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  1. #1

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    what does the 'L' in L5/L4 etc stand for?

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    The Jazz Guitar Chord Dictionary
     
  3. #2

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    I have always assumed L for (Lloyd) Loar, Gibson's designer at the time... but I don't actually know if that's correct.

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lloyd_Loar

  4. #3

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    The L series was Gibson's first production line introduced circa 1902 consisting of 4 models, well before Loar arrived at Gibson. Not sure what it designates.

  5. #4

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    I've looked into it and came upon a thread where someone emailed Gibson, and apparently they aren't even sure. The only thing they could come up with was Large.

    I've settled on assuming it stands for Lang!

  6. #5

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    not a silly question at all!!

    gibson used letter prefixes...F was mandolin, H was mandola, K was mando-cello & L guitar...tho i don't know how they arrived at that!!

    and yes L-1 was years before lloyd loar- here's a 1907




    the original L-series guitars are some of the most tuneful guitars ever made...

    cheers
    Last edited by neatomic; 02-28-2021 at 10:45 PM. Reason: sp-

  7. #6

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    Years ago I heard that it stood for Lang.

    After that, I found out it was Loar.

    Now, I find out that both were wrong.

    This situation is LamentabLe.

  8. #7

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    Maybe they thought they were building Lutes!

  9. #8

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    Losers? Lurkers?

  10. #9

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    Quote Originally Posted by neatomic
    not a silly question at all!!

    gibson used letter prefixes...F was mandolin, H was mandola, K was mando-cello & L guitar...tho i don't know how they arrived at that!!

    and yes L-1 was years before lloyd loar- here's a 1907




    the original L-series guitars are some of the most tuneful guitars ever made...

    cheers
    They skipped G?!

  11. #10

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    Lovely.

  12. #11

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    "Let's make 'em wonder!"

  13. #12

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    I vote Lute!

  14. #13

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    I like "Loud".

  15. #14

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    because it’s an L of a guitar


  16. #15

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    Luscious.

  17. #16

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    L for litre?

    L for latin 50?

  18. #17

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    Quote Originally Posted by Herbie
    L for latin 50?

    i thought of that, but it originally sold for $35!! haha


    cheers

  19. #18

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    LOTS of money

  20. #19

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    Quote Originally Posted by neatomic
    not a silly question at all!!

    gibson used letter prefixes...F was mandolin, H was mandola, K was mando-cello & L guitar...tho i don't know how they arrived at that!!
    A for mandolin too, the ones without the expensive strap hanger. Also J for acoustic guitar.

  21. #20

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    How about Late Lamented ?

  22. #21

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    Quote Originally Posted by Michael Neverisky
    A for mandolin too, the ones without the expensive strap hanger. Also J for acoustic guitar.
    B for the upright bass, C for Cello, G for viola, V for Violin, and U for the harp guitar

    gibson made much more than just guitars, albeit mostly forgotten now

    letters that we do not know of today, probably models that did not make it past the design into the production phase

  23. #22

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    Upright basses in B
    What does the 'L' in L5/L4 stand for?-gibson-upright-label-jpg

  24. #23

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    Gibson was much simpler in naming their first electric bass. "EB-1" = Electric Bass #1!


  25. #24

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    I think I have a Gibson book that said it WAS used because of Lloyd Loar. I may not remember correctly. Sometimes I forget to remember stuff.

  26. #25

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    Quote Originally Posted by Michael Neverisky
    A for mandolin too, the ones without the expensive strap hanger. Also J for acoustic guitar.
    I think J was for "Jumbo."

  27. #26

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    My guess is they were going chronologically through the the alphabet with new designs.
    And some line up like bass and Jumbo.

  28. #27

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    Quote Originally Posted by Littlemark
    My guess is they were going chronologically through the the alphabet with new designs.
    And some line up like bass and Jumbo.
    They made L's before they made J's.

    John

  29. #28

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    Quote Originally Posted by John A.
    They made L's before they made J's.

    John
    That's some good logic.


  30. #29

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    The only way to answer this question is to find a very qualified medium and ask Orville Gibson himself. And Orville may not wish to be bothered.

  31. #30

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    poor orville gibson was persona non grata for gibson... a consortium of 5 investors bought his name and ideas (in 1902!) & paid him an annual fee...to keep him away...

    he spent the later part of his years in mental hospitals...sad

    he had nothing to do with gibsons letter prefix system



    cheers

  32. #31

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    Quote Originally Posted by neatomic
    poor orville gibson was persona non grata for gibson... a consortium of 5 investors bought his name and ideas (in 1902!) & paid him an annual fee...to keep him away...

    he spent the later part of his years in mental hospitals...sad

    he had nothing to do with gibsons letter prefix system



    cheers
    I never knew Orville was a lefty.

    Wait, could that be what the "L" stood for in L4 and L5??