However, in the beginning this was not done consistently, so that there are also be instruments without identification.
Where to find the serial number The serial number is stamped or punched on the back of the headstock.
This should never be the only method used, but quite often it can help back up evidence already acquired to date an instrument. First you need to get underneath, to the circular disc on the bottom of the shaft at the opposite end of the knob (which may, or may not, have to be removed depending on the instrument).
In most cases if it’s not made unreadable by blobs of solder, you should see a six or seven digit number.
Right: The "inked on" serial number on this 1959 Les Paul Junior has no space between the "9" digit (year) and the rest of the numbers.
This happened only in 1955, 1956, 19 when production required a number above "9999", thus occupying the space. The 1964 number on the left is still a "pressed in" number, though gibson has inked the impression to make it more readable (they started doing this about 1963 or 1964, when serial numbers went to six digits).
We’re not talking about dinner and a movie, of course…
For my first blog post on dating instruments, I’d thought I’d talk about potentiometer or, “Pot” codes which can be used to help date almost all electric instruments, amplifiers, and effects pedals made in the U. The Pots are the small parts responsible for the volume and tone controls.
Left: Oval white label as used from spring 1947 to January 1955.This means that the Pot was manufactured by CTS company in the 15th week of 1974.If your earlier detective work determined that the guitar was probably made in the early 70’s, you can now ascertain that since you always date an instrument by the latest dated part, that it’s most likely from 1974.1935-1937: Letter between the batch number and the order number. 0123 A5 1938-1941: Two or three letters before batch number. If there is a second character follows it is the code for the type of the instrument.(G = Gibson, K = Kalamazoo, W = Recording King (Montgomery Wards).