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Thread: Was thinking of buying a Les Paul Gibson but... they only sell the new models?

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    A Ficus ehdwuld's Avatar
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    Default Re: Was thinking of buying a Les Paul Gibson but... they only sell the new models?

    When I looked at Warmoth
    They had three sizes of stainless frets
    None of which were lower than standard

    Carvin offers stainless but only the one size ,if I remember correctly

    My dude in China says all of his frets are stainless. But doesn't really state the size

    Jescar probably has whatever size you want in whatever material
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    Toneologist YeRedHouseOverYonder's Avatar
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    Default Re: Was thinking of buying a Les Paul Gibson but... they only sell the new models?

    I have 3 CS guitar without any fret work that I am aware of. A 2007, 2011, and 2017. All similar or same models (two 336s and one 356). I would say the least "school bus" frets are with the 2007 KS 336 (goldtop) and the most with the 2017 336 (cherry). I would post pics of the KS 336s frets, but the nibs have shrunk a bit within the last 11 years.




    This 2014 R8 did have some work done on it. Frets seem a bit more school bus. Regardless of that, it still rocks hard.

    Sent from my LG-H931 using Tapatalk

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    Default Re: Was thinking of buying a Les Paul Gibson but... they only sell the new models?

    3 beauties. Very nice.

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    Ultimate Tone Slacker zionstrat's Avatar
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    Default Re: Was thinking of buying a Les Paul Gibson but... they only sell the new models?

    Quote Originally Posted by YeRedHouseOverYonder View Post
    I have 3 CS guitar without any fret work that I am aware of. A 2007, 2011, and 2017. All similar or same models (two 336s and one 356). I would say the least "school bus" frets are with the 2007 KS 336 (goldtop) and the most with the 2017 336 (cherry). I would post pics of the KS 336s frets, but the nibs have shrunk a bit within the last 11 years.




    This 2014 R8 did have some work done on it. Frets seem a bit more school bus. Regardless of that, it still rocks hard.
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    Toneologist YeRedHouseOverYonder's Avatar
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    Default Re: Was thinking of buying a Les Paul Gibson but... they only sell the new models?

    Thanks. It's taken 4 years of flipping gear to get them all.

    Back to the OP, go out and play standards you're interested and bring one home that feels right in your hand regardless. If the guitar is "a bit rough around the edges", but workable, use it to your advantage. Ask for discounts. If you purchase online, which isn't a cardinal sin IMO, ask a lot of questions and pics. Know the return policy. Most used gibsons will have been dialed in to some degree.

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    Mojo's Minions ItsaBass's Avatar
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    Default Re: Was thinking of buying a Les Paul Gibson but... they only sell the new models?

    Quote Originally Posted by Chistopher View Post
    Do you know of anywhere that sells stainless steel "Fretless Wonder" frets. I have always loved them, but I fret to heavily for nickel silver frets of that height to last any significant time.
    You can't get regular fretless wonder frets, let alone stainless. You can only get close with that banjo wire I mentioned, or find old stock. I doubt that banjo wire is available in stainless.
    Quote Originally Posted by LesStrat View Post
    Yogi Berra was correct.
    Quote Originally Posted by JOLLY View Post
    I do a few chord things, some crappy lead stuff, and then some rhythm stuff.

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    Mojo's Minions ItsaBass's Avatar
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    Default Re: Was thinking of buying a Les Paul Gibson but... they only sell the new models?

    Quote Originally Posted by Darg1911 View Post
    I don't know about the nibs but those frets on the CS guitar photos posted don't look much different than whats on my Traditional. In fact, they may be more "school bus" than my Trad. But, I'm not saying that the CS guitars aren't better instruments. Just that, from those two photos at least, I'm not seeing anything of the fretwork itself that appears superior.
    In the post right above the one I am quoting, I name a couple things that are clearly different than standard production line fret work. The main thing is that they are dressed significantly lower, therefore the crowning and end-rounding requirements are not as heavy. The "school bus" thing, as well as square-cut ends, become less of a technical problem as the frets get lower. The photos are not very clear, but they also might have a tighter crown radius on them. Look how much crown there is on the last photo YeRedHouseOverYonder posted. Also, notice how the fret bevels tend to cut through both metal and plastic, for a longer, softer transition. Look at how much more nicely the ends are softly transitioned into the fret body. I can't tell for sure whether the binding is the same thickness as the usual thick Gibson single-ply binding; it might be thinner.
    Last edited by ItsaBass; 06-13-2018 at 12:09 PM.
    Quote Originally Posted by LesStrat View Post
    Yogi Berra was correct.
    Quote Originally Posted by JOLLY View Post
    I do a few chord things, some crappy lead stuff, and then some rhythm stuff.

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    Toneologist YeRedHouseOverYonder's Avatar
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    Default Re: Was thinking of buying a Les Paul Gibson but... they only sell the new models?

    Yeah, it's hard to take clear pics with my phone. It can be finicky with close ups. I should probably invest in a good camera lol.

    Sent from my LG-H931 using Tapatalk

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    Default Re: Was thinking of buying a Les Paul Gibson but... they only sell the new models?

    Quote Originally Posted by YeRedHouseOverYonder View Post
    Yeah, it's hard to take clear pics with my phone. It can be finicky with close ups. I should probably invest in a good camera lol.

    Sent from my LG-H931 using Tapatalk
    You can buy decent quality lenses for your phone. Look into the Optizoom QX9, it can do 12 optical zoom and can fit on any phone or tablet.
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    Default Re: Was thinking of buying a Les Paul Gibson but... they only sell the new models?

    Quote Originally Posted by ItsaBass View Post
    In the post right above the one I am quoting, I name a couple things that are clearly different than standard production line fret work. The main thing is that they are dressed significantly lower, therefore the crowning and end-rounding requirements are not as heavy. The "school bus" thing, as well as square-cut ends, become less of a technical problem as the frets get lower. The photos are not very clear, but they also might have a tighter crown radius on them. Look how much crown there is on the last photo YeRedHouseOverYonder posted. Also, notice how the fret bevels tend to cut through both metal and plastic, for a longer, softer transition. Look at how much more nicely the ends are softly transitioned into the fret body. I can't tell for sure whether the binding is the same thickness as the usual thick Gibson single-ply binding; it might be thinner.
    Without knowing the CS guitars fret size/height and the height of what Gibson is using now (since the 27% lower fret wire thing starting in 2015, I think it was 2015) on their regular production models, and then measuring and studying my frets to do a more detailed comparison, all I'm going by are the photos here and what my 2017 Trad looks like in my head. Gibsons CS guitars cost more, they should be better instruments and I'm making no overall quality comparisons. I don't want to get deep in the weeds with this either. It's just not important to me. They just look similiar, based on the photos. That's all I was commenting on.

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    Mojo's Minions ItsaBass's Avatar
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    Default Re: Was thinking of buying a Les Paul Gibson but... they only sell the new models?

    Quote Originally Posted by YeRedHouseOverYonder View Post
    Yeah, it's hard to take clear pics with my phone. It can be finicky with close ups. I should probably invest in a good camera lol.

    Sent from my LG-H931 using Tapatalk
    To clarify, your pix are sharp enough. It's just hard to tell from any pix exactly what is going on on a 3D object, especially when it is small. When the guitar is in hand, you can turn it this way and that, move your perspective, and get a really good idea of things. Your pix are actually better than the ones I posted (two of which are major crops from much bigger pix).

    That dog-ear one you have is right up my alley. It's a beaut, and seems like it would sound incredible.
    Quote Originally Posted by LesStrat View Post
    Yogi Berra was correct.
    Quote Originally Posted by JOLLY View Post
    I do a few chord things, some crappy lead stuff, and then some rhythm stuff.

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    Default Re: Was thinking of buying a Les Paul Gibson but... they only sell the new models?

    Quote Originally Posted by Darg1911 View Post
    Without knowing the CS guitars fret size/height and the height of what Gibson is using now (since the 27% lower fret wire thing starting in 2015, I think it was 2015) on their regular production models, and then measuring and studying my frets to do a more detailed comparison, all I'm going by are the photos here and what my 2017 Trad looks like in my head. Gibsons CS guitars cost more, they should be better instruments and I'm making no overall quality comparisons. I don't want to get deep in the weeds with this either. It's just not important to me. They just look similiar, based on the photos. That's all I was commenting on.
    27% lower fret wire would indeed improve things. You can see that it *is* better than in the past, on the green '15 LP posted last page. But there are still problems, and the CS frets are noticeably lower to me (as they traditionally have been). It's either that, or they are significantly wider.

    Do you have pix of your Traditional's frets?
    Last edited by ItsaBass; 06-13-2018 at 01:26 PM.
    Quote Originally Posted by LesStrat View Post
    Yogi Berra was correct.
    Quote Originally Posted by JOLLY View Post
    I do a few chord things, some crappy lead stuff, and then some rhythm stuff.

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    Mojo's Minions ItsaBass's Avatar
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    Default Re: Was thinking of buying a Les Paul Gibson but... they only sell the new models?

    To re-iterate, I wouldn't kick any of these guitars out of bed (well, except the SG Special Faded I posted on the first page, which I *did* kick out of bed). Do they "suck?" No. Are they "total crap?" No. Would I not get one for these reasons? If the price was right, or I just had to have one, sure I would. But I sure as **** would expect to spend the $100–$150 to get the frets real nice, and the $40–$60 to have a nice nut installed – stuff that you shouldn't have to do on a $2K–$3K instrument...or as a point of principle, even on an $800 instrument made in the same factory by the same people. That was my point: Expect to spend the money to do some fine tuning on a new Gibson, if you want it to play its best (unless you have a very high end model). The Custom Shop is a different animal. They are allowed to take their time there to get things closer to ideal. The standard production line is just cranking them out, so they skimp on the labor-intensive finishing touches.
    Quote Originally Posted by LesStrat View Post
    Yogi Berra was correct.
    Quote Originally Posted by JOLLY View Post
    I do a few chord things, some crappy lead stuff, and then some rhythm stuff.

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    Default Re: Was thinking of buying a Les Paul Gibson but... they only sell the new models?

    Quote Originally Posted by ItsaBass View Post
    27% lower fret wire would indeed improve things. You can see that is *is* better than in the past, on the green '15 LP posted last page. But there are still problems, and the CS frets are noticeably lower to me (as they traditionally have been). It's either that, or they are significantly wider.

    Do you have pix of your Traditional's frets?
    No. No photos of the frets. The fret wire on my 2013 Tribute is taller than my 2017 Trad. Don't know about 27% but it's definitely taller, easily noticed by sight and by feel. The 2013's frets are level and they are't bad at all but a crown and polish wouldn't hurt. I don't want the 2017 touched.

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    Ultimate Tone Slacker zionstrat's Avatar
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    Default Re: Was thinking of buying a Les Paul Gibson but... they only sell the new models?

    Quote Originally Posted by ItsaBass View Post
    But I sure as **** would expect to spend the $100$150 to get the frets real nice, and the $40$60 to have a nice nut installed stuff that you shouldn't have to do on a $2K$3K instrument...or as a point of principle, even on an $800 instrument made in the same factory by the same people.
    I totally agree- In the Gibson threads we explored some of the reasons that G has ended up out of sync on value/price points across most of the portfolio. They will have to get quality up and prices down if they want to compete-

    I'm only a sample of 1, but I've never played a PRS that didn't have nicely finished frets and a great set up out of the box.

    But good news is they have some time with Ch11 to ramp up the game.
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    A Ficus ehdwuld's Avatar
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    Default Re: Was thinking of buying a Les Paul Gibson but... they only sell the new models?

    To the OP

    Gibson guitars have been like cars of late
    With each model year making small or, as in 16, large wholesale changes
    With the necks getting wider and flatter that year

    My model plays fine. Some I played were noticeably different but not uncomfortable

    Fenders by the way are like trucks
    They rarely stray from course
    It took the compound fretboard years to move from Jackson / Charvel
    To production Fenders


    I would play several they vary alot, even in the same year
    The shape of the neck not so much and the frets are well what they are
    But they just FEEL different
    Last edited by ehdwuld; 06-13-2018 at 06:21 PM.
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    Ultimate Tone Slacker Gtrjunior's Avatar
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    Default Re: Was thinking of buying a Les Paul Gibson but... they only sell the new models?

    Quote Originally Posted by ehdwuld View Post
    To the OP

    Gibson guitars have been like cars of late
    With each model year making small or, as in 16, large wholesale changes
    With the necks getting wider and flatter that year

    My model plays fine. Some I played were noticeably different but not uncomfortable

    Fenders by the way are like trucks
    They rarely stray from course
    It took the compound fretboard years to move from Jackson / Charvel
    To production Fenders


    I would play several they vary alot, even in the same year
    The shape of the neck not so much and the frets are well what they are
    But they just FEEL different
    That was 2015 with the wider, flatter neck not 2016.

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    A Ficus ehdwuld's Avatar
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    Default Re: Was thinking of buying a Les Paul Gibson but... they only sell the new models?

    Quote Originally Posted by Gtrjunior View Post
    That was 2015 with the wider, flatter neck not 2016.
    I knew it was one year
    Thanks
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    Default Re: Was thinking of buying a Les Paul Gibson but... they only sell the new models?

    Back in the 90's I went to buy my first 'real' guitar. Among many, I played a 1994 LP Standard, a 1986 LP Custom and a 1974 LP Deluxe. They all sounded about the same through a distorted Marshall, though the Deluxe was slightly weaker/thinner. I bought the latest model at the time because it sounded the same like I wanted and played in tune. I still have it and use it regularly.

    A few years back I also bought a $600 LP Studio with a painted neck and no binding with frets that felt like they might cut your fingers. The paint on the neck smoothed out with playing and I've adapted how I grip and move around the neck to avoid catching the frets. I bought it as a cheap platform to try pickups. I've gotten it sounding better than the Standard, but it will never play better. Despite that I've used it more for gigs in the past year than my Standard. I don't notice fret job when I'm deeply focused on performing music. Just this past weekend I had strangers coming up to me shaking my hand telling me how beautiful I played and they were so glad I was there for them to hear it. I don't think I'm anything great and I didn't do anything fantastic, but the point is the cheap crappy guitar sure didn't stop me.

    Point is, if you want a gibson, try one and if you like it, get it and enjoy it. It will never be perfect. But if the satisfaction is worth the price to you, who cares. Enjoy it.
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    Default Re: Was thinking of buying a Les Paul Gibson but... they only sell the new models?

    I would recommend only buying a Gibson guitar if you can play it in person whether you are buying new or used. They are hit or miss from the factory and I truly believe the company is just riding on its name on the headstock. I do understand the appeal of a Les Paul and that is exactly the nostalgia that Gibson is riding on... but there are better guitars out there for equal, less, or more money..... unless you just really really care about the name on the headstock.

    Of course, if you come across a great deal on an instrument and it plays great and looks great (even if it needs a little work done), then of course it is worthwhile to acquire if it is what you are seeking.
    ROCK ON.

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