Given the nature of its construction – the guitars were painstaking, hand-built recreations, down to the very last detail, of the Black Sabbath rifflord's own, heavily modified SG Special – the street price of the Custom Shop "Monkey" SG was, unsurprisingly, about that of a well-taken-care-of used car.
Now, Gibson has created a new, lower-cost version of the signature guitar for its Artist Collection.
The Iommi signature SG Special boasts a mahogany body and neck with a period-correct rounded profile and a bound Indian rosewood fingerboard boasting acrylic dot inlays and 22 medium-jumbo frets.
A pair of wax-potted P-90s take the place of the Custom Shop version's hand-wound pickups, but the same three-way switch and two pairs of Volume and Tone knobs – all hand-wired with Orange Drop capacitors – remain.
Other differences from the Custom Shop version include the non-aged finish, the USA-built SG Special's Grover Rotomatic tuners with contemporary-style buttons (instead of the Schaller M6s on the Custom model), and the lack of routing holes below the bridge.
Further differences come in the form of the SG Special's multi-ply vintage pickguard, which stands apart from the original's wide-bevel pickguard, and the optional "Monkey" sticker, which came attached to the Custom Shop guitar.
The Gibson Tony Iommi SG Special is available now – in an unmistakable Vintage Cherry finish and in both right- and left-hand versions – for $2,399.
For more info on the guitar, stop by Gibson.