#1
Hello all,

In my buddy's music classroom we discovered this guitar. It's atleast 10 years old and the body is on good shape. Besides fretwork is this guitar worth fixing up? I bet the tuners and the pickups need to be replaced. Is the body and neck mahogany? If It's not, why not? Please no "of course not, it's an Epiphone -duh" replies.

The sticker on the guitar said it was made in the USA custom shop, and it had a Gibson truss rod cover. Not that any of that particularly means anything.
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Last edited by Shadowofravenwo at Feb 15, 2013,
#2
It is not American made. American made Special II's just do not exist. A sticker on the back of it doesn't mean anything. Epiphones are sometimes labelled 'Custom Shop' when they aren't at all. They're just standard production guitars.

It is not worth doing anything to because Special II's are such pieces of crap. They are the worst Epiphones you can buy so they are not worth putting any money into.

The neck is probably maple and the body is probably either Alder or Plywood. Reason being that mahogany is too expensive to be used on such a cheap guitar.
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Last edited by T00DEEPBLUE at Feb 15, 2013,
#3
Quote by Shadowofravenwo
Hello all,

In my buddy's music classroom we discovered this guitar. It's atleast 10 years old and the body is on good shape. Besides fretwork is this guitar worth fixing up? I bet the tuners and the pickups need to be replaced. Is the body and neck mahogany? If It's not, why not? Please no "of course not, it's an Epiphone -duh" replies.

The sticker on the guitar said it was made in the USA custom shop, and it had a Gibson truss rod cover. Not that any of that particularly means anything.


No Epi LP Special II has ever been made in the US

here is more information about them..

http://epiphonewiki.com/index.php/Les_Paul_Special#Les_Paul_Special_II

It is NOT a crap guitar - you just get what you pay for....
#5
So it will look like a les paul, play like one, but not sound like one.
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#7
WHY NOT? BUT WHY NOT???
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#9
Quote by Shadowofravenwo
So it will look like a les paul, play like one, but not sound like one.

Won't sound or play like any halfway decent Les Paul. The basic shape and idea are the same but calling a Special II a Les Paul is like calling a meth lab a laboratory. Shit's all wrong.
#10
Epis used to have Gibson truss rod covers. The practice was eventually stopped because it was confusing people in the used guitar market.
#11
Quote by jpnyc
Epis used to have Gibson truss rod covers. The practice was eventually stopped because it was confusing people in the used guitar market.


It was used when Korean production of the Epi LPs and SGs started in 1989
to suggest it's relationship to Gibson
It stopped when Gibson/Epi opened their first own factory in QingDao, China in 2002
#12
Hmm they must be stupid people then. Truss rod covers can be swapped out, Headstocks generally cant... If you cant pick an Epi headstock from a Gibson headstock then its time to get that eye test youve been putting off for so long....
#13
Damn. As a potentially free guitar, I was hoping it would be worth fixing up.
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#15
Quote by Shadowofravenwo
Damn. As a potentially free guitar, I was hoping it would be worth fixing up.



if the neck isn't warped, and the frets look okay, the only thing it would really need would be tuners (maybe) and a good set-up. for a little bit of work and money, you could have a playable guitar.

it definitely won't be anything like a full-on Les Paul- it just isn't one- but it will be a tolerable guitar.

at worst, sell it for a pack of strings or something. you're probably going to end up money ahead (surprisingly easy when you start with no investment)
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#16
Quote by Ippon
Make it a project guitar if the neck's straight.



Ippon and KK

The neck is really nice and the body is mint. One of the pickups is loose. The strings are gone. I knew I would need new tuners. I was thinking of putting SD Alnico 2 pros in it. But if I can't get that sweet Les Paul sound, not sure I want to put the effort in.
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MXR '78 Custom Badass Distortion
Last edited by Shadowofravenwo at Feb 16, 2013,
#17
Quote by Shadowofravenwo
Ippon and KK

The neck is really nice and the body is mint. One of the pickups is loose. The strings are gone. I knew I would need new tuners. I was thinking of putting SD Alnico 2 pros in it. But if I can't get that sweet Les Paul sound, not sure I want to put the effort in.

If you want to re-do it, use www.guitarfetish.com they have good parts and pickups for really cheap
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#18
Quote by Shadowofravenwo
Ippon and KK

The neck is really nice and the body is mint. One of the pickups is loose. The strings are gone. I knew I would need new tuners. I was thinking of putting SD Alnico 2 pros in it. But if I can't get that sweet Les Paul sound, not sure I want to put the effort in.

You won't get the sound of a ''full'' Les Paul from it, ever. Bolt-on, flat-top guitars can't replicate the sound of a set neck, carved top guitar, even if they use the same woods (and vice-versa).
What it can sound like is a Les Paul Junior or Special. If that's a tone you like, great. If not, you're going to be disappointed.

And for what it's worth, A2Ps would be just abotu the worst pickups you could put in it if you want the thicker, normal Les Paul tone. The point of A2Ps is that they have a very clear, open and flat tone, and really let the guitar itself decide what sort of tone you get. It's hard to explain, but think of it as sort of magnifying the natural tone of the guitar. In a normal Les Paul, this will mean you get an even thicker and more resonant tone. In a LP Special-II it means you'll get an even thinner and flatter tone.
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#19
Quote by MrFlibble
You won't get the sound of a ''full'' Les Paul from it, ever. Bolt-on, flat-top guitars can't replicate the sound of a set neck, carved top guitar, even if they use the same woods (and vice-versa).
What it can sound like is a Les Paul Junior or Special. If that's a tone you like, great. If not, you're going to be disappointed.


I have no idea what those sound like, as this one is unplayable.


And for what it's worth, A2Ps would be just abotu the worst pickups you could put in it if you want the thicker, normal Les Paul tone. The point of A2Ps is that they have a very clear, open and flat tone, and really let the guitar itself decide what sort of tone you get. It's hard to explain, but think of it as sort of magnifying the natural tone of the guitar. In a normal Les Paul, this will mean you get an even thicker and more resonant tone. In a LP Special-II it means you'll get an even thinner and flatter tone.


That is worth a lot. What would you recommend instead?
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#20
Quote by Robbgnarly
If you want to re-do it, use www.guitarfetish.com they have good parts and pickups for really cheap



Cool site, but the pickups appear to have no brand names. How would I know how the sound?
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#21
Quote by Shadowofravenwo
Cool site, but the pickups appear to have no brand names. How would I know how the sound?


They are GFS brand, meaning they deal directly with the consumer and cut out the middle-man distributor (hence lower prices).

I've been using GFS pickups almost exclusively this past year and have found them to be quite good for the price (I've dropped different pickups in four guitars). If you go this route, I recommend a Dream 90 neck and Fat Pat bridge, may not be the exact Les Paul tone, but it's my favorite configuration from their line.

YouTube will also give you sound clips for them, though sound quality isn't the best when compressed through YouTube.
Last edited by SteveHOC at Feb 16, 2013,
#22
Quote by Shadowofravenwo
Cool site, but the pickups appear to have no brand names. How would I know how the sound?

They are their own brand of pickup called GFS.
Some are really good, and some are not that great. I have a few of them and I am very pleased with the quality and the tone I get from them.
The Fat Pat humbucker is really good, I like it more than the Dimarzio Super Distortion that it replaced and it is only $30ish and the Dimarzio is $70ish
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#23
Quote by Shadowofravenwo
I have no idea what those sound like, as this one is unplayable.
Even if it was brand new, that guitar wouldn't sound like a normal Les Paul Junior or Special.

Basically, Juniors/Specials (proper, set neck, Gibson ones) have a darker and thinner tone than a regular Les Paul, quite simply because they are thinner. The carved maple top that normal LPs have adds a lot of 'body' to the tone, giving you more bass and treble, and the Junior and Specials lack this. Additionally, Juniors and Specials usually have brighter-sounding pickups in them, which further exaggerates the difference between them and the much thicker-sounding normal Les Pauls. They can also be described as sounding like a very slightly brighter version of a Gibson SG.

Juniors and Specials were very popular in the late 60s and up to the late 70s for blues-based rock and early punk and are still popular for pop music and pop-punk.

That is worth a lot. What would you recommend instead?
If you want a thicker sound like a standard Les Paul, try a Seymour Duncan 59/Custom Hybrid for the bridge and a Pearly Gates for the neck; DiMarzio Breed and Tone Zone pickups will give a similar sound but with more output, if you like that.
If you do fancy trying the traditional Les Paul Junior or Special tone, take a look at the DiMarzio Bluesbucker and Seymour Duncan Phat Cat. The Phat Cat is the closest in sound to the old Juniors/Specials, but it hums; the DiMarzio is a little bit more modern-sounding, but it is hum-cancelling.

Cheaper brands like Guitar Fetish, IronGear, Wilkinson and Tonerider all offer their own versions of these pickups, though these cheaper pickups never sound quite as nice as the proper brands. It's up to you whether you think the sound or saving a bit of money is more important.

Though, since you'd be overhauling this guitar anyway, you might want to check out Seymour Duncan P-Rails. These give you several different tones in one. Using Seymour Duncan's Triple Shot mounting rings, or two push-pull pots (replacing the volume and tone controls in the guitar), you can get thick humbucker (standard Les Paul), thin humbucker (SG), P-90 single coil (Junior) and an additional thin single coil tone (Strat), all in one. They're totally jack-of-all-trades pickups, not perfect at any one sound, but that makes them rather handy for these fun mod jobs. It's a good excuse to experiment with wiring.
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#24
Sweet! Lots of ideas for these guitars. I was goi g to make them my drop-d/c guitars anyway. Tunings I don't play on a regular basis but do have interest in.
Washburn MG-44(E)
Ibanez RG421 (Eb)
Art & Lutherie Electric Cutaway
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Vox AC4tv 1x10
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MXR '78 Custom Badass Distortion
#25
Quote by Shadowofravenwo
Please no "of course not, it's an Epiphone -duh" replies.




Just because you ask us not to say it doesn't make it any less true.

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Thats too bad, I was under the impression I was arguing something profound


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