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FDP Forum / The Gretsch Forum / Gretsch guitars numbering (6120, etc.): any system to it?

reverend mikey
Contributing Member

west Omaha, east NE

Life gets in the way of my G.A.S.
Mar 2nd, 2014 09:42 PM   Edit   Profile  

That's basically my question. Gretsch's all have names, but they also have a four digit number - I'm just curious if there's any rhyme or reason to this numbering system?

Thanks for helping a total (albeit 56 year old) novice when it comes to Gretsch guitars!

reverend mikey
Contributing Member

west Omaha, east NE

Life gets in the way of my G.A.S.
Mar 3rd, 2014 10:39 PM   Edit   Profile  

So no one visits this forum? (Just checking ... check, check, check ... testing, testing ... is this mic on?)

Contributing Member

I am not a complete

idiot - I have several pieces missing!
Mar 3rd, 2014 11:34 PM   Edit   Profile  

Found this on Gretsch Talk:

5s are all FMIC-era Electromatics (5120, 5122, 5570)

6s are the prolines, or the vintage Gretsches. (For example the current Corvette (CVT) is 5135, but it used to be 6135.)

1s & 2s are pre-FMIC Synchros and Electros

3s are the Historic series.

70s Baldwins started with a 7 and had different model numbers.

The second number is a 1 for electrics, 0 for acoustics. (Only for the 5s & 6s)

The last two are the specific model.

Contributing Member

Louisiana's oldest

brand-new CPA
Mar 4th, 2014 05:51 AM   Edit   Profile  

Oh, and if you want to look like a Gretsch expert (Grexpert?), use the 4-digit model numbers instead of a model name, such as Tennessean or Country Gentleman.

That's what an old friend from college whom I have not seen in decades told my brother, who lives in the same area.

I think it may have to do the Gibson gaining custody of the names Tennessean and Country Gentleman, forcing a resurrected Gretsch to use Tennessee Rose and Country Classic but keeping their numbers.

Contributing Member

North Gnarlyington

Mar 4th, 2014 06:45 AM   Edit   Profile  

The price is usually the giveaway, but do the numbers indicate which are made in China VS MIK?

reverend mikey
Contributing Member

west Omaha, east NE

Life gets in the way of my G.A.S.
Mar 4th, 2014 09:03 AM   Edit   Profile  

Thanks, everyone (Dadical especially): that helps solve the mystery somewhat.

I just always thought it was a strange numbering system - like what Marshall uses for its heads and cabs (but we don't need to go there!).


Fredericksbu, Va USA

John F.
Mar 4th, 2014 03:30 PM   Edit   Profile  

There are a couple of more little things... like a 5422 or 5122 is a double cutaway, as opposed to the 5420 or 5120...

Then there were the electromatic hollowbodies that were in place when FMIC took over... referred to as the 512x series. They are 5124, 5125, 5126, 5127, 5128 and 5129... They are all the same guitars, but a different color!

There are some others numbered in a similar fashion, the color=number thing that is.

The Electromatics have basically gone up in number since FMIC took over, the 512x, 5120/5122. then the current 5420/22, etc.

There really doesn't seem to be much rhyme or reason to any of it... At least not much I've found after the first number! LOL

Then, there's the letters after the model number... T usually means Tremolo or a Bigsby. L usually means Lacquer. Other letters mean all kinds of stuff I haven't figured out yet.

But, I still love them!

Here's a screwy example: I have a 5127 and a 6129TLS. The 5127 is an Electromatic series hollowbody, baby blue with two single coil Dearmond 2000 pickups and a Bigsby. If it was Red it would be a 5129 and it would still have single coil Dearmond 2000 pickups and a Bigsby. This series didn't have any letters after the model number.

My 6129TLS is a Sparkle Jet, with a blue pearl drum wrap top, HS Filtertron humbuckers and a Bigsby (Oh and it's not lacquer!). If it was red it would be a 6129T... with a couple different letter and probably be a special order... Unless it had Powertron humbuckers, then it would be a Firebird, instead of a Jet and be a 6131T-TVP.

See, easy as pie! LOL

(This message was last edited by Axis40 at 05:32 PM, Mar 4th, 2014)

Contributing Member

Twin Cities, USA

Land of Sky Blue Waters
Mar 7th, 2014 07:13 PM   Edit   Profile  

No,not much sense.

Start Here

reverend mikey
Contributing Member

west Omaha, east NE

Life gets in the way of my G.A.S.
Mar 9th, 2014 02:56 PM   Edit   Profile  

"No, not much sense."

Holy cow ... no kidding!

(I think that was a Rancher reference...not sure!)

Makes my eyes cross...


Hawaii, USA

Perfect is the enemy of good enough
May 13th, 2014 02:25 PM   Edit   Profile  

Mine is either a G5435-6-or 8T, took me months to find out it was a -8T, a goldtop.

FDP Forum / The Gretsch Forum / Gretsch guitars numbering (6120, etc.): any system to it?

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