3/12/2014

Parts: Early 1960s Gibson "Sideways" Vibrola Unit


Update: Sorry, this unit is sold.

I've had this stashed away in my parts bin after removing it from a 40s Gibson (acoustic) archtop guitar that'd had it mounted along with a jumble of other 1960s parts that I took off. It's time to let it get back to where it belongs: to complete someone's "all original parts" Gibson SG, ES-335 (or 345 or 355), or similar early 60s Gib. It's a complete unit with everything but the original 3 body mounting screws.



The bar can be swiveled back to stow away easily.

A lot of folks removed these units in favor of Bigsby units in the 60s and as a result many of the guitars that came from the factory with these standard no longer wear them. I can only imagine that something similar happened with this little orphan.


What's cool about these things is that they look like a mixup of Art Deco and 50s styling. They're classy and massive.


You can see that the plating is tarnished here and there. I haven't cleaned it up but it certainly would clean up a bunch more if desired.


Here's the mechanism... and you can see why it's called the "sideways" unit as the bar presses in to the side to operate rather than up/down like most other vibratos.


Big old cast parts... and everything working. It looks like it can be adjusted to player preferences, too, but I haven't mucked with it since taking it off the guitar it came on.



Here's why I think this came off of an ES-335/45/55 or similar: it has a trapeze-style "end" hanger which facilitates mounting "over the side" of a semihollow guitar. It could easily be mounted to an SG or similar by removing this extra bit and mounting it to the top, however.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Price?
melvyn *at* melvynhiscock dot com