Epiphones Getting Gibson Headstock Designs Soon


Senior Member
Jun 3, 2017
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Gibson are fine with using the open book headstock on their other brands as long as they aren't in direct competition. Which also means we probably won't see it on regular Epis anytime soon.

Walmart Maestros

Japan domestic market Orvilles/Epis


Senior Member
Apr 30, 2009
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With a declining market share I've been saying for a long time build Gibsons at the China factory they own and leave a custom shop in Nashville.
There are Gibson managers who've been recommending this for the last decade. I've had beers with a few of them. My thought is to begin a Gibson (China) brand that's theoretically limited to the Chinese market. Build them with none-nitro finishes and offer some modern features (Floyds, shaved neck heels, jumbo frets, 16" radius fretboard, etc.). Maintain Nashville as the home of the "lifestyle" guitars at the top end, with fully traditional materials and construction. "Made In the USA" and all that.

At some point, we'll see a grey market in Gibson (China) guitars coming in through Vancouver, etc., and eventually the home office boys will be "forced" to make those available in the US as well. Gibson will eventually become both the traditional builder (in Nashville) and a more modern builder (China) and will have the best of both markets.

Epiphone management is more than capable of producing world-class guitars, but is traditionally limited by Gibson management as part of Gibson's long-standing anti-Epiphone culture. But if it says "Gibson" on the headstock, they'll have to support it. And Epiphone will become a much better brand for it, because sneaky Epiphone management will be able to compete with Gibson (China) as well.


Strange kind of blues-coloured moon
Jul 22, 2012
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I think it'll be the opposite. I think the old headstock style will become less desirable so there may be clearance prices at stores to clear out the old stock to make room for the new.
At first, yes.

But I reckon within five years 'pre-book Epi headstock' will become a desirable thing.

Which is fine by me, as an Epiphone devotee.

(By 'devotee', incidentally, I mean only that, below a grand, you get a better guitar from Epiphone than Gibson, generally, bang-for-buck-wise.)


Junior Member
Jun 7, 2012
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Have a JDM Junior with e Gibby headstock
Yeah. That's why I find it odd. JDM are easy to get a hold of, but I've never seen a CDM.

I know the CDM were a limited run, but I would have expected one to appear on a forum somewhere. Would love a go on the Melody Maker....