Discussion in 'Gibson SG' started by noid4879, Sep 29, 2018.
Rock or bust tour. Pulled it out a number of times
Also covered in the Angus Young Rig Rundown. Starting around the 7:30 mark.
3:50 - 4:10 has some nice close ups
Every time I start to lean one way, some makes a comment that makes a lot of sense for the other model or something else all together. I guess I am saying that vintage is out. And some sort of used custom shop is in. I don't want to spend the $4K plus on a new custom shop.
I like a lot of the suggestions.
Keep in mind there is a difference between a SG Custom & SG Custom Shop.
The Customs were the classic split diamond head stock, typically 3 pick up, beauties. Sometime around the year 2000 (someone will chime in shortly with the exact date) Gibson opened the Custom Shop, which was out of the Memphis plant if I recall correctly.
This is where they currently make all of their customs and Custom Shop guitars. The Custom shop guitars (as you probably know) expand well beyond the typical, although beautiful, Custom configuration. Everything under the moon.
In my opinion they are a cut above the Gibson USA line. Where things get muddy is when you ask yourself, is the price increase of 100-400% worth the coin. Well, having a few beautiful SG’s, some USA and some Custom Shop, I personally feel the Custom Shops exceed the USA line. But NOT by those margins.
Basically you are paying exponentially more to have an instrument that has had some extra attention and more hands on tooling and sculpting and Gibson’s best luthiers building your piece. Beautiful work, but the exponentially more money does not equate to an exponentially better guitar.
I like to think of cars for reference. New Tahoe, $75,000. New Escalade, $130,000. Is it worth it? Well that’s up to you. But any way you slice it the Escalade runs the same chassis, does the same job, gets you the same places.
If you got the coin , great! If not, save some bank roll and get an awesome Gibson and perhaps a new amp? Or just save some money.
Very true - and it applies to guitars in general, now that mass production has got so good, and so consistent. Every step up the price ladder produces smaller and smaller returns. And most of us chase those returns up the ladder as far as we can afford!
When it comes to Custom Shop, there certainly is more hands on tooling and sculpting by Gibson’s best luthiers - but I was recently surprised to hear just low lax their QC is. It seems on a par with Gibson USA.
Here in the UK Gibson just blew out some CS LP R8s at big discounts, and there was a 'feeding frenzy' thread on a forum. Amazing fun to watch, especially being someone with no interest in LPs - my credit card was reasonably safe - though even I did have the odd twinge of GAS. Well, others had it big time, several buying two and even three CS LPs! One dealer stood out with their service, and are also active on the forum - they photographed, weighed and checked out each of the 50 guitars they received (there were 300 in total, I believe). Their stock sold out in a couple of days, but they announced they might be getting some more, as replacements for ones they'd returned as flawed.
How many of the 50 CS guitars do you think they returned as flawed? ...2? ....3? ....5? No, NINE.
9 out of 50 got returned, and note that these were simply a stock of models that Gibson wanted to unload quickly, due to changes in their range - they were not seconds, returns or B-stock. So, yes, there is an undoubted jump in quality - but not in quality control, or so it seems.
Well The Pete Townshend custom shop model has been sold. I guess that rules that option out for now. I am going to try to find an SG with P90s someplace local to try. See what I think of them. Still thinking about the Brian Ray.
Try to find an SG Classic, they're discontinued, but they're recent enough and should be plenty around. Pretty close to a late 60's special in looks.
For new models, the Gary Clarke signature with three P90s looks very interesting too. Wouldn't mind having one, not at all!
I do need to look at these. I like getting custom shop guitars, (used) but these are a lot less money and as SG standard mentioned above, maybe not that much better quality.
Yes, there's more to the Gary Clark Signatures than meets the eye. Other than the three P90s and 24 frets, they have the low neck profile and deep cut bevels like the 61 reissues. The real MOP inlays are also a nice touch. All in all these feel and sound amazing. An excellent addition to anyones SG family. You play one of these that have been set up properly, you'll be hard pressed not to take it home with you.
I took a shot on a vintage SG (76' standard) as i wanted the 1-9/16 nut for open chords.. I did not need a case queen, as i wanted a player which i knew i would heavily modify to my liking. Not a lot to choose from but i used the following rules for my search:
1. If i were to buy online.. do it at Christmas time when people are discounting everything
2. Know your value and market values
3. Know how to ask for additional pictures and tons of questions for the seller
4. Know how to spot trouble
5. Dont be afraid of headstock breaks and refinish.. concentrate on the bones
6. I wanted something very economical knowing i would refret it.. in fact horrible frets are a plus.. as it was well played.. even a case queen could need new frets..
I got very lucky and found a great deal on a broken head stock refinished piece with past mods (had a phase switch in the past). The refinish was actually a plus as the extensive sanding it got fixed issues like the repair and finish issues/ plugs (former toggle).. once i get new frets.. replacement KLUSON Harmonica bridge, new nut to go with new frets and perhaps Ratio locking tuners.. Oh.. and aftermarket T-TOPS.. I will have my dream guitar for less than $ 1200 all in..
I don' t know if you are open to a vibrola, The SG Original is a good option.
I got one of these 2 months ago. Love it!
I ended up with the custom shop limited edition Pete Townshend SG. Here it is also with my 71 SG. It does give me a nice difference in sound from the SG standard. Thanks for all the advice and opinions.
It came with the cool Pete Townshend flight case.
God that’s beautiful
Thanks for checking back in and letting us know what you ended up with.
your welcome pancake81. I really appreciated all of the great advice everyone posted.
Now if I could figure out how to play better...…...
Having not read the earlier responses I'll offer my 2 cents. Here's what I currently have. Two SG Classics which have P90's. I have a Brian Ray SG. Lastly a 1961 LP SG Standard with the sideways wiggle stick. The LP SG is exceptionally awesome. It rings and all 3 PU positions sound great. Great neck and playability. The BR SG is also exceptional. I like the meaty neck and playability with the larger frets. I also love the Classic; one has an open chiming tone in the middle position like on some of the Live at Leeds songs. This video is representative;
The other is more compressed and better for neck PU position lead tones. Also very playable. I would recommend any of these guitars. The Classics are great bang for buck but not really in the same league as the BR SG. The 1961 LP SG is my best SG ever; but not cheap.
I had a 1965 SG Special with the wide nut; sold that because it didn't ring out. Not a very good guitar for rock; more mellow jazz tones. The other SG that I couldn't bond with was a 2008 '61 SG Standard historic reissue . The neck was not very stiff and would not stay in tune. Currently I'm planning on getting the BR SG Jr. as I think the specs on this are amazing and the quality of the BR SG I have now lends me to suspect these too will also be great.
Forgot to mention before I had a PT custom shop from 2001 I believe. Sold that eventually because of neck dive due to the Grover tuners and that with the lighting bolt tailpiece it never really played in tune; meaning I could not intonate it adequately. Back then there weren't the specialty tail pieces that probably would have solved this problem. The Classic is a pretty good P90 guitar especially for the money; like usually under $1K for a mint one.
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