Gibson ES-333 left-handed. A superb instrument.
The Gibson ES-333 has the following minor differences from it’s more famous cousin, the ES-335:
– the ES-333 has a satin finish,not a gloss finish
– the ES-333 has exposed, not covered, humbucker pick-ups
– the ES-333 has a silkscreen Gibson logo, not an inlaid pearloid logo
– the ES-333 has an electronics access lid (pictured here) on its back versus the solidback of theES-335
These differences are so minimal that whilst the ES-333 was in production, its sales were apparently undermining the sales of the ES-335.
Consequently, the production of the ES-333 which commenced in 2003 was ceased in 2005. As the ES-333 was only made for a period of two years it has become a collector’s item in Gibson circles.
This particular guitar was made in Memphis, USA, on 16 July 2003
Serial No. 01973707
Faded Cherry Red with satin finish
Laminated 3 ply Maple/Poplar/Maple ArchTop, back and sides
Mahogany neck with rosewood fingerboard
Two Gibson Humbucker Pick-Ups (490R and 498T)
Stop tailpiece and Tune-O-Matic bridge
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The Gibson ES-333 is a semi hollow body electric guitar made by Gibson Guitar Corporation.
The ES-333 is quite similar to the Gibson ES-335, but varies from the ES-335 in the following ways:
The finish is a thin satin finish, versus the ES-335’s thicker full gloss finish.
The headstock has a silkscreen Gibson logo, versus the ES-335’s inlaid pearloid logo.
The headstock has no further decorative inlay, versus the ES-335’s “crown” headstock inlay.
The pickups are Gibson type 490R and 498T, versus the ES-335’s Gibson 57 Classic pickups.
The back of the body has an access cover for the electronics, versus the solid rear of the ES-335.
The body is made of arched, laminated wood, with the exterior and interior laminations being made of maple. There is a maple central core in the body, to which the top and bottom, and neck are attached. The neck is one baulk of mahogany, with a rosewood fingerboard and pearloid dot markers. The hardware is nickel plated. As delivered by Gibson, the ES-333 had no pickup covers, nor pickguard, and came with black “speed” knobs. Switch tip color was alternately black or creme. The truss rod cover is unadorned, and the headstock overlay is the fibre material used on many contemporary Gibson models.
The ES-333 was available in “faded” brown, cherry red, natural and sunburst finishes, which are thin satin nitrocellulose lacquer. These finishes will take on the appearance of old instruments, after a period of being played, through the action of the players hands rubbing the satin finish to a fairly glossy patina wherever the hands make frequent contact with the instrument. There were also natural (very light amber) and three color sunburst finishes available from some of the larger retailers.
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