Author Topic: Single-pickup Thunderbird II Custom Shop  (Read 7028 times)

vates

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Single-pickup Thunderbird II Custom Shop
« on: November 24, 2010, 08:15:36 AM »
I am very glad to join this community and here is my first question.

I've seen here and there some pictures (like the one attached) of Thunderbird II basses that've been marked as later (80-s or something) Custom Shop production.
But I cannot find any info on these basses anywhere. Like years of production, numbers, prices, specs, availability, any user thoughts and so on.

Maybe you can help me?

Thanks,

Serge

mc2NY

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Re: Single-pickup Thunderbird II Custom Shop
« Reply #1 on: November 24, 2010, 08:39:38 AM »
That one's mine....(and my favorite "go to" Tbird that I own.)

Gibson did a special small run of these in 1986 for key Gibson dealers in Japan, mostly in Polaris White color with ebony fingerboards. The ones from this run all have the Gibson Custom Shop decal on the back of the headstock.

I was told it was a run of only six but I ran across a post on the internet that states it may have been around 20.

Either way...they are VERY rare. I've seen three of them so far, including mine and the one Uwe owns,  all Polaris White.

...I wish I could find another! I'd actually passed on a second one about a week after I'd bought this one, not realizing how rare it was at the time....and haven't found another since in six or seven years. DUH!!
« Last Edit: November 24, 2010, 09:21:07 AM by mc2NY »

TBird1958

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Re: Single-pickup Thunderbird II Custom Shop
« Reply #2 on: November 24, 2010, 09:15:16 AM »

 Hey Serge,

Welcome here to the real Gibson bass forum!
And thanks Jon for that cool pic of your bass, that's one 'Bird I still really GAS for  :)
Resident T Bird playing Drag Queen www.thenastyhabits.com  "Impülsivê", the new lush fragrance as worn by the unbelievable Fräulein Rômmélle! Traces of black patent leather, Panzer grease, mahogany and model train oil mingle and combust to one sheer sensation ...

OldManC

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Re: Single-pickup Thunderbird II Custom Shop
« Reply #3 on: November 24, 2010, 11:00:56 AM »
The one I owned (Uwe has it now) didn't have the custom shop decal and didn't show any evidence of ever having been repaired. When I wrote Gibson about it the guy who responded said that they made a few after the Japan run as special orders. I've seen pictures of a black one and a beautiful burst one as well, but all the rest (including mine) were white (or cream now).







 

mc2NY

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Re: Single-pickup Thunderbird II Custom Shop
« Reply #4 on: November 24, 2010, 12:07:46 PM »
The one I owned (Uwe has it now) didn't have the custom shop decal and didn't show any evidence of ever having been repaired. When I wrote Gibson about it the guy who responded said that they made a few after the Japan run as special orders. I've seen pictures of a black one and a beautiful burst one as well, but all the rest (including mine) were white (or cream now).


Looks like a couple of those have rosewood fingerboards?

Mine and the other I could've bought both had ebony.

Hmmmm?

TBird1958

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Re: Single-pickup Thunderbird II Custom Shop
« Reply #5 on: November 24, 2010, 12:21:05 PM »


 Now I'm all sproingky for a bass I can't have  :-\
Resident T Bird playing Drag Queen www.thenastyhabits.com  "Impülsivê", the new lush fragrance as worn by the unbelievable Fräulein Rômmélle! Traces of black patent leather, Panzer grease, mahogany and model train oil mingle and combust to one sheer sensation ...

Highlander

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Re: Single-pickup Thunderbird II Custom Shop
« Reply #6 on: November 24, 2010, 02:17:08 PM »
Lady, youse jush needsh that lottery win, an' then the worlsh your oyshter...

(think Spike in T&J) ;)

Oh yeah, an welcome to comune, Serge
Staring at the event horizon is a dirty job, but someone has to do it...

BIONIC-JOE

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Re: Single-pickup Thunderbird II Custom Shop
« Reply #7 on: November 24, 2010, 05:11:33 PM »
BAD ASS!!!!! Jon, I want that bass!!! Ha! Nothing beats a Thunderbird II!!!!!! Wish they would make them now.

OldManC

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Re: Single-pickup Thunderbird II Custom Shop
« Reply #8 on: November 24, 2010, 09:59:55 PM »
Wish they would make them now.

Wouldn't that be cool? Then I'd only have to buy one pickup when ridding it of that hideous black hardware!  ;)

vates

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Re: Single-pickup Thunderbird II Custom Shop
« Reply #9 on: November 25, 2010, 01:44:55 AM »
Thank you all for you kind greetings, your answers, info and pics provided!
Special thanks to TBird1958 for giving me a hint to visit this forum a while ago.


All is much clearer now. I assume, these are closer to vintage specs with all-mahogany neck (not like a later mahogany-walnut lamination)?

Thanks again for all your inputs!

BIONIC-JOE

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Re: Single-pickup Thunderbird II Custom Shop
« Reply #10 on: November 25, 2010, 05:36:56 AM »
Uh..All REAL Gibson Reverse Thunderbirds have 9 ply walnut and mahogany. You're thinking of the Gibson Firebirds or maybe some of the prototypes or early models that had 1 or 2 piece necks.

uwe

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Re: Single-pickup Thunderbird II Custom Shop
« Reply #11 on: November 25, 2010, 06:44:29 AM »
Only the 1963 Thunderbirds had a full maho neck, they introduced walnut in 1964. The all maho neck really isn't a quality characteristic, it costs more to do the nine-ply process and it makes sense from a stability prerspective.

I have a faded black one-off from 2006 that - miraculously - has a full maho neck, I guess they couldn't be bothered to find a nine-ply piece of wood in that one singular case. Does it sound different to my other Birds? Not a bit.

Uwe
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BIONIC-JOE

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Re: Single-pickup Thunderbird II Custom Shop
« Reply #12 on: November 25, 2010, 08:06:15 AM »
I think they only made 2 thunderbird basses in 1963, both Thunderbird II's, am I right? Say Uwe, do you have any original T bird Saddles that are unnotched??? Like the one on your purple Burst Thunderbird IV that used to be mine that you got from Kevin??

vates

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Re: Single-pickup Thunderbird II Custom Shop
« Reply #13 on: November 25, 2010, 08:55:19 AM »
Thank you for these details. I always though the original 1963-1965 TBirds II were all-mahogany.

Hornisse

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Re: Single-pickup Thunderbird II Custom Shop
« Reply #14 on: November 25, 2010, 09:00:31 AM »
Thank you for these details. I always though the original 1963-1965 TBirds II were all-mahogany.

I always thought the Embassy necks were full mahogany until I saw the recent purchase by dadagoboi.