1972

The SG Deluxe was introduced in June 1971 at Summer NAMM (although they don't appear to have started production until later in the year) as a replacement for the SG Standard. It appears the production of the Standard may have overlapped with the Deluxe in late 1971. However, this would prove to be arguably the most controversial SG model ever made. This was because the Deluxe marked some significant departures from traditional SG features; a front-routed control cavity, zero degree neck pitch, deeper set neck and a Les Paul style pickguard. It was also the first ever SG below the Custom to have Mother of Pearl fretboard inlays. Yet, many of the features that the Deluxe is commonly associated with were not actually new, for example the SG Standard had a narrow 1 9/16" nut since 1966, a laminated neck since mid-1969 and a volute since 1970. However, public reception would cause the model to be quickly discontinued and the Standard to return in mid-1972. The Deluxe remained on price lists until October 1972 as remaining supply was sold off.

1998

The transition back to the SG Standard started in mid-1972 as the last Deluxe parts were being used up. The first change was moving the control cavity cover to the rear of the body again. Then, the pickguard changed to something similar to the early '60s Angel Wing style, but with less of a curve for the cutaway, which was fixed by 1973 as the cutaway beveling returned. These transitional models are detailed below as the "SG Deluxe/Standard".

2013

Curiously, Gibson's shipping ledgers show small numbers of SG Deluxes being shipped out as late as 1975. At least one example has surfaced. It features 1973 dated pots but also T-Tops with an engraved patent number, and is noticeably different from an older Deluxe, now sharing many Standard features. The seller speculated it being an early Nashville factory build. While this can't be confirmed, it does use a different style serial number stamping than most Kalamazoo builds of the era.

In 1998, a new SG Deluxe was introduced, bearing no resemblance to the original Deluxe, aside from a Bigsby tremolo. It featured what Gibson called a "1959 Slim Taper" neck profile, which they described as a 1959 radius, but slimmer. It was only produced through 1999.

The name returned again on a totally different model in 2013, now resembling an SG Supreme. Again, the only feature common to every version of this model being a Bigsby tremolo.

1971 - 1972

72 deluxe1.jpg

  • June 1971: $375
  • November 1971: $395
  • October 1972: $415

Body:

  • Beveled, solid Honduran Mahogany body
    • Un-beveled cutaways
  • Nitrocellulose Lacquer finish

72 deluxe2.jpg

Neck:

  • 3-pc laminated Honduran Mahogany
  • Set-in construction
    • Zero degree pitch
    • Titebond glue
    • Joins body at 18th fret
  • Indian Rosewood fretboard
    • Small block inlays
    • 12" radius
  • Volute
  • Large Open Book headstock
    • Resin impregnated fiberboard veneer
    • Inlaid Mother of Pearl Gibson logo
    • Inlaid Mother of Pearl crown
    • "Made in U.S.A." stamp
    • 14o pitch
  • 22 frets
  • 24 9/16" scale
  • 1 9/16" nut width

72 deluxe3.jpg

Binding:

  • Single-ply, neck
  • Fret-edge binding
  • Thinner style

Electronics:

  • Two "T-Top" humbuckers
    • Short bar AlNiCo V magnets
    • ~7.5K Ohms DCR
    • "Gibson" embossed chrome covers
    • "Goof hiders" under pickup rings (sporadic use)
  • 3-way switch
  • 2 Vol, 2 Tone
    • CTS 500k pots

Hardware:

  • Chrome Hardware
  • Schaller M6 tuning machines
    • 12:1 ratio
    • Metal Schaller-style or Keystone buttons
  • Grover Rotomatic tuning machines
    • 14:1 ratio
    • Metal Keystone buttons
  • 5-ply elevated Les Paul pickguard
  • 5-ply front-mounted control plate
  • Bell shaped truss rod cover
    • Single-ply black
  • Black Witch Hat knobs w/ pointers
  • ABR-1 Tune-O-Matic bridge
  • Gibson-branded Bigsby vibrola

Finishes:

  • Cherry
  • Walnut
  • Natural 

 1972 Deluxe / Standard

Version 1 (Photo Credit: Cream City Music)

After a short hiatus, being replaced by the Deluxe, the Standard returned mid-1972 as the last Deluxe parts were being used up. The first change was moving the control cavity cover to the back of the body again. Then, the pickguard changed to something similar to the early '60s Angel Wing style, but with less of a curve for the cutaway, which was fixed before the cutaway beveling returned (or pickguards were cut by hand as they worked on creating a new template; there is variation in pickguard shape at this time). Some examples even have holes left behind from Les Paul style pickguards that were going to be mounted on them. Other features like knobs, pickups and bridge are essentially randomly grabbed from parts bins and do not transition in a linear fashion. Embossed pickup covers were used on both T-Tops and Super Humbuckers at first. Once the cutaway beveling and neck angle return, it can again be considered a Standard and not a transitional model.

Version 2

  • June: $395
  • October: $415

Body:

  • Beveled, solid Honduran Mahogany body
    • Un-beveled cutaways
  • Nitrocellulose Lacquer finish

Neck:

  • 3-pc laminated Honduran Mahogany
  • Set-in construction

    Version 2, alternate pickguard variation & parts

    • Zero degree angle
    • Titebond glue
    • Joins body at 18th fret
  • Indian Rosewood fretboard
    • Mother of Pearl small block inlays
    • 12" radius
  • Volute
  • Large Open Book headstock
    • Resin impregnated fiberboard veneer
    • Inlaid Mother of Pearl Gibson logo
    • Inlaid Mother of Pearl crown
    • "Made in U.S.A." stamp
    • 14o headstock pitch
  • 22 frets
  • 24 9/16" scale
  • 1 9/16" nut width

    Late 1972 Super Humbucker ad (Ver. 2)

Binding:

  • Single-ply, neck
  • Fret-edge binding
  • Thinner style

Electronics:

  • Two "T-Top" humbuckers (Version 1 & 2)

    Compare pickguard shapes with & w/o beveling

    • Short bar AlNiCo V magnets
    • ~7.5K Ohms DCR
    • "Gibson" embossed chrome covers
  • Two Bill Lawrence "Super Humbuckers" (Version 2)
    • Indox 7 ceramic magnets
    • ~5.4K (neck), 7.5K (bridge) Ohms DCR
    • Epoxy-mounted
    • AKA "Tarbacks"
    • "Gibson" embossed chrome covers (earlier)
    • Blank chrome covers (later)
  • 3-way switch
  • Version 2, Tarbacks w/ embossed covers

    2 Vol, 2 Tone
    • CTS 500k pots

Hardware:

  • Chrome Hardware
  • Schaller M6 Keystone tuning machines
    • 12:1 ratio

      Version 2

    • Metal Schaller-style or Keystone buttons
  • Grover Rotomatic tuning machines
    • 14:1 ratio
    • Metal Keystone buttons
  • 5-ply elevated Les Paul pickguard (Ver. 1)
  • 5-ply pseudo-"Angel Wing" pickguard (Ver. 2)
  • Bell shaped truss rod cover
    • Single-ply black, beveled (random)
    • 2-ply b/w, un-beveled (random)
  • Black Witch Hat knobs w/ pointers (Ver. 1 & 2)
  • Black Speed knobs w/ pointers (Ver. 2)
  • ABR-1 Tune-O-Matic bridge and Bigsby vibrola
  • Schaller "Harmonica" Tune-O-Matic bridge and Bigsby vibrola

Finishes:

  • Cherry
  • Walnut
  • Natural 

1971 - 1972 Stereo Deluxe

Same as 1971-1972 Deluxe, but with separate stereo outputs and dual slide switches. Only 79 units produced.

72 stereo setup-0.jpg

1973-1975

1975 (Aftermarket bridge)

Body:

  • Beveled, solid Honduran Mahogany body
    • Un-beveled cutaways
  • Nitrocellulose Lacquer finish

Neck:

  • 3-pc laminated Honduran Mahogany
  • Set-in construction
    • 3 degree pitch
    • Titebond glue
    • Joins body at 18th fret
  • Indian Rosewood fretboard
    • Acrylic trapezoid inlays
    • 12" radius
  • Volute
  • Large Open Book headstock
    • Resin impregnated fiberboard veneer
    • Inlaid Mother of Pearl Gibson logo
    • Inlaid Mother of Pearl crown
    • "Made in U.S.A." stamp
    • 14o pitch
  • 22 frets
  • 24 9/16" scale
  • 1 9/16" nut width

Binding:

  • Single-ply, neck
  • Fret-edge binding

    1975

  • Thinner style

Electronics:

  • Two "T-Top" humbuckers
    • Short bar AlNiCo V magnets
    • ~7.5K Ohms DCR
  • 3-way switch
  • 2 Vol, 2 Tone
    • CTS 500k pots

Hardware:

1975

  • Chrome Hardware
  • Schaller M6 tuning machines
    • 12:1 ratio
    • Metal Schaller-style or Keystone buttons
  • Grover Rotomatic tuning machines
    • 14:1 ratio
    • Metal Keystone buttons
  • 5-ply Les Paul pickguard
  • Bell shaped truss rod cover
    • 2-ply b/w, blank
  • Black Reflector knobs
  • ABR-1 Tune-O-Matic bridge & stopbar tailpiece
  • Optional Gibson-branded Bigsby vibrola

Finishes:

  • Cherry (12 units)
  • Walnut (3 units)
  • Natural (1 unit)

1998 - 1999

1999

Body:

  • Beveled, solid Mahogany body
  • Nitrocellulose Lacquer finish

Neck:

  • 1-pc quartersawn Mahogany
  • "1959 Slim Taper" profile (.790" / .900")
  • Set-in construction
    • Joins body at 19th fret
  • Rosewood fretboard (1998)
    • Acrylic dot inlays
    • 12" radius
  • Ebony fretboard (1999)
    • Mother of Pearl small block inlays
    • 12" radius
  • Narrow Open Book headstock
    • Silkscreened Gibson logo
    • "Made in U.S.A." stamp
    • 17o pitch
  • 22 frets
  • 24 9/16" scale
  • 1 11/16" nut width

1998

Electronics:

  • Three 490R/498T mini-humbuckers
    • AlNiCo II (neck & middle) & V (bridge) magnets
    • 17k (neck & middle), 26k (bridge) Ohms D.C.R.
    • Chrome covers
  • 6-way rotary switch
  • 1 Vol, 1 Tone

Hardware:

  • Chrome Hardware
  • Gotoh locking Kluson-reissue tuning machines
    • 12:1 ratio
    • Chrome oval-shaped buttons
  • 3-ply pearloid pickguard
  • Bell shaped truss rod cover
    • 3-ply pearloid/black
  • Black Reflector knobs (1998)
  • Black Bell knobs (1999)
  • Nashville Tune-O-Matic bridge
  • "Maestro" engraved Bigsby tremolo

Finishes:

  • Ebony
  • Blue Ice
  • Hellfire Red

2013

Cobalt Fade

  • $4,332 MSRP
  • $2,599 Street
  • $1,649 Street (Black Friday Sale)
  • $2,499 Street (Gibson Demo)

Body:

  • Beveled, solid Honduran Mahogany body
    • Grade A
  • AA figured Maple top
  • Deep cutaway beveling
  • Nitrocellulose Lacquer finish

Neck:

  • 1-pc quartersawn Honduran Mahogany
  • Set-in construction
    • Titebond glue
    • Standard style heel
    • Joins body at 19th fret
  • Slim Taper profile (.800" / .875")
  • Rosewood fretboard
    • Mother of Pearl split diamond inlays
    • Grade A
    • 12" radius
  • Narrow Open Book headstock
    • Resin impregnated fiberboard veneer
    • Inlaid Mother of Pearl Gibson logo
      • Classic font style
    • Inlaid Mother of Pearl split diamond
    • "Made in U.S.A." stamp
    • 17o pitch
  • Red Fade

    24 frets
  • 24 9/16" scale
  • 1 11/16" nut width

Binding:

  • Neck, single-ply
    • Fret-edge binding
    • Thicker style
  • Headstock, single-ply

Electronics:

  • Three '57 Classic humbuckers
    • AlNiCo II magnets

      Lime Burst

    • ~7.9k Ohms DCR
  • 3-way switch
    • "Tog Pot" middle pickup volume control
  • 2 Vol, 2 Tone

Hardware:

  • Chrome hardware
  • Grover Roto-Grip Locking Rotomatic tuners
    • 18:1 ratio
    • Manufactured by Ping
  • Bell shaped truss rod cover
    • Orange Burst

      2-ply black/white
    • Beveled edges
    • "Deluxe" script
  • Black Reflector knobs
  • Nashville Tune-O-Matic bridge
  • Bigsby tremolo

Finishes:

  • Lime Burst
  • Cobalt Fade
  • Orange Burst
  • Red Fade
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