Where is Gibson Getting This Wood - AAA I Don't Think So

Brek

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I thought the A grading was more about the quality of the wood, like the flecs etc? or it used to be, prolly co opted now to describe flame.
 

Utmost

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One piece top?
F5D0675A-B258-4FB4-887F-8C6773E1B371.jpeg
 

01GT Eibach

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One piece top?
It initially looks that way, but I don't think so. If you took the left part of the cap, flipped it over, and put it under the right side, then many of the lines would seem to match up. But definitely from the same piece of maple, for sure. I really appreciate tops where you really have to look at it to determine it is not a one piece. Fabulously beautiful guitar.
 

mjross

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Looking to do a project build so I just cruised the “usual suspects” looking for a nice lefty “50” or “60” with a decently figured top. Very disappointed, most look like Plain Tops with faint figuring.

I purchased a Gold Top “50” last year because all the non Gold Tops were frankly not so good. I was hoping that as soon as Gibson got up and running they would produce some decent tops. It appears that a few do exist because I’ve seen pics of them but it also appears that you need to act fast, cause I’m telling you what is available at the moment is really sad, at least for lefties.

It appears that in todays market you need to go with one of the specialty dealers but they appear to charge a premium for the better tops. Wildwood has some very nice examples (a butt load) for a $300 up charge, but I have yet to see a lefty.
 
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519tbarr

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I have found Gibson USA maple tops hit and miss for some time now. One year I remember the tops looking quite good was 2015. There were some Ocean Blue colours on those traditional's that looked fantastic. I hope this is something the new Gibson Co address in the future.
 

Kothas

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Whoever matches wood sides and expects 3k for shiz tops needs their head examined. Gibson aaa tops are more like a. I haven't purchased a new gibson since 2017. Last year of caring about the presentation.
 

rjwilson37

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Yep, AA and AAA are just Meh for a while now. I have not seen a nice unburst like the one in the post above for a long time.

sweet1.png

sweet2.png
 

CyFan

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Keep looking , they're out there. Wildwood had some great stuff when I was shopping a few months ago. I got a really flamey top and actually good flame on the sides and back! Bonus: the '59 Wildwood Select pups sound great! So did the BB1 & 2 but these sound even more articulate, sparkley and smooth. As always, ymmv.
 

moreles

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Welcome to the world of inflation and declining availability of materials. As mass-producers slap thin or veneered flames on every cheapo guitar out there, tops with bold flames running through 3/4" of carveable wood are going to be rare indeed. I wonder if there's more $$$ to be made slicing a board into veneer than carving it into one single solid-top LP. As for grading, since it's all relative and apparently done by the manufacturer, I think it's smart not to assume any kind of accuracy or consistency. "Grading Inflation" is likely. I don't know how widespread the grading BS has become, but the examples shown here appear way off. You shouldn't have to show your guitar at one crazy angle under controlled light to see the figure if it was graded AA or better. I like modest or irregular flames, but most of the tops discussed here are meh-minus, IMO, and the mechanized finishing doesn't help.
 

RedSkwirrell

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Used to detest Flame-Tops.
Then I was offered one that was supposedly made for Mick Ralphs.
Told that he rejected it, but I couldn't afford it anyway.
Got two now.
This is my 'AAA'.

LtdSun2.jpg


2010 Std Ltd in Fireball finish.
I still have the originals, but switched out the two witches hat knobs with speed knobs to match the other two, already fitted (one is the MCK, so the other option was always a non-starter).

Only other thing I'd change is the super-white binding.
Them's fer 'burst Customs.
I'd have personally preferred the off-white Std 'bursts binding, but there ya go.
:io:
 

rockstar232007

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I've never trusted Gibson's grading-system. Not sure who's responsible, but their idea of what constitutes a "AAA-top" is vastly different from everyone else's?

I've seen LP listed as "AAAA", that were "AA", at best - almost zero figure.
 

ArchEtech

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Gibson has always kind of overrated their wood grades as compared to other premium makers. Nothing new here.
 

Plant man

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I agree. I love Gibson but I think most people who are in the market for les Paul are concerned more about how the guitar plays rather than be concerned about AA or AAA top. I mean AA or AAA tops are cool. I see how some can go for that….
Gibson has always kind of overrated their wood grades as compared to other premium makers. Nothing new here.
 

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