I have observed considerable variation in batch sizes – from possibly a single, custom ordered model up to a hundred or more instruments of the same model in a consecutive SN range. Revised SN-to-year allocation The findings stated in (2) in connection with other research (mainly from analyzing/comparing SNed instruments with dated documents) has led to a revised dating approach for Epiphone SNs. When looking at SN-to-year allocations keep in mind: Instruments were not made in one day – the time span between production start and shipping/selling of an instrument was typically several months (sometimes more), often spanning different calendar years.The "W” date of an Epiphone instrument/SN always refers to the estimated date when it entered production – and NOT the date it was finished, left the factory, or was sold by a store.
FYYMMRRRR F= Factory code (this can be 2 letters as well) YY= year of manufacture (this can also be just 1 digit for '90s models) MM= month of manufacture R= ranking number (may be more or less digits, not necessarily indicative of total units produced) Example - S02021234 was issued in Feb. Another code used on some current Epiphone models FYYMRRRR F= Factory code YY=Year of manufacture M= This will be a letter code corresponding to the month (A=January, B=February, etc...) RRRR= ranking number Example - R03D0263 was issued in April 2003.
The front of the headstock has "Epiphone by Gibson" at the top and the Epiphone logo at the bottom. ______________________________________________________________________ looking at the epiphone forum the serial numbers seem to run similar to gibsons, if they begin with a letter then this denotes the factory/country of origin, yours has no letter so yours according to Epi forum was made in 88(1988) 05(may 5th month) 09595(9,595th guitar made). Hi, I have such an Epiphone, serial number begining with 88 and I cannot find when it was made either!
Dont know a lot about these numbers so take that with a pinch of salt, you could try posting your question here: and goto the forum link. I would guess the guitar is either a copy or eipiphone had samples made by prospective suppliers in the late eighties.
It can be assumed that shipping/sale dates of individual instruments from the same production period (or even the same batch) could vary considerably – i.e.
some selling quickly, while others remained unsold for months or longer.