Price Check: 1963 Gibson Les Paul

Discussion in '"Vintage" Instruments' started by Crshngdstryr, May 14, 2018.

  1. Crshngdstryr

    Crshngdstryr Member

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    Hey,

    There’s a 1963 Gibson les paul (SG) for sale locally and I was hoping to get all the Gibson experts’ advice on whether the asking price is fair. It’s listed at $4499. It plays great and has no major issues as far as I can tell. Here are the mods:

    Looks like it has a pretty old refin. The vibrato tailpiece was removed and replaced with a typical stop tail. I imagine the refin was done to cover up the marks from the old bridge. I think the saddles may have been replaced as well, but if they were, it was done a long time ago. There’s one or two small filled holes where the old tailpiece was which are virtually impossible to notice. All electronics and pickups are original.

    I’ve seen these ones go for $8k-13k all original. Is the asking price fair on this or do I have some room to negotiate? Thanks!
     
  2. rockinrobby

    rockinrobby Senior member Professional musician ... Gold Supporting Member

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    I'm assuming it's the Humbucking model and not the P90's version SG Special? If so, a Refin would make the guitar $3K guitar assuming all the electronics are intact unless it has PAF's witch I doubt.
     
  3. Crshngdstryr

    Crshngdstryr Member

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    Thanks. It’s got original humbuckers, but I’m not sure which kind. Whatever was being put in these gits in 1963.
     
  4. Flogger59

    Flogger59 Member

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    It should have Pat# pickups.
     
  5. rockinrobby

    rockinrobby Senior member Professional musician ... Gold Supporting Member

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    I agree Pat# are the pickups you should see. However, I had a 63 ES350 with one PAF in the neck. Most likely Pat# Good luck..
     
  6. hogy

    hogy Member

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    There is no such thing as a "1963 Gibson Les Paul (SG)". The naming agreement with Les Paul ended in 1962.
     
  7. hogy

    hogy Member

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    That's because the 350 used narrow spaced (Byrdland) humbuckers. Gibson had stock of those that was used up until well after regular PAFs had been replaced by patent number pickups.
     
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  8. Crshngdstryr

    Crshngdstryr Member

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    There’s a Les Paul truss rod cover on it. Do you think someone put that on the guitar later?
     
  9. 27sauce

    27sauce Member

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    I’ve seen quite a few ‘63 Les Pauls, and even owned 2. The last one owned had a shipping date of June ‘63.

    The name was dropped sometime in ‘63.
     
  10. Jayyj

    Jayyj Supporting Member

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    If it has its original Pat No pickups there's a couple of grand just in the pickups.

    It's hard to know what to knock off for the stop tail - personally a vibrato is a big part of the vintage SG vibe so I'd not really consider an SG that was drilled for one unless it was super cheap. But there are people who prefer them, so I guess if you're in that cap maybe it's not such a big hit.

    Value would depend on the quality of the refin - I know everyone says 50%, but for me it's worth substantially more if it was a well done finish that was done a long time ago with lots of natural patina than an it is if it's an amateur or brand new looking finish.

    If it looks great as if is, you don't mind the stop bar and you understand that a stop barred SG is going to be a bit of a wild card if you try to sell it on, then I personally don't think the price is too bad, particularly if you can play it first.
     
  11. Prairie Belt

    Prairie Belt Supporting Member

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    My '63 SG jr has "Les Paul" on the headstock. Not sure of the month though.
     
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  12. Kinghat Guitars

    Kinghat Guitars Member

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    I also have a bone stock 1963 SG Jr that is labeled "Les Paul" on the headstock
     
  13. Dashface

    Dashface Member

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    I think it sounds like you have a winner there. Always try to negotiate, for sure... But in my neck of the woods that's still a decent price. But go in and offer low and see what happens, can't hurt :)
     
  14. Rumble

    Rumble Instrumental Rocker Silver Supporting Member

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    Isn't this the year SG necks got a little thinner, by mid year maybe? Link Wray used a '63 SG for many years (it was auctioned on ebay about 10 years ago).
     
  15. zhivago

    zhivago Member

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    '63 is the last "Les Paul" year :)
     
  16. 27sauce

    27sauce Member

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    In my experience, the thinnest years were '61 and '62. The bigger necks from the wide nut era tend to be from '64. Thats not to say there aren't examples from each year. I just have personally never held a 61/62 with a big neck. 63 area kind of all over the place.
     
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  17. Kinghat Guitars

    Kinghat Guitars Member

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    I have a 61 and a 63 SG Jr. The 61 is very thin, the 63, thick and thin. You can visibly see the neck shrink past the 12th fret.
     
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  18. Rumble

    Rumble Instrumental Rocker Silver Supporting Member

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    I may have misremembered that. My old SG book (from 1989 by John Bulli) claims the necks were reduced in width in 1963 (not thickness). He says the necks were reduced to 1-9/16ths at the nut that year. Not sure how accurate that claim is. The oldest SG I ever played was a 1973 Standard that I had some years ago. I didn't care all that much for the neck, plus it was a little dark sounding for my tastes (300k pots I believe). I still like SGs though, and may get another some day.
     
  19. HelloKittyHawk!

    HelloKittyHawk! Member

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  20. hogy

    hogy Member

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    Yes, I've seen Juniors carry the Les Paul name into '63. SG Standards seem to have dropped the name earlier, but there could have been exceptions.
     

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