Who Makes the "Ultimate" Les Paul?

Discussion in 'The Small Company Luthiers' started by JoeinLA, May 22, 2006.


  1. JoeinLA

    JoeinLA Member

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    Anyone have an opinion on who is currently making the "ultimate" Les Paul? The "Ultimate" Les Paul has the classic Les Paul tone: Huge, Fat GROWL and rich harmonics, but also has what Gibson sorely lacks: craftmanship, playability, and consistently great (AWESOME) sound.

    Also, how would varying the classic formula of Mahogany and Maple change the tone? Rosewood neck, Korina/Limba body, Chambers, etc...

    I've got an R9 that I'm thinking sounds HUGE, and a Thorn SC on order. Just wondering if there's anyone else worth looking into (e.g., McNaught, Huber).

    For my Thorn, I'm keeping the body 2", chambered, mahogany with a brazilian rosewood neck and trem. I was thinking of using Korina for the body, but Ron and I thought I might lose some of that low end "chunky" growl.

    Thanks!
     
  2. abergdahl

    abergdahl Member

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    Johan Gustafsson, JG Guitars !! The Bluesmaster 59 is AMAZING:cool:
     
  3. smilefan

    smilefan Member

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    This was purpose-built to be the ultimate LP by
    Scott Heatley - [​IMG].
    .
    [​IMG].
    .
    Stainless steel frets
    Buzz Feiten tuning
    large elegant belly cut
    locking tuners
    super-thin satin nitro finish
    old wood maple top
    RS Guitarworks harness & tailpiece
    Lollar Imperials

    The guitar has such slick playability
    and ergonomic comfort it feels as much like
    an Anderson as a Gibson

    Scott worked with me thru every detail I wanted
    to produce MY ultimate Les Paul. Stands to reason
    he could do the same for you.

    By the way, the finished product cost me about $500
    less than a new stock Historic.
     
  4. RAD

    RAD Member

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    Morgaine Beauty, by Jorg Tandler.

    [​IMG]

    RAD
     
  5. AJ Love

    AJ Love Senior Member

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    I'd say Gibson, back in the 50's
     
  6. DWB1960

    DWB1960 Senior Member

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    My McNaught VSC is the best LP I've ever played. The stock Rio's in this pic were a bit too much sizzle so I replaced them with a Duncan JB/Jazz set which worked out great.

    [​IMG]
     
  7. r9player

    r9player Silver Supporting Member

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    I'm a big fan of J Nunis - an incredible amount of bang for the buck.
     
  8. dzo

    dzo Member

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    I'm partial to my Bolin LP. He'll make it to any spec you want including those matching the replicas he has made for many musicians.

    [​IMG]
     
  9. kingsleyd

    kingsleyd Frikkin genyus Gold Supporting Member

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    +1. Other than what Gibson made in the '50s, of course.
     
  10. VegasGreg

    VegasGreg Member

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    If you are looking for something that cops THE Les Paul sound, IMHO the Huber isn't necessarily the thing I'd get. I absolutely love mine, but I'm not sure if that's the sound you'd be after.

    I really believe the neck joint has a lot to do with the sound, and Nik uses a completely different joint than Gibson.

    Having said that-if you can try one, maybe you'd probably like it! :eek:
     
  11. Mr.Hanky

    Mr.Hanky Supporting Member

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    If you want a Les Paul, you buy a Les Paul, period, end of disussion.

    You are just going to have to shop around until you find YOUR ultimate LP.

    If you want something different, get something different.
     
  12. MikeyG

    MikeyG Supporting Member

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    I love LPs. I hate 'em. I won't pay $4K plus to get shoddy fretwork and a fancy top.

    So a 57 Goldtop Historic, with Duncan Antiquities, and a fret redress, and I'm there. I've got my ultimate LP for under $2K.
     
  13. Mr.Hanky

    Mr.Hanky Supporting Member

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    WERD!!

    I wanna buy you a beer!
     
  14. matte

    matte Senior Member

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    my body.
    Your end of the "disussion" is fueled by what specific information? The guy who made this and is no longer in the game, was pretty good.
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
     
  15. leofenderbender

    leofenderbender Supporting Member

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    Baker makes the nicest ones I've seen - with Holmes pickups too. That's a pretty good combination...
     
  16. Mr.Hanky

    Mr.Hanky Supporting Member

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    Didn't you sell that guitar?
     
  17. matte

    matte Senior Member

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    my body.
    Twice. Just imagine what I'm holding.
     
  18. MikeyG

    MikeyG Supporting Member

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    The Bakers (I'm talking about the B1s, haven't played a Crucible) and the McNaughts are LP'ish' ... they're in the ballpark ... but when you pick up an actual LP, you go "AHHHH!".

    Again, I'm sure there are dudes out there who will build you a '59 to exacting specs, etc. I'm happy saving thousands by getting the Goldtop, and the LP vibe, on a shoestring.
     
  19. gassyndrome

    gassyndrome Member

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    I'm not sure I want to. You are (IMO) the TGP king of tasty guitars. :crazy

    That LP is just insane, but then you have JG's that probably wipe the floor with it.....you make me want to cut my fingers off! :)
     
  20. lv

    lv Supporting Member

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    I've owned over 15 historic Les Pauls (57's, 58's and 59's) over the last 5 or 6 years - they were all great sounding guitars. A couple had high frets that were taken care of by the factory, and they don't have PRS like precision, but in my opinion the poor quality repuation is overblown, especially now that they are using the Plek. My most recent LP was ordered blind and arrived setup well, reasonable weight, but more importantly, killer tone, with a thick and fat bridge that doesn't need any rolling off of the tone knob. I've owned Baker, PRS, Hamer, and none of them had the low end, the response, or the feel of a good Les Paul - though they were all great guitars in their own right. If you want LP tone, try one of the newer LP's that have been plekked, you may be pleasantly surprised. The *only* guitar I have read about that interests me is the JG stuff, but at $6k or more, beyond what I can justify spending.
     

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