Help identify Epiphone MIJ - is this legit? worth it?

chookity

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Hello,

A collegue of the forum recommended me to post here.

So I decided to get a Korean or Japan made. Found this one, asking aprox 980-1000 USD. Says it's '90 Japan make, model LPC-90 with new frets, seymour duncan JBs and a original hard case included. Serial is from what i see from the picture 909455.

There is only one decoder that says it's '99 Fujigen Japan, other say it's actually 1961-1970, but 6 digit serial numbers cannot be decoded to an exact year and others don't even decode it. When it comes to manual decoding, some sites say that Japanese should have letters before the digit, this one has none. Other sites say it's 61-70.

I've posted on facebook on different groups, there's one guy telling me the seller is on-spot with the guitar. He said it's 99' made fugigen factory pre elitist. long neck tenon. one piece mahogany neck. Others say it's a fake. Seller doesn't have the original PUs and the headstock tag doesn't say "Gibson", but it says "Les Paul Custom" - so less info, while also making it more confusing for me, since I am not versed at all in these guitars.

Anyhow, this doesnt look like an elite, even if it's japan - so I don't know if its' worth the money. I also cannot play it myself since it is overseas. Everything adds to the hard situation.

Around me its very hard to find guitars like these, and second hand guitars are getting fewer by the day anyhow. There are aproximately 5-6 epiphones and 7-8 gibsons maximum selling in my country at this moment. So I don't have many options.

Here are some example images, but I can get more if needed.
Thanks a lot!
 

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ranchonmars

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Just looking it over the tuners in the back look pretty crooked. Also, if it's coming from Japan you'll be assessed a customs fee for any purchase over $800USD if you bring it into the states. There are a few Epiphone Elitists on Reverb and eBay for under a grand sold here in the states. Unless you are living outside the U.S. I would stick to a domestic seller for the MIJ Epiphones. They can be found and you don't have to worry about the neck snapping in transit or customs popping it for the mahogany.
 

scott 351 wins

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Just looking it over the tuners in the back look pretty crooked. Also, if it's coming from Japan you'll be assessed a customs fee for any purchase over $800USD if you bring it into the states. There are a few Epiphone Elitists on Reverb and eBay for under a grand sold here in the states. Unless you are living outside the U.S. I would stick to a domestic seller for the MIJ Epiphones. They can be found and you don't have to worry about the neck snapping in transit or customs popping it for the mahogany.
I've noticed that the Japanese like to install the turning pegs in a arc like in the O.P.'s pictures.
 

frehley76

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That is a killer deal that wulfman linked above. I would definitely go for that one over the one OP posted.
 

wils

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I would walk away from that pal it looks like a dog. I don’t know much about epis I’ll admit I had a standard burst 30 or so years ago before I could afford a Gibson. However the logo on the headstock is to big and at the wrong angle. The trus rod cover looks wrong. Gibsons have the 2 screw covers. Epis have 3 as it’s cheaper to produce that way. This looks like a two screw like on a Gibson. Tuners don’t look right either. And that’s just for starters. I wouldn’t part with my cash until I had played it either. For $1000 I wouldn’t risk it. I’d find a lp studio. In the Uk you can get them for £500 but if you can’t get one shipped you can get a far better guitar than that. If you need any advice message me. Always willing to help. Wils.
 

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lwchafin

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I've noticed that the Japanese like to install the turning pegs in a arc like in the O.P.'s pictures.
That's not what it looks like to me. Looks like both of the E string machines are misaligned - the other four are squared to the neck's midline.
 

frehley76

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I would walk away from that pal it looks like a dog. I don’t know much about epis I’ll admit I had a standard burst 30 or so years ago before I could afford a Gibson. However the logo on the headstock is to big and at the wrong angle. The trus rod cover looks wrong. Gibsons have the 2 screw covers. Epis have 3 as it’s cheaper to produce that way. This looks like a two screw like on a Gibson. Tuners don’t look right either. And that’s just for starters. I wouldn’t part with my cash until I had played it either. For $1000 I wouldn’t risk it. I’d find a lp studio. In the Uk you can get them for £500 but if you can’t get one shipped you can get a far better guitar than that. If you need any advice message me. Always willing to help. Wils.
It is MIJ, they have the the Gibson type truss rod cover, and many more Gibson traits.
 

lwchafin

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1655907377904.png

MIJ 1989 Epi LP Custom headstock. LPC-80 Fujigen factory. Reverb $1196.
 

PRSWILL

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Yeah it's not a fake- and has some nice upgrades with the Grovers and Seymour JB's. but that's too much money - maybe that's what you have to pay in a smaller market, but i'd check Reverb.com and see what the benchmark on price might be. I am not familiar with Epi pricing.
 

chookity

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Yeah it's not a fake- and has some nice upgrades with the Grovers and Seymour JB's. but that's too much money - maybe that's what you have to pay in a smaller market, but i'd check Reverb.com and see what the benchmark on price might be. I am not familiar with Epi pricing.
its from reverb. the cheapest considering the upgrades + the case. there are others good looking, but i cant stand gold hardware
 

chookity

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That's not what it looks like to me. Looks like both of the E string machines are misaligned - the other four are squared to the neck's midline.
dont they just need to be straighten? i mean, what else to do to this guitar. adjust truss rod, clean it, swap some old screws with new ones and thats that. the guitar has new frets. it'll take me 20 years to wear them down. also two good pickups, high quality sdjb and original hardcase which is also aprox 150$.
 

moreles

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I'm surprised that the MIJ-Epi fans haven't chimed in to point out that those guitars are often considered to be excellent in build quality and largely authentic LP features. This one even has the open-book Gibson headstock shape instead of the butt-ugly Epi headstock. While I do think that any Epi is going to have a value ceiling, and the price on that one, in that condition, is high, I've read thousands of enthusiastic, even bragging posts about MIJ LPs to just dismiss it. Without looking more closely, I can't offer a more reasonable price, but it may well be a very good guitar. I had a Fuji-Gen built LP for many years and once I got the terrible PUs and some cheap parts out of it, it was excellent, particularly because it was built to vintage specs -- long tenon, solid top, stuff that Gibson was not doing at the time. I often crap on veneered, slick-looking but poorly-made Epis, but while I could be wrong, that one may be a good guitar and a superior Epi.
 

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