A re-neck is a re-neck. In Burst land, that would be 50% deductible or more. In this case, maybe more because it wasn't done all that historically correct. I am surprised to be honest with you that it wasn't. I think (thought?) that Michael Stevens had done the re-neck, so I am surprised its not all that accurate.
 

Joe Desperado

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Yes I have heard that about that Explorer having a replaced neck. In the book that I linked above, he [Dave Rogers] does say this "Purchased at a Dallas Show in the early 1990`s. I remember thinking at the time that if I didn`t buy this one, I`d never find another one"
I think the 'Pictorial History Explorer' book is great--it`s just mainly pictures & not just of original `58 Explorers though--204 pages just on Explorers. I have some other books that have some pictures etc of the original Explorers--I even contacted Walter Carter to ask him what books he recommended. Nonetheless, this is the best one I own if you`re a '`58 Explorer nut' like I am. It`s worth the $28 w/ free shipping I`d say although there are other listings there on Amazon at a lower price but not sure if their price includes free shipping.
Thanks for the reply. I had pics of Dave's explorer though I can't find them on this device. It definitely had a stepped heel, which we discuss earlier in this thread as well as one that is at Gruhns (I think). They were not built that way, and a one off is just not likely. Dave's neck was installed more like a 50s Les Paul Standard with no lip on the tenon and therefore no step. Oddly, I would think that if the broke neck was there when it was replaced, there would have been a pattern for it which would have been used. So who knows? I wouldn't want to speculate on the rest of the guitar, though I guess I just did.
 

bursty

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Dec 25, 2012
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A re-neck is a re-neck. In Burst land, that would be 50% deductible or more. In this case, maybe more because it wasn't done all that historically correct. I am surprised to be honest with you that it wasn't. I think (thought?) that Michael Stevens had done the re-neck, so I am surprised its not all that accurate.
I was thinking that the attribute I am most interested in is the neck thickness at fret 1 and to a lesser degree the neck thickness at fret 11.

If the neck is not original to the guitar then there would be no reason for me to be curious about the neck thickness because the neck seems like it may not be original.
A bit of a bummer, IMO.
 

K_L

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Sep 11, 2014
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Oddly enough, I have talked to Ronald Wood on the phone and Via emails, yet I do not have that book…. Is it an essential must have?
There are so many great pictures of original `58 Explorers in the book & in the middle section there are 14 full-page color pictures of outstanding original Explorers as well as some Futuras, & a split headstock Explorer. And also plenty of smaller pictures on practically every page. It`s more a of 'picture book' rather than a 'reference book'. Just some fantastic pictures of original Explorer & alot in color--certainly worth owning even if one is just a 'casual fan' of Explorers.
 

K_L

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I also need to mention that most of the original Explorers shown in the book 'Explorer: A Pictorial History' includes their serial number so that`s a another cool reason to own the book!
PS: I am in no way affiliated w/ the Explorer book etc or w/ Amazon etc--I am just recommending it here because I think it`s the best book available to feature the original 1958 Gibson Explorers!

 

SKYNYRD FRYND

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Mar 19, 2021
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5D3BEF9A-F619-44AF-89C8-E3D3E92AEA90.png
Here’s a picture of the Explorer in question. I don’t remember where I found the picture, but I saved it since the description said the neck had been replaced and only a select few knew at the time that it was replaced. If I’m not mistaken I may have a picture of the neck joint, or there may be one in the “Explorer a Pictorial History” book. I’ll look once I get home.

Edit:
If I’m not mistaken I believe there was also some speculation that the serial number on the new neck doesn’t match the original. Although only Dave and Mike Stevens would know for sure. If Mike did indeed do the replacement.
 
Last edited:

Cody

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Jul 23, 2002
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I took that pic from an old Gruhn price list, and posted it on the Gear Page a few years ago.

The serial number may be entirely made up, as the guitar may have been entirely neckless when Stevens got it - at least it is in this pic:

14411BDC-39BD-413B-8D2F-6C581BDB371A.jpeg
 

Joe Desperado

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I wasn’t sure if I should share the pic above. There is one picture other wherr two other gents in the pic as well. Clearly not all of those guitars are original.
 

SKYNYRD FRYND

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I took that pic from an old Gruhn price list, and posted it on the Gear Page a few years ago.

The serial number may be entirely made up, as the guitar may have been entirely neckless when Stevens got it - at least it is in this pic:

View attachment 18484
My apologies for not giving you credit, I never took note of the OP of that picture. That looks like an odd neck break, was the story ever recovered as to why that happened?
 

bursty

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Dec 25, 2012
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If an instrument is rednecked then the instrument is pretty much a copy/replica; amirite?
 

Cody

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If an instrument is rednecked then the instrument is pretty much a copy/replica; amirite?
Strokes for folks. There has to be a line, but we don’t all draw it in the same spot. The way I think of it, a burst body with a new neck made to specs is a burst, albeit with issues. A burst neck with a new body is no longer a burst, imo.

I’m cool with this one, and kinda wish I’d had the coin when it was at Gruhn’s.
 

Joe Desperado

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I believe that 3 of these 4 are original `58 Explorers.

Maybe 2? The two unfinished ones do not have pickguard holes drilled at the tip of the horn. I think it would be very difficult to believe 10% of all original Explorers were in the same place back then. 2 maybe… though the one assembled would be hard to authenticate from this pic alone.

I suppose someone who knows Michael could ask him, but not sure he would be forthcoming
 

bursty

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I believe that 3 of these 4 are original `58 Explorers.


That's pretty cool to see both Andy Kaufman (left) and Sasha Baron Cohen (middle) in the same photo with some Korina.

I LOLed
 

K_L

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Sep 11, 2014
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406
Maybe 2? The two unfinished ones do not have pickguard holes drilled at the tip of the horn. I think it would be very difficult to believe 10% of all original Explorers were in the same place back then. 2 maybe… though the one assembled would be hard to authenticate from this pic alone.

I suppose someone who knows Michael could ask him, but not sure he would be forthcoming
Actually he himself [Michael Stevens] says it on his FB page! [which I why I posted it 40 minutes ago!]
 
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