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Les Paul Deluxe surgery


sunburstfaded

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Is it possible to fit normal size humbuckers into a Gibson Les Paul deluxe without any changes to the body, such as routing out the top for the bigger pickups? If not, how much work needs to be done and what level of expertise is needed? And please don't start earbashing me about changing a perfectly good guitar etc etc, I am looking for info from the experts on this fine forum as a matter of some urgency. Thanks

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The Deluxe, by definition, is a Les Paul with smaller routs that accommodate P90s or mini humbuckers. Lots of people butcher them so they can have a "real" Les Paul; they never heard, apparently, that Lester Polfuss himself said that the Deluxe with minis was the best of the high-impedance models.

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It Doesn't Take That Much Trimming and They Do Make Special

 

Trim Rings to Install the Mini's in a Full Size Hole.

 

If You Ever Want to Go Back.

 

Here is a 1974 I Should of Never Sold Years ago.

 

74deluxe.jpg

 

I Think Some of The Deluxes Did Come Thru with a Full Size Hole for a Regular Humbucker

 

and Those Had a Special Pickup Trim Ring That Put the Mini in a Full Sized Hole.

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Great illustration Max!

 

I was just gonna say that the mini-HB is taller and skinnier.

 

The P-90 is what the hole was originally machined for, even the mini-HB sits in that big ring as an adaptation.

The mini-HB was an Epiphone design Gibson inherited when they purchased Epi.

 

That mod is tough to disguise going either way because of the humbucker being shorter/fatter.

 

You get an idea why most people don't recommend it - for any reason.

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+1. There's no good excuse for [possibly] ruining a perfectly good guitar.

 

No matter how good a job you do, or how careful you are, you are turning a Les Paul Deluxe into a mutt. You will pretty much destroy its resale value (not that Deluxes are high dollar to start with) and end up with a "wannabee."

 

Sell the Deluxe and get a Standard.

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No matter how good a job you do' date=' or how careful you are, you are turning a Les Paul Deluxe into a mutt. You will pretty much destroy its resale value (not that Deluxes are high dollar to start with) and end up with a "wannabee."

 

Sell the Deluxe and get a Standard.[/quote']

 

+2, How much you want for it?

 

Or, we could start a "save the Deluxe" fund . . . :D

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this is my deluxe.

when i got it years ago, the previous owner had done the usual and retrofitted full sized humbuckers.

also put in the mini-toggle to put the pickups into or out of phase.

 

i find the topic of modifications vs. stock very interesting. i'm not saying one or the other is the right thing to do.

but i do notice that a LOT of players modify their guitars with different pickups and upgraded hardware.

i guess its a matter of personal taste and whether you are buying the guitar as an investment or for your personal playing enjoyment?

 

guitars004.jpg

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this is my deluxe.

when i got it years ago' date=' the previous owner had done the usual and retrofitted full sized humbuckers.

also put in the mini-toggle to put the pickups into or out of phase.

 

i find the topic of modifications vs. stock very interesting. i'm not saying one or the other is the right thing to do.

but i do notice that a LOT of players modify their guitars with different pickups and upgraded hardware.

i guess its a matter of personal taste and whether you are buying the guitar as an investment or for your personal playing enjoyment?

[/quote']

 

It's about respecting the integrity of the instrument. Deluxes are not Standards -- if you want a Standard, go find one. A lot of us love the mini humbuckers and wouldn't walk across the room for a Les Paul equipped with full size pickups. Sorry, every one I've picked up has been muddy sounding. I actually turned down the chance to play the Deluxe I own now because I just didn't like the sound of Les Pauls. Mine's a boat anchor, besides, but it has the sound. Other Les Pauls have the sound IF you match them up with the right amp, player, and style -- and I don't have that kind of amp, and I ain't that kind of player, and I don't have that style.

 

It's interesting that yours has the phase switch. Deluxes get no respect for what they are, and every one is always trying to "improve" them -- seems like I see a lot of Deluxes with extra doodads and knobs on them that would never appear on a Standard.

 

So leave the Deluxes for the enthusiast: to a Standard fan, a whacked Deluxe will never be more than a mutt.

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You have plenty of choices of aftermarket humbuckers in a P90 sized cover, or good old P90's for that matter. If you don't like the sound of the mini humbuckers then just use pickups that will fit the guitar - without routing them out. Lots of people routed them out before they realized that the guitars were going to be very valuable some day. That first shaving of the router is going to make thousands of dollars evaporate - so yeah, it's cheaper to buy another guitar.

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You have plenty of choices of aftermarket humbuckers in a P90 sized cover' date=' or good old P90's for that matter. If you don't like the sound of the mini humbuckers then just use pickups that will fit the guitar - without routing them out. Lots of people routed them out before they realized that the guitars were going to be very valuable some day. That first shaving of the router is going to make thousands of dollars evaporate - so yeah, it's cheaper to buy another guitar.[/quote']

 

 

There are probably 10 billion Deluxes still out there that are not routed (give or take). You can see 4-5 pop up every week on Ebay. If it is a tone turn, fire up the router.

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