Using the decoder, you can lookup the production date of your Guild guitar by decoding its serial number. However, Guild’s official documentation of serial numbers is not comprehensive, as some lists have been lost in the past. Additionally, the decoder also includes information for new and non-US-made guitars.

Where to find the serial number

You can find the serial number of a guitar stamped on the back of the headstock. In the case of (semi) acoustic guitars, it may also be located on the bottom inside of the body or stamped on the neck block.

To determine the year of production for your Guild guitar, you have two options: you can use Guild serial numbers decoder, or you can refer to the TABLES PROVIDED BELOW.

decoder coming soon… see tables

All decoders:

Guild history in short

Guild is a renowned American guitar manufacturer that has been producing high-quality instruments since 1952. The company was founded by Alfred Dronge, who had a passion for music and a vision for creating a guitar that was both great sounding and easy to play.

Dronge was a guitarist and music store owner who saw an opportunity to improve the design and construction of guitars. He assembled a team of experienced luthiers and set out to create a line of guitars that would appeal to a wide range of musicians. The first Guild guitars were archtops that were highly sought after by jazz musicians. They featured a unique bracing system that gave them a rich, full-bodied tone that was unlike anything else on the market at the time.

In the 1960s, Guild started to produce flat-top acoustic guitars that quickly gained popularity among folk and rock musicians. Guild’s acoustic guitars became so successful that the company had to move to a larger factory to meet demand. During this time, Guild also began producing a line of electric guitars that were designed to compete with popular models from other manufacturers. The Guild Starfire was a particular success, thanks in part to its use by legendary guitarist Jerry Garcia of the Grateful Dead.

Throughout the years, Guild has continued to innovate and improve its instruments, while also staying true to its roots of producing high-quality guitars that are easy to play and have a unique tone. In the 1970s, Guild expanded its product line to include basses and amplifiers. The company collaborated with musicians such as Duane Eddy, Jerry Garcia, and Eric Clapton to design instruments that were tailored to their specific needs and styles.

In the 1980s, Guild faced increasing competition from other guitar manufacturers and struggled to keep up with changing market trends. The company changed hands several times and went through a period of restructuring and downsizing. However, throughout this time, Guild continued to produce high-quality instruments that were beloved by musicians around the world.

In 1995, Guild was acquired by Fender Musical Instruments Corporation, which invested in new equipment and technology to help revitalize the brand. In the years that followed, Guild introduced a number of new models, including the D-55, F-512, and F-55, which were well-received by both critics and musicians.

Guild introduced a new line of acoustic guitars in the early 2000s, known as the GAD series, which stands for Guild Acoustic Design. These instruments were inspired by Guild’s earlier acoustic designs but were manufactured in China and can be identified by their GAD prefix. However, the GAD line was later discontinued by Cordoba in 2014.

In 2001, Fender moved production of Guild guitars from Westerly, Rhode Island to Tacoma, Washington. This move was met with some controversy, as many musicians and fans believed that the Westerly plant had been an important part of the Guild legacy. However, the move allowed Fender to consolidate production and improve efficiency, which ultimately benefited the company and its customers.

In 2014, Guild was acquired by Cordoba Music Group, which has continued to uphold Guild’s tradition of craftsmanship and innovation. Today, Guild offers a wide range of guitars, including acoustic and electric models, as well as basses and accessories. The company’s guitars are still highly regarded by musicians around the world, and Guild’s commitment to quality and innovation ensures that it will continue to be a major player in the guitar industry for years to come.

One of the defining characteristics of Guild guitars is their unique tone. Guild’s archtop guitars in particular are known for their warm, full-bodied sound, which is a result of the company’s innovative bracing system. Guild’s flat-top acoustic guitars also have a distinctive tone, thanks in part to their use of solid woods and high-quality materials.

Guild guitars have been used by many legendary musicians over the years, including Buddy Guy, Richie Havens, Nick Drake, and Tom Petty. Guild’s collaboration with Jerry Garcia of the Grateful Dead is particularly noteworthy, as Garcia played a Guild Starfire and helped to popularize the instrument among other musicians.

Serial numbers

The tables below provide the most accurate information available to Guild to distinguish date of manufacture by serial number. But as already mentioned, the documentation of the serial numbers is not complete because there are lists in the past have been lost causing leaving some gaps in the dating.




This table shows the first and last serial numbers of guitars produced from 1960 to 1969.



From 1965 to 1969, Guild used a separate serial numbering system for each model. This table lists the year, model, and start and
end serial numbers for each instrument.

A50AB101 – 136AB137 – 162AB163 – 203AB204 – 240N/A
A150N/AN/AN/AAI101 – 108AI109 – 113


This table shows the first and last serial numbers of guitars, produced from 1970 to 1979. Corresponding model names or numbers are not available.

1979195068211877 (tot 30 Sep. 1979)


From 1979 through 1983, Guild continued to use separate serial number prefixes. for every guitar model. This table shows the year, model and last serial number.

ARTIST AWARDJA100012JA100043JA100067JA100097JA100107


From 1984 through 1989, Guild continued to add serial number prefixes to each model. This table shows the year, model and last serial number.

ARTIST AWARDJA100122JA100127JA100133JA100147JA100203JA100227


From 1990 to 1994, every model also had a serial number prefix.
This shows the year, model and last serial number.

ARTIST AWARDJA100274JA100280JA100328JA100379


For 1994, only the latest serial number of each model is available.
For 1995 and 1996, Guild continued to use serial number prefixes for each model, and the first and last serial number of the year.

ARTIST AWARDAA000039AA000040 – AA000089AA000089 – AA000105
A25N/AN/AAF250272 – AF250893


This table shows the year, model and start and end serial number.

ARTIST AWARDAA000106 – AA000158
A25AF250894 – AF250896

GAD serials
The round label on the inside with a GAD (number) were consecutive but do not refer to the production date of the guitar.
The serial number that correlates with the production date can be found on the heel block.

For the decoder: only enter the number on the neck block, so without GAD in front.

Dated after February 2005 made in Tacoma, Washington
Fender Musical Instruments Corporation (FMIC) began building Guild guitars in Tacoma, Washington in 2005.
These have a serial number consisting of two letters and six digits.

Example: TK 135012.
• The first letter “T” indicates that the guitar was made in the production facility in Tacoma.

• The second letter indicates the year of manufacture and is based on a dating system introduced by the Tacoma guitar factory in 1998 who associated the letter “B” with that year.
The following years are linked in sequence to the alphabet.
(I = 2005, J = 2006, K = 2007, L = 2008, M = 2009, N = 2010)
In this system, the letter “K” stands for the year 2007.

• The first three digits are derived from the “Julian” calendar, which associates each day of the year with a respective number in numerical order from 1 to 365. These three digits indicate the production month and day.
In this example, the number 135 indicates that the guitar was made on the 135th day of the year (2007), which is May 15 according to the Julian calendar.

• The last three digits of the serial number refer to the unit number built on that day. In this example, 012 indicates that this is the 12th guitar built on May 15th.

Summarized: T (made in Tacoma), K (in 2007), 135 (on 15 May), 012 (the 12th guitar on that day).

Dated from December 2008, made in New Hartford, Connecticut

The same dating system described above also applies to Guild guitars made in New Hartford, Connecticut.

The first letter indicating the location of the production, however, this is now “N”, meaning “New Hartford” indicates.
Serial number NL 348 004 is N (built in New Hartford),
L (in 2008), 348 (December 14), 004 (the 4th guitar on that day).

Other serial number formats

PYYxxxx (7 digits) P = Production location. 3 Made by Cordoba, Valencia, Spain. YY = Year. xxxx = Production number.

PYYxxxxx (8 digits) P = Production location. 1 = China 8 = Oxnard, California. YY = Year. xxxxx = Production number.

PPYYMMxx (2 letters 6 digits) PP = Production location.

GY = China. YY = Year.(20YY) MM = Month. xx = Production number.

PPYxxxxxx (2 letters 7 digits) PP = Production location.

KC = Korea Cort. IC = Indonesia Cort. Y = Year.(199Y)
xxxxxx = Production number.

PPYYxxxxxx (2 letters 8 digits) PP = Production location.

KC = Korea Cort. Y = Year.(20YY) xxxxxx = Production number.

PPPYYxxxxx (3 letters 7 digits) PPP = Production location.

KWM = Korea World Musical. KSG = Korea SPG. YY = Year.(20YY) xxxxx = Production number.

PMMxxxxxx (3 letters 6 digits) P = Production location.

C = Corona, California. MM = Model. (example: UV = F50, PM = D25 ) xxxxxx = Production number.


How can I tell what year my Guild guitar was made?

Using guitar decoder, you can dating Guild guitar by checking its serial number. The decoder also includes information for new and non-US-made Guild guitars. However, Guild’s official documentation of serial numbers is not comprehensive, as some lists have been lost in the past. To determine the year of production for your Guild guitar, you have 2 options: you can use the serial number decoder, or you can refer to the tables.

How do I find Guild guitar serial number?

You can find the serial number of Guild guitar stamped on the back of the headstock. In the case of (semi) acoustic guitars, it may also be located on the bottom inside of the body or stamped on the neck block.