View Full Version : Gibson pickup Pat. No. 2,737,842 ?

02-18-2008, 07:02 AM
Hi, I have a Gibson pickup Pat. No. 2,737,842 that came out of a 1992 ES-335. I thought that these pickups were made in the 70's. Does anybody know anything about them? What magnet was used? Wax potted or not? etc.....and what was it doing in a 1992 ES-335?


Jon Silberman
02-18-2008, 07:23 AM
Google is your friend. You're welcome!

After PAF pickups were gone, the patent# pickups were next and used from 1962 to 1965. Then from 1965 to 1975 (note overlap) the next Gibson humbucker is known as the "T bucker" or "T top". They are called this because of a "T" that is part of the molding on the front of the two pickup bobbins. These also had the decal with "Patent No 2,737,842" (still the patent number of Les Paul's trapeze tailpiece). The only way to see the "T" is to remove the pickup cover. A small change in late patent# pickups was white PVC bobbin wires instead of black (black was used on pre-1965 humbuckers). Also T buckers can use either slot or phillips head screws to hold the bobbins to the base plate. From 1976 to the 1980s they still used the "T bucker" but now they had the correct patent number stamped in the metal bottom plate (no decal).

When buying used Gibson pickups, many people will buy the "Patent No." style with an unopened nickel-plated cover. This pretty much guarentees you'll get a "good" pickup at a fair price (opposed to buying a PAF pickup with the "Patent Applied For" decal intact, which sell for more money). Sonically the nickel plated covered patent# pickups are excellent values, as they are very similar in sound to a real PAF pickup (but are much less expensive). Note if you buy a chrome covered Gibson pickup, it's a crap shoot as to what's inside - it could be either a T-bucker or not (but chances are good it will be a T-Top). For this reason I would generally avoid chrome covered Gibson humbuckers (unless they are really inexpensive), as the odds are against you in hopes of finding a non-Ttop.

P.S. I have one, too.

Jon Silberman
02-18-2008, 07:25 AM
and what was it doing in a 1992 ES-335?
That you really don't need to ask (someone put it in!). ;)

02-18-2008, 07:42 AM
Thanks for the reply Jon. I bought that guitar brand new at Ace Music in Miami in 1992. I replaced that pickup a few years later with a Classic 57 because it was squealing, I know how to fix that problem now, but I didn't back then, so I just put in a new pickup. I guess I'll have to take the cover off and see if it's a T-top. BTW, The other original pickup is still in the guitar.

Jon Silberman
02-18-2008, 07:44 AM
And thank you for putting up with me! :)

02-18-2008, 07:58 AM
Good info! Thanks

so... what's the value of an early 80's T bucker neck pup?

02-18-2008, 08:16 AM
There is one from the 70's on eBay for $300, and a set with gold covers on Craig's list for $325.

02-18-2008, 08:28 AM
And I won a Shaw with ink date (`80) off ebay for 50 bucks last month !

02-18-2008, 10:31 PM
The pat#s made in the '80s could also have been Shaws or P490s (predecessor to 490T/Rs). The Shaws usually have an ink stamped code on the back, until '85 or so when they stopped doing that, IIRC. Shaws are highly regarded pups. The P490s, not so much. So, depending on when it was made, you might have a t-top, or if it was in the '80s, I'd say you most likely have a P490 or if you were lucky, a Shaw.

09-15-2009, 12:24 AM
I stumbled upon this thread by accuident today. Patent numbers on baseplates were used into the early 90's. I've seen them used on 500t's, 496r's in early Les Paul Classics. On a 335, they may have been 490t,490r in the early 90's. I see alot of Ebay sellers selling them as 70's or as t-tops! Even, when there is no t-top bobbin, for outrageous prices aswell.

12-08-2013, 07:00 PM
Can anyone tell me what kind of pickup this is? I've had for over 20 years. Got it from an old hippie in college.


Thanks for any help. Also how do you tell if it's a bridge or neck?

02-07-2014, 06:57 PM
Bump. Still trying to get some info on this pickup, pics posted in last post. Thanks for any help