GUITAR OF THE MONTH: 1976 GIBSON EXPLORER
This rare 1976 Gibson Explorer was one of only 67 finished Alpine White to be shipped in 1976. The serial number falls out of line with the regular models from this year, and the specs differ slightly. This leads us to believe this is a pre-production model made prior to ’76, a slimmer neck profile and slightly different pickguard backs this up.
Originally launched in 1958 as part of the “Modernist” range alongside the Flying V and Moderne, the Explorer was ahead of its time with its radical design. Gibson president from 1950-1966, Ted McCarty, was a key figure in the development of Gibson’s most successful and iconic models including the Les Paul, ES-335 and the “Modernist” range.
The Explorer has slowly built up a strong following over the decades with artists as diverse as The Edge (U2), James Hetfield (Metallica), Lzzy Hale, Bill Kelliher (Mastodon) and even Eric Clapton favouring its rich sound and striking look.
This 1976 explorer is not free from a few scrapes, finish is chipped in all the usual places. The gold hardware has aged nicely over the years, and there’s a strange pattern of dents beneath the bridge lined up perfectly with the strings. The pots date to 1976, all
except the bridge volume which has been replaced.
- Colour: Alpine White
- Body: Mahogany
- Neck: Mahogany
- Neck Profile: Slimmer Shape
- Fingerboard: Rosewood
- Fingerboard Inlays: Pearl Dots
- Fingerboard Radius: 12″ (305 mm)
- Nut Width: 1.695″
- Scale Length: 24.75”
- Frets: 22
- Binding: None
- Pickguard: 1-ply Black
- Tuners: Gold Gibson Deluxe Tuners
- Bridge: Tune-o-Matic w/Stop Bar Tailpiece
- Hardware: Gold Plated
- Pickups: Gold Covered Humbuckers
- Controls: 2 Volume, Master Tone
- No. Of Strings: 6
- Case/Gigbag: Original Black Hardshell w/Purple Lining