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Saw a mint 2015 USA Les Paul Jr. Stunning! And not in a good way.

Discussion in 'Other Guitars, other instruments' started by AZkoaMan, Jul 2, 2017.

  1. AZkoaMan

    AZkoaMan Tele-Meister

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    I'm assembling a partscaster for a dude I know and was over at his house to check out all the parts and got to checking out his guitar collection. He had a 2015 LP Jr. I've never had any interest in Gibson guitars so this was the first time I really studied a Jr. up close. Is was in 'mint' condition because he didn't like playing it. Can't blame him. I was blown away by the horrible quality.

    The first thing I noticed was the neck. It was REALLY wide. Almost like a classical guitar neck but with the normal electric string spacing. There was over 3/16" of fretboard outside of the E strings. It was really weird looking and worse feeling. There was thick, glossy lacquer overspray on top of the fretboard under the high E string, from the 14th to 18th frets. Looked like it bled under the masking tape. Awful.

    The body was only marginally better. The lacquer looked hazy (a sign of moisture in the finish, usually a result of humidity) and the buffing/polishing job was pretty marginal. I was in disbelief that this was a USA made Gibson, in new condition, that sold for around $800. I didn't have the heart to tell him he got hosed. I've seen better quality on sub-$200 Chinese Strats. What has happened to Gibson?
     
  2. TimothyC

    TimothyC Tele-Afflicted

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    My 2015 jr is my best guitar. The wide and flat neck is my favorite of the recent Gibsons. It was flawless other than stupid robot tuners
     
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  3. Darkness

    Darkness Tele-Afflicted

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    2015 neck is so much nicer than the more traditional sizes. For some reason, it just feels perfect to me. I do agree that it is fairly chunky in size.
     
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  4. tonyj

    tonyj Tele-Afflicted

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    This is 2017. There has been more written on line and elsewhere about Gibson's 2015 offerings than the complete works of William Shakespeare ten times over. Where have you been hiding AZ ?

    The Junior to many was a disaster in many ways, but in the past two years it has had at least a few who liked it.

    At least it came in the best HS case that Gibson provided for a Junior ever.
     
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  5. ebb soul

    ebb soul Poster Extraordinaire

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    Gibsons president is a megalomaniac. I expect the hierarchy from the top down reflects this.
    They range from good to bad at all price points.
     
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  6. AZkoaMan

    AZkoaMan Tele-Meister

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    Like I said, Gibsons never really attracted me so this was my first time seeing a 2015 Jr. up close. The case was very impressive. Quite a contrast to the guitar quarantined inside of it.
     
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  7. bettyseldest

    bettyseldest Friend of Leo's

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    I have had a Gordon Smith GS1 for 25 years which fills that Les Paul Junior hole in my life. But the opportunity arose to buy an amost new 2015 Junior at a ridiculously low price. It is not going anywhere, I love mine, will probably replace the brass nut at some point, and will remain open minded about the G-tech tuners, but love the way it plays and sounds.
     
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  8. jackinjax

    jackinjax Friend of Leo's

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    Maybe, just maybe it was a genuine Chibson? o_O
     
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  9. Paul G.

    Paul G. Friend of Leo's

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    I don't like the 2015 "player" neck width. Some do. So not a sign of anything.

    The finish on Gibsons is Nitro. In order to get a high-end gloss finish it takes quite some time.

    In order to compete with imports Gibson has some low-end instruments that sell at competitive prices.

    One compromise made to reach that price point in a quality American-made instrument is the satin finish, basically marginally sanded, not buffed or polished. It is a conscious decision. The guitars sound good and play well. To some of us, that's enough.

    I've got some recent non-budget Gibsons and they are well-made and beautifully finished. I also have a '14 LPMM. It ain't pretty. It sounds great and plays easy.

    I don't look at them much. I play them.

    P.
     
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  10. TimothyC

    TimothyC Tele-Afflicted

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    Shoot Gibson an email, they'll ask for your serial number and ship you the titanium nut for free regardless if you're the original owner or not. I did mine as the brass nut was wearing exceptionally quick on mine.
     
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  11. AZkoaMan

    AZkoaMan Tele-Meister

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    I'm curious. What would be the warranty for defects with my friends 2015 LP. Jr.? The lacquer on the fretboard is clearly a manufacturing defect. Could he file a claim for that or is it too late?
     
  12. Dave_11

    Dave_11 Tele-Meister

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    I have/had:
    2009 Les Paul Studio (humbuckers)
    2010 LP Studio 50s Tribute (P90s)
    2013(?) LP Studio 50s Tribute (P90s)
    2014 Melody Maker (P90s) now sold

    The fit, finish, and playability on all of these guitars is/was excellent. No finish problems on any of them. The 2013 Tribute is too heavy for me at 9 lbs, so I bought the 2010 Tribute, which is fully chambered and about 7.5 lbs, used. I keep meaning to sell the heavier one, but it plays and sounds so nice that I have a hard time doing it. The MM P90s were a bit on the bright side which I didn't care for so I sold it. Otherwise it was a great guitar - nice and light because of the thinner body.

    I also have a 2007 J50 and a 2016 Hummingbird. Both of those have impeccable workmanship. I guess there are bad Gibsons out there, but I haven't come across any yet. Of all the above, the J50 and 2010 Tribute are the only ones I bought locally. All the rest were ordered sight unseen.
     
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  13. BadTranslate

    BadTranslate Tele-Meister

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    The 2015 Gibsons had a wider neck profile from what I've read. I think it has something to do with the Zero-Fret nut they used that year. I guess it would just depend on your hand size if you like it or not. :)

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
     
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  14. Nick Fanis

    Nick Fanis Poster Extraordinaire Ad Free Member

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    Every new Gibson I have seen since 2005 is FANTASTIC.Especially the cheap models are the best value guitars out there.I recently got a 2011 60s tribute and it's a killer guitar,a complete steal,fit and finish are exceptional.

    The 2015 deluxe a friend has is also great.
     
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  15. MilwMark

    MilwMark Doctor of Teleocity Ad Free Member

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    $800 for an American-made, nitro, set neck guitar seems pretty reasonable to me.

    Why did your friend buy if he didn't like the feature set? The neck Was advertised as wide. Not a flaw or a surprise.
     
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  16. Syrinx

    Syrinx Tele-Holic

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    I have bought several new gibsons over the last few years, and have been impressed with quality control-and some of them were scratch and dent! Get over the neck thing-it may not be what you prefer-but its a great neck.
     
  17. scooter_trasher

    scooter_trasher Tele-Meister

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    I love my 2014 Les Paul melody maker and plan on getting a Les Paul Jr. in Mahogany, as far as finish and fret end polishing goes same as my Highway One Stratocaster, I can buy polish a lot cheaper than It cost to pay the rent and supply food stamps for my neighbor! You can carry on all you want about how much nicer the finish is on those imported guitars,compared to those shoddy low end American made guitars, but no matter how much that 10cent , or $1.00 an hour labor force polishes that imported guitar, it's still a turd and turds draw files.

    If I was a flying v fan or had a wannabe shredder child , or my wife wasn't keeping such a close eye on my stash, I would run, not walk, right out an buy this, a Gibson Flying V Melody Maker for four bills, probably not polished enough for some people, but it drools rock & Roll :)
    http://www.guitarcenter.com/Used/Gibson/Melody-Maker-V-Solid-Body-Electric-Guitar-112905128.gc
     
    Last edited: Jul 4, 2017
  18. bettyseldest

    bettyseldest Friend of Leo's

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    Used the contact us facility on the Gibson Website, and as you predicted a new titanium nut is on it's way. Thanks.
     
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  19. wyclif

    wyclif Tele-Afflicted

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    I didn't come here to bash Gibson, but when I read the OP I thought about all the times I've seen USA-made Gibsons that I couldn't believe ever made it through QC. If they still have QC...

    I'm talking about massive overspray in the most astonishing and obvious places, places where you don't have to look closely or even pick up the guitar to see. Bridge and tuning gear mount holes drilled offline. Over-applied lacquer. Necks that couldn't be set up or adjusted to play properly without ruining the guitar. Etcetera.

    In fairness, I have seen good ones too. But what's weird about that to me is where you find them, sometimes in the middle of the price range.

    Now, there are always gonna be duds out there but I can't believe what Gibson is currently putting out from Montana at these price points at the top of their line.
     
  20. AZkoaMan

    AZkoaMan Tele-Meister

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    Exactly! That's what I was getting at. I wasn't aware the neck dimensions were deliberate so even though I find it really bizarre other like it so no QC issues there. But the crappy finish on the body and especially the lacquer runs on the face of the fretboard...those are really obvious defects. It's not the same as cutting corners on manufacturing by leaving the fret ends a little rough, or using lower quality electronics. Those kinds of things are part of the plan for those instruments, but they're also priced accordingly. No, this is a USA made guitar that cost around $800 and it left the factory with glaring defects in the finish. The only way that happened is if people in QC at Gibson saw it (because you can't miss it) and just didn't care, or there was no one working at QC to even inspect it.

    I'm not saying all this to bash Gibson. Rather, I think it's sad that an American company, recognized around the world, with a history going back 115 years and the prestige to match, is shipping out guitars with poorer quality control than some Chinese factories building guitars that cost 1/4 as much.
     
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