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  1. #1
    Hang 'Em High Reckless Fable's Avatar
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    11.28.17 @ 10:56 AM
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    Default Help and Questions About a 1982 Gibson Flying V (Designer Series)

    So, I was recently bequeathed a really cool old guitar. I'd love to get everyone's thoughts on what I should go about doing with this. I'm a piece of crap when it comes to working on my guitars besides basic stuff, so maybe this is a great instrument to work on.

    It is a 1982 Gibson Flying V. I've never seen this paint job before and Google brought me to this page. It is part of an art series Gibson did: http://www.flying-v.ch/f_83desi/1983desi.htm
    The above site refers to this series in 1983, but the serial number is clearly a 1982.

    The previous owner wasn't the one that played the guitar. He bought it for his son new who played it until he left for college, then it sat in their basement since 1991. It definitely has a number of dings, scratches and paint chips. Overall, I like that it doesn't look that clean, though.

    The electronics are in great shape. Everything sounds great. All the pickups sound great. The pots are clean, which is amazing considering how long it sat in a dank basement.

    Problems: apart from the physical blemishes, the Kahler Bridge. Maybe all these years of playing Floyd's and fixed bridges spoiled me, but I hate it. It is missing a tuning knob. It looks like the previous owner removed the locking nut on the top as you can see where it was previous screwed in.

    Anyway, how would you go about giving this baby a makeover? The only thing I don't want to do is repaint or fix the dings. I kind of like 'em.

    Also, any idea what this things is worth? There is a WIDE range of prices online of anything from $400 - $3000.






  2. #2
    Baluchitherium
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    That's a cool find RF. If you want to fix it up yourself I'm sure you will get tons of help here.

    I'm not big on doing major changes myself either. Also not fond of Kahlers.

    If the neck, frets, electronics, tuners etc all seem good it isn't too bad. The nut looks a little mangled.

    What I would do is clean the thing up of the grime it accumulated in that person's basement. I'd then connect with a great local guitar tech, get his feedback and have him get it in good shape. I'd either upgrade the Kahler to a Floyd or a stop tail piece. Going with a pro is a quick easy and guaranteed way to get it in prime playing shape with no frustration.

    It looks odd how the high e string is popping off the nut. I'm not sure what they removed there if it was a string tree or a kahler part.

    Good luck with it. Post a pic when it's all done. Gibson V's are a classic.
    [SIGPIC][/SIGPIC]

  3. #3
    Baluchitherium noise next door's Avatar
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    12.14.17 @ 11:18 AM
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    Nice Guitar

    Get it cleaned and set up by a PRO... then go from there.

  4. #4
    Hang 'Em High Reckless Fable's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by At0micPunk View Post
    That's a cool find RF. If you want to fix it up yourself I'm sure you will get tons of help here.

    I'm not big on doing major changes myself either. Also not fond of Kahlers.

    If the neck, frets, electronics, tuners etc all seem good it isn't too bad. The nut looks a little mangled.

    What I would do is clean the thing up of the grime it accumulated in that person's basement. I'd then connect with a great local guitar tech, get his feedback and have him get it in good shape. I'd either upgrade the Kahler to a Floyd or a stop tail piece. Going with a pro is a quick easy and guaranteed way to get it in prime playing shape with no frustration.

    It looks odd how the high e string is popping off the nut. I'm not sure what they removed there if it was a string tree or a kahler part.

    Good luck with it. Post a pic when it's all done. Gibson V's are a classic.
    Ha! That's a good eye. I think a new nut might fix the E string slippage. All the 82 V's I've seen out there don't have the string tree on them.

    I think this would look pretty sweet with a stop tail piece. I'll be ripping through Hot For Teacher in no time!

  5. #5
    Baluchitherium
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    It's a real odd tremelo.

    Here is a pic of a guitar with the same trem, showing the odd mechanism on the headstock which is missing off yours.


    Is there any routing at all under that Kahler?
    [SIGPIC][/SIGPIC]

  6. #6
    Sinner's Swing!
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    11.25.17 @ 09:06 AM
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    Yeah, Kahler's...You either love 'em, or hate 'em. The Kahler locking nuts were abismal. That's why Jerry Cantrell upgraded his to a Floyd locking one.
    If I remember, most Kahler's have a route under the bridge to accomodate their spring mech. (I didn't do any direct conversions from Kahler to Floyd on this model, though I have done some repair patches on bodies that had the typical 7300 style. Actually, the Kahler isn't a terrible trem at all, but it's a different feel from a Floyd, or standard Fender style, but some grow to like the feel a lot.
    The main complaint is the amount of set up and maintenance.
    I'm impressed the electronics are still sound.
    I'd just give it to a pro if you don't feel comfortable doing the clean up yourself, like the others said.
    As far as price.....With a lot of the typical "80's graphic designs", it really comes down to the "It's worth as much or little as what someone is willing to pay: adage. 80's designs are kinda polarizing. some think it looks cool and retro, others think it's cheezy and gaudy.
    That's not to say it's good or bad, it's just not of a standardized price point of a commonly classic finished guitar.
    If you dig it, and feel the price is fair, go for it.
    Last edited by we die young; 04.17.13 at 06:35 PM.

  7. #7
    Top Of The World AtomicPunk91's Avatar
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    Cool find.

    Gibson seemed to stick the Kahler trem on everything in the '81-'85 timeline. Les Paul's, SG's, Flying V's... The Kahler was able to fit in the existing bridge holes without modification.



    The nut is top mounted.



    Yes, there will be a big cavity underneath the trem like this,



    Factory installed units won't be as sloppy as that Custom, and the bell truss cover will be fitted. So yours is most likely factory installed.

    Unless you want to route out a spring cavity, plug the Kahler trem, route the trem block route and Floyd post holes, you're most likely stuck with the Kahler. You'd have to route the neck for a Floyd nut shelf as well. Your other option is to plug the cavity and install a normal stoptail.

    I'd recommend cleaning it up, installing a new nut, and a Kahler nut and enjoying the heck out of it.
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  8. #8
    Top Of The World AtomicPunk91's Avatar
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    Oh also, yours is a 1984, made on August 18th, and was the 95th guitar stamped that day. The serial number goes as follows,

    YDDDYRRR
    YY is the production year
    DDD is the day of the year
    RRR is the factory ranking/plant designation number.

    It was also made in the Nashville plant and not the Kalamazoo plant.
    Atomic Punk Guitars
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    "Life is like music; sometimes it's the silence in between the notes that is most important..."

    "I'd rather be a failure with my own music, than a success off of someone else's music..." - Edward Van Halen

  9. #9
    Hang 'Em High Reckless Fable's Avatar
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    11.28.17 @ 10:56 AM
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    Quote Originally Posted by At0micPunk View Post
    It's a real odd tremelo.

    Here is a pic of a guitar with the same trem, showing the odd mechanism on the headstock which is missing off yours.


    Is there any routing at all under that Kahler?
    Unfortunately, it is routed. Where the Floyd is all one piece, the Kahler is two. The outside/base frame sits on top of the and it drilled right into it. The middle part, about 2.5 inches or so, is routed and that is the part that pulls up and down.

    I emailed the son and he told me that he took off the bridge locking nut because it was a huge pain in the neck to change strings and tune. Apparently each string had its own lock (unlike almost every other lock I've seen that has 3).

    Looks like I should just get this guy working. Other than the missing piece, the bridge seems to be working fine and the intonation is surprisingly good for something that's been sitting idle for so long.

  10. #10
    Hang 'Em High Reckless Fable's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by AtomicPunk91 View Post
    Oh also, yours is a 1984, made on August 18th, and was the 95th guitar stamped that day. The serial number goes as follows,

    YDDDYRRR
    YY is the production year
    DDD is the day of the year
    RRR is the factory ranking/plant designation number.

    It was also made in the Nashville plant and not the Kalamazoo plant.
    That's tremendous. Heh. It's like Ralphie decoding Orhan Annie's message with his decoder ring.

    "BESURETODRINKYOUROVALTINE."

    Good stuff man.

  11. #11
    Hang 'Em High Reckless Fable's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by AtomicPunk91 View Post
    Oh also, yours is a 1984, made on August 18th, and was the 95th guitar stamped that day. The serial number goes as follows,

    YDDDYRRR
    YY is the production year
    DDD is the day of the year
    RRR is the factory ranking/plant designation number.

    It was also made in the Nashville plant and not the Kalamazoo plant.
    This makes total sense now. All the stuff that I was reading online didn't seem to add up. Of course, being stupid, I thought I had this rare gem! Nope. If it is too good to be true, it probably is.

    One other thing that Gibson was stupid about was where they put the strap button. It is right on the tip of the top wing. Horrendous. You rest the guitar on the tip of its wings. This one is pretty damaged and the screw is bent in about 3 different directions. I think I might just drill a new one about halfway down the wing.

 

 

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