Love Les Paul Sound..Hate Playing Les Pauls..Ideas

Discussion in 'The Small Company Luthiers' started by pfrischmann, Jul 6, 2006.


  1. pfrischmann

    pfrischmann Member

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    Hi Guys,
    I love the deep baritone sound of a Les Paul. To me even the high notes have body to them. I can't play a Les Paul to save my life. I've tried and it always feels like I have my shoes on backwards or something. I could use some ideas of some guitars to check out that feel like a fender (ish) but sound like a LP. Here's a list of what I do not like about a LP. I thought it might be cool to get a discussion going about what makes a Paul a Paul.

    So...

    Things We should take for granted and LP sounding guitar should have:

    1. Mohogany body with a maple cap
    2. Mohogany Neck with rosewood board
    3. 24 3/4 scale
    4. PAF style pickups

    Things I do not like about LP's (in order of dislike)
    1. No tummy cut
    2. No forearm contour
    3. Body too small to sit down and play without a strap
    4. Carved top messes with my forearm (I rest my hand on the bridge)
    5. Gibson bridge is too high for my picking technique. (I have to turn my wrist down to compensate for the breaking angle)
    6. Neck angle brings body too close towards me. I feel cramped.


    So, what do you guys think??
    What really matters of this stuff to get there?

    Will a Anderson Cobra sound close enough?
    Does it have to be a dovetail joint?

    I know I can't be alone in this.
     
  2. CocoTone

    CocoTone Senior Member

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  3. Scumback Speakers

    Scumback Speakers Gold Supporting Member

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    I'd just get an old Ibanez Artist and fix it up to suit you. While it doesn't have all the features you're looking for, they've got some of them, and they can be bought for relatively inexpensively, too.
     
  4. thesedaze

    thesedaze Member

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    Gibson L6s, or one of the many knock off's should solve this for you. Bigger body (although thinner) w/ tummy cut. I think maybe the mahog/maple brother L5s also had a tummy cut, but I could be mistaken. You could always do a Warmoth L5s w/ tummy cut if you don't mind the bolt on.
     
  5. Don L

    Don L Member

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    Huber Orca.

    [​IMG]
     
  6. Jon Silberman

    Jon Silberman 10Q Jerry & Dickey Gold Supporting Member

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    Don't get me wrong, I love Godin LG-series instruments (there's mine, below) but they are 25 1/2" scale bolt-ons that sound little like a LP and as such are not responsive to the thread initiator's question.

    [​IMG]
     
  7. twitch

    twitch Member

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    Sounds liek your biggest issues are with the body. If you ever get a chance, try a Driskill. Most comfortable playing guitar IMO. I beleive his scale is 25 inches. And the top is carved, but I still think you would find them very comfortable to play. Since you can spec it out however you want, I bet you could get a great LP sounding guitar, granted it won't be cheap and you'd have to wait some.
     
  8. atquinn

    atquinn Supporting Member

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    Used baker with the 24 3/4" scale?

    -Austin
     
  9. cnardone

    cnardone Supporting Member

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    I think that the no forearm contour kind of goes with the Carved Top. I also think that the raised bridge goes with the neck angle. So I don't think that you are asking for something crazy.

    The one Cobra I played was the most comfortable guitar I've ever played. Like it was part of me. If you are willing to spring for a new Cobra, I'd look at a Chapin Hawk, Thorn, or Heatley to name a few. They will all build you guitars that meet your needs.


    Only you can answer your question as to whether or not a Cobra will get you "Close Enough". Mr. Hanky would say no, Others might say yes. Only you know what is enough for you.
     
  10. Powderfinger

    Powderfinger Gold Supporting Member

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  11. datguytim

    datguytim Supporting Member

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    GMP Pawnshop Custom - total LP killer & I grew up on Les Pauls . .
     
  12. ButchR

    ButchR Komet Player Gold Supporting Member

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    I've kinda felt the same way that you do. I now play a Baker B1 '59 that is a very comfortable guitar to hold and play. It is a double cut like a strat is and basically has all the goodies that a Les Paul would have.

    It is the single cut on the Les Paul that I dislike which is why I like the Baker so much.
     
  13. Reeek

    Reeek Member

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    I own a Fernandes Vertigo Deluxe with the SD Jazz pickups (no sustainer system) and I have been telling my friends and proving it too, that this thing is very similar to an LP in tone and certainly playability minus some small variations and its shape of course.

    Here are the similarities in material/dimensions:

    1. All mahogany and a substantial amount of it too
    2. 12" radius
    3. Rosewood FB with MOP inlays
    4. 24 3/4 scale
    5. Large headstock
    6. Set neck
    7. Maple cap
    8. TOM

    Differences:

    1. Body Shape
    2. Jumbo frets
    3. SD Jazz PU's

    Ultimately though, this guitar is VERY LP'ish . . . And it plays amazingly! I love it.
     
  14. pfrischmann

    pfrischmann Member

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    That's cool but it looks exactly like a LP. Is it much different ?
     
  15. joek86

    joek86 Supporting Member

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    Larger body, maple cap, mahog body, 24 3/4 scale, tummy tuck, carved top, deep full sound............

    [​IMG]



    Joe
     
  16. jayhawk

    jayhawk Member

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    Telecaster body with the forearm contour, tummy cut and two humbuckers would do it, I think. I've got a tele with a neck 'bucker and that can get some very LP'ish sounds and the Tele body is going to give you the ergonomics you prefer.

    Get a USA Custom or Warmoth body, maybe a neck off Ebay, pickups and hardware and put it together. Cheap and good sound.
     
  17. NickVig

    NickVig Member

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    Neck joint is a big thing, IMO. I would say a good portion of the sound/tone is coming from that style neck joint.

    I think as long as you got the above items and the neck joint you'd be covered. Hardware aside, you'd probably be in Les Paul tone land that would be close enough for rock 'n' roll or government work. :cool:

    I would search out a luthier who's not against doing the mortise/tenon neck joint and figure out what hardware works for you and go from there. I don't think you're going to find an 'off the rack' guitar that will be close enough.

    With that being said, a lot of guys say that the original Bakers have almost all the a$$ of a good les paul, but I haven't seen many that don't use a stop-tail/TOM bridge. Maybe if you could find a Baker with Gibson length and a wrap tail or trem it might be close.
     
  18. Don L

    Don L Member

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    25" scale vs. 24 3/4" for LP.
    Shallower neck angle hence the lower bridge.
    Little bit of tummy tuck.
    Easier access to the upper frets beyond 15th fret.
     
  19. onehandfretting

    onehandfretting Member

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  20. bobgoblin

    bobgoblin Supporting Member

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    well, for a whole lot less cash than an LP, there's always the yamaha aes series (620 & above). i've got a 620, mahogany body & neck, maple veneer cap (the 920 has a maple cap), rosewood fretboard, sounds great. here's mine:

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
     

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