Advice on 60's neck Les Paul

ben2e

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Need some sense from the forum choosing a Les Paul. I had a 60 VOS MF Special Historic 6 years ago and regret I sold it but water under the bridge. I've seen several suggest the current Historics are at nose bleed prices and priced beyond what I'm willing to pay. I could use advice though on the best of the current new models and particuarly what I'm likely overlooking. I'd like a '60's neck profile or biggest maybe a '59. I play rock/blues and even some jazz but won't likely use my LP for that. All things equal, I'd prefer one not too heavy. My old one was 8.5 lbs and felt great (I realize that's the benefit of a Historic but I'd be ok with chambered).

Here's my very brief take on what's out there.

'59 Epiphone LP Gibson Inspired. The last Epiphone I played didn't wow me but wasn't awful and by all accoutns 2019+ has seen a big improvement in these. This model looks good to me too and isn't too heavy. Downside is $200 more gets you a plek'd Les Paul Special HB. Also hear the neck is pretty fat, more so than a '59 should be.

'60 Epiphone Gibson Inspired Les Paul: Probably a better neck for me and gloss. Bummed I wouldn't have the USA pickups. Don't really need the hard case. Wish the Bonamassa's were still for sale.

LP Special Tribute Satin HB: Maybe not the best looker but has the function and the plek's frets so no need for me to pay a ton for fret dressing. (I can do the other setup basics). This model is light. I don't love a satin finish but can live with it.

LP Tribute: Another $200 and a maple top. More LP look but still satin finish. 490 pickups I've heard are a bit more of a metal focus.

Studio: $300 more. Gloss finish but still the 490's.

Traditional Pro V Satin: I prefer the look of the bound LP's to the Studio's and Tributes. $1900 today ($800 more just for gloss ??). Weight relieved but still heavy from what I read/hear. Not sure if the new ones have non-pcb wiring.

Classic: The Classic is about the same price as the ProV Satin. $2k but gloss. Weight relieved but only relatively so. Looking at Wildwood's small stock, many are well over 9.5 lbs. I prefer the plain top. I only see figured tops I prever over plain on the most expensive guitars . The typical vineer flame isn't attractive to me. I love interesting grain but the extra $500 for the Std 60's doesn't seem worthwhile.

Anyone know a way to get a light weight (but new) Classic ? I have points to use at MF and they don't list weights or seem willing to weigh prior to shipping. Know some secret way to at least get the lightest of the stock they have ? Perhaps some kind person in the warehouse would weigh the boxed guitars assuming the packing and accessories all weigh the same.
 

Dogbreath

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I know that this isn’t a Les Paul, but… The new SG Junior is the best guitar I’ve ever played. I have owned several Les Pauls and several SG’s. I currently own a Les Paul Traditional, three SG’s, a new Les Paul Special and a Custom Shop Stratocaster. The one I can’t put down and won’t sell is the SG Junior. It’s magical! It’s light. The single P90 sings or growls. I don’t know why someone would need anything else. It has a slim taper neck. It comes with a hard case. The workmanship is top notch and the price is right. I would choose it over all of my guitars. Check one out.
 

C Squared

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The Trad Pro V is satin , yes, and is pcb, it actually has the high performance harness with the dip switches for coil tap, oop, etc, and comes with tradbuckers which were wired specifically for the hp harness. it seriously covers a LOT of ground (paf , p90, tele, all right there). The necks are incredible if you want a slimmer neck. Asymetrical with a compound radius. I scored one a bit back and it is by far my favorite to play. A lot of the ices tea ones have some nice figuring in the maple. Usually can be had for 1599
 

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danzego

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Understand that the production models (Gibson USA) aren’t going to have the same neck profiles as their Custom Shop counterparts. For instance, a Custom Shop 60’s shape will generally be a nice rounded C while the production model has a “flatter” back end. The production models that are labeled 50’s tend to be more like a 58 than a 59 in that they’re chunkier than a 59, but will generally feel even larger than more current 58 RI’s due to larger shoulders (again, the Custom Shop 58 is more evenly rounded, making it feel smaller).

There will be some from both lines that will be sanded more or less and, this, have more overlap, but that’s kind of a general rule I’ve found the last couple of years. Point is, you’re going to want to lay hands on these guitars first because what you know as a 60’s neck on a Historic/RI (for example) isn’t necessarily what you’re going to get on a production line one.
 

DaveSG

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I know that this isn’t a Les Paul, but… The new SG Junior is the best guitar I’ve ever played. I have owned several Les Pauls and several SG’s. I currently own a Les Paul Traditional, three SG’s, a new Les Paul Special and a Custom Shop Stratocaster. The one I can’t put down and won’t sell is the SG Junior. It’s magical! It’s light. The single P90 sings or growls. I don’t know why someone would need anything else. It has a slim taper neck. It comes with a hard case. The workmanship is top notch and the price is right. I would choose it over all of my guitars. Check one out.
+1 and the Jr is going to have the strongest neck joint of the SG family, without the giant route out for a neck pickup.

OP, lots of ways to go, what is your budget? The guitars mentioned are anywhere from $500 - $1500.

My personal opinions - go w/ a LP Tribute and upgrade the posts/caps/pickups when you get a little more jangle. Don't sell the 490/498 combo short - they can do well in non high gain situations, but just aren't really known for it.

The tribute is going to be lighter than a full LP Classic/Std and will get you in the territory. Neck will be a more rounded shape, which will work great for blues/jazz, but best advice would be to try a few Gibsons in person and get a general feel for how they shape their necks.

I like Epis (have a few), but will always recommend a USA Gibson when I can. The SG Jr and the LP Tribute are solid deals, lighter weight, and just great, fun guitars. The Jr is going to have a slightly slimmer neck and lighter weight. The LP is going to be more versatile, a little more full neck and slightly heavier. Can't go wrong w/ either (correct answer is to eventually end up w/ both).
 

Musha Ring

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I play rock/blues and even some jazz but won't likely use my LP for that.
I'm confused by this sentence. You'll be playing rock and blues on it, but not jazz? Or you play all those styles but won't be playing any of that on it?

At any rate, all I can give you is my personal experience/opinions.

First of all, you want a 60s neck and light weight. That limits your options, which isn't a bad thing.

As you mentioned there's the Classic, Tribute, Studio, and the Epiphones. If your budget allows, a Gibson will be a better guitar than an Epi and will hold it's value better. A Gibson, even a used one, is money better spent.

The Tributes are nice, but they do show wear and tear sooner being a satin finish. That said, the satin finish is a good way to save money. The gloss nitro isn't cheap. These will be lighter because the body is slightly thinner like a Studio.

I personally own a Studio and a Classic, amongst other things. The Classic is the heaviest Les Paul I've ever owned. The Studio is the lightest. The Studio is about 3/16s of an inch thinner. Both models have circuit boards. Both have coil splitting, the Classic also has an out of phase and a bridge direct control.

If you feel you need the binding and the full bore Les Paul experience, get the Classic. If you want something that plays, sounds, and feels just as good but is cheaper, get the Studio.

As for picking a light one, some places like Sweetwater allow you to pick your specific serial model/guitar as they list the weight of each one.
 

ben2e

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@Musha thanks and yes on the Rock/Blues being it's primary use.

Good to know on Sweetwater ! I was hoping there was some secret guy in the MF warehouse you could ask to find a lighter box but so far haven't found them. I'll try Sweetwater.
This listing claims 8.3 lbs ! Really light for a Classic if it's true (and not a lite model). Classic FS on Reverb
Granted most shops will sell a new one for less the weight is impressive if true.

I do like the gloss finish and binding on the classic and it's still in budget.
 

ben2e

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I forgot to add to the list above: Studio Special Limited Edition. Has a slim neck, burstbucker PU's, gloss finish. I'm not a big fan of the single finish option Desert Burst. Maybe it would look better in person. Otherwise the guitar checks lost of boxes.
 

redcoats1976

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i have a 2017 tribute GT.polished it up with meguiers to give it a little more gloss,added a poker chip,and im quite happy with it.weight is 8 pounds even.if you set the bridge volume at around 8 it tames the pickup pretty well
 


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