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Dec 6, 2023 - 7:52:38 AM
813 posts since 11/9/2003

Does anyone know what year Gibson went from the 3 reasonator lugs to the modern 4 reasonator lugs ? I noticed some prewar banjos have 4 reasonator lugs and other models have 3. Model specific maybe ? I did a search on the hangout and this info did not come up. Maybe it hasn't been posted in the past.

Dec 6, 2023 - 9:15:38 AM
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14809 posts since 6/2/2008

My understanding:

Pre-war Mastertone: 4 lugs

Pre-war sub-Mastertone: 3 lugs (from some photos I've seen)

Post-war through end of 60s: xB 100, 150, 250, 500, 800: 3 lugs

Post-war 1970 forward: 4 lugs (came back with TPF RB-250); I've seen photo of 4-lug 70s RB-100

 

It's possible the photos I've seen aren't representative across all production.

Check out EarnestBanjo.com for a run-down on pre-war designs.

Edited by - Old Hickory on 12/06/2023 09:17:30

Dec 6, 2023 - 9:38:02 AM
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2749 posts since 1/4/2009

clarification on ken's post, some prewar sub mastertones, like my 1930 style 1 and my 27 and 28 style 2s have 4 resonator lugs, but the later 30s most sub mastertones had 3.

Dec 6, 2023 - 9:56:19 AM
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3483 posts since 4/7/2010

quote:
Originally posted by Old Hickory

My understanding:

 

Post-war 1970 forward: 4 lugs (came back with TPF RB-250); I've seen photo of 4-lug 70s RB-100


A 1976 RB-100 came into my shop last week. It has 4 resonator lugs.

 

Bob Smakula

smakulafrettedinstruments.com

Dec 6, 2023 - 1:56:29 PM
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5514 posts since 5/29/2011

Ken and Kyle's comments are accurate but you could always count on Gibson to be inconsistent. I have seen a couple of Bow Tie Mastertones that had four lugs. One was a mid-fifties model and the other was from the late sixties. Both were RB250's.

Dec 7, 2023 - 9:35:59 AM

377 posts since 2/14/2013
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To answer your question was not originally a year-related change, and a 4-lug layout is not necessarily a modern arrangement. There were both 4-lug and 3-lug models in the pre-war era, and some models, such as style 1s and style 2s, could come with 3 or 4 lugs. The prewar 3-lug models had the 2 forward thumbscrews in the 4-th flange holes back from the neck; shortly after the war, Gibson began placing these thumbscrews in the 3rd flange holes back from the neck

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