Help dating this LP

Robert Parker

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My buddy has had this since we were in high school. It was his grandfather's, I think. We're pretty certain it has been refinished, because the back is Gold and the serial number is pretty hard to read. The bridge doesn't look like anything stock. We think the serial number 122487. Based on the serial number dating websites I've looked at, I think it's early 70's, but I've not seen one that had a Deluxe headstock and ebony fretboard but with a wrap-tail bridge. These are the only pictures we have at the moment.
IMG_05391.jpg


IMG_05401.jpg
 

Robert Parker

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Interesting. That would make sense. I don't know a lot about these.

Pretty clear this was refinned, but what would the original finish have been? It's got trapezoidal inlays, rather than the blocks of a Custom, but it has the Custom headstock inlay.
 
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coreydm676

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Interesting. That would make sense. I don't know a lot about these.

Pretty clear this was refinned, but what would the original finish have been? It's got trapezoidal inlays, rather than the blocks of a Custom, but it has the Custom headstock inlay.
I would have almost certainly been black originally. If you could get pictures of the inside of the pickup cavities and the volume pots it would tell us more.
 

lpfan1980

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Close up of the logo/headstock is a big help if you can get the pic!
 

Danelectro

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I don’t recall any model with that combination of features; Custom headstock, trapezoid inlays, humbuckers, wraparound bridge....I wonder if that might be a custom order or a one-off put together by an employee.
 

Cozmik Cowboy

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It also has Custom-style body binding, and the front view looks like the fretboard might - might; I need a better shot - be ebony. At this point, I'm inclined to suspect that the refin is covering the plugged holes where the stop-bar or Bigsby was.
That, however, still leaves the trapezoids unexplained. Of course, you never can tell with Gibson; I'm thinking right now of an ES-335-TD with factory 345 'board inlays that CME had for a while (not on their site tonight).

So, LPC with special-order (or factory goof-up) inlays, plugged tailpiece holes, and an all-gold refin?

More pix, please; everything, close-up. Try for several angles where the tailpiece/Bigsby would have been, the fretboard, and inside the p/up routes.

"Pretty clear this was refinned, but what would the original finish have been?" If Grandpa got in the '70s, probably black, white, natural, or cherry-burst (though some of those might not have come along until the '80s; I am sure smoneone more knowledgeable than I will correct me).
 

Oranjeaap

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I don’t recall any model with that combination of features; Custom headstock, trapezoid inlays, humbuckers, wraparound bridge....I wonder if that might be a custom order or a one-off put together by an employee.
Yes if someone is one of those self-proclaimed Reverb.com "vintage guitar dealer" types you would probably call it a custom order or employee guitar. In the real world I'd guess it's way more likely this had some other repairs/work done given the refin and possible routing. Replaced headstock overlay or new fretboard after a neck break for example?

Let's see a bunch of extra pictures especially from the inside??
 

Mark_the_Knife

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Too many contradictions going on here. If this started out as a custom, the poker chip would be black, the inlays would be blocks (noted), and there would be a stop tail and ABR, not a pigtail style bridge. Also, a reissue might have an LE prefix on the S/N and no volute. It is more likely that this is a modifed Deluxe with a new/replaced neck based on a Custom, where the inlays were changed to trapezoidal prior to re-necking. I go with this theory, rather than assuming this started out as a Custom body and neck. That does not make sense economically. Ask the owner to check the neck for a volute, as this would tell you whether the neck is a replacement part for a reissue or a normal custom.
 

Cozmik Cowboy

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Too many contradictions going on here. If this started out as a custom, the poker chip would be black, the inlays would be blocks (noted), and there would be a stop tail and ABR, not a pigtail style bridge. Also, a reissue might have an LE prefix on the S/N and no volute. It is more likely that this is a modifed Deluxe with a new/replaced neck based on a Custom, where the inlays were changed to trapezoidal prior to re-necking. I go with this theory, rather than assuming this started out as a Custom body and neck. That does not make sense economically. Ask the owner to check the neck for a volute, as this would tell you whether the neck is a replacement part for a reissue or a normal custom.
And the body binding was changed, too? That strikes me a better indicator of original features than the poker chip (which is just a tad cheaper & easier to replace than the binding).

Modded LPC still makes the most sense to me - followed by fake.
 

drmmrr55

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Is the back of the body also bound? Except for the fretboard inlays, to me it looks like it was originally a custom, because of the multi-ply binding on the top. There may be more than just a refinish going on there. I have a cousin, that owns a Firebird V that supposedly was once owned by Rick Derringer, and it has had a headstock of a custom grafted onto the neck because of a break south of the nut. It still has it's trapezoid inlaid fretboard, with a double diamond bound headstock on it. Not your typical looking Firebird, but it looks really cool! Of course, it was painted opaque white to hide the repair. I'm wondering if that guitar has something like that going on, replaced fretboard maybe? Just guessing of course...
 
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Robert Parker

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Here are some pics of the fretboard, front of the headstock, and control cavities. I'll ask about the volute. You can just see the edge of the binding on the back in the pic with the switch cavity, as well as a little buck rash that revealed some wood underneath.

Also, I can zoom in pretty close on my computer. There is no indication of plugged holes from a stop-bar or Bigsby. If they're there, there's no noticeable shrinkage of the finish to give it away.

IMG_05541.jpg


IMG_05551.jpg


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IMG_05581.jpg
 
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charlie chitlins

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79/80?
Whatever it is, it's freakin' cool!
If that's not a factory custom, somebody did some very tasty custom work!
 

HardCore Troubadour

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Hog neck puts it before 75

big heel, and the cutaway makes me think 72-74 etc. etc.

trapezoid inlays look wonky to me...especially the first one where the sides are so scalloped, the second one seems to be "jagged" at the top?

might just be the angle etc???
 

Robert Parker

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Hog neck puts it before 75

big heel, and the cutaway makes me think 72-74 etc. etc.

trapezoid inlays look wonky to me...especially the first one where the sides are so scalloped, the second one seems to be "jagged" at the top?

might just be the angle etc???
Pretty sure it's the photo. It's a little blurry.
 

Mike I

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Any chance in the early 70's you could get a special order custom with trap inlays and a wrap tail?

Is that 3rd fret inlay off center, or is it just the photo?

A close up pic of the bridge would be nice if possible.

I'm inclined to agree a Bigsby must have been removed, even if the tell tale signs aren't there through the finish.

This is an odd one.
 
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drmmrr55

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Binding on the back...pretty big tell that it started life as an LP Custom. It might be possible that it came with the trapezoid inlay fretboard, but I'm inclined to think the original block inlay fretboard was replaced, perhaps because the truss rod was damaged/broken. The easiest way to fix a broken truss rod is to remove the fretboard, any good luthier can do it. BTW, the 3rd fret inlay does look a bit off center, but camera angles can play tricks on you. As for the bridge, it's hard to even guess what's going on there, it is however very cool, and kinda fun to speculate, which is what we are all doing!
 

Caretaker

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I still think it started out as an early 70`s 54 reissue with some mods.
 

Mike I

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Binding on the back...pretty big tell that it started life as an LP Custom. It might be possible that it came with the trapezoid inlay fretboard, but I'm inclined to think the original block inlay fretboard was replaced, perhaps because the truss rod was damaged/broken. The easiest way to fix a broken truss rod is to remove the fretboard, any good luthier can do it. BTW, the 3rd fret inlay does look a bit off center, but camera angles can play tricks on you. As for the bridge, it's hard to even guess what's going on there, it is however very cool, and kinda fun to speculate, which is what we are all doing!
I agree with this, and feel it makes the most sense. A replacement fingerboard, and the owner liked traps vs blocks.
( I had a custom once and for some reason i hated the block inlay at the first fret).

And I still think that it had a Bigsby removed, prior to the refin.

That's the most logical place I can put this guitar.
 


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