Quality Control Issues with 2018 LPs?

Les Paul Newb

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I put zero stock in the information that comes out of the mouths of the employees at GC. If there are guys that you know well and trust to be knowledgeable at your local store then that's one thing, but that's certainly not the case here. It's exactly as others have said, they'll say anything to steer you toward the product they want to sell. They always seem to assume that I don't know a guitar from a groundhog, and then it's just blah, blah, blah...
I live in a city of 215k people. Not big, but not small. We had 3 guitar stores before GC came along 12 years ago. When they first opened it was such a blessing. Selection for everything was huge, no signs on the expensive guitars that read "serious buyers only".

But the knowledge level was piss poor. Those guys couldn't tell a p90 from a lace sensor. You couldn't discuss anything about guitars beyond color.

The 3 guitar shops closed within a few years. Fast forward to today, GC has turned 1/3 of the retail floorspace into lesson rooms. This didn't effect guitar selection, but accessories. They have a much smaller selection of strings, pedals, pickups, etc.

The other thing is, they make the good stuff a pain to try out. LPs are strictly behind the counter, so you have to get an employee. And if you want to try a nice LP, they're fu**ing 30ft in the air. It's almost not worth the hassle. So you end up looking at cheaper stuff.

Black Friday is the only time I've seen great deals there. But I have gotten killer deals when people are there selling guitars. Lol. If they have something nice I just wait until no employees are there and tell them "I'll give you $50 more than they offer." Works every time.
 

NewDayHappy

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I live in a city of 215k people. Not big, but not small. We had 3 guitar stores before GC came along 12 years ago. When they first opened it was such a blessing. Selection for everything was huge, no signs on the expensive guitars that read "serious buyers only".

But the knowledge level was piss poor. Those guys couldn't tell a p90 from a lace sensor. You couldn't discuss anything about guitars beyond color.

The 3 guitar shops closed within a few years. Fast forward to today, GC has turned 1/3 of the retail floorspace into lesson rooms. This didn't effect guitar selection, but accessories. They have a much smaller selection of strings, pedals, pickups, etc.

The other thing is, they make the good stuff a pain to try out. LPs are strictly behind the counter, so you have to get an employee. And if you want to try a nice LP, they're fu**ing 30ft in the air. It's almost not worth the hassle. So you end up looking at cheaper stuff.

Black Friday is the only time I've seen great deals there. But I have gotten killer deals when people are there selling guitars. Lol. If they have something nice I just wait until no employees are there and tell them "I'll give you $50 more than they offer." Works every time.
I live in a town of 30,000 people and the local mom n pop shop doesn't even carry Gibson anymore. People would just come in and scratch up the LPs with no intention of buying one, they're already a tough sell to begin with. I bought my LP in November of 2016 and I'm still making payments on it almost a year later. I'm not complaining, I got a really, really good Les Paul with a beautiful top and no issues but not many people have 3k laying around. If you want to try a Les Paul, chances are you have premeditated this purchase and are determined to try one but it doesn't surprise me that they keep them hung up out of reach, too many people would be nicking them up if they were on the floor.
 

Les Paul Newb

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Yeah that must suck as a small guitar retailer. You have to put the good stuff out of reach. If it sits too long or gets demo'd too much people want to haggle. Tough business. It doesn't surprise me they're all closing.
 

No ugos

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When the salesman tells you the QC is "as bad as 2015" when 2015 wasn't a bad year, it tells you what you need to know about that "salesman"
 
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Tried a good number of 2018s in the past week, the QC is all over the place, some were pretty good, some were pretty bad, so, just another year for gibby.
 

ajay

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The ones at my GC were flawless. Still haven't seen a Blood Orange LP yet though
Judging by the photos, all I see is a red Les Paul. I don't even see the faintest hint of Orange on them. Just another gimmick. Red is Red. Those Standards have a nice AAA flame, but they're just plain Red!
 

JMB1984

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When the salesman tells you the QC is "as bad as 2015" when 2015 wasn't a bad year, it tells you what you need to know about that "salesman"
Exactly. 2015 quality control was top notch and people were forced to pay more for it. It was the specs people had an issue with. Also the brass nut material was a poor choice when combined with the Gforce, but Gibson fixed that with replacement nuts under warranty.
 

Badlionsfan

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Not trying to rain on anyone's parade here, but got some info today that I thought I'd share and ask the MLP community for your thoughts.

I was in my local GC to check out the 2018s and an employee there shared with me that they've been finding the 2018s are having quality control issues. Said it was reminiscent of 2015 or worse and has made it hard to sell the new LPs right now. If that's true it's really a shame because my 2017 is perfect and it seems Gibson was on the upswing!

This is just one guy's opinion and who knows if he's right. I know any given year is gonna have some great ones and some duds so I take what he said with a grain of salt. However I just bought a 2017 Standard from him a month ago so he knows he's not gonna lose a sale by telling me this.

All this aside, the 2018 Standard and Classic tops I saw are beautiful! And the two guitars I played looked to be of good quality all around. High actions as usual, but straight necks, clean binding, nice fret boards etc.
He's full of it. The only issue on the 15's were the brass nut, which Gibson made good on. There were no "QC" issues, just specs that many didn't like.
 

SoCal Flood

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I no longer have any doubt that 2015 had any worse QC than any other year, people just didn't like their specs it appears. Actually seems like I should go hunting for a steal on a 2015!
 

Lend27

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I no longer have any doubt that 2015 had any worse QC than any other year, people just didn't like their specs it appears. Actually seems like I should go hunting for a steal on a 2015!
I recently purchased 2015's when Sam Ash blew them out.
I got a 2015 Les Paul Less+ and a 2015 Les Paul Special Doublecut with P-90's.
Both excellent guitars, the only quality issue being the soft brass nut, which Gibson replaced with the titanium version within a week of my call to them.
I replaced the Gforce tuners with Grovers, not because of quality but because they are too much of a hassle to use. But they worked fine. I don't use many alternate tunings and I like tuning it myself.
The fit and finish is on a par with the best I have owned.
I love the zero fret. Every guitar should have one.
The electronics and pickups are top notch on both. Both came with the new gold hardshell cases. They do the job.
I got used to the wide necks in no time, and love the feel and playability.
I don't like the hologram or the Les Paul signature, but that has nothing to do with QC. Just poor judgment on Gibson's part.
The price was right, and I feel like I got a great deal on both. I actually wish I had pulled the trigger on a Junior also. But they sold out pretty fast.
 

TubesNtone

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Not trying to rain on anyone's parade here, but got some info today that I thought I'd share and ask the MLP community for your thoughts.

I was in my local GC to check out the 2018s and an employee there shared with me that they've been finding the 2018s are having quality control issues. Said it was reminiscent of 2015 or worse and has made it hard to sell the new LPs right now. If that's true it's really a shame because my 2017 is perfect and it seems Gibson was on the upswing!

This is just one guy's opinion and who knows if he's right. I know any given year is gonna have some great ones and some duds so I take what he said with a grain of salt. However I just bought a 2017 Standard from him a month ago so he knows he's not gonna lose a sale by telling me this.

All this aside, the 2018 Standard and Classic tops I saw are beautiful! And the two guitars I played looked to be of good quality all around. High actions as usual, but straight necks, clean binding, nice fret boards etc.
 

TubesNtone

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Let's forget all about pots for a moment, and focus on TONE!!! Here is a wiring diagram I drew up and incorporated into my 2007 LP Classic Fireburst using Jason Lollar 4 Conductor nickle plated Imperials. These will add a lot of tones and versatility! and you won't have scratchy POTS!!
JimmyPage Wiring Jason Lollar Imperial PU's.jpg
 

jap545

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Gibson is Gibson. We all know how they are and how they always will be. Inconsistent.... But we love them and will continue to buy them and tweak and fix what we must. Today however i found a perfect 2016 Traditional in iced tea. About 8 1/4 lbs, super nice flamy top, Fit and finish is flawless, crazy sustain and resonance. Action and intonation just perfect. Plays like a dream and sounds as good. Even better it was on sale. A leftover from the warehouse. I have a 2015 and 2017 as well also fantastic in every way. You just have to shop around. Fortunatley i live in the NY metro area so i have many options as far as guitar shops go. I understand it is harder when your options are limited. Beleive me i return more than i keep so i know. I have had my share of duds. I had a few custom shop duds as well. Custom shops are awsome, historics and true historic..etc.. But they are way overated at their price point. Bottom line is These are hand made guitars whos quality is determined by the particualr set of American hands that finishes them. Being American we know that in our culture we can have bad attitudes and bad work habits yet still not lose our job in many cases. That includes QC inspectors at Gibson who probably let alot of things go because " They dont pay me enough" or "I aint got time for that" Big companies get away with poor quality control because many american workers at these companies demand that they do. Our overall work ethic is weak here compared to overseas. We are overall the entitled people. It's our fault..really. Gibson is not a small custom shop. They are a big business putting out a ton of product whos mission is to make big money. Despite some duds and QC issues they know that their products captivate us and that we are emotional about them.. So if a few suck here and there they dont really care. It's a numbers game. All this may be annoying but when something is not right they do take care of it if you persue it in a timely manner. I love their guitars. All the guitar snobs bitching about headstock angles and bad flame tops and QC and all the other crap they come up with can leave em on the shelf for guys like me. Gibson is behaving like a typical large american company. They are fat lazy americans building guitars for fat lazy americans like me...
 

Dave Makowski

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Personally, I don't listen to rhetoric as it applies to Gibson instruments because to me "the proof is in the pudding". I have seen plenty of poor examples and many excellent examples. The problem I have is someone or a group at Gibson just aren't and/or can't be making good decisions based on everything stated above. I believe and respect all posts above. That's why when I purchase a brand new Gibson I have to hold it, play it, inspect it, and compare similar models to judge resonance and "feel". What is a shame is that companies like Fender are making high quality and consistent instruments that don't vary much from one instrument to another. Why can't Gibson do the same? Finally, my pet peeve is the beloved Gibson Les Paul Custom. Why Gibson moved it to the "Custom Shop" only seems like a very bad idea. On top of that the use of "Richlite" instead of "Ebony" affects the tone. This really pisses me off because I used to play Gibson Les Paul Customs but not anymore as "Richlite" just doesn't sound right to me. I now play Gibson Les Paul Standards with "Rosewood" fingerboards. Who can afford a $4,799.99 Gibson Les Paul Custom with a "Richlite" fingerboard? Not me. No way!!
 

Hope

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Guys I've been wondering what happens with guitars that fail QC at the factory?
 

oldflame

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I was in my local GC to check out the 2018s and an employee there shared with me that they've been finding the 2018s are having quality control issues.
... nothing new there. It's been going on for at least a decade. The cost x quality equation is way off from the bottom of their range to the top. Why should punters have to sift through heaps of Gibsons to find a good one?
 

Nippon

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Yeah, one guys opinion. Probably has a monthly PRS sales target to meet.
 

pgodman

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What quality control issues were 2015's known to have?

Gforce & a hologram aren't QC. They're just options/astetics that people don't like.
I just picked up a 2015 LP Deluxe - Gforce and no quality problems whatsoever.
 

pgodman

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I have ordered a 2017 LP Custom Walnut on Aug 31st 2017 still waiting and sure I will love it. It will be added to my 2004 LP Custom, 2012 LP Standard, 1969 Strat, 2005 Tele, 2006 Songwriter. Have yet to have any quality issues with Gibson. My first Gibson was a 1971 LP Professional, sadly I sold it years ago...
 

nicholas322

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Not trying to rain on anyone's parade here, but got some info today that I thought I'd share and ask the MLP community for your thoughts.

I was in my local GC to check out the 2018s and an employee there shared with me that they've been finding the 2018s are having quality control issues. Said it was reminiscent of 2015 or worse and has made it hard to sell the new LPs right now. If that's true it's really a shame because my 2017 is perfect and it seems Gibson was on the upswing!

This is just one guy's opinion and who knows if he's right. I know any given year is gonna have some great ones and some duds so I take what he said with a grain of salt. However I just bought a 2017 Standard from him a month ago so he knows he's not gonna lose a sale by telling me this.

All this aside, the 2018 Standard and Classic tops I saw are beautiful! And the two guitars I played looked to be of good quality all around. High actions as usual, but straight necks, clean binding, nice fret boards etc.
I have seen four incidents of bad, broken and unplayable 2018 Les Paul guitars being shipped to customers. One from sam ash with a broken headstock which was then replaced with a guitar with a bad fret job. A guitar from another big retailer that had a space between the binding and the neck and finally a fourth guitar that after 3 days in his bedroom closet was removed from the hardcase to reveal a broken headstock. Gibson is now in 540 million dollars of debt between their many guitar companies and other debts like their stock in Onkyo electronics. The problems with being harassed by Obama and new wood laws as well as a down economy might finish them. If I buy another single cut I will buy a Heritage. I have a large guitar collection but only 6 Les Pauls. YES there is something about them that makes me choose them over any woman but I would buy a vintage or a historical unit. They are perfect, I would also look for a vintage Epiphone I have a 1990 which is amazing and don't forget Dillion, they make a jimmy page copy that is worth at least twice what they are charging. My Luthier was amazed!!!
 




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