How to Find the Value of a Gibson Acoustic Guitar

By Kevin Irons ; Updated September 15, 2017
The Gibson Guitar Corporation makes both electric and acoustic guitars.

Gibson Guitar Corporation was founded in the late 1800s by Orville Gibson and has blossomed into one of the world's leading guitar manufacturers. Gibson made the first electric guitar in 1935 and has pioneered famous guitars such as the Les Paul, the Flying V, the Explorer, the Firebird, and SG. Gibson guitars have been played by rock 'n' roll and blues legends that include Jimmy Page and B.B. King. Finding the value in a Gibson acoustic guitar can be done in a number of common sense ways.

Finding Value in a Gibson Acoustic Guitar

The first way to find value in a Gibson acoustic guitar is to check the guitar's body, neck and head-stock for dings, scratches, nicks or cracks. Damages on any guitar, acoustic or electric, can devalue it significantly. If there are two of the same guitars, the guitar with the least amount of damage will be the more desirable product.

Finding and identifying the serial number inside your Gibson acoustic is another good way of finding value in the instrument. While Gibson's serial numbering system can be confusing and, in some cases, impossible, it still is one of the best ways to tell where and when your instrument was made. The serial number on your Gibson acoustic should be on the inside part of the guitar's sound-hole. Serial numbers on Gibsons made from 1961-1969 and 1970-1975 can be especially confusing because of their length; however, Gibson changed its serial numbers in 1977 to simplify things, and still uses that method. The first two serial numbers will be the years of production, the next three numbers will be the days that it was made, and the last three numbers will be plant designation or the instrument rank.

Knowing which Gibson plant and what type of guitar you have is also important when it comes to finding the value in your Gibson acoustic guitar. Some Gibson collectors highly value acoustic guitars that were manufactured in a particular Gibson plant, which can raise the value on your Gibson acoustic. Gibson collectors value types of acoustics that are not readily available, so the more rare your acoustic guitar is, the higher the value. Generally speaking, the older your Gibson acoustic guitar is, the more valuable it will be.

One of the most sure-fire ways to find out the value of your Gibson acoustic guitar is to contact the Gibson Guitar Corporation. Gibson has a 24-hour, seven-days-a-week customer service phone number for anyone with questions about their instrument. The customer service number is 1-800-444-2766.

Tip

If you want more information on Gibson's serial number system, check the link in the References section marked Gibson Serialization: Blue Book of Electric Guitars Sixth Edition

About the Author

Kevin Irons graduated in May 2008 from Saint Leo University with a bachelor's degree in creative writing. He's been writing professionally since 2008 and is pursuing his Master of Fine Arts in creative writing. He has expertise in surfing, playing music and sports.