1976 gibson explorer

1976 gibson explorer

On October 14, 2012, in Gibson explorer, by admin

1976 Gibson Explorer Question
Hey everyone, I just got a ’76 explorer and was wondering what kinds of pickups were put in them? I tried looking online but couldn’t find anything. I am also new to having a 24 3/4th scale neck and usually put 11′s on my guitars, will 11′s on a Gibson feel like 10′s on a 25 1/2 scale neck? Also if you have a cool/vintage Explorer post a picture!
Thanks!

irstly, welcome to the forum. Nice Explorer, and a Norlin too! Beauty.

If the pickups are original they should be T tops, I think. Try pulling them out next time you do a string change and check them out. I think for a 76 they will have the patent number stamped into the base plate.

As for strings, just try and see what you like best, they’re easy enough to change and it’s not expensive to try different gauges. If you are used to 11′s try them first and see how they feel. Then try 10′s and compare. Personally I use 10-46. Everyone works out what’s best for them.

I have no Explorers, just Les Pauls and an SG, so no pics I’m afraid.

That’s a killer looking Explorer. In fact, I’ve been scouring ebay and various forums looking for one in natural myself – yours looks perfect. Is it an actual 1976 guitar? Or a 76 reissue, as the current production models are often referred to.

I don’t know much about the pickups, but of the two I watched on ebay, they both had these epoxy back pickups, not sure what they are but that looks like some big-ass magnets on the back there.

I think those pickups are the Bill Lawrence super humbuckers.

That is a very attractive explorer. Take good care of her

Thanks for the replies everyone! Thanks for welcoming me! Yes there are 10′s on them now but I don’t think I get the crunch like I do with the 11 gauge strings I have on my other guitars. Will 11′s on my explorer feel like 10′s on a 25 1/2 scale?
Yes it is a 1976, not reissue, the tuners were changed when I got it (still have originals in the case) tail piece and tune o matic bridge were also changed to newer ones (have originals in the case as well). Has the Made in USA, Limited Edition, and Serial number on the back of the headstock.
Thanks for the compliments! Thanks Circus boy! I’ll look up those pickups. & yes Reaper I’ll take very good care of her!
I am going to have it set up later this week and will have the guitar tech check out how the underside of the pickups look like.
Also, I don’t plan to sell it any time soon but how much is this guitar worth? I don’t think it’s worth almost 6k like that one on ebay. That’s pretty high.
Here are some more pictures in case you wanted to see some more!

Looks like a reissue to me……
Maybe I am wrong and they did that finish on a few back then?

That’s no reissue, it’s a real 1976.

I have a set of original tuners for that guitar, 6 on a plate.

The pickups are “Super Humbuckings”, with the parts epoxied into the covers.

VERY cool guitar.
__________________
Cool guitars, extreme repairs and brutal honesty.

Great Explorer!
Didn’t some of the Explorers from back then also come with the Dirty Fingers pups, the ones w/o covers?
__________________
Mark Hatheway..pawn shop king.
“Candles red I have a pair
Shadows dancing everywhere
Burning on the angry chair”

I’ve seen quite a number of these ’76 Explorers for sale. Was there a big run that year?

I feel vindicated – BCR Greg agreed with me about the pickups!!

They are really well regarded over here – I’ve heard a few old SGs with the Bill Lawrence Super Humbuckers in them & they ROAR!!

We’re so happy for you !

But before you walk away with the prize, Gibson used to call a lot of those pickups “Super Humbuckers” including the EB-0 mudbucker.

Could it be the TGA Super Humbucker designed for Howard Roberts, later known as the “Velvet Brick” ?

Or the BL designed “Super Humbucker” in the Sonex/LS6 series ?

Or the BL designed Series VII later to become Dirty Fingers ?

And which were cast in clear resin and which polyester resin ?

Dirty Fingers have the two rows of screws, so I don’t think that’s them.

Wow quite a jump in the number of posts! lol
Thanks BCRgreg for the info. Yeah, I still have the original tuners, as well as the original stop bar tail piece and tune-o-matic bridge. Everything was already changed when I got the guitar, the original stop tail piece was pretty used up, all grey and what not. Must have been used a lot. I’m not sure how many were made, I’m still trying to figure that one out myself! I had it brought to my usual guitar tech for a set up and asked him to take a picture of the underside of the pickups to see what kind they are.

Correct.

The TGA’s had no epoxy, the LS6 had no pole pieces and the Series VII has 2 separate wires.

Notice the short legs designed for early 70′s SG’s, they have a name and a story. Let’s see who knows but don’t call Gibby, they’ll tell you to call Heritage. I know you know Greg !

And I’m so happy for you Dynabite – who-hoo!

I was joking – perhaps next time I can PM you to let you know in advance when someone is having a chuckle.

The guy asked what sort of pickups they were so I told him to the best of my knowledge. They appear to be, from the photo of the pickups lying on the body of the guitar, the pickups that were called Bill Lawrence Super Humbuckers around my way. They were in many of the SGs of the period, as I stated above.

They look nothing like any of the Dirty Fingers that I’ve seen, which from memory came out a few years later in any case. But I guess that you know that already.

And I’m so happy for you Dynabite – who-hoo!

I was joking – perhaps next time I can PM you to let you know in advance when someone is having a chuckle.

The guy asked what sort of pickups they were so I told him to the best of my knowledge. They appear to be, from the photo of the pickups lying on the body of the guitar, the pickups that were called Bill Lawrence Super Humbuckers around my way. They were in many of the SGs of the period, as I stated above.

They look nothing like any of the Dirty Fingers that I’ve seen, which from memory came out a few years later in any case. But I guess that you know that already.

And I’m so happy for you Dynabite – who-hoo!

I was joking – perhaps next time I can PM you to let you know in advance when someone is having a chuckle.

The guy asked what sort of pickups they were so I told him to the best of my knowledge. They appear to be, from the photo of the pickups lying on the body of the guitar, the pickups that were called Bill Lawrence Super Humbuckers around my way. They were in many of the SGs of the period, as I stated above.

They look nothing like any of the Dirty Fingers that I’ve seen, which from memory came out a few years later in any case. But I guess that you know that already.

And you stand correct on both – Super Humbucker & Bill Lawrence but there were a few and this one has a nickname and a history, I’m surprised you didn’t find it yet – It’s not the Dirty Fingers, Velvet Brick, Series VII or the Super Humbucker in the LS6.

What has a nickname and history? The pickups? Made me think of the nickname that was written on the case when I got it, “THE EX”

Explorer ’76 Review

The Gibson Explorer ’76 was made in 1976 (of course!) in the US. It has the famous shape used by many rock and metal guitarists.

Features: 8.5
Sound: 8.5
Action: 9.5
Reliability: 10
Impression: 9

Overall rating: 8.3
Reviewer rating: 9.1
Users rating: 7.5
Votes: 23
Price paid: € 850

Purchased from: An Italian online shop

Features: The Gibson Explorer ’76 was made in 1976 (of course!) in the US. It has the famous shape used by many rock and metal guitarists (Jackson used that shape for their Kelly models too). Here there are the features:

Body: Mahogany
Neck/Profile: Mahogany/Rounded
Fingerboard/Inlay: Rosewood/Dot
Scale/Nut Width: 243/4″/111/16″
Bridge: Tune-o-matic
Hardware: chrome
Pickups: 496R and 500T, both humbucker
Controls: two volume, one tone, three-way Switch
Strings: Brite Wires .009-.042

It also came with a very good hard case. The features are amazing, the only thing I don’t like is the fact that the highest frets (from 19 to 22) are hard to reach. // 9

Sound: The Explorer suits my style perfectly. I play hard rock and metal (mainly power metal) and this guitar is perfect. Very rich, powerful and full sound, no noise at all, pinch harmonics are easy to do and feedbacks comes only when you want. I use it on a Roland Cube 60 and it sounds good on all settings, even on the clean channel. Some people say that the Explorer pickups have a bad clean sound, but it’s not true. I actually like it a lot. You can play everything with this guitar. I’d give 10, but I don’t like so much the sound of the neck pickup. The bridge one is amazing though, I’ll never change it. // 8

Action, Fit & Finish: The guitar was setup perfectly. The action was a bit high, but still comfortable. The strings were a lot better than I expected, and very easy to bend. One of the pickups was moving a little, but it’s an easy thing to fix. Other than this, all stuffs were setup properly: looks like a luthier did his best before shipping. // 9

Reliability & Durability: This guitar is rock solid, including the strap buttons, and will lasts for years. The hardware is very well made, it’s Gibson afterall. I have a Jackson RR3 too but I’d definitely play live with the Explorer without the Jackson as backup. I’m looking forward to start a band and I’m sure the Explorer will be my main guitar for years, even if I become famous. // 10

Impression: I play mainly metal (Edguy, Avantasia, Sentenced, Sonata Arctica, Hammerfall) and a bit of hard rock. I have been playing for 3 years and I have a Jackson RR3 plus two cheap guitars I never use. The Jackson is good, but not good as the Explorer. I’d definitely buy it again if stolen or lost. It’s a perfect guitar, except for the neck pickup and the very last frets that are hard to reach, but they are not a problem for me: I always use the bridge one and I’m a rhythm player and don’t need the 22th fret. //

Tagged with:
 

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

*

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>