FAQ: Norlin History

Discussion in 'Norlin Years' started by dwagar, Mar 26, 2009.

  1. Ace Warslave

    Ace Warslave Senior Member

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    One of the books i have for iding gibsons serial numbers was saying,

    that in early 1973 they were having troble sourcing good grade mahogny..

    which possibly explains my 70s 900000s with 3 piece maple neck norlin...:hmm:
     
  2. dwagar

    dwagar V.I.P. Member

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    Don't look down on a 3 pc neck guitar. Historically, Gibson used one piece necks for the cheaper guitars, multi piece for the high end guitars.

    Here's a pretty neck, a Super 400 (pic stolen from Elderly)

    [​IMG]
     
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  3. siempreyo

    siempreyo Member

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    buy a gibson les paul 78 'custom a few days ago and would help me know what kind of body she has, she has neck is three piece maple and three pickups
     
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  4. Ace Warslave

    Ace Warslave Senior Member

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    Lots of good people on here but some nice pics will help..:thumb:
     
  5. parts

    parts Senior Member

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    I was selling/Teaching at a Chicago Thomas Organ store in 1965..I was 16..(I got the beginners that year)..CMI and Gibson..mostly Thomas Organs until the world changed..

    By 1968 we heard the CMI guys talking about a sale of Thomas Organ..Lowry..Gibson..and Vox rights..

    CMI still had some money in the ECL group I think..and even the name..NORLIN..shows that
    “Norlin” was named for Norton Stevens, ECL president, and Maurice Berlin, CMI president.
    This may be well known here..just never saw it mentioned.. CMI still controlled Gibson for a few years later..so
    CMI was the Directing organization until mid 70s..
    Any changes done during that time were , I beleive, CMI management reacting to ECL investment concerns..

    I did NAMM shows for both CMI (FUN TIMES) and NORLIN (Everyone Nervous).. The quality seemed fine..until I left for another group and finishing college..
    By 1971 I was out on the road..and everything seemed distant memory..

    CMI was absorbed by NORLIN mid 70s..Probably as investment targets were not achieved..

    Probably all common knowledge here..but old guys ramble on..LOL

    I own 5 pre 1968 Gibsons..and a 1971 LP cutom..all are excellent and quality instruments..
     
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  6. SpencerJ

    SpencerJ Junior Member

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    I have a 1979 Les Paul Standard that, while I have no doubt of it's authenticity, I suppose I'm curious as to how it came about. From what I understand, by that point, Kalamazoo (which the serial number and various other visual hallmarks indicate as this guitars place of origin) was operating in it's final phase of a "Giant Custom Shop", so I'm curious as to how a Standard passed through there. It has a two piece top, as opposed to the standard 3 of that era, and in case your wondering, it's not a KM model (you can see the indentation of where the original Kluson, as opposed to the Grovers on the KM)

    Help?,
    Spencer
     
  7. Vincent R.

    Vincent R. Member

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    Please a question:
    is the short tennon an higher high-quality preferible reliable way than longer tennon ?
    By watching the pic into this link i get the feeling the short tennon make the body to stay with much more wood thickness, doesnt it?? While the long tennon way needs to cut much more wood from the body. I like much more the short one! What do you all think about? Thanks a bunch
    (BTW Merry Xmas holidays and happy new year! :wave:)
    http://www.mylespaul.com/forums/gibson-les-pauls/50210-gibson-les-paul-101-a.html
     
  8. 79standard

    79standard Senior Member

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    BUMP :wave:
     
  9. tele0123

    tele0123 Senior Member

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    I love my Norlin but it's kinda weird how some of these got out with inconsistent features...such as my 78 Std with non pancake body and no volute or made in the USA stamp.
    A solid boat anchor that just rocks ....Oh my acking back :(
     
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  10. Progrocker111

    Progrocker111 Senior Member

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    No volute on 78? :shock: Are you sure the the neck wasnt sanded or repaired?

    :photos:
     
  11. tele0123

    tele0123 Senior Member

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    Used to be Ebony and it's been refinished but no breaks....don't know why someone would sand one down otherwise.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
     
  12. Kris Ford

    Kris Ford Senior Member

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    This post is huge and probably one of the most fact based and intelligent ones on this thread....one thing that needs to be cleared up is that NORLIN wasn't even a word until 1974!!!!!! Obviously not common knowledge if 70-74 if they are called NORLIN. This is simply just incorrect, and this is how misinformation becomes facts on these forums...
    Thus, from '70-'74 should state something like "ECL owned CMI" or "Pre-merger period"
    Gibson remained under the control of CMI until 1974 when it became a subsidiary of Norlin Musical Instruments. Norlin Musical Instruments was a member of Norlin Industries which was named for ECL president Norton Stevens and CMI president Arnold Berlin.
    So yes, CMI still ran the show, even while "owned" by someone else..if you look at brochures from 70-74..still says Gibson, INC. Then by '75, will say NORLIN...
    So it's very important for people to know that it was NOT called NORLIN right off the bat.
     
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  13. Progrocker111

    Progrocker111 Senior Member

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    Exactly. :)

    People often forget too, that all typical "Norlin" features (pancake body, three piece necks, transitional tenon etc.) were incorporated in 1969, not in 70. So they arent Norlin features.

    Typical Norlin era features, were for example maple necks, short tenon etc, bigger neck angles etc, simply all what came in 75 and later.
     
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  14. 1981 LPC

    1981 LPC Senior Member

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    I stumbled upon interesting posts made on the lespaulforum by member Big Al. New info (to me at least) and since he's not a member I thought I'd copy-paste.

     
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  15. Kris Ford

    Kris Ford Senior Member

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    I believe Big Al is a member here too..regardless, what he has to say speaks volumes. Far more truth based than some idiot who's never even owned or played Gibsons from this era spouting off with unfounded biases..I never even knew the Norlin era was so terrible until the Internet...
     
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  16. tele0123

    tele0123 Senior Member

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    Yea......Ya got that right.
     
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  17. CaptSouth

    CaptSouth Junior Member

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    My 1980 Cherry LP born on 6/4/1980 plays very well and never had an issue with quality.
     
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  18. Kris Ford

    Kris Ford Senior Member

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  19. Mats A

    Mats A Senior Member

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    What does it mean that they got wider bindings in 1969? Was it all around the guitar?
     
  20. Chris B.

    Chris B. Senior Member

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    Just piping in to say I had a 1981/9182 LP Std from that era. It was probably the best guitar I ever owned. So, ya. No issues here with Norlin era Gibbies.

    Unfortunately, I had to sell it along the way to pay rent. :(
     

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