1977 GIBSON THUNDERBIRD IV BASS (reverse)
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The 1977 Gibson Thunderbird IV reverse body Bass featured the neck through body design and two pickup configuration. The rectangular black tolex case continued to transition. It often had the Gibson name silkscreened on and a neck snap strap, but some earlier year models didn't have those additions. The earlier model's strap compartment was still towards the back of the case. 1977 case interior colors were pink or blue.
Other 1977 Thunderbird IV characteristics: White Gibson logo with "i" dot disconnected from "G" on black plastic truss rod cover, Kluson no-name riveted clover reverse tuners with phillips head screws (w/ 2 different size bushings), headstock divets hidden underneath the tuning machines to accommodate the tuner protrusions, unbound rosewood 20 fret board with pearloid dot fret markers, two chrome pickups each with three phillips head height adjustment screws, chrome pickup cover with (1) plastic shim, white/black/white vinyl pickguard with with red, white and blue nine star bird logo and still including the Bicentennial number "76", body route underneath pickguard, three silver top/gold hat shaped knobs including volume/tone words and numbers, chrome bridge cover with (2) plastic shims, 3 pole bridge, CTS potentiometers, "blue drop" capacitor, input jack on body front, strapholder on upper bout NOT on body back, four screw plastic controls access cover on body back, often a date stamp in controls cavity, mahogany body and neck.
There were three different types of serial numbers on 1977 Thunderbirds. All three had 8 digits and were located on the back of the headstock. The first type was embossed on and began with an "06" prefix. The second type was a large stamp that began with an "06" prefix. In August, the third type was introduced with a smaller stamp that moved to the tip of the headstock. On this third type, Gibson changed it's eight digit serial number headstock dating scheme to: YDDDYPPP- The first and fifth letter indicate year of production. The second, third and fourth letters indicate the day of production within the year. The sixth, seventh and eighth letters indicate the manufacturing plant: 001 to 499 shows production rank at the Kalamazoo factory and 500 to 999 shows production rank at the Nashville factory. Gibson records show a total of 301 Ebony, 237 Natural, 605 Tobacco Sunburst and 127 White Thunderbird IV's were shipped in 1977.