Gibson Guitar Board: Restoration vs Repair vs just leave her alone - Gibson Guitar Board

Jump to content

Page 1 of 1
  • You cannot start a new topic
  • You cannot reply to this topic

Restoration vs Repair vs just leave her alone My highly modified and somewhat historic Les Paul, Jr.

Poll: What should happen to my guitar? (14 member(s) have cast votes)

Restore, Repair, Sell, or Leave it alone?

  1. Restore it (4 votes [28.57%] - View)

    Percentage of vote: 28.57%

  2. Just repair the flaws (7 votes [50.00%] - View)

    Percentage of vote: 50.00%

  3. Sell it and make some money (0 votes [0.00%])

    Percentage of vote: 0.00%

  4. Leave it as-is, it's got history! (3 votes [21.43%] - View)

    Percentage of vote: 21.43%

Vote Guests cannot vote

#1 User is offline   59lespauljr 

  • Newbie
  • Group: Members
  • Posts: 1
  • Joined: 08-March 12

Posted 08 March 2012 - 10:16 AM

I have owned a 1959 double-cutaway Les Paul, Jr since 1972. I purchased it in Greenwich, CT from (long gone) Spratt Music on Greenwich Avenue. While I was in the store, Michael Bruce (Guitarist for the original Alice Cooper Band) walked in and handed the Junior to the store manager and said "sell it".

Needless to say, I purchased it the minute he left. For $200. It is highly modified, has a crappy repaint, Schaller heads, a humbucker, and an amateur did the sloppy soldering on the rewiring. The bridge is a cheap Seymour Duncan-style knockoff. The volume and tone knobs are newer Les Paul style. It is a screamer, though. I've always wondered whether of not it was used on any of their albums.

The strings are a bit off-center on the neck. The neck has never been refinished, so the head has a nice vintage look to it. There is definitely an issue with tuning...when I press down on the third string at the 5th fret, the note is a bit sharp. It ain't easy to keep this guitar in tune, in fact you have to fudge the tuning of the 3rd string depending on whether you're playing open chords or up the neck.

Although I mostly play my Strat, now and again I pick up the old girl and keep her happy.

Attached thumbnail(s)

  • Attached Image: _DSC0004.JPG
  • Attached Image: _DSC0005.JPG


#2 User is offline   tmoney 

  • Member
  • Group: Repair & Restoration
  • Posts: 26
  • Joined: 30-December 11

Posted 08 March 2012 - 10:31 AM

View Post59lespauljr, on 08 March 2012 - 10:16 AM, said:

I have owned a 1959 double-cutaway Les Paul, Jr since 1972. I purchased it in Greenwich, CT from (long gone) Spratt Music on Greenwich Avenue. While I was in the store, Michael Bruce (Guitarist for the original Alice Cooper Band) walked in and handed the Junior to the store manager and said "sell it".

Needless to say, I purchased it the minute he left. For $200. It is highly modified, has a crappy repaint, Schaller heads, a humbucker, and an amateur did the sloppy soldering on the rewiring. The bridge is a cheap Seymour Duncan-style knockoff. The volume and tone knobs are newer Les Paul style. It is a screamer, though. I've always wondered whether of not it was used on any of their albums.

The strings are a bit off-center on the neck. The neck has never been refinished, so the head has a nice vintage look to it. There is definitely an issue with tuning...when I press down on the third string at the 5th fret, the note is a bit sharp. It ain't easy to keep this guitar in tune, in fact you have to fudge the tuning of the 3rd string depending on whether you're playing open chords or up the neck.

Although I mostly play my Strat, now and again I pick up the old girl and keep her happy.


#3 User is offline   tmoney 

  • Member
  • Group: Repair & Restoration
  • Posts: 26
  • Joined: 30-December 11

Posted 08 March 2012 - 10:35 AM

A 100% restoration is a pricey proposition but given what you have in it, almost assuredly worth it. However, given the celebrity connection and the fact that it's already a 'screamer,' you have a good argument for leaving it. I think you need to get it to a very good tech and have the nut placement, nut slots and frets evaluated. Worst case would probably be a plane and refret w/new nut to get it playing in tune. If it's gonna scream, it oughtta be in tune!

#4 User is offline   itieu 

  • Newbie
  • Group: Members
  • Posts: 2
  • Joined: 08-March 12

Posted 08 March 2012 - 03:58 PM

Boy that fretboard almost looks scalloped, thats some play Mojo there.

#5 User is offline   Cú Chulainn 

  • Advanced Member
  • Group: Members
  • Posts: 290
  • Joined: 17-February 12

Posted 08 March 2012 - 04:08 PM

I'm all for war scars [biggrin]
"Spend less time chasing tones and more time just playing music." - Marty Friedman

#6 User is offline   bigtim 

  • Advanced Member
  • Group: Members
  • Posts: 387
  • Joined: 01-August 11
  • LocationMiddle TN

Posted 09 March 2012 - 11:39 PM

Well since someone has already botched it up for you, I would go ahead and fix it up right. Not sure what to say caused the strings to get off center but, a new nut put on might make things alot better. As far as the finish goes, I guess it depends on what you want, a nice new finish after a complete strip of the old finish is what I would do personally. The pick up and other electronics could be an easy fix unless you want a period correct one which could be the most expensive replacement or just go with a new current production pick up which would be alot less than a vintage one and probably would not have any issues as a period correct one could have. Just my 2 cents, Tim
Paranoid Redneck Here ...............Stay away from that Gibson Acoustic room!!! Those Educated Commies in there will get you!!!

Gibson SG Standard

Check out my tunes

http://www.reverbnation.com/timh73




#7 User is offline   retrorod 

  • Advanced Member
  • Group: Members
  • Posts: 3933
  • Joined: 29-December 07
  • LocationNorth Carolina

Posted 10 March 2012 - 05:42 AM

I am of the restore camp. You have had the guitar for 40 years in the present condition? I would at least get the playability restored, if not the cosmetics. Personally, I would restore it cosmetically also. At this point (40 years later) if you don,t have any documentation of the previous ownership, than I don,t think it would carry much weight in a resale situation anyway.....
Its hard to believe that a guitar would get that much abuse in the 12-13 years before your purchase! Hey RockNRoll is tough on a guitar [scared]
"You never know what worse luck your bad luck has saved you from."--Cormic McCarthy

Celebrating the sixty years of "white privilege" that i have just recently learned that I was born with...

#8 User is offline   lespauljr 

  • Member
  • Group: Members
  • Posts: 13
  • Joined: 17-March 12

Posted 17 March 2012 - 11:37 AM

i would say fix it up to an extent. it sounds like your intonation is wrong, from what you are describing with the tuning problems on the 5th fret. seen as the bridge has 6 individual saddles a guitar tech should have no problem sorting that out for you, by just giving the guitar a basic set up.

#9 User is offline   pfox14 

  • BANNED
  • Group: Members
  • Posts: 3374
  • Joined: 05-August 08

Posted 17 March 2012 - 01:27 PM

To me the nut slots look right, but the bridge seems all out of whack. Off to one side and sitting pretty far back from the mounting bolts. Since it's not all original, I would go ahead and restore it and I would probably replace the bridge.

#10 User is offline   Searcy 

  • Advanced Member
  • Group: Members
  • Posts: 6453
  • Joined: 21-March 10
  • LocationNashville

Posted 18 March 2012 - 12:29 PM

I might put a Dog Ear p-90 back in it and some Kluson tuners and let it roll.

#11 User is offline   Aster1 

  • Advanced Member
  • Group: Members
  • Posts: 2060
  • Joined: 11-January 10
  • LocationIowa

Posted 18 March 2012 - 02:46 PM

Before I vote, did Dennis Bruce have the work done or was all the mods done after Dennis Bruce owned it? So you don't have anything that can be traced back to him as the owner?

If the work was done after him, and not a scrap of proof to justify a big price ticket to sell, then I'd vote to restore it.

Aster
"Life is too dang short to eat ratty tast'n peaches!"

#12 User is offline   Dave Lang 

  • Advanced Member
  • Group: Members
  • Posts: 51
  • Joined: 30-March 12

Posted 04 April 2012 - 07:46 PM

+! for what Aster said

#13 User is offline   stein 

  • Advanced Member
  • Group: Members
  • Posts: 6375
  • Joined: 09-February 11

Posted 04 April 2012 - 08:53 PM

I would say, if you witnessed the guy selling it to the shop, you at least know where it came from.

I think MOST guitarist, regardless of how 'famous' or not, LOVE to talk shop about gear they once had and what they have done with it. Regardless of what you choose to do, it might be worth finding him and asking. He might love to tell the story.

It looks as though the strings are off center because of the tilt of the bridge. I wonder if a lot of that might be remedied by adjusting it straighter and compensating with the saddle adjustment.

As for the tuning issue of open vs up the neck, a lot of times this is caused by the nut. If it is too high, it pulls the strings sharp when you fret closer to the nut as opposed to away from it. Said that to point out that on most guitars, the nut is placed a little further back to compensate. Either way, attention there could fix it.

I think it could be made playable without modding. I don't think anyone is going to blame you if you restore though. If you were attempting to preserve history for no other reason than to preserve history, there might be a reason WHY he said "sell it" at the time.

#14 User is offline   kropodkin 

  • Member
  • Group: Members
  • Posts: 26
  • Joined: 09-April 12

Posted 10 April 2012 - 02:01 PM

I would just want it to play and sound as great as it did when it was new without any problems. But I'd say keep the battle wounds as long as they don't affect the playing - they give it character!
1979 25/50 Black (Kalamazoo)

Share this topic:


Page 1 of 1
  • You cannot start a new topic
  • You cannot reply to this topic

1 User(s) are reading this topic
0 members, 1 guests, 0 anonymous users