Another Burny pickup question. Expert advice appreciated...

MrGansburg

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Firstly, apologies that this is not about a Les Paul but I’ve had so much advice from here before re Japanese guitars I thought it’d be the ideal place to ask.

I have a Burny Explorer that I’m planning to refinish. I’ve looked at the catalogues at - https://www.fernandes.co.jp/catalog/ - and am pretty sure it’s an early 1980s REX-80 ‘76 model and it has 80108 stamped in the neck pickup cavity.

What I’m unsure about is what pickups are in there (see pics). I think they’re L8001s however I don’t know how this relates to the VH name i.e. VH-1 through to VH-5.

Any help identifying exactly what these are would be greatly appreciated. :thumb:
 

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Roxy13

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I'm defniitely no expert here but I have a 1977 FSG (SG model) with it's serial done the same way. In the pickup cavity with that spot left to the bare wood (they put tape over it, spray the finish, then remove the tape to stamp the number). So I suspect your guitar might be a 1978 instead of a 1980. 1980 also makes sense though so I'm not completely certain. Mine also has the same TRC yours has and so does my 3 pickup SG that's in my avatar. The pickups in both my SGs though have brass baseplates so I really can't say for sure which pickups are in yours. The braided wire might even mean they are the original VH1s that everyone raves about.

@JDZ since I know he's had some FLGs that probably have the original VH1s.
 

wulfman

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To me those look like 1980's or later Fujigen-made pickups. The 2-hole baseplates point to that for me. I don't recall others like that from MIJ 70's models.
 

Roxy13

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They do have Fujigen looking baseplates.

I would say roughly half of the guitars I've bought from Japan have had pickup swaps as well and that can make it harder to figure out what is in there.
 

MrGansburg

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Thanks for the replies so far @Roxy13 and @wulfman. I've been looking around a bit more:


and the fact that I think it is an early 80s guitar (Gibson bell-shaped truss rod cover) with metal colour baseplates and braided wire seems to suggest these may well be early VH-1s. The Fernandes catalogues - https://www.fernandes.co.jp/catalog/ - also show that the REX models were first introduced in 1982 and the catalogues from that era state that there were L8001s in them.

On the right lines...?
 

Roxy13

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You might be. I just don't happen to have a Burny that I can compare with yours. I have these:

1973 approx. FSG 70 with dogear P90s
1977 FSG 75. Original pickups but brass baseplates and grey coated wires
Pre CNC (so probably before 1982?) RSG 70 3 pickup SG in my avatar. Came with the same pickups as the 77 FSG 75
1984 Angus Young RSG 75-AY SG. I'm still not sure if they have VH2 or VH3 as I've seen both listed for this model
1986-88 RLG 90 but did not come with original pickups. Came with 1976 S stamped Maxons
 

wulfman

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I’d guess no to the VH-1 theory. Earlier RLG models have them and they don’t look the same. How is the wiring? Original? Fujigen did make some Burny guitars in the 80s. Hopefully some of the Burny gurus will be able to chime in one way to the other.
 

MrGansburg

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Yes, wiring, pots and caps all look original. No codes on the pots though.
 

R1sky

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FLG’s had VH1s? Well mine certainly didn’t!
 

MrGansburg

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Just wondering if anyone had any further updates on this? I'm no further forward. Thanks
 

Jim_E

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My understanding - those are close to original VH1's but not - braided wire in the top right and on steel plate with 4 brass screws is correct - but the extra wire hole bottom left and lack of zebra coils to me means not VH1's.

I think yours is built too early to have VH1's, personally I've not seen them on anything less than a 90 model and don't think earlier than 1984.

Can you put meter on those pups and ley us know what they read? that's probably going to get you close to a proper answer.
 

MrGansburg

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Thanks to everyone who replied here, apologies for the delay with the pickup readings (circumstances...), but here they are. :fingersx:

IMG_20211101_171534539_HDR~2.jpg


7.26

IMG_20211101_172637715~4.jpg


7.12
 

nopea

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I am not sure about the pickups, they do look like they would be early 80's but I am not sure that they match the date of the guitar. It would appear that it is from 1998 based on the date stamp in the neck pickup cavity (June 1st 1998). Maybe the stamp is from 1988 - but from what I have seen they did not put any date stamps in the pickup cavities at that time (these are date stamps BTW and not serial numbers. I have seen a guitar on Reverb that is the same as mine with the same number stamp).

Perhaps these are not the original pickups?
 

Roxy13

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Yeah, that can be an issue over the originality of the pickups. I would say half the guitars I've bought from Japan came with pickup swaps. That can be part of the fun though to find out what's in there lol. But, if you can't ID them, maybe not so much. In that case if they sound good to you, just keep them and accept you may never get the correct ID on them.
 

nopea

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Yeah, that can be an issue over the originality of the pickups. I would say half the guitars I've bought from Japan came with pickup swaps. That can be part of the fun though to find out what's in there lol. But, if you can't ID them, maybe not so much. In that case if they sound good to you, just keep them and accept you may never get the correct ID on them.
That would be ideal - not sure about the OP but my OCD wouldn't allow that ;):oops:
 

Roxy13

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That would be ideal - not sure about the OP but my OCD wouldn't allow that ;):oops:

It happens though. I've not been able to determine which factory made my 3 oldest Burny SGs. No one ever really paid as much attention to SGs as they did to the singlecuts. I would like to know, but I also realize I've been chasing that ghost on the 77 since 2000. Twenty one years of futility lol.

I also don't know for sure that the one I call an RLG 90 is an RLG 90. It does have nitrate cellulose inlays and a nitro cellulose finish though, but the top is so lightly flamed I can't even say for sure it's a solid top. I've been in those pickup cavities several times and I can't say with certainty that it is or isn't. It might be a custom order and not exactly an RLG90.

I had a strange old Edwards too that now belongs to someone here that was most definitely a solid top and not veneer. I've never been able to figure that one out either.

I do have this tendency to zoom in on the weird ones.

I have a strange CAR Edwards that never looks CAR in photos so we first thought it might be a Joe Walsh model. Then it got here and I realized it was a darker CAR finish but it had all it's paperwork so then I figured out it was a special order for Kurosawa. Otherwise I'd still have no idea what that one was.

I also bought a funny Aria that has half a flame top by accident. Not sure how that happened lol. Someone might have been hung over that day when he grabbed wood from the pile.
 

MrGansburg

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That would be ideal - not sure about the OP but my OCD wouldn't allow that ;):oops:

That's the thing, on the one hand it's really bugging me but I'm also thinking that I should let it go and just enjoy/sell them on with all the info I have managed to gather so far.
 

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