Help with vintage ABR-1 Bridge

Slowhands

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Hi, I have been scouring the net for info on vintage ABR-1 bridges and it seems all the gurus are here from the search returns. I'm seeking info on a bridge I bought sight unseen because it was dirt cheap, I liked the old school box and thought it would make a good decoration. But looking at it, seems it might be pretty special.

It has the markings "Gibson ABR-1" with the foundry mark, it has metal saddles and no retaining wire. It came with a rosewood mount in a pristing but clearly old box. All saddles are present, held in place with a piece of ancient masking tape. Based on the markings, the saddles, and the lack of wire, I think this thing might be from the late 50s. But I'm no expert, I'm curious if anyone know enough to point me to a good source to figure it out?
 

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Slowhands

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A couple of better pics, sitting on the rosewood mount. Note the ancient masking tape that held the saddles in place extended to the rosewood at one point (not when I got it) and some is seemingly permanently affixed to it now where you see that light patch. Also note the rosewood condition, it's strangely perfect for something that sat in a box for decades.
 

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ESchmidt

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Looks late 50s to me. The Gibson lettering is flat, the “step” is present to the right of the foundry mark, and the saddles have the diagonal tooling marks consistent with what I have seen on genuine ABR1s from that time period. That all being said, I am no “expert.” I’m sure Eric Ernest will chime in soon and will be able to tell you everything you need to know in a few seconds flat. I would take his opinion as gospel on a matter such as this.
 

Slowhands

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Thanks.

You know, once I peeled the ancient tape that was holding the saddles in place (which left lots of residue you can see in the pic) and got a better look at the saddles, they are not overly used but they are also not pristine smooth. I'm thinking someone did use this for a short time. I've also noticed that in many pix of peoples ABR-1s three saddles face one direction and the other three face the opposite. In mine, they are all facing the same way. Is there a "proper" way to orient them, I wonder? Why would these be different?
 

Slowhands

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Interesting comparison of tone if a modern ABR-1 versus a late 50s ABR-1 in the same Les Paul with no other changes. I am surprised at how different they sound.

 

61LPSG

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Like ESchmidt, I'm not an expert. I believe your bridge is late '50's or early '60's.
I have "no-hole" on a '62 SG that matches yours. I also have a early '60's (63/64) that has the wire holes, and no step next to the foundry mark.
Some where I read that the transition was very early sixties.

P.S. The origonal box had a cardboard filler with a Gibson branded screwdriver , the rosewood base for use on an archtop, and an instruction sheet.
Mine has the price on it. $12.50 :)

Alec
 

Slowhands

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Like ESchmidt, I'm not an expert. I believe your bridge is late '50's or early '60's.
I have "no-hole" on a '62 SG that matches yours. I also have a early '60's (63/64) that has the wire holes, and no step next to the foundry mark.
Some where I read that the transition was very early sixties.

P.S. The origonal box had a cardboard filler with a Gibson branded screwdriver , the rosewood base for use on an archtop, and an instruction sheet.
Mine has the price on it. $12.50 :)

Alec
$12.50? I'll take it!
 




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