Nickel Grover Rotomatic
TunersGrover’s original Rotomatic tuners are an engineering marvel, with style and performance exactly suited for the J-185. With a gear ratio of 14:1, the Rotomatics deliver precision tuning in a durable housing that provides maximum protection for the gear and string post. All moving parts are cut for exact meshing, eliminating the possibility of slippage. A countersunk tension screw lets players regulate the tuning tension to any degree. A special lubricant inside the gear box provides smooth and accurate tuning stability.
Crown Peghead Logo
Gibson put the first crown peghead logo on an ES-300 back in 1940, and it has graced the headstocks of many legendary Gibson guitars ever since, including today’s J-185. Over the years, it has also been called a “thistle” because of the group of flowering plants with the sharp prickles, though Gibson has preferred to call it a “crown.”
The tortoise pickguard for the J-185 is Gibson’s standard 1950s-style Jumbo shape. As with all of Gibson Acoustic’s pickguards, the coloring, inlay, and binding are all done by hand.
A rosette is the beautiful, hand-crafted circle around the soundhole, and can be one of the most ornamental elements of any acoustic guitar. It is also one of the most subtle and complicated woodworking decorations on any acoustic guitar. The rosette on the J-185 is a double-ring rosette, with the main ring consisting of seven-ply binding, and the second ring three-ply binding, adding a stylish, understated elegance to the J-185.
Rosewood Fingerboard with Rolled Edges and Split Parallelogram Inlays
The fingerboard of Gibson’s J-185 is constructed from the highest grade rosewood on earth, which is personally inspected and qualified by Gibson’s team of skilled experts before it enters the Gibson factories. The resilience of this durable wood makes the fingerboard extremely balanced and stable, and gives each chord and note unparalleled clarity and bite. The J-185’s split parallelogram inlays are made of genuine mother of pearl, and are inserted into the fingerboard using a process that eliminates gaps and doesn’t require the use of fillers. The fingerboard also sports a rolled edge—instead of the usual right angle where the fingerboard surface meets the neck, Gibson Acoustic’s rolled edge is slightly beveled for an extremely smooth and comfortable feel, enhancing the playability of the J-185.
Body Tonewoods (back, sides and top)
The top of the J-185 is made from AA-grade Sitka spruce, while the back and sides are constructed from AA-grade Eastern maple, giving the J-185 a perfect balance of sound and playability. Selecting the right wood, and the formula to dry it out, are two of the most central procedures to Gibson’s guitar-building process. Beginning with its first catalog in 1903, Gibson has assured its customers that every guitar would be built using woods with “the most durable, elastic, and sonorous qualities,” and today’s guitars from Gibson Acoustic are no different.
L.R. Baggs Element Active Acoustic Pickup System
Gibson Acoustic’s J-185 comes equipped with the popular Element Active Acoustic Pickup System from L.R. Baggs, which features a low-profile undersaddle element—or transducer—that’s proven more stable and durable than many standard ribbon-type pickups. Combined with an onboard preamp with an unobtrusive and removable volume control mounted just inside the soundhole, the Element delivers performance not previously attainable from an undersaddle pickup. Its sleek and effective design removes unnecessary internal components to enhance the coupling between the pickup and the guitar, and improve the sensitivity of the transducer for a robust, lively, and natural acoustic sound with excellent dynamics and delicate high end. The Element works with a standard 9V battery, which is housed inside the guitar in L.R. Bagg’s new “Battery Bagg.”
Every acoustic guitar made by Gibson features hand-scalloped, radiused top bracing inside the body, a feature normally found only in limited run, hand-made guitars. By scalloping each brace by hand, the natural sound of the acoustic is focused more toward the center of the body, enhancing the instrument’s sound projection. The bracing pattern inside the J-185 was created in 1951 as a smaller version of the design used in the Gibson’s legendary Super Jumbos. This traditional “X” pattern delivers an exceptionally balanced tonal palette ideal for both the stage and studio environments, making the J-185 a standard choice among today’s discerning players. Features Gibson LogoTapered Dovetail Neck JointRadius Top