Thursday, May 23, 2013
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Gibson Les Paul Custom Solid Body Electric Guitar (1956)
Gibson Les Paul Custom Model Solid Body Electric Guitar (1956), made in Kalamazoo, Michigan, serial # 6-6674, black lacquer finish, mahogany body and neck, ebony fingerboard, original black hard shell case.
The Les Paul Custom was Gibson's top-of-the-line solidbody in the 1950's, a shining "Black Beauty" of a guitar with gold plated hardware and deluxe appointments drawn from the company's flagship archtops. This model was introduced in 1954 and proved to be Les' personal favorite of the original series, and he and Mary Ford performed for the rest of the 1950's on modified Customs. The Gleaming black top was Les' idea-he called it a "tuxedo effect" and insisted it made the player's hands stand out to the audience!
The guitar itself has many specific features unique to the Custom model; the carved-top solid body is made entirely of mahogany, with no maple cap. The fretboard is ebony with pearl block inlay, and the elaborate split diamond inlay on the headstock is shared with the Super 400, Gibson's most expensive guitar. All hardware is gold plated. The custom was the first Gibson to feature the then-new Tune-o-Matic bridge, and the only solidbody to carry the new "Alnico V" pickup newly designed for the company's high-end instruments.
Overall length is 39 5/8 in. (100.6 cm.), 13 in. (33 cm.) wide at lower bout, and 2 in. (5.1 cm.) in depth, measured at side of rim. Scale length is 24 3/4 in. (629 mm.). Width of nut is 1 11/16 in. (43 mm.). This "Black Beauty" is classic one-owner guitar, played for over 50 years but very well cared for. It exhibits overall typical light finish checking and gold plating wear, making for a beautiful patina. There are numerous small dings but no major areas of finish loss and no damage or repair; all finish and hardware completely original except for the Switchcraft switch retaining ring which is a later replacement. Even the original -and often broken- laminated plastic jack plate is intact.
The original small "Fretless Wonder" frets are lightly worn but the guitar is quite playable. The A string tuner shaft is somewhat bent but functions fine. Includes the original Deluxe black gold lined case with some wear but still solid. The case has one anomaly we have noticed with this piece before-the switch tip has punched a small hole through the case lid. This is oddly typical with these black 50's cases-the lids are fairly flimsy and the inertia of a Les Paul seems sufficient to cause this specific oddity! This is a wonderful playing example of one of Gibson's signature 1950's creations, a no issues guitar that has aged better than many. Excellent Condition.
Item # 5376
Please contact us for pricing and status. Prices subject to change without notice.
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