Greco Les Paul Custom without serial

Thierry1982

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hi there,

I hope you guys can help. Trying to close a deal for a Greco Les Paul Custom. However it doesn’t have a serial, can you help me identify this guitar and let me know what a reasonable price is?
 

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Thierry1982

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Netherlands. I’m not interested if it is Korean though. Seller wants 720€. Claims the guitar is from the seventies or eighties.
 

Thierry1982

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That definitely looks like a Cort (Korean) headstock to me. I did have one but mine had the resin fretboard and the diamond was much more green (abalone I believe).
Thanks for the information. Too bad. Will back out of the deal.
 

Roxy13

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I've had both a Cort and a Fujigen one from that same era (late 80s/1990) and they are very similar in build quality IMO. My Cort made one came with Japanese pots so wiring wise they were nearly identical too. The Cort pickups sucked, but that easily fixed lol.

I actually preferred the neck tenon joint and inlays on the Cort. The routing on the Fujigen was better otherwise though.

But, his price is too high for a Cort made one since they get a worse rap than maybe they deserve.
 

Thierry1982

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I've had both a Cort and a Fujigen one from that same era (late 80s/1990) and they are very similar in build quality IMO. My Cort made one came with Japanese pots so wiring wise they were nearly identical too. The Cort pickups sucked, but that easily fixed lol.

I actually preferred the neck tenon joint and inlays on the Cort. The routing on the Fujigen was better otherwise though.

But, his price is too high for a Cort made one since they get a worse rap than maybe they deserve.
Thanks so much for sharing your knowledge with me. I'm still learning :).
 

EG700

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Similarly, I've got both Cort and Fujigen ones. The thicker logo font and the deep-vee "open-book" mark this one out as Cort, as would "blingey" inlay and a brick-like nut if the nut were still original (thanks go to Roxy and Wulfman for educating me). I have been monitoring prices on Yahoo Japan in the past year and observe that hammer prices for good-condition Cort ones are in the JPY 35,000 - 40,000 range whereas equivalent-condition Fujigen "O-cuts" will be JPY 60,000 - 80,000. The difference in guitar quality is fairly slight, so this price difference only serves to illustrate that, in Japan, Korean guitars are about as popular as Korean mobile phones (in a word, jingo-ism). As a result, Japanese vendors always describe a Cort Greco LP as "late Mint Collection O-cut" and will fudge the issue of country of manufacture, but "no serial" is a flag. It might still be Terada with no serial, however the other features will give it away, including black shielding paint in the pick-up routs (a thoughtful touch that's lacking in Fujigen ones). Nothing wrong with buying a Cort Greco LP, so long as it's discounted about 40% or 50% cheaper than if it were a Fujigen "O-cut".
 

Roxy13

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They seem to get a worse rap here too. But, I've had mine completely apart as both were project guitars and I've seen everything and played both once they were together. I did have to replace the nut on both too so in the end they both had bone nuts. My Fujigen one also didn't have oringal pickups. It had old SDs in it and one was dead to the point where eventually Cooljuk rewound it for me, so no Screamins in mine (but I've had them in other guitars so I know what they sound like). And as I already said the Korean pickups are pretty crummy but it got some 57 Classics which suited it well.

If you just want a well made black beauty for a good price, the Korean ones will do the job for you. The ones with resin fretboards too you will never need to oil it and it probably will never get any wear either and the refret on it was very easy. You can just clean it with a damp rag really.
 

simon_62

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Is anyone here able to confirm what model and/or origin my Greco is please? It was sold to me as MIJ a couple of years ago, though I’m now having doubts. I didn’t pay a fortune though, and I love the guitar so it doesn’t make much difference either way, but it’d be nice to know one way or another…!

- Open-book headstock
- Open-O inlay
- Split diamond headstock inlay
- Ebanol (I think) fingerboard
- Pickups and hardware have all been changed/modified over the years
- Full-size pots, w/MIJ paper-in-oil type capacitors
- Cavities screened w/black paint
- Original nut’s long gone
- Deep-tenon neck joint

Album:
 

EG700

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Is anyone here able to confirm what model and/or origin my Greco is please? It was sold to me as MIJ a couple of years ago, though I’m now having doubts. I didn’t pay a fortune though, and I love the guitar so it doesn’t make much difference either way, but it’d be nice to know one way or another…!

- Open-book headstock
- Open-O inlay
- Split diamond headstock inlay
- Ebanol (I think) fingerboard
- Pickups and hardware have all been changed/modified over the years
- Full-size pots, w/MIJ paper-in-oil type capacitors
- Cavities screened w/black paint
- Original nut’s long gone
- Deep-tenon neck joint

Album:
If you have a deep-notched vee in the centre of the open book, fat font on the "Greco", and blingier-than-Fujigen inlay on the headstock, plus no serial and the black-painted cavities, then that all adds up to MIK.
 

simon_62

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@EG700 Thanks, but I’m honestly not sure!

- The vee isn’t deep-notched
- The inlay is used on Fujigen models too

It’s a weird mix of specs, and may well be MIK after all but I just can’t seem to pinpoint the exact model. :D
 
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simon_62

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@brokentoeswalker yep, that's the key thing that made me question whether it was MIIJ in the first place tbh. I'd had it for eighteen months before I even twigged that it wasn't ebony - and this is far from my first ebony-loaded guitar either!
 

GBLEV

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Now that's what I call a 'mirror' finish on the headstock!
 

EG700

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The ultimate test for the origins of a non-serial Greco is pickup cavity routs, according to expert witnesses like Wulfman. The pickup routs are like fingerprints that are unique to a particular factory. There is another thread hereabouts in "Other single-cuts" that has photos posted of Terada vs Cort vs Fujigen pickup routs. Though if you have black paint in there, then you can pretty much say "Cort!"
 

simon_62

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The fatter font for the Greco logo and the wider block inlay, along with the "ebony" board say it's MIK.

Nice catch on the inlay widths, that hadn't occurred to me either! Cool, I'll accept it's an MIK model then - thank you!

Next question... what MIK model is it likely to be?! :D
 

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