No SAM, that is not correct. What top are you looking at? Not fiddleback and no flecks. Flecks do not indicate quartersawn timber, WTF???
Hey Thanks for checking this out.Hey Tony, I agree with the observations others have made, there are so many abnormalities with this guitar it is impossible to know the true history based on a few photos. We could sit here all day conjuring a bunch of "maybe this is what happened" ideas and theories, but that won't give you a definitive answer. My first thought was that it might have been a Heritage body that was downgraded to a Standard, and fitted with a Standard neck. Or a warranty return Heritage fitted with a Standard neck, and returned to stock as a Standard. But like Big Al said, the correct top carve doesn't appear to be there, and I'm not sure if the cutaway horn is "pointy" enough. Sooo many different scenarios. If you want to dig for more clues, I would look closely at the neck pickup route / tenon area for any signs of a re-neck and re-spray. Or maybe even look under the bridge bushings to see if there are signs of ABR studs having once been present. Even then it's still just a bunch of puzzle pieces.
Everyone responds differently to tops. It's personal opinion and valid as such. I don't question your evaluation of beauty, just terms. It gets too confusing if we don't all adhere to the same terms. Flecks are very different from mineral streaks or sycamore figure and I was looking for them. Figure terms are confusing but have become more standard in the last 30yrs. Fiddleback is a smaller, wavy tight figure, flame is larger, tiger is straighter, on and on. I was reacting to terminology and a being bit overmedicated having a rough episode this weekend. I thought you were looking at another guitar from the one I saw.Big Al --
Boundless respect for you, your contributions here and all you are confronting at this moment.
But yeah, I don't mean mineral flecks, I said and meant the fletch marks which reflect quarter-sawn maple 100% of the time.
Like these ones:
View attachment 13650
No comment on the authenticity or value of the OP's guitar.
But I still say, "That is a gorgeous top."
Tony, I think you have a heavily modded Les Paul Deluxe. Those do not appear to be factory humbucker routs. Is that a pancake sandwich body???? Finish looks like a pro refin and I suspect the top may be a retop with figured maple which may explain the thin binding, cutaway and pickup/bridge/control layout discrepencies. New top meant new fingerboard or removed/replaced and real mother of pearl inlays added. All work is professionally done and someone went to great lengths to get a dream guitar. Many of us did this in the 70's and it is not uncommon.Hey Thanks for checking this out.
I have a pic of the Neck route.
And Big Al mentioned a good pic of the inlays.
Like you said it's a puzzle for sure.
I'm more than happy with it. It sounds great ! Stays in tune . Intonation is good .
I haven't weighed it. But it's more than a 2015 Trad and less than a '99 standard. I'd guess 8.5 to 9 pounds.
Even with all the weird specs I believe the build quality is really good.
It's value won't matter until my Estate sale haha . Then the kid can worry about it .
Thanks again everyone for your time looking at this.
Hey Big Al.
No it's not a pancake body, but it sure looks like it is from the
Pickup cavity. There is a lot of lacquer spray in the bottom of that
Route. So much there's a crack running through it.
Part of this answer might make me sound like a weirdo. But that's ok.
I did do loads of research. Starting from very little previous knowledge of
Vintage les Pauls. I read everything I could find about the Kalamazoo plant in the late 70's early 80's. Watched a crap load of videos. 5 watt world, trogly's
Nothing I learned pointed to this being any kind of reissue.
But I still bought it because I did believe it was made in Kalamazoo.
All of the things that were not perfect on it I credited to it it being from "then"and "there". But still perfect Force tuners, No Les Paul hologram . No les paul 100 signature. It was a batch that was supposed to go to Japan.. It's a good one too 😁
Tony, the real takeaway here is your pleasure in owning this one off customised guitar. Bear in mind my impressions are just that. Not as sure as I would be in person.Oh ya and that seller had 90.. 5 star reviews on Ebay no bad reviews at all.
Live and learn.
I hope youre doing well.
Thanks Again as always
Thanks Big Al.Tony, the real takeaway here is your pleasure in owning this one off customised guitar. Bear in mind my impressions are just that. Not as sure as I would be in person.
If you still have that Kalamazoo itch and wish to add a companion, (GAS can sneak up on a fella), there are plenty unmolested pre 75 Kalamazoo Customs, Deluxes and Standards to pick from. I've become quite obsessed by them myself. There is no cure.
Wrong.I´m a little confused now. I´ve always believed that the 8 digit serial no breaks down as this: Digit 1 & 5 is year. Digit 2, 3 & 4 day of the year. Digit 6,7 & 8 Guitar of the day, with 1-500 being Kalamazoo, and 501-99 being Nashville. So with digits 6,7 & 8 being 054, it would be the 54th guitar made that day in Kalamazoo. In other words I read the number as the 54th guitar made in Kalamazoo on the 4th of May in 1981. Wrong?
Who said it wasn't Kalamazoo?I see I made a typo. I meant to write 501-999 for Nashville (Not 501-99), which I now know is wrong, as it apparently is 500-999.
But I still don´t understand it. If 499 and below are Kalamazoo, then why is 054 NOT Kalamazoo??? (The guitars number is 054, NOT 554). And I assume that we agree, that as the guitars number is 81241054, the relevant part in this case IS 054. Last time I checked, 054 was well below 500.
I have questions about that neck. Serial number, lack of made in usa, logo, headstock shape are unusual not to mention mop fingerboard inlays. I cannot say that they appear stock. I feel certain that it is not a Kalamazoo made 1981 neck. I am very familure with Kalamazoo instruments and the factory and the custom builds as well as fsr that came from there at that time.It´s my impression that Big Al believes it to be Nashville. See post #6 and I also read #29 that way.
Hey There.That neck does not match any Kalamazoo post 75 spec. I find it hard to believe it came with that body from the factory. I do not believe it to be a Custom Kalamazoo build. Nasville bridge is on KM models but I've only seen abr on mahogany neck guitars. You are correct that a nashville by itself proves little, but taken with rest seems unlikely too me.
You are also correct about the utterly confusing nature of this odd duck and we may never know.
Something to consider, Nashville had low logo and small binding dots. What that means is another question mark. Everything is mixed up with no clear definative location source!!!!
However, given everything it seems whishful to assume this is a Kalamazoo made Les Paul. In hand I might feel different. And I only offer my thoughts and I am not the final word on this, nor do I wish to appear so. Strong opinion would be most correct not more valid than yours.
Guitar of the day numbers are: 500 and above = Nashville. 499 and below are Kalamazoo.
With that being said, where guitar number 500 is the first one of the day. Number 501 is the second guitar of the day, etc.
So a Nashville guitar with number 554, will actually be the 55th guitar of the day.
I'm not sure if Kalamazoo started the day with 000 or 001. I'd love to know if anyone out there can tell me.