View Full Version : Factory order number?

Oct-20-2010, 10:13pm
What's the significance of the "Factory Order Number" stamped inside a Gibson Mandolin?

Oct-21-2010, 11:09am
You can look at the FON as a batch number. Multiple instruments in a batch and possibly mandos/banjos/guitars all within the same FON.

Oct-21-2010, 2:43pm
Ok thanks for the reply. So instruments sharing the same factory order number could have been purchased by and built for the same customer?

Oct-21-2010, 2:48pm
Not quite. The FON usually had a 4 digit number and then a number after it which was the actual number of that batch.
In many low end Gibsons this is the only number found and the best way to date it. It varied from decade to decade on the scheme they used for the FON. Like on the signed Loars the FON is covered up with the Loar signature label. FON can be confusing. You need to know more than just the FON to date it. Serial nos. were appliled latter in the process on higher end models like the F4 and F5.

Oct-22-2010, 2:53pm
Cool. Thanks very much.