Jump to content
Gibson Brands Forums

want another Gibson small body


gruffydd3

Recommended Posts

I have a 2017 Gibson L-00 Vintage, that's become my favorite. I really like the small body guitars, and I'd like to get another.

 

The 1928 L-1 Blues Tribute appeals to me. So, my question is this: Do these two guitars sound different enough to make buying the L-1 worthwhile, or are they going to sound almost the same. I'm not able to get my hands on an L-1 to try out.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Hi Gruffy, Welcome to the forum. I can not speak to the differences between the L-00 and The Blues Tribute. I can speak to how much I enjoy the Lg-2 American Eagle. I play it more than any other guitar I own and I have a dozen of really good guitars, Including three other Gibsons.

 

The LG-2 is a nice guitar, but I like the chunky V necks of the L-1 and L-00.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

In my experience, you’d be happy with the L-1 but I don’t think it would give you a great deal of variation from your L-00.

 

I went on a bit of a small body odyssey last year and was determined to find one that was right for me, having owned L-00s, F20s, CJ165s and allsorts. I found in general the Gibson small bodies all sounded lovely, but all fairly similar. I bought a LG2 American Eagle in the end which was great, but I ended up playing my early L-1 shaped Epi EL-00 more, so the LG2 was traded against my ‘41 Reissue SJ100.

 

One really strident and lovely guitar you should try is the Maple bodied Nick Lucas. Very different vibe to the L-00 despite the similar shape.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

If you like a chunky V or roundback D neck the LGs are not what the doctor ordered. I have no idea what the new CF-100 RI sounds like but I would check them out. While I do not really need a cutaway, if nothing else they are sexy looking as all get out. Those with the P-90 have the X bracing placed closer to the bridge which puts out a different sound than the LGs. When it comes to something like a Blues King, I would stick with an older one with the deeper body.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I own the 1928 L-1, and previously owned an L-00 Pro. They are both wonderful but quite different animals in my opinion. That particular L-00 was perfectly well rounded and I adored it. The L-1 just has so much character, personality and uniqueness though - it is an absolute mid-range tone monster and sets itself apart from my J-45 and other guitars. That’s why I’ll keep it forever. It’s a very light build, as I’m sure certain L-00’s are as well. I’d just say it’s more mid range-growly in its voice. You certainly can’t go wrong!

 

Disclaimer: I’m a sucker for 12-fretters in general.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Ladder braced guitars are where I go in a different direction. I am a believer in the wisdom of going with one of the higher end Harmony or Kay offerings as opposed to the lower end Gibsons or Martins. If nothing else you will get a 1 3/4" nut width with most Harmonys which tended to change little from the 1940s into the 1970s with the exception of the addition of a truss rod. It is hard to beat a good LG-2/3 or CF-100. But when it comes to LG-0s and LG-1s I would recommend looking at the all mahogany Harmony H-165 or the Roy Smeck model (which these days though can cost you more than a 1950s LG-1).

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Well I made a decision.

 

I threw a Martin into the mix, a CEO7 small body. I played it for 10 minutes at my local GC. It actually only took me about 10 seconds to know it wasn't for me. I've heard Martins on recordings and YouTube videos that sounded real nice, but I've never played one or heard one played in person that did anything for me. It's left me wondering why they're so well thought of. The finish on it wasn't that great either.

 

Anyway, I considered the Nick Lucas but on the videos I listened to, it sounded a lot like my J-45 Custom. Also, the neck is thinner and narrower than I wanted.

 

So this morning I ordered a Gibson 1928 L-1 Blues Tribute. I can't wait to get it in my hands!

 

Again, thanks to everyone for all the advice.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I bought the LG-1 I have now to help a friend out and fixed it up and cleaned it up and decided it was not quite the sound I was looking for. But then I put in another friend's shop for a couple of months and it just sat and no one wanted it. I had special ordered a new TKL case because the original Red Line was in pathetic shape and it was too short for the guitar and over the years the finish on the headstock got worn. Well I brought it home and played it and am taking it out to a jam tomorrow. I recorded it today and man it sounds good in a very different way than any of the cheaper ladder braced guitars I've owned over the past several decades. It has a ring to it and a cut that is way cool and different from the rich overtones of the ladder braced guitars. For slide it is real killer. I may not be selling this one afterall.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I bought the LG-1 I have now to help a friend out and fixed it up and cleaned it up and decided it was not quite the sound I was looking for. But then I put in another friend's shop for a couple of months and it just sat and no one wanted it. I had special ordered a new TKL case because the original Red Line was in pathetic shape and it was too short for the guitar and over the years the finish on the headstock got worn. Well I brought it home and played it and am taking it out to a jam tomorrow. I recorded it today and man it sounds good in a very different way than any of the cheaper ladder braced guitars I've owned over the past several decades. It has a ring to it and a cut that is way cool and different from the rich overtones of the ladder braced guitars. For slide it is real killer. I may not be selling this one afterall.

 

I love LG-1s. I played an amazing ‘50s example at Chandler’s in London a few years ago that blew my mind...really fat midrange and that cut and ring that you mentioned were in full evidence. It seemed quietish to the player but really projected well and filled the room. Just sublime for blues and rags.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I played a 1968 LG-1 at the local GC a couple weeks ago. It sounded great. I might have bought it but the neck was real narrow and thin. It seemed like maybe it was made for a young person to learn on.

 

No. While I have no time under my belt with 1960s LG2, Gibsons got a slimmer neck profile in 1960 and a narrower nut in 1965. The slim neck carve though is the reason I avoid 1960s Gibsons.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I avoid the narrow nut whenever possible (big hands & fingers). As we've discussed from time to time here in the forum, Gibson didn't necessarily make changes in specs immediately and dating them as they show up on specific instruments has to allow for the occasional anomaly. A lot of that is simply a matter of exhausting existing parts and such before starting to employ the 'current spec' as cataloged. For example, my '61 LG-1 retains the earlier-dimensioned neck, my '65 H'bird has the wider nut, and my '58 Epi Cortez sports an 'original' Epi neck. I mention all this to say that if you're put off by certain changes in specs, but hanker for a specific year's model, they're sometimes out there - time and patience required, though☺

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I avoid the narrow nut whenever possible (big hands & fingers). As we've discussed from time to time here in the forum, Gibson didn't necessarily make changes in specs immediately and dating them as they show up on specific instruments has to allow for the occasional anomaly. A lot of that is simply a matter of exhausting existing parts and such before starting to employ the 'current spec' as cataloged. For example, my '61 LG-1 retains the earlier-dimensioned neck, my '65 H'bird has the wider nut, and my '58 Epi Cortez sports an 'original' Epi neck. I mention all this to say that if you're put off by certain changes in specs, but hanker for a specific year's model, they're sometimes out there - time and patience required, though☺

 

Every 1958 FT-79 and FT-45 I have ever seen had the Epiphone French Heel neck rather than the Gibson "Freedom" neck. These first Gibson-made Epis were produced in a rented facility separate from the Gibson plant with Gibson using up leftover Epiphone parts. I had a 1958 FT-79 in the house for a bit and it was pretty much an Epi neck grafted onto a J-50 body.

 

Gibson he "crossover" years like 1955 really throw everything the specs say up for grabs. I have played J-160Es which still had the solid tops the year they were supposed to be made with laminate and SJs with the new style bracing but the old style pickguard.

 

LG necks from at least 1946 on were what I would classify as medium Cs. That is at the low end of my tolerance scale. I would think the neck carve had to do with balance rather than being meant for young players. My question is given that the LGs had skimpier necks to begin with, would you notice that much of a difference with the new neck profiles that showed up in 1960, especially on a short scale guitar? You certainly would feel a difference when they started using the narrower nut but I am just not sure if it would have been that noticeable earlier on.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Well I made a decision.

 

I threw a Martin into the mix, a CEO7 small body. I played it for 10 minutes at my local GC. It actually only took me about 10 seconds to know it wasn't for me. I've heard Martins on recordings and YouTube videos that sounded real nice, but I've never played one or heard one played in person that did anything for me. It's left me wondering why they're so well thought of. The finish on it wasn't that great either.

 

Anyway, I considered the Nick Lucas but on the videos I listened to, it sounded a lot like my J-45 Custom. Also, the neck is thinner and narrower than I wanted.

 

So this morning I ordered a Gibson 1928 L-1 Blues Tribute. I can't wait to get it in my hands!

 

Again, thanks to everyone for all the advice.

 

 

My question is if you feel the sound of the Martins on videos is not representative of how they sound when you are up close and personal to them, why would you assume the sound of a Nick Lucas RI on a video is any more of an representative of what they sound like in your hands. A few weeks back I played two Martin Jeff Tweedys. One was very good and the other more than very good. In terms of feel and sound, I would taken that second Martin over a Gibson NL 14 fret reissue. But I was not the one looking to buy a guitar, my wife was and she wanted a 12 string.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

That's a good point about the Nick Lucas, but it's all I have to go on. I've never seen or heard one in person.

 

As for Martins, I've played 8 or 9 and heard a few others in person. None of them did anything for me. The CEO-7 I played had a disappointing finish a high action to boot. There was a $550 Taylor there that sounded much better to me.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Every 1958 FT-79 and FT-45 I have ever seen had the Epiphone French Heel neck rather than the Gibson "Freedom" neck. These first Gibson-made Epis were produced in a rented facility separate from the Gibson plant with Gibson using up leftover Epiphone parts. I had a 1958 FT-79 in the house for a bit and it was pretty much an Epi neck grafted onto a J-50 body.

 

Gibson he "crossover" years like 1955 really throw everything the specs say up for grabs. I have played J-160Es which still had the solid tops the year they were supposed to be made with laminate and SJs with the new style bracing but the old style pickguard.

 

LG necks from at least 1946 on were what I would classify as medium Cs. That is at the low end of my tolerance scale. I would think the neck carve had to do with balance rather than being meant for young players. My question is given that the LGs had skimpier necks to begin with, would you notice that much of a difference with the new neck profiles that showed up in 1960, especially on a short scale guitar? You certainly would feel a difference when they started using the narrower nut but I am just not sure if it would have been that noticeable earlier on.

I get what you mean about the feel of the LG necks, and it makes a lot of sense. I went through a fair number of various LG models at one time, looking for one that both felt and sounded like a keeper. The banner necks were all pretty comfortable, but I couldn't get the sound I wanted from any of the three that I owned. The most massive neck was on a '46 LG-2, but, again, not the right sound. Then the rest of 'em - a handful of LG-1s from the 50's and 60's until the '61 that I kept. Wish I had access to some that I could measure for the sake of comparison, but the '61 neck didn't impress me as different at the time😒 Love those '58 EPI necks, though.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I get what you mean about the feel of the LG necks, and it makes a lot of sense. I went through a fair number of various LG models at one time, looking for one that both felt and sounded like a keeper. The banner necks were all pretty comfortable, but I couldn't get the sound I wanted from any of the three that I owned. The most massive neck was on a '46 LG-2, but, again, not the right sound. Then the rest of 'em - a handful of LG-1s from the 50's and 60's until the '61 that I kept. Wish I had access to some that I could measure for the sake of comparison, but the '61 neck didn't impress me as different at the time Love those '58 EPI necks, though.

 

I do not really recall the neck on my '58 FT-79 other than it had the French Heel. My two 1950s Epis had different carves. But on both I replaced the nuts to the get it the widest I possibly could.

 

Of all the Gibson models out there, I have found the 1940s LG-2/3s to be the most inconsistent when it comes to sound. I think that is one of the reasons I went from LG-2s to a CF-100.

 

Of all the guitars I own, my favorite 1960s neck carve remains that on the Harmony Grand Concerts and the Sovereigns. It is a nice full roundback D with a 1 3/4" nut. Harmony changed virtually nothing over the decades other than to add a truss rod to some of their models in the late 1950s or early 1960s. They may be the most consistent sounding and feeling guitars on the planet.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Archived

This topic is now archived and is closed to further replies.

×
×
  • Create New...