Wiring Harness for Gibson USA SG • 1960 Drifted Black Beauties
By the time the Les Paul was redesigned in 1961 to become what would eventually be known as the SG, Gibson had switched from mylar Black Beauties to Sprague ceramic disc capacitors. A replica of that harness is available from our Absolute Vintage Collection. So if you're upgrading a Historic to be more authentic, or restoring an original, click here.
But we like the idea of these 1960 Black Beauties in a Gibson USA SG. Since we use drifted caps, we can offer incredible vintage tone without the high price tag usually associated with harnesses built with authentic 1960 capacitors.
The Black Beauty is essentially the same capacitor as a mylar Bumblebee. In 1960, Sprague changed the striped pattern used to mark the value of the caps to a more straight-forward design using red ink to print the specs on the shell.
The ’60 Burst was outfitted with .022 400v +/-20% caps and today they command a hefty price tag in the vintage collector's market. Over the years the old caps drift in value, some significantly. It's not unusual to test a .022 capacitor that's over 50 years old and have it read .06 or higher. It's also quite common to test a cap of a different value and find that it's drifted right into spec range for the .022 caps. Since they're not being sought by collectors to restore an old Burst, they are much more affordable. The caps we use in these harnesses are genuine vintage Sprague Black Beauties from the 60s. Most are marked .018 but now test in .022 spec.
We build them with CTS' finest 500k short-shaft pots with brass posts and shafts, a Switchcraft toggle and jack, ready to drop in to your guitar.