1961 LPS Restoration

Discussion in 'Vintage Les Pauls' started by crashbelt, Mar 7, 2018.

  1. crashbelt

    crashbelt Junior Member

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    20180102_002052.jpg
    I inherited this much mistreated 61 a couple of months ago. It had a John Birch customisation :( in the early 80s including a 2-3mm thick all over (yes even the board:mad2:) poly finish over a dark green into black burst refin. The sideways was replaced with a Gibson fine-tuning tailpiece - apologies to anyone who rushed to the bathroom at this point:shock:.

    Lesser crimes were replacement tuners, wrong saddles and missing switch surround. But the good stuff - original hot PAFs:thumb: (covers had been off and put back but I checked to see unmolested coils), original TR cover, guard and knobs and no sign of old neck breaks (although can't be 100% sure what's under the opaque poly yet). Original pots with easily reversible treble bleed cap mod.

    So it's with the brilliant Joseph Kaye Guitars in London for stripping and aged Polaris White refin, and replacement of wrong parts with aged replicas. It needs to be a solid colour to cover filled holes and there are a couple of nice examples on the internet of original custom ordered white 61s which look awesome.

    My only dilemma is whether to get a repro stop tailpiece or a repro sideways. I really don't like sideways, and this will be a player for gigging, but it would look right. I'd welcome thoughts on that.

    I'll post pictures when it's done although this will be a long job to get it right.
     
  2. Left Paw

    Left Paw Senior Member

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    Good luck on that one. It can be brought back with a lot of work. I would opt for the stop tail since the guitar will never be original again.
     
    Last edited: Mar 7, 2018
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  3. Duane_the_tub

    Duane_the_tub Senior Member

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    +1 on the stop. If it's a player, you'll appreciate the stability. Glad someone is giving that old girl the resurrection she deserves. Best of luck.
     
  4. Stinky Kitty

    Stinky Kitty Senior Member

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    Sweet Score! Gratz

    Def the stop for a player..
     
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  5. pinefd

    pinefd V.I.P. Member Premium Member V.I.P. Member

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    For my '61 restoration, I went with an original sideways vibrola, because I've always loved the looks of them. But recognizing its limitations, I did the Mojoaxe VibroStop conversion on it (which is completely reversible, btw):

    [​IMG]

    "MojoAxe VibroStop Sideways Vibrola Conversion Kit

    for 1960,1961, and 1962 Gibson SGs

    The sideways vibrola unit installed onto the early 1960's Gibson SGs is notorious for causing tuning issues and in some cases making these otherwise wonderful guitars pretty much unplayable. The MojoAxe VibroStop Conversion Kit allows for an easy conversion of the stock Gibson sideways vibrola unit to a solid stop type setup. All of the springs and moving parts of the stock vibrola unit are replaced with a single solid block. The VibroStop conversion tailpiece block is precision CNC machined from aircraft grade 7075 tempered aluminum barstock and plated with a nickel finish. Once installed, the tuning stability is dramatically improved and on par with an ABR/stopbar setup. Additionally, the VibroStop increases the downward angle of the strings behind the bridge resulting in improved sustain and tone.

    The MojoAxe VibroStop Conversion Kit includes the stoptail block and all necessary fasteners. Installation can be done with ordinary tools. $125"

    Here is a link to the website, sold by one of our fellow members here (Danelectro): http://www.mojoaxe.com

    Here's how my restoration came out:

    [​IMG]

    Best of luck!


    Frank
     
  6. crashbelt

    crashbelt Junior Member

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    Thanks that's really helpful - I use Mojoaxe intonating stop tailpieces on Juniors and Specials. They're great guys to deal with and I'll seriously consider that option.

    Love your restoration - hope mine comes close!!
     
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  7. Greco

    Greco Senior Member

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    I'd say if you have the chance to put on a stoptail instead of a de-sexed sideways toaster thing, then go with the stoptail.
     
  8. chasenblues

    chasenblues Senior Member

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    Wouldn't the Stop Tail posts/studs have to be re-positioned on this? The current studs look way far back.

    sg.JPG
     
  9. Greco

    Greco Senior Member

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    Yep. That's why he's going with white, I thought?
     
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  10. chasenblues

    chasenblues Senior Member

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    Maybe i misread his post then..
    The current location is where the TP/comb(?) for the sideways trem was attached correct?
     
  11. Greco

    Greco Senior Member

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    I'm pretty sure they float and were attached at the back on a hinge. So those badly misplaced holes were all butchery.
     
  12. crashbelt

    crashbelt Junior Member

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    Yes I was thinking of the solid white colour as there will be holes to be filled after the misplaced tailpiece is removed, which would show through a translucent finish.

    Incidentally there was evidence in the cavities that the original colour was cherry. No surprise there.
     
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  13. chasenblues

    chasenblues Senior Member

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    :slap: D'oh..Got my trem/tailpiece parts confused..

    Though this was under the sideways cover for some reason.:facepalm:

    Gibson_EMS-1235_EDS-1275_tail_piece_guitar_parts_vintage.jpg
     
  14. Greco

    Greco Senior Member

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    Well if those are the only holes or breaks then I think two well placed bits of mahogany wouldn't look too bad under red. It might even then look better with a tremolo of some kind to cover them. Depends if you can live with plugged holes or not.
     
  15. mapleflame

    mapleflame Senior Member

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    I remember this guitar lol
    Frannnnnnk what up $$$!!!
     
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  16. pinefd

    pinefd V.I.P. Member Premium Member V.I.P. Member

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    Hey, Steve, how are you?!? Of course you remember that one! Not much happening...although I'm off to Nashville tomorrow to attend this weekend's guitar show. I don't imagine you go to that show, do you? It's not nearly as good as the Philly show, so I'm told, but it's a good excuse to get together with some of my guitar buddies.


    Frank
     

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