The Gibson Explorer captures classic Explorer styling with its radical body shape that debuted in 1958. Its debute was considered to be almost 20 years ahead of its time since it wasn't until the late 1970s that rock and roll artists really started to embrace the Explorer, and this Gibson Explorer captures all the flare of the classic 1976 style.
Gibson Explorer Electric Guitar Features
- Mahogany body
- Rounded mahogany neck
- 496R and 500T humbuckers
- Tune-o-matic bridge
- Mini Grover tuners
- Includes hardshell case
With its angular, asymmetrical body and pointed headstock, the legendary Gibson Explorer was light years ahead of its time when it was first introduced in 1958. In fact, the Explorer was such a radical departure that Gibson produced only about 100 of the famed instruments, many of which are now highly prized collectibles selling for upwards of half a million dollars. Today, the same far-out, futuristic Gibson Explorer, reintroduced in the mid-1970s, is one of the most coveted powerhouses of screaming rock and roll.
The Explorer Neck Profile
No guitar neck profiles are more distinguishable than the neck profiles employed on the Gibson models of today. The more traditional '50s neck profile is the thicker, more rounded contour, emulating the neck shapes of Gibson's iconic models of the late 1950s. The '60s neck profile is considered the more modern, slim-tapered contour most commonly associated with the Gibson models of the early 1960s. The neck on Gibson's Explorer has the best of both worlds, it is a hybrid between the '50s rounded contour and the '60s slim-taper profile. As with all Gibson necks, it is machined in Gibson's rough mill using wood shapers to make the initial cuts. Once the fingerboard gets glued on, the rest is done by hand. That means there are no two necks with the exact same dimensions. So while it still has the basic characteristics of its respective profile, each neck will be slightly different, with a distinct but traditional feel.
Solid Mahogany Body
The most central feature of any Explorer is its mahogany body, which provides players a well-balanced, weight-reduced guitar alternative, with absolutely no compromises in tone, sustain, or performance. The Explorer's body is a solid piece of mahogany in the classic style of the 1976 Explorer. The mahogany goes through the same rigorous selection process as all of Gibson's woods, and is personally inspected and qualified by Gibson's team of skilled wood experts before it enters the factories. Inside the Gibson factories, humidity is maintained at 45 percent, and the temperature at 70 degrees. This ensures all woods are dried to a level of equilibrium, where the moisture content does not change during the manufacturing process. This guarantees tight-fitting joints and no expansion, and controls the shrinkage and warping of the woods, in addition to reducing the weight. It also improves the woods' machinability and finishing properties. Consistent moisture content means that a Gibson guitar will respond evenly to temperature and humidity changes long after it leaves the factory.
Gibson’s 496R and 500T Pickups
No event is more responsible for dramatically influencing the evolution of popular music than Gibson's introduction of the double-coil humbucking pickup in 1955. From the warm jazz tones of Charlie Christian, to the world-shaking rockabilly of Scotty Moore, and the crunching rock of Jimmy Page, countless players around the world explored the limitless possibilities of the tonal spectrum through Gibson pickups and guitars. As the musical landscape changed, so did the development of the humbucker pickup. Introduced in the early 1970s, Gibson's 496R and 500T pickups filled the need for more powerful humbuckers and energized the emergence of hard rock and heavy metal. The 496R produces incredible sustain and cutting power with its ceramic magnet, adding more highs with increased definition and no muddiness at all. The 500T is one of Gibson's most powerful pickups, containing a three ceramic magnet structure, which enables a no-holds-barred rock and roll crunch that never loses its rich combination of enhanced lows and crystal clear highs. This is one of Gibson's most potent pickup combinations.
The angled headstock is another example of Gibson's industry-changing way of thinking. Every Gibson headstock is carved out of the same piece of mahogany as the neck then fitted with Gibson's traditional wing blocks. It is not a glued-on headstock, and the process takes craftsmanship, time, and effort. But the rewards are worth the effort. The headstock is carefully angled at 17 degrees, which increases pressure on the strings and helps them stay in the nut slots. An increase in string pressure also means there is no loss of string vibration between the nut and the tuners, which equals better sustain.
American Musical Supply; an Authorized Gibson Internet Retailer
AmericanMusical.com has been selected as one of Gibson's very few Authorized Internet Retail Sites in the United States. As one of these select few Internet sites, AMS offers an unparalleled selection of all of Gibson’s premium brands, all covered by Gibson’s Limited Lifetime Warranty; only available from Authorized Gibson retailers.
Gibson is recognized as one of the most respected guitar builders in the world. AMS is proud to have a decades-long history with them and honored that Gibson has chosen us to bring their world-class instruments to you. Look for more new product announcements, special events and promotions in the coming months.
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