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Gibson 1959 Korina Flying V
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  • tjon901tjon901

    Reissue of the original Flying V design

    Gibson 1959 Korina Flying VPublished on 06/30/11 at 08:16
    In the late 50s Gibson was getting blown away by Fender guitars. Fender had the image of being a more modern and hip guitar company ever since the stratocaster came out. Gibson wanted to change their image so in the late 50s they produced a series of futuristic guitars. This line of guitars called the Modernistic series had guitars like the Flying V and the Explorer and lesser known guitars like the Futura and the Moderne. In the 50s of all the Modernistic guitars the Flying V was the only one that had any popularity but overall they were deemed too radical at the time. The Flying V was reissued in 67 with a slightly different design but this guitar is the reissue of the original design. Th…
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    In the late 50s Gibson was getting blown away by Fender guitars. Fender had the image of being a more modern and hip guitar company ever since the stratocaster came out. Gibson wanted to change their image so in the late 50s they produced a series of futuristic guitars. This line of guitars called the Modernistic series had guitars like the Flying V and the Explorer and lesser known guitars like the Futura and the Moderne. In the 50s of all the Modernistic guitars the Flying V was the only one that had any popularity but overall they were deemed too radical at the time. The Flying V was reissued in 67 with a slightly different design but this guitar is the reissue of the original design. The dimensions are slightly different and it uses Korina wood like the original models did. It has a 22 fret rosewood freboard attached to a Korina neck. It has the pointy flying V headstock from the 50s. It has dual gold finished humbuckers. Each pickup has a volume control and there is a master tone knob. The bridge is a big V shaped piece of metal that helps with sustain.

    UTILIZATION

    The V design naturally has better fret access than a Les Paul. The set neck design means there is a bit of a heel at the neck joint but on this model it is not bad. Since this is a 58 model the upper fret access is even better than on a 67 flying V. The neck attaches to the body higher on the neck than on the 67 models so the neck joint heel is less intrusive. The V shape might be hard for some people to play sitting down. You may have to play in a classical position with the guitar in your lap if you are playing while sitting down. This model has a strip of rubber to add more traction to the bottom of the guitar, making it easier to play while sitting down. Standing up the shape gives the guitar perfect balance. The input jack is kind of in a bad place if you are use to wrapping it through your guitar strap but this is something they didnt do back in the 50s.

    SOUNDS

    Think of any Albert King song and you will know what a good 50s V should sound like. This guitar is made out of korina. Korina is a cousin to mahogany and has a yellowish color. It produces all the thick tones of mahogany but with less weight. With the 50s style PAF pickups this guitar is a blues and rock machine. The PAF's have just the right amount of sag in the tone so you can really work the dynamics. The neck pickup is super smooth and when you throw in some tone knob you can get that sour tone like you have a parked wah on. The bridge pickup has a little more bite and spank to it. With some gain you can get good classic rock tones from the bridge pickup. If you do not like the old style PAF pickups you can sell them and get some hotter Seymour Duncans and still make money.

    OVERALL OPINION

    The Flying V was a strange design at one time but now it is an old classic like most other guitar designs. This is one of the first attempts at a non traditional guitar design. I think the 50s Flying V design is better than the 67 reissue design. The upper fret access is better and the design has more class overall. If you are looking for a classic design that is not so classic the original Flying V design is a good option.
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