Monday, May 19, 2014

Gibson Les Paul Standard Cherry Sunburst Review - Standard Vs Traditional

Gibson Les Paul Standard Traditional Pro Review
This instrument is offered in many options. All of them have the basic features that make this the quintessential hard rock guitar: mahogany body, maple top, humbucking pickups and set mahogany neck.
The body of the new Standard is chambered to create weight relief. Even though this is a desirable feature to many players that find this guitar heavy, I prefer the full sound you get from a full body like in the Traditional Pro.
A nice feature of this model is the push/pull volume knobs to split the humbuckers and get single coil sounds. With a minor modification you could have the famous Jimmy Page pickup wiring installed in this guitar.
The pickups on the Traditional Pro are the 57' Classic and Burstbucker 3' which have a less pronounced upper midrange response than the 490R and 498T pickups that used to come with these guitars.
The neck of the Gibson Les Paul Standard has been known to be too thick for some hands. The Traditional Pro has the 60's slim tapered which is thinner and more speed friendly. Another nice feature of the Traditional Pro are Grover locking tuners.
Gibson Les Paul Standard Traditional Plus Review
This model is almost identical to the Traditional Pro. The main differences are that the Plus, in classic Gibson fashion, stands for the highly figured flamed sunburst finish.
Both pickups are 57' Classic, the locking tuners have been replaced for the more vintage looking Kluson style and the neck is the regular 50's design.
Gibson Les Paul Standard Plus Review
The new Gibson Les Paul Standard electric guitar addresses an issue that has plagued this instrument since day one, its weight. The thick mahogany body has acoustic chambers to create weight relief.
This is of help to many players that after a long day can't take the pain of carrying around almost 10 pounds of wood. The neck features an asymmetrical design that is really comfortable to play and features the new Plek'd setup.
The Burstbucker Pro pickups have substituted the 490R and 498T that came in this guitar for many years, they offer a great sound. Other extra features are the locking bridge, locking input jack, locking tuners and transparent control covers.

Wednesday, January 15, 2014

Here's How to Tell If You Have a Vintage Surfboard

There are so many people out there dealing in the vintage surfboard market these days that it is getting hard keeping track of what's what. I have been amazed at what some of these dudes spend money on and what is being perceived as cool. I have always said that what was cool in "the day" is what is still cool today. But that isn't always the case.
Oh well. But, in my own little way of trying to sort out some of this stuff, I have nevertheless decided to come up with a little rating system to at least give some sort of order to things. This really deals more with the condition of the beast than what the thing is in the first place.
You guys are gonna have to figure that out on your own because nobody seems to be getting these things right. When a horrible old restored pop-out that was a laughable joke in the `60s sells for $3,000, and then a classic old Yater in perfect condition goes for $400 right after it I have to throw my hands up.
Anyway, here is a little system to determine a starting place as far as condition is concerned. Going into it know that first off a classic board in original condition is better than if it is redone to make it look new. Fixing the dings is fine, but reglossing and recoloring definitely takes away from the collectible value.
1. VIRGIN: This would be a vintage board that has never been waxed up or ridden, virtually in new "showroom" condition. The highest value.
2. MINT: In pristine condition. No dings or dents and not too yellowed or faded. Probably ridden a few times and then stored in a garage or hermetically sealed surfboard storage chamber. Very desirable and of high value.
3. CHERRY: A board that was surfed on yet kept in great condition. No serious damage ever done to it. No compression dents and possibly only a minimal amount of fixed and hard to notice small dings. Excellent value.
4. BETTY: This is most of what you will find out there. A board that was ridden hard and put away wet. Dings and dents, yet all fixed very well. Has all the original stuff as far as the skeg and finish. O.K. if it is a bit yellowed or faded. Good value.
5. BEATER: Not in perfect condition by a long shot. Has unfixed dings and/or dents. A board that was ridden hard and thrown away wet. Might have had more than normal contact with rocks, jetties, piers and heads. But, maybe something that still might be fun to take out and try to ride. Or at least maybe fix it up and save it until its value increases with the years going by. Some value as an investment.
6. TRASHED: Just what it sounds like. A board that has been really destroyed beyond reasonable repair. At best this would be one for refurbishing. Fix all the dings and give it a regloss with color to cover up all the carnage. Try to keep the original logo visible if at all possible. I hate to say this but some of these are actually going for more than some of the ones listed above. So, some value as a project.
That just about runs the gamut I guess. Besides these guidelines for condition though I'd also like to stress that it might be important to get some sort of education of what was what before you start investing in what seems to be what. Or hire somebody to help you make these choices before investing a ton of money in a vintage surfboard collection. The cream will rise, it always does sooner or later.