1971 Deluxe to 1950s inspired Burst conversion

Discussion in 'Norlin Years' started by ESchmidt, Aug 6, 2017.

  1. ESchmidt

    ESchmidt Senior Member

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    Hello everyone! I would like to share my guitar and it's story with you. Back in December I purchased an absolute beater of a 1971 Les Paul Deluxe. It was in poor condition. It was originally a goldtop, but the top was stripped and re-finished (badly, I might add) in natural. It also had a horrendous re-fret and the neck had been cracked and repaired. Additionally, the guitar had been routed for humbuckers at some point but the routes were filled back in and a set of late 1970's mini humbuckers were installed. Although it had its original pots dating to the 3rd week of 1971, they sounded bad so they had to go too. I saw the guitar and it's potential with that beautifully flamed top and a weight of only 9.5 pounds and I knew I had to bring this one back.

    I had Chad Fitzpatrick of CF Restorations do all of the work, and I'll tell you what, his quality is second to none. I had him re-carve the top to a 1950s deep dish carve, refinish the top in a greened out honeyburst, refret the guitar, route for humbuckers, re-radius the fretboard, and add cellulose nitrate inlays to complete the makeover. I wanted to leave the original back and side finish that came on the original guitar because I like the color and it would match the new top refinish well. I also finished the project with the following parts:

    Throbak single line Kluson Tuners
    Martin Six String Custom rolled truss rod cover
    Historic Makeover cellulose nitrate inlays
    Original 1971 poker chip
    Throbak heavy aged cream M-69 rings
    Dave Johnson heavy aged pickguard
    Original late 50s long magnet PAF 7.91k (neck)
    Original early 60s short magnet PAF 8.20k (bridge)
    DMC no wire ABR-1
    True Vintage Taper pots and bumblebee caps
    Lightweight aged aluminum tailpiece
    Vintage accurate long tailpiece studs
    Early 1960s reflector knobs
    Lifton reissue case

    The guitar came out very well. The only thing I would have changed is I would have had the bridge pickup route completely re-worked. I thought that the pickup ring would hide the old awful route/repair but it did not, so you can see the old repair. In short, now I have a fantastic 1950s inspired burst and it is a joy to play. And again a big thanks to Chad at CF Restorations for his hard work, dedication, and advice. Let me know what you think!

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    Last edited: Aug 6, 2017
  2. ESchmidt

    ESchmidt Senior Member

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  3. ESchmidt

    ESchmidt Senior Member

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  4. Jeremiah

    Jeremiah The Worst Premium Member

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    well shit, you do not see that every day. now you've got me wondering why it isn't done more often!
     
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  5. ESchmidt

    ESchmidt Senior Member

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    Sorry I don't have any big pictures of the original guitar when I got it, just this one here.
     

    Attached Files:

  6. Bobby Mahogany

    Bobby Mahogany Senior Member

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  7. Donal

    Donal ¯\_(ツ)_/¯ Premium Member

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    WOW that turned out excellent. :thumb:

    Enjoy her :applause:
     
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  8. 1981 LPC

    1981 LPC Senior Member

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    Beautiful. I particularly like the finish and how it's been aged.
     
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  9. Oranjeaap

    Oranjeaap Senior Member

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    Great colour! Love it.

    If the bridge route bothers you, I know just how to fix that. I'll PM you an adress, you send it there and you'll never have to look at that ugly fix again. ;)
     
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  10. acstorfer

    acstorfer Senior Member

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    Wicked!
     
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  11. HardCore Troubadour

    HardCore Troubadour Senior Member

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    That's PURDY!
     
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  12. Progrocker111

    Progrocker111 Senior Member

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    Wow, really great work and beautiful guitar. Congrats! :dude:

    P.S. How do you like the tone of the guitar?
     
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  13. ESchmidt

    ESchmidt Senior Member

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    Progrocker,
    It sounds fantastic! Those PAF pickups are a good fit for this particular guitar. It's very resonant and being only 9.5 pounds, it is uncharacteristicly light for the average Les Paul of the era. The sound is very "3D," for lack of a better term.
     
  14. jc2000

    jc2000 Senior Member

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    Very nice!!!
     
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  15. djsuckapunch

    djsuckapunch Senior Member

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    Nice!
     
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  16. moreles

    moreles Senior Member

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    I love, love, love that beautifully flamed multipiece top. Something weird in me just get tons of pleasure in seeing such a gorgeous surface knowing that its heritage is as a player's guitar, not some boutique concoction with a vast upcharge for every nice little bit. Really nice! Good going! I've always want to do what you have done but have never had the opportunity.
     
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  17. Mr Insane

    Mr Insane Senior Member

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    Mean looking guitar!
     
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  18. XpensiveWino

    XpensiveWino Senior Member

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    Real nice man. I'm sure, like you, wish that d*** neck pickup route wasn't as it is. I have to say the outcome is gorgeous, and only nerds like us are ever going to even think about that route repair. Let it rip and enjoy!
     
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  19. ESchmidt

    ESchmidt Senior Member

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    Thank you all for the kind comments. I can say with certainty that out of the dozens of les pauls I have owned over the years this is my favorite!
     
  20. RustyNuts

    RustyNuts Premium Member

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    That is absolutely beautiful. Thank you for having the vision of what it could become. Play it in good health!
     
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