• Epiphone SQ-180 Don Everly acoustic guitar
    Epiphone SQ-180


Brand name: 


  • acoustic guitars

Series name: 

Dates of manufacture: 

1983 to 2000
2002 to 2006

EPIPHONE began making the Don Everly SQ-180 (MODEL EAQ1) in the early 1980s. The Epiphone SQ-180 was an authorised version of the 1962 Gibson Everly Brothers flat-top acoustic with its thin J-185 style body, star inlays and double tortoiseshell pickguards.  This model was  referred to in earlier catalogs as simply the SQ-180 - but when the Neil Diamond SQ-180 was introduced in 1999 they had to start calling this one Don Everly SQ-180 to differentiate it. It finally discontinued in 2006. The peghead shape and logo changed in 1989 and again in 2002 and by 2006 there was a Don Everly signature  on the peghead.

Source: Epiphone catalogs 1991 - 2002

Source: Unofficial Epiphone Wiki - SQ-models

Specifications (15)


Finish colorsebony finish
Number of strings6 strings
Scale length24.75 inches scale-length


Body back materialmaple body back
Body sides materialmaple body sides
Body stylejumbo-style body
Body top materialspruce body top
Body width15.5 inches body width
Pickguard materialtortoiseshell pickguard
Pickguard shape2 separate pickguards, soundhole-surrounding pickguard


Fingerboard materialrosewood fingerboard
Fingerboard position markersstar fingerboard position markers


Neck materialmahogany neck
Neck width1.65 inches wide at nut
Tuner layoutthree-each-side

Prices (11)

2017$720goodBruceI bought it in 2020 NOT 2017, the dialog box only goes to 2017
2017$150.00goodRich1996 Korea
2018$300excellentfrankPurchased June 2021. July 1994 mfd date. s94070040 serial #
199589 FRF excellent
2017$195.00excellentLGreat guitar!!
2018€70poorThis is 86-89 -model. Original(?) plastic saddle and bridge are wreck and there are two round holes in the mahogany sides of the body. Neck is bit twisted, high action on bass-side, but its playable.

Reviews (0)

Gallery (0)

Players (0)



They started the Everly brothers version in 1986, not 2000. I own a 1991 model.

Even older ...

I own one and just checked the serial number on this site
which says its from 1983.


The SQ first stated life out as a Hondo Little Susie, in black also blonde. In 1985. Epiphone took on the self same guitar from the factory and due to the space on top of the headstock put an Epiphone by Gibson logo on it. This was very late 80’s early 90s. As regards any serial number on an Epi referring to 83, they had a messed up way of the serials back then. Come the early 90’s they made access to the truss rod from the headstock and bit the ears from the open book headstock. The reason why they then decided to call it the Don Everly model was after 95 when Gibson done another 180 called the Everly . Not to be confused with the Gibson Everly.

Epi SQ 180

I own an 06, 94 and 91.  My understanding from my research, which included a retired Gibson historian, is that the 89, 90, and 91 models were all made in Gibson's new (at that time) Bozeman, MT, facility.  The 89, 90 and 91 models were all solid tone woods (spruce top, maple back and sides).  The neck was made in Korea and is mahogany, ergo the Made in Korea print on the internal label.  You can tell one of these guitars by the open book head stock (not pegged) and a serial number that has no letters at the end specifying which Korean plant it was made in.  Having played all three of the guitars, my 91 sure sounds like solid tone woods, and the 94, though it is nicely made, does not have the sparkle, bass or sustain of the 91.  The 06 is not a good guitar aside from its looks.  I have played J-180's and would put my 91 up against any of them sound wise.  If anything, it sounds more like the original Gibson EB flat top than do the modern J-180's which had a number of changes from the original EB flat top.  You can pick up one of the 89, 90, 91 models for between $500 and $1000 depending on condition.  

SQ 180

Bill I am very interested in this story. I have the rare 90 model I bought from new. Has since had a headstock repair (my bad). It is an absolutely awesome guitar. I will never sell it. I jut sold my 2001 Gibson J45. The SQ 180 while different, stacked up against the Gibson for tone, and is a way nicer neck and action to play for mine. I could believe the body came out of the US or at minimum uses top tone woods. But the prices they were selling them it does not make economic sense to me. I am sure these are S.E.Asain guitars, likely our of the original high quality Hondo plant  - just well made ones with some decent wood at that period. Sounds like the later ones they went for cheaper tone woods - which i'd believe Epiphone would do.

Epiphone SQ 180

Milo, just saw your response, and I apologize for not answering earlier.  All I know is what I was told by Gibson's chief historian and former web manager.  The historian claimed to have seen runs for the 89, 90 and 91 models from the Bozeman plant.  The Bozeman plant had belonged to the Flat Iron Mandolin company, and Gibson wanted to make some guitars there using craftsmen who had experience making stringed instruments though not guitars.  So, they decided to leave the production of the Gibson j-180 in Nashville (introduced in 86 and based on later Gibson Everlys, 69 to 71 models), and do some "interesting" things in Bozeman initially.  Regardless of where it was made, it sounds great.  I have a Gibson j-185, and it is a marvelous guitar, but the SQ 180 just has this crackly, sharp, clear tone that is almost a dead ringer for the original Gibson Everly's.  Whenever I play it, it causes heads to turn and people to listen.  It is also amusing to see folks try to play it when they are used to a wider neck.  I was also told that the reason it is marked "Made in Korea" is due to a change in FTC policy.  Many American companies were marking products as "Made in America" when only a part was.  The FTC flipped the policy so that if any substantial part was manufactured in another country, then the item was marked made in that country.  The necks of the 89, 90 and 91 models were made in Korea, ergo the label.  I also changed out the plastic nut, pins and bridge for bone and replaced the tuners with Klusons.  It made quite a difference.


I recently picked up a 1991 SQ-180 and my tech, who is a well-trained and very sought after luthier, set it up for me and confirmed the back and sides are not maple, but mahogany. I’d really like to see a photo of anyone’s 89-91 that says they have solid maple back/sides. Their would be little grain and the wood would be light. Every model of that era I’ve seen listed recently also appears to have the same mahogany material if you look in the sound hole. The top is clearly spruce, and it sparkles. Whatever the combo, these are underrated guitars and the 89-91 are a great find!


Hi, I have an Epiphone by Gibson SQ 180 but cant get a fix on the sn. its not recognized 8804202 

Epiphone by Gibson SQ-180

I also have an Epiphone by Gibson SQ-180 with the serial number, 8804103.
It sounds as though our guitars may have a similar history. I have not been able to find any info based on the number.
Any help or advice would be welcomed.

Neck join on SQ 180?

Hi All

I just wondered if anybody out there knows what type of neck join the SQ 180 had? I have a 1988 one in my workshop at the moment in desperate need of a neck reset. Just very fearful that it might have been put together with epoxy/dowels. Any assistance or direction to somebody that might know would be much appreciated.
Thanks all

SQ 180

As far as I have read, the SQ180 has a Set Neck Joint. 


SQ 180

Can anyone tell me what the "SQ" stands for or means on the SQ-180??


Epiphone by Gibson SQ180 1988

Hi, I still own the above and have now decoded the SN, its 8804202 making it a 1988, It wasnt easy to find how to decode it. I have owned it since 1991.  Would be interested to know the value now.