Help me pick my 1st Les Paul

Discussion in 'Guitars in General' started by benabloom, Aug 25, 2008.

  1. benabloom

    benabloom Member

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    Whats up people. After 17 years of playing guitar, I am ready to buy the guitar I have always wanted A Gibson Les Paul. I currently play a 96 SG standard (w ebony fret board) and a 1978 Gibson Es-347. Both have been with me a long time.

    I am definately looking for a used lester in great shape. I really like The Les Paul Standards as opposed to the Customs, Studios, juniors or weight relieved etc... I want to spend $2000 at most. I really don't want a very Bright sounding one. Meaty and Toneful. I like all types of Finish. Gold tops, plain tops, sunbursts etc..

    What year Les Paul Standards are consitantly well built, toneful instruments that are "worth it!" I have heard '01, and '02 models are generally better than others. is there any truth to this? How about the late 90's models (my SG KILLS) ? What Weight is Ideal for Tone ? It seems that under 9lbs is desired most around here.. any truth in that logic?

    Really any suggestions you guys can give to help me start my search would be appreciated.

    Ben
     
  2. DrumBob

    DrumBob Gold Supporting Member

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    There are so many choices out there and with a $2K budget, you're in good shape, so hit the music stores and play every Lester you can find until you find the one that really "speaks" to you. You'll know when you find it. You'll keep on coming back to play it multiple times. It's like finding the right woman. You'll just know.
     
  3. frank62

    frank62 Member

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    I would not rule out the chambered or relieved Lesters. The R7 is probably the best deal out there right now on used Les Pauls. I have played Les Pauls for 40 years and I have yet to play one I would consider a bad guitar.
     
  4. XKnight

    XKnight Member

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    You should be able to find a R7 or R8 for $2K or less. They are much better than the LP Standards in my experience.
     
  5. Caretaker

    Caretaker Silver Supporting Member Supporting Member

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    Yes. There are many R7`s out there and usually one a month here at TGP for less than $2K.
     
  6. Hootad Binky

    Hootad Binky Member

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    Pay attention to pick-ups! Buying second-hand will allow you to be choosy.

    With LP's I find the one that sounds loudest with the nicest tone unplugged is a good bet, plus it must have a super-comfortable neck. And Standards are a good way to go!
     
  7. jonny toetags

    jonny toetags Member

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    I'd get a used R7.
    In all honesty, I'd never get any LP other than a Historic, but that is just me.
     
  8. benabloom

    benabloom Member

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    R7s or R8s huh.? That implies a 57 or 58 reissue correct? I assume that the reason is because Gibson usually pays better attention to detail and uses better wood on these? Is there any particular years which tend to be more consistant or better than others? If I am buying it on TGP for example, what questions should I ask the seller to ensure it will be a good one?

    Believe me, I know that buying a guitar unplayed is not desireable, however it expands the available options/deals. So if I did go that route help me ask the right Q's.

    Thanks and keep the suggestions coming
     
  9. frank62

    frank62 Member

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    The R7, or R anything is IMHO amoung the very best Gibsons ever built. You can't go wrong with any of them. The R guitars are Custom Historics and not standard production Les Pauls.
     
  10. jazzandmetal?

    jazzandmetal? Supporting Member

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    I agree with the suggestions for getting a 57 or 58. I was wondering though, if you have ever played one. The necks aren't comfortable for everyone. I like em, but some people prefer the 60s style necks and the 57 and 58 necks are quite big.

    The VOS 58 is one of my favorite guitars that Gibson is putting out these days. Just wish I could get used to playing a Paul. I would buy one in a heartbeat.
     
  11. benabloom

    benabloom Member

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    Neck Carve will be the 1st thing I need to figure out for sure. I plan on playing some 60's slim taper style as well as some 5o's profile ones this week to get that out of the way. I like both , but on a lester.. I always thought I would want a 60's slim taper as that is what I have played so often in guitar shops, however my playing has changed over the years and I tend to like fatter necks these days...

    -B
     
  12. jonny toetags

    jonny toetags Member

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    One good thing about the Historics, and if you buy used, is if you don't like the neck on the R7-8-9, you can easily resell it for what you paid.
     
  13. buchla300

    buchla300 Member

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    Shhh...early 80's LP Standards....keep it to yourself...
     
  14. hbreaze

    hbreaze Gold Supporting Member

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    I agree with the R7, R8. But if you like a thinner neck a G0 1960 reissue plaintop is the way to go. You should be able to find one used for around $2000 and they are consistently good to great guitars. I have played many of them and have yet to play a bad one. Custom shop is the way to go more consistently good guitars and higher resell value.
     
  15. Blue4Now

    Blue4Now Gold Supporting Member

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    I just can't get along with the necks on the Historics even the GO, the thickness combined with nut width was just too much )I have small hands). Ended up with a Classic with the slim taper neck. Fits me so perfect. I got a gold top. Its chambered and is pretty much my perfect LP.
     
  16. 3th3r

    3th3r Member

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    Be aware that Gibson USA's "50s neck profile" is different from Gibson Custom's R7/R8. As well, the "60s neck profile" is very different from that of an R0/G0.

    If you think you will be buying a Custom shop R Gibson, be sure to play one first, or you may be very surprised by the shape of the neck profile.

    I have small-ish hands and short-ish fingers, and for me the most comfortable is Gibson USA's 50s profile, followed closely by the Custom shop R0 profile. My least favorite is Gibson USA's 60s profile.
     
  17. Hootad Binky

    Hootad Binky Member

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    You won't know if there's going to be any "passion" until you put your hands on it (a bit like other things... ;))
     
  18. Patrick Ginnaty

    Patrick Ginnaty Member

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    After having had 5 other Les Pauls, I finally bought a historic ri... it's better than the 52/58 conversion, or the 72, or the 80's 59ri. I'd look for a '58 ri plaintop if you like a fatter neck, or a GC RO if you're looking for a thinner 60s style neck.

    Of course, I also have an '87 Custom that I like a lot, but you weren't interested in Customs. I paid $1500 for the Custom (used from a pal), I paid a lot more for my '98 historic, but it has a ridiculously flamed top that
    I paid a premium for.

    A nice plaintop historic would probably be just the ticket, imho.
     
  19. Frankee

    Frankee Wartime Consigliere

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    psssst...hey.....Juniors and Specials.......dare to be different.
     

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