Greco Mint series

Bray n

Senior Member
Joined
Sep 10, 2013
Messages
151
Reaction score
38
I have been doing some research and have read a bunch of threads but still not quite educated on the MIJ LP's.
Were the 1990 Greco models still made in Japan? and are they considered a well made guitar. They look great! I am new to the MIJ Les Paul's but think I should get on board.
Was considering buying a LP studio recently as they are going for low prices right now. But I though maybe I should look into a MIJ LP.
Greco seems to be a good choice from what I've read. But which one's are considered good/well made. The price range is wide and I wonder as some of them creep up into and surpass Gibson prices. I guess that means they are as good or ?

Thanks for any help
 

Mr Teeny

Senior Member
Joined
Dec 27, 2010
Messages
3,543
Reaction score
2,408
Yep they were still making Japanese Greco's in 1990, but around that time Greco also contracted Cort/Cor-Tek to make budget guitars for them. The simplest way of checking is if there's no serial it's usually a Cort made one. There were also well made Japanese Tokai Grecos around the same time without serials just to confuse things, but a little research and you can easily spot the Cort ones if a Tokai made one takes your fancy.

The Golden period is generally assumed to be around the Super Real period 1979-1982, nibs etc, but the Mint Collection 1982 to early 1990's are certainly well made guitars. I think the thing with MIJ's is you really have to go out of your way to play one before believing all the hype. Plenty of the lower priced models will blow a studio out of the water and the higher priced ones are priced that high for a reason and plenty willing to pay it over a Gibson.

Just look thru the craigslist type ads , guitar shops etc and see if you can get to try one out to compare. Because they're not chambered they can be heavier than today's Gibsons and a poly finish doesn't suit everyone
 

wulfman

ABB Fan
Joined
Apr 2, 2010
Messages
8,814
Reaction score
12,914
I think the best bet for Grecos would be 1982-1983 because they are pretty consistent from the bottom to top of the line for quality and materials. Higher models from 1980-1981 are a good bet too. Just my experience though.
Later ones have been excellent as well and some were made by Tokai or as Teeny mentioned Cor-tek.

I have attached the translation I did of the 1982 specs for the EG LPs to let you see the range of models they had that year.
 

Attachments

Bray n

Senior Member
Joined
Sep 10, 2013
Messages
151
Reaction score
38
Thanks guys. I appreciate the help and info.
I guess that's why those early ones are pricey.
I'll keep my eyes out for one local. Was thinking of looking on one of the Japanese sites but I think I need more knowledge of what is a good guitar/buy first.
 

pfddi

Senior Member
Joined
Feb 24, 2011
Messages
121
Reaction score
309
Here is a 1982 EG59-120. It is a fantastic guitar and the looks and playability are wonderful.
 

wulfman

ABB Fan
Joined
Apr 2, 2010
Messages
8,814
Reaction score
12,914
Looks pretty minty. I didn't know the 120s came in that colour. Small frets on the 120?
 

Wingtip4

Senior Member
Joined
Jun 8, 2009
Messages
312
Reaction score
97
Others here know more than me, but 1990-91 is about the cut-off for the Mint series. Very good year for a great guitar. Beware models with no serial number, many of which were made in Korea. Greco made great guitars I believe from 1975-1991. About 1979, they started with more vintage specs and the solid bodies. I think higher grade Grecos from 1980 to 1990 are always a safe bet depending on condition. Most need tune-ups like fret leveling and maybe hardware.
 

old mark

Senior Member
Joined
Aug 21, 2009
Messages
3,826
Reaction score
3,502
Mine is a Mint Collection from around 1986...VERY heavy, styled after a '70's LP Custom down to the voluted neck. Good player, very loud...I once owned a '73-74 Gibson LP Custom that was almost identical to my Greco...the Greco is generally of equal quality, IMO, but the neck is better...the Gibson had smoother sounding pickups...

The only thing I changed on this guitar was to replace the original bridge with a Gotoh and add the Les Paul TRC...Oh, yeah - I also added the reflector knobs and the poker chip.
 

Attachments

pietro

Senior Member
Joined
May 31, 2008
Messages
524
Reaction score
75
Mine is a Mint Collection from around 1986...VERY heavy, styled after a '70's LP Custom down to the voluted neck. Good player, very loud...I once owned a '73-74 Gibson LP Custom that was almost identical to my Greco...the Greco is generally of equal quality, IMO, but the neck is better...the Gibson had smoother sounding pickups...

The only thing I changed on this guitar was to replace the original bridge with a Gotoh and add the Les Paul TRC.
Nice one!
 

Satellitedog

Senior Member
Joined
Mar 13, 2014
Messages
567
Reaction score
83
Thanks for the great info guys. I've been contemplating and wavering a little as to what type of solidbody guitar to buy (SG, Jazzmaster, LP Special type), and found myself oddly attracted to some plaintop LPs, which I didn't know existed (or haven't seen a nice one before I got here).
Is there a specific series of plaintop Grecos? There was a beautiful EG 700 in the MIJ bargain thread, but other 700s have solid finishes so I wonder...
 

J-Dizzle

Senior Member
Joined
Jan 26, 2011
Messages
2,937
Reaction score
2,432
Saw this and wondered about it.
Greco 1990 Made Mint Collection LP Custom Screamin PU Long N Tenon Made in Japan | eBay

But now I'm all over the place with this new MIJ LP knowledge. :)
Bacchus, Burny, Orville, Tokai.
I just want a solid player for not too much $. I like heavy guitars. Not overly in to aesthetics. (Except I am not fond of cherry burst)


Thanks again for all the help
I have bought from him before and found him to be a good vendor.

Just make sure you look closely at all the photos for dings and scratches. Sometimes he sells guitars which have been refinished.

Fortunately he puts lots of pics in his listings.
 

pfddi

Senior Member
Joined
Feb 24, 2011
Messages
121
Reaction score
309
Here are a few more pics of the 120. Sorry for the quality - I suck as a photographer. The guitar has been refretted (I got it that way), so no nubs anymore.


 

Bray n

Senior Member
Joined
Sep 10, 2013
Messages
151
Reaction score
38
I almost feel like a kid in a candy store :)
I knew the Japanese guitars were good but just didn't realize that there were so many really high quality copies available.
 

Satellitedog

Senior Member
Joined
Mar 13, 2014
Messages
567
Reaction score
83
Before the thread moves on I'll ask this again. Is there a specific series of plaintop Grecos? There was a beautiful EG 700 in the MIJ bargain thread, but other 700s have solid finishes so I wonder...
 

Wingtip4

Senior Member
Joined
Jun 8, 2009
Messages
312
Reaction score
97
I may be way off, but it seems like I've seen more Tokai plaintops than other brands. If you have patience and do the research, you could get a used Greco that has finish problems for cheap and strip the top and oil it or lacquer it, even stain it, etc....
 

wulfman

ABB Fan
Joined
Apr 2, 2010
Messages
8,814
Reaction score
12,914
There were a couple of nice plain top MC Grecos for sale in the classifieds recently.
 


Latest Threads



Top