Greco Les Paul Junior Questions

vashypoo

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hey all, been trawling these forums for a while looking for info on MIJ replicas. i've got a Tokai Strat that i love, and i am looking for a Les Paul Jr. right now so figured going back to the replica well would be a lot easier on my wallet. i've got a line on one that's a Greco from 1988, EJR 54-60. i know the golden years for the MIJ replicas are around 77-82, and specifically the Super Real for the Grecos, but i am also not sure if Greco even made Junior replicas til about 81/82. this would be part of the Mint Collection which i've also heard is desirable, and built at Fujigen, but the fact that it's from 1988 is a bit iffy for me considering that is when they started making Orvilles as well. at the end of the day, it's all up to the player and how it feels/sounds once it's in my hands, but since i can't try it out, i'm asking you guys:

do you think a 1988 Greco is still worth buying?
was there any significant dip in quality between 1982 and 1988 at Fujigen in terms of the wood being used, electronics, hardware or anything else?
what are the differences between the EJR 54-50 and 54-60 beyond just the price point? are there any other EJRs to look out for? those seem to be the only ones made in the 80s at Fujigen based on the catalogs, but perhaps i am missing something.
are there any significant changes between the Super Real guitars and the Mint Collection or are they mostly cosmetic?
are all Fujigen guitars created equal?
does anyone have a TV yellow Les Paul Jr. replica they're looking to unload? ;)

thanks so much for the help, y'all are my last hope!
 

vashypoo

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oh also, wanted to know what the best Tokai Junior to look out for would be, and from what year(s). I know they’ve got their LSJs but not sure when they started manufacturing those, or if they’re as desirable as the Grecos or Orvilles.
 
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Roxy13

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I wouldn't have any problem buying a 1988 Greco. I have an 89 and a 91. I also had a 90.

And Fujigen made guitars post CNC (1982 sometime) are very consistet. You could buy an FGN or HIstory now and all the workmanship is just like the older Grecos or Orvilles. I have and have had quite a number of Fujigens.
 
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Hi , if you are talking about the one listed currently on reverb it’s a nice one, but it all depends where you live (for shipping / tax calculation) and what you really want. I am a junior fan myself and own several ObGs that are great but even if I am following this one Greco as well, I am not sure if it’s nitro, not sure of the factory and for instance for me it’s already too expensive because in France we have approx 25% taxes (from price + shipping). Knowing that my ObG (cherry red) was 900€ full (all taxes incl) ... for me it’s not yet worth it. It’s about personal liking now: are you ok with the Greco p90? Have you spotted that rusty screw holding the tailpiece that needs to be replaced ? And other tiny things, that could all be easily solved with some little cash. But nice axe, now it’s -21%, at -30% I might click on « buy »
Hope it makes sense , now I :io:back to work
Edit : if you buy, you better ask for remaining fretlife, and for how the action is set, because the wraparound seems grounded on the body, so almost no room there for lower action; but looking at it again, I agree it’s cool
 
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greens

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Are you into/not into particular neck dimensions?
 

vashypoo

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thank you all for the replies, just seeing everything now. i ended up pulling the trigger on it but definitely still curious about everyone's thoughts. i am going to take it into my repair guy to give it a once over and potentially change the pickup and perhaps electronics, but then again with my Tokai Strat i thought i'd have to do that and it's still exactly as i bought it from the shop 2 years ago. i will keep everyone posted.

Are you into/not into particular neck dimensions?
not really - the only thing i would avoid is the 3/4 scale Les Pauls Gibson made but not sure anyone made a replica of those anyhow. thoughts?

Hi , if you are talking about the one listed currently on reverb it’s a nice one, but it all depends where you live (for shipping / tax calculation) and what you really want. I am a junior fan myself and own several ObGs that are great but even if I am following this one Greco as well, I am not sure if it’s nitro, not sure of the factory and for instance for me it’s already too expensive because in France we have approx 25% taxes (from price + shipping). Knowing that my ObG (cherry red) was 900€ full (all taxes incl) ... for me it’s not yet worth it. It’s about personal liking now: are you ok with the Greco p90? Have you spotted that rusty screw holding the tailpiece that needs to be replaced ? And other tiny things, that could all be easily solved with some little cash. But nice axe, now it’s -21%, at -30% I might click on « buy »
Hope it makes sense , now I :io:back to work
Edit : if you buy, you better ask for remaining fretlife, and for how the action is set, because the wraparound seems grounded on the body, so almost no room there for lower action; but looking at it again, I agree it’s cool
so are the ObGs the most desirable ones of all the replicas?

i agree with everything you said. i did end up buying it, as he offered me a lower price and agreed to duck the price on the receipt so duties weren't so much, so figured i may as well go for it. i knew i would have to take it in to get some things changed, and i may want to switch out the pickup, so at the lower price (around 30% like you said) i decided to jump on it. i don't necessarily care as much if it's got the nitro as i would've even been happy to get one of the Faded And Worn gibsons from the early 00s. a more recent Love Rock Special is for sale at a local shop here for $1299 CAD, so i feel like i could flip this one fairly easily if i don't end up liking it for at least what i paid for it.

and yes i will definitely post pics once it arrives! thank you all again.
 

Roxy13

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Does it have a p90 pickup? If so and it's still stock it should be a Hot LIcks and they sound fantastic IMO.
 

vashypoo

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Does it have a p90 pickup? If so and it's still stock it should be a Hot LIcks and they sound fantastic IMO.
yeah i believe it is the original Hot Lick, which i am excited to hear, but i usually end up swapping pickups out anyway so not the biggest deal if it's a lemon. i'll check the serial number underneath once it arrives. glad i learned how to solder recently ;)
 

Roxy13

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yeah i believe it is the original Hot Lick, which i am excited to hear, but i usually end up swapping pickups out anyway so not the biggest deal if it's a lemon. i'll check the serial number underneath once it arrives. glad i learned how to solder recently ;)
I'm probably one of the worst people here for changing pickups or moving them around to different guitars and I nearly always change the wiring harness, but I really like the Hot Licks. I also really like the 1978 Gibson p90s that come in the old Arias and those are still stock as well.
 

vashypoo

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I'm probably one of the worst people here for changing pickups or moving them around to different guitars and I nearly always change the wiring harness, but I really like the Hot Licks. I also really like the 1978 Gibson p90s that come in the old Arias and those are still stock as well.
this is all good to know, thanks. and yeah, i used to play Mustangs live and would always swap out the pickups for different things cuz they are fun beater guitars that way. this will be a totally different beast, of course. i don't have a TON of experience with P90s in my own guitars (other than a strat-sized custom made one i have in a Mustang - nothing alike) but i usually just follow my ear and it works out okay. it's all in the hands right? or the... ear... i guess...
 

Roxy13

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I haven't had a lot of guitars with p90s. I wouldn't mind having more to be honest. For a very long time I had an old Jay Turser SG with p90s and changed them to Gibson ones and modded that whole thing really. And had a Gibson SG Special with mini hums that I thought I was going to change to p90s but I actually really liked the mini hums and they were something different I hadn't ever had before.

I would like a semi or full hollow body with some p90s. I'm sure I'll have one someday.
 

vashypoo

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I’ve always been hesitant with them because of the hum but for some reason the Juniors really spoke to me recently, and in my experience when i have a gut feeling about a guitar, it’s usually the right thing for me. I like that they still have the clarity and articulation of single coils since I’m so used to my strat now, but I wanted something with a little more bite. plus who’s gonna hear the hum if you’re shredding the whole time?
 
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Cool to hear you took it for a bit lower $ ! Yep, show us pics!
I don’t consider ObGs to be more desirable than Grecos, it’s just where I started with MIJ, but I actually look for a lot of different axes, there are some Grecos in the list :) I went for ObGs because of the copied specs with THE P90s... and then for THE original BLs. But I love the majority of MIJ.
I’m especially curious about fret life. I saw some other nice Grecos around, but as I told you I was wondering too for that one... I am in a big gas period but with limited budget :wow::facepalm:
Don’t get me wrong, regarding the rusty screw, it’s not for the look, but because rust uses to be contagious for parts in contact with each other.
 
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for sale at a local shop here for $1299 CAD, so i feel like i could flip this one fairly easily if i don't end up liking it for at least what i paid
One word regarding pricing, yes you are right, and in France it’s almost the same prices... I mean good deals for MIJ have to be done overseas or hand to hand locally (or through forums) because here as well a good jap junior in a shop is 1200€ (at least !!!) . They sell for a lot more, and they are difficult to negotiate. I think it’s because of the MIJ hype, and because of Gibson ‘s high prices for a good Jr... So I try to do the same comparison : overseas for less than 1k, VS in local shops for around 1,2k.
But the risks we take with that logic is not to have the expected condition, and to have to add too much $ in order to get the desired thing. This was why I was concerned about your fretboard & bridge condition...
I hope that you will be happy, not obliged to add too much cash, and that will help us to know other good jap sellers (this one has a nice stock but I never dealt with him, I know one already with whom I would buy eyes closed). Cheers
 

vashypoo

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IMG_3105.jpg


ok honestly the thing i am MOST impressed by is how quickly it arrived - ordered monday, shipped wednesday, arrived friday. mental.

this thing fucking rules (Greco EJR 54-60 LP Jr Copy, for anyone who didn't read above). everything about it is amazing. i don't have a ton of experience with these things but right away it felt so comfortable in my hands. the neck wasn't nearly as thick as i was expecting. frets are in great shape, as is everything else. couple minor dings here and there but nothing major at all, and the thing is just a joy to look at.

the pickup sounds unbelievable. WAY better than i expected, and for all the talk about how noisy P90s are, this one barely makes a sound even when i have my overdrive turned on. i love when a guitar responds to how my right hand is playing, and this is about the most responsive pickup i've come across, totally changing the colour depending on where and how hard i am strumming. and the volume/tone knobs are unbelievable. never in my life have i had a guitar completely change the vibe even rolling off a couple notches of either volume or tone. i am in my apartment so i haven't had a chance to really crank this up but god damn, i am in love with this thing. sounded a liiittle more flat when i had my amp turned down and was playing super clean but i'm comparing that to my Strat which feels sorta unfair, and i had my Deluxe Reverb at like just below 2 for the most part, so not exactly giving it much juice to really sing while clean. that sweet spot of amp breakup with a little bit of gain... wow. just perfect.

only real downer is that the tuners aren't great but that might be because the guitar came with super light gauge strings. gonna try my usual 11s on it and see how that goes. all in all, i am in love. makes every other guitar i own look, sound and feel like a joke! thank you so much for all of your input. i would definitely recommend that seller on Reverb, too - super fast communication and i am p sure he was an american dude, as his name wasn't japanese and he spoke perfect english (not that that's an issue obviously! just helped a lot with the questions i had!) Japan Guitar was the store name, which is about as on the nose as it gets.

thanks again! very happy NGD to me :)
 
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Happy NGD man, and I am sincerely glad that you’re happy !!! Agreed, she’s sweet !
Thanks for the input about the seller, that’s important for us MIJ buyers out on reverb ...
The magic (for me) with P90s is that you learn again how to play : they are a world away from strat singles , they can get muddy, and also can withstand a lot of OD. But the coolest thing is that they are very responsive to your attack, and that makes a whole lot of different sounds without even touching the tone or volume pots (start cool n clean, then strum that bluesy riff that screams !)...
Then another set of new sounds when you start playing with the pots. Especially if you have a fender amp, that’s their best friend... social distortion ruled years of my life !
i love my humbuckers but the P90s have that bit of soul an old motorcycle has: it won’t start in the morning to allow you to be at work on time, but when you ride it you feel like you are making love...
Have fun, I’ll share your joy from France strumming one of mine today ! :cheers2::welcome:
 

Roxy13

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Told ya you'd like the Hot Licks if that is what is still in it stock :)

The noise tends to come when you have 2 p90s and that 60 cycle hum.

What don't you like about the tuners? Are they just old and worn and feel loose? Or you'd like a higher ratio?
 

vashypoo

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Happy NGD man, and I am sincerely glad that you’re happy !!! Agreed, she’s sweet !
Thanks for the input about the seller, that’s important for us MIJ buyers out on reverb ...
The magic (for me) with P90s is that you learn again how to play : they are a world away from strat singles , they can get muddy, and also can withstand a lot of OD. But the coolest thing is that they are very responsive to your attack, and that makes a whole lot of different sounds without even touching the tone or volume pots (start cool n clean, then strum that bluesy riff that screams !)...
Then another set of new sounds when you start playing with the pots. Especially if you have a fender amp, that’s their best friend... social distortion ruled years of my life !
i love my humbuckers but the P90s have that bit of soul an old motorcycle has: it won’t start in the morning to allow you to be at work on time, but when you ride it you feel like you are making love...
Have fun, I’ll share your joy from France strumming one of mine today ! :cheers2::welcome:
yes, that’s a perfect way of putting it. i love anything that sorta pushes against what you’re doing a little, makes you put more physicality into your playing. it feels more like a living breathing instrument and can really get across the “soul” (for lack of a better term) of the performance. very excited to track with this thing.
 

vashypoo

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Told ya you'd like the Hot Licks if that is what is still in it stock :)

The noise tends to come when you have 2 p90s and that 60 cycle hum.

What don't you like about the tuners? Are they just old and worn and feel loose? Or you'd like a higher ratio?
haven’t checked to verify but the seller seemed pretty confident it was all stock, and all signs point to it being a Hot Lick, in which case I’m definitely a fan! didn’t know that about the hum, but it makes perfect sense.

the tuners aren’t terrible or anything, just a little loose, but i do wonder if it’s the gauge still. wouldn’t be the end of the world to get new tuners but not sure which I’d go for. i also like the aesthetic of these ones so ideally they just kick into gear… literally.
 


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