Thunderbird II and IV (1963-1965) Launched in 1963 as a companion to Gibsons new Firebird range. The two models were a one pickup Thunderbird II and a two pickup Thunderbird IV. Also known as the reverse-body Thunderbird, sales were poor and production ceased in May 1965.
The Thunderbird stands out as the most respected of all Gibson bass guitars, and has been in production on and off since 1963. At the time Fender were having sucess with their modern looking bass models and Gibsons response was the Thunderbird. Designed by German auto engineer Ray Dietrich, it was Gibsons first long scale (34 1/2 inch) bass and was named after the giant bird of Native American folklore.
Thunderbird II and IV (1966-1969) The late sixties instruments were really an 'upside down' Thunderbird, usually referred to as a nonreverse-bodied Thunderbird. Still available with one or two pickups. The other difference was set neck, contrasting the through-body neck of the earlier design.