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Thread: Gibson destroys hundreds of Firebird X's

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    Registered User Bob Visentin's Avatar
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    Default Gibson destroys hundreds of Firebird X's


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    Default Re: Gibson destroys hundreds of Firebird X's

    Quote Originally Posted by Bob Visentin View Post
    Capitalism at its finest. Why not donate them to schools? Why not have contests to give them away? Unreal.

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    Moderator MikeEdgerton's Avatar
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    Default Re: Gibson destroys hundreds of Firebird X's

    You guys might want to join in on the already ongoing conversation here. I'd hate to have to read two of these threads.
    "Bargain instruments are no bargains if you can't play them". These are the words of J. Garber.

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    Default Re: Gibson destroys hundreds of Firebird X's

    sad, wrong and just a downright weird, stupid way to get rid of anything.

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    Registered User Roger Adams's Avatar
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    Default Re: Gibson destroys hundreds of Firebird X's

    FWIW.....This is said to be a statement by Gibson in regards to this event:

    Statement by Gibson:

    “The Firebird X destruction video that surfaced months ago was an isolated batch of Firebird X models built in 2009-2011 which were unsalvageable and damaged with unsafe components. This isolated group of Firebird X models were unable to be donated for any purpose and were destroyed accordingly.

    “Gibson recently announced its re-launch of the Gibson Foundation. Since 2002, the Gibson Foundation has provided thousands of guitars and donations to schools and charities in excess of $30 million. As a starting point, Gibson has committed to giving a guitar-a-day away over the next 1000 days. 100% of donations to the Gibson Foundation go directly towards giving the gift of music, re-affirming Gibson’s commitment to giving back, helping under-served music education programs, empowering music culture and encouraging the creation of music.”
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    Default Re: Gibson destroys hundreds of Firebird X's

    Quote Originally Posted by Roger Adams View Post
    FWIW.....This is said to be a statement by Gibson in regards to this event:

    Statement by Gibson:

    “The Firebird X destruction video that surfaced months ago was an isolated batch of Firebird X models built in 2009-2011 which were unsalvageable and damaged with unsafe components. This isolated group of Firebird X models were unable to be donated for any purpose and were destroyed accordingly.
    What I don't understand is where they got the plutonium encased volume controls and the radium based lacquer in the first place . . .

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    Registered User Roger Adams's Avatar
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    Default Re: Gibson destroys hundreds of Firebird X's

    Quote Originally Posted by rcc56 View Post
    what i don't understand is where they got the plutonium encased volume controls and the radium based lacquer in the first place . . .
    lol!
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    Registered User foldedpath's Avatar
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    Default Re: Gibson destroys hundreds of Firebird X's

    Unsafe components might be PR-speak, but this is a guitar where (as I understand it) the battery is required to put out any sound at all. And you only get two hours of playing time until the battery dies. Then you have to replace it with a charged battery.

    It also came with battery-powered floor pedals using Bluetooth for full operation of the features. But the battery requirement for the guitar to work at all, was probably the killer. This was just never a guitar that was going to work as a donation to schools. For school donations you want an electric guitar you can just plug into an amp and play, you know? Not one that dies after two hours unless you have a charged battery handy.

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    Default Re: Gibson destroys hundreds of Firebird X's

    I worked for 6 years as a technician for an electronics manufacturer.
    These guitars could easily have been refitted with standard electronics. It would not have been necessary to replace the pickups. The cost would have been quite modest. The instruments could then have been sold or donated.

    I don't know what Gibson's true purpose was, but I don't buy their story.
    Last edited by rcc56; Aug-02-2019 at 1:12am.

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    Default Re: Gibson destroys hundreds of Firebird X's

    This video: https://youtu.be/_ft5J1lX4-o contains an interview with someone that was present at the scrapyard when this happened. He basically says they instruments contained all sorts of electronics and computer interface components that could not be updated for contemporary operating system use. The instruments were un-sellable in their current state. If they want to destroy them, it's their prerogative. It's certainly easy to imagine someone with one of these instruments would want support or would complain about it crashing their computer or any number of liability exposure they might present.

    I do agree that they could have chosen another way to dispose or part out the instruments but pretty much every way would mean some person would be taking them apart and someone would have to administrate their distribution. Maybe they wanted to be done with it. Sometimes in my business I print out music with errors and I don't just give that to people that might be interested in having music to learn. It has my name on it and I wouldn't want to be associated with incorrect information and then be responsible for someone learning something incorrectly. Sometimes while I'm working on a record we record versions of songs that are not used for the final album. Should I offer those for others to practice mixing? In my recording contract there is not a discard clause for alternate takes. How would you feel about your discarded performances being distributed?

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    Some Ability - No Talent MikeZito's Avatar
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    Default Re: Gibson destroys hundreds of Firebird X's

    I certainly don't claim to be an expert on such things . . . but something in this explanation from Gibson and the subsequent video from the guy who oversaw the destruction, sounds fishy to me. If you look at the two closey, they almost seem to contradict each other. The gibson statement says that the guitars were; 'unsalvageable and damaged with unsafe components' . . . while the employee seemed to indicate that they were all just horribly made guitars.

    Obviously Gibson can do whatever they like with their product, but I have a hard time believing that even if the wood and electronics were bad (as the employee seems to describe) couldn't simple things have been saved like tuners, truss rod covers, bridges, pot knobs, etc.?

    Also, how on earth did they allow scores-and-scores of these guitars to be made, before they realized that they were no good? Many years ago I knew of a guy who (if I remember correctly) worked for Gibson, and his only job was to pull random guitars off the assembly line and play them for quality control. Sounds like a pretty useful (and fun) job to me.

    I could go on and on . . . but, in short, this video and subsequent 'statements' left me with more questions than answers.

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    Registered User grassrootphilosopher's Avatar
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    Default Re: Gibson destroys hundreds of Firebird X's

    No need to be a tree hugger. But I donīt understand, why they donīt salvage the raw materials (to heat the office, to sell the copper wire etc.). Where do they go from there? The video borders on weird.

    If youīre into weird, thereīs this movie "Candy Mountain" from around 1987 or so. It has some nice music f.ex. by Leon Redbone. In the end guitars get burned (at the 1:23:57 mark. I couldnīt find out [again] how to embed a video starting at the very spot):

    Olaf

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    Registered User Joe Dodson's Avatar
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    Default Re: Gibson destroys hundreds of Firebird X's

    Quote Originally Posted by grassrootphilosopher View Post
    No need to be a tree hugger. But I donīt understand, why they donīt salvage the raw materials (to heat the office, to sell the copper wire etc.). Where do they go from there? The video borders on weird.
    That was part of my reaction as well. And I am a tree hugger.

  17. #14

    Default Re: Gibson destroys hundreds of Firebird X's

    Large corporations destroy unsellable and unsold products all the time. The former is to protect their brand name, the latter is to protect their retail pricing.

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    Registered User foldedpath's Avatar
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    Default Re: Gibson destroys hundreds of Firebird X's

    Quote Originally Posted by rcc56 View Post
    I worked for 6 years as a technician for an electronics manufacturer.
    These guitars could easily have been refitted with standard electronics. It would not have been necessary to replace the pickups. The cost would have been quite modest. The instruments could then have been sold or donated.

    I don't know what Gibson's true purpose was, but I don't buy their story.
    The pickups might be re-purposed if you bypassed the digital junk, but I think you would at least need to install a new tone and volume knob, because that was controlled with the digital electronics (I'm pretty sure).

    To operate without battery power, you would also need to remove the motor-driven tuners, because they can't be used manually with a string winder when changing strings. They need the powered windup function (per the manual). I'd want to tear those out anyway if I was a music teacher, because one of the things you need to learn is how to tune a guitar, and how to listen for when it's out of tune. The Robot tuners work directly against that.

    Basically, too much work to convert it to anything that would be useful as a school donation. And as a donation for auction to support schools it doesn't work either, because nobody wanted the damned things.

  19. #16

    Default Re: Gibson destroys hundreds of Firebird X's

    Em Tee is right.

    The guitar I learned on was a '58 Gibson 335. Decades after selling it I wanted a similar neck. In 2014 Gibson was closing out it's 2013 Tribute Les Pauls and I bought a 50's Tribute LP for $400. If they hadn't offered this I eventually would have ponied up for a more expensive 335 or LP. But I'm happy with my budget LP which I chose from a half dozen, so I won't be in the market again.

    Because Gibson has such a large stockpile of unsold guitars I'll bet they felt that giving them away or selling them cheap would depress sales of their much higher margin instruments. The cover story about them being "unsafe" was comical.
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    mandolin slinger Steve Ostrander's Avatar
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    Default Re: Gibson destroys hundreds of Firebird X's

    Another glimpse of the madness that is emanating from Gibson lately.
    Never say "bouzouki" to a TSA agent...

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    Registered User Bob Clark's Avatar
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    Default Re: Gibson destroys hundreds of Firebird X's

    Quote Originally Posted by Steve Ostrander View Post
    Another glimpse of the madness that is emanating from Gibson lately.
    Amen to that. One more reason to support small-shop and individual luthiers.
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    Default Re: Gibson destroys hundreds of Firebird X's

    Unsafe? Really?

    " the revelation that something in that batch was deemed unsafe"
    You can't get there from here.

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    Registered User foldedpath's Avatar
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    Default Re: Gibson destroys hundreds of Firebird X's

    Quote Originally Posted by DPrager View Post
    Unsafe? Really?

    " the revelation that something in that batch was deemed unsafe"
    Well, for a school guitar donation you wouldn't want kids getting their fingers caught in the motorized tuners, would you?


    Or maybe exploding Li-Ion batteries...

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    Default Re: Gibson destroys hundreds of Firebird X's

    "The New Gibson" seems to be developing a pattern of shock value publicity.
    We'll see how that works out for them.
    They're certainly not as clever with it as the Rolling Stones are.

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    Registered User Charles E.'s Avatar
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    Default Re: Gibson destroys hundreds of Firebird X's

    Waiting for the next video only this time with banjos.
    Charley

    A bunch of stuff with four strings

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    Registered User Timbofood's Avatar
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    Default Re: Gibson destroys hundreds of Firebird X's

    No need.
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    Default Re: Gibson destroys hundreds of Firebird X's

    I'm done with the Gibson smoke and mirrors soap opera. I have better things to do with my time then watch a cheap carnival show.

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  30. #25
    Registered User Denman John's Avatar
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    Default Re: Gibson destroys hundreds of Firebird X's

    One of the many reasons why I’ll never buy a Gibson product!
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