IF you have EMG pickups, they had a dating scheme in the 80’s and 90’s that was very easy to use.  And it may help you in tracking down just when your guitar, or at least the pickups were made.

It’s alpha code for the year of manufacture.
So, for instance one of my guitars, my Standard Pro 0202, has IA, which is 1991 – seen below
For example IE is 1995
IB – 1992, etc

ADDED:  I just found out that some pickups have a 3 letter date code!  Thanks to Kriss from France inquiring – and the 3rd letter is the month code –  his is IJC which is 1990 March – he got this information directly by email from EMG

They quit doing alpha codes I believe in ~2000 and since put dates like 1/12/07 – I asked EMG directly when I ordered a set from them (thru a dealer but I called them to give specs)

Hopefully this may help in figuring out what year your guitar was made, or at least the pickups.  And obviously anything without alpha codes is a way later model, not an Original Pre/Samick, Pre/Gibson, or it could be an original with “updated” pickups.

12 Thoughts on “This may help with dating your guitar…if it has EMG’s”

  • I have a standard pro I bought used around 1990. It has EMG pickups. Teal green. Serial number 0083. Can you give me any info?

    • Sound legit – but send pictures and the things at the top of the registry page and I’ll get to it – thanks

  • Hi, I have a beautiful Valley arts custom pro USA with 3 EMG pickups the body is a fantastic natural flame and the back of the body is black the front of the neck is ebony with binding down the sides and bottom the back of the neck is beautifully ringed the back of the headstock has an indented serial no VA20230, would love to know it’s age and value. Thanks.

  • Hi from France.
    I’ve a VA Custom Pro (SD pickups / Floyd bridge) , which has the number : 1903 (inside the bottom of the neck). There is also another ref on the neck : NQ800 – BM – ER. The neck is also signed, with the date 2/9/1993 (i guess 9th Feb 1993).
    I just would like to know :
    – is it a pre/post Samick guitar
    – what could be approx. the value on the market (even if i don’t want to sell it today !).
    Thanks in advance

    • All my limited knowledge is contained in the various stories linked under News…but from mid-92 they had Samick as a partner – which means it is a transition guitar – I have one and it’s a wonderful guitar, but not as valuable as the PS ones…..hope that helps

  • Have a valley arts serial #0110. Theres no logo on the neck stock but on the plate joining the neck.Im trying to figure out hey my VA is different to the others I’ve search for on the net and various other sites can’t seem to f8nd my look alike. Can u help. Cheers

    • I’d advise you to send pictures to Martin – he’s listed on the Contact Us page – he’s forgotten more about these guitars than I have learned.

  • Hello, my valley arts have VA 0337 s/n on the back of the headstock. Seems to hv 2 EMG pickups with humbuckernon the bridge, single coil on the neck, and nothing in the middle.
    Gold hardware with floyd rose trem. Can u pls help identify the guitar type and year?
    Many thanks in advance.

  • Hi… i just got a rex rose model. I learned comstock built it.. can you tell me any history on it .. thanks you for your time…
    Rick. 971-212-3309………has emg pickup

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.