#1
Alright, here is the full story guys, I don't post on here much but I really need some help.

First off, is there such a thing as a 1965 Les Paul, because I thought they stopped making them for a short time (they made SG's instead or whatever). Second of all, my buddy is selling one for his uncle who really needs the money and I can get it at the right price. Third, I played it, it sounds great, and when I checked the serial and it said it was made in 1965...I am perplexed. It's a sunburst LP with what look like P-90 or P-100's.

Anybody out there got any information that could help?

Thanks guys.
#2
What makes you think it's a '65? There were no Les Pauls at that time. In 1968 there were Les Pauls. Check the serial number.
#3
Maybe the neck/headstock were replaced at some point. If the guitar sounds great and you have the cash then go for it.
#4
Quote by Suduko Killer
What makes you think it's a '65? There were no Les Pauls at that time. In 1968 there were Les Pauls. Check the serial number.


It's got a serial that is only 6 digits, and when I check it on Gibsons website it says that was produced in 1965. That is on the headstock, on the other side of the head stock it says Gibson Les Paul.

The first thing I thought was that it would be fake, but this is my friend, not a stranger on ebay.
#5
Gibson was notoriously inconsistent with its use of serial numbers and I think there was some duplication of number sequences during the 60s.

To my knowledge there's no such thing as a 65. The LP was reintroduced in 1968.

What are the 1st 3 numbers of the serial #?
#7
After the LP was reintroduced, there were two series of serial numbers (I think depending on whether they were produced in Kalamazoo or Nashville). There were 6 digit numbers in the 500s and 800s.

You are right about the 300 series being in the mid-sixties. However I've never heard or read about any LPs from that period. If it's real, you have a real find!

You can contact Gibson (there's an e-mail address in the customer service section on their website) and ask them directly. They were actually able to find the manual ledger showing the ship date of my 69 Custom.
#8
Oh, I just saw something. Gibson also produced 6 digit numbers up into the 70s. Does your guitar's headstock have "Made In USA" stamped under the number?

http://www.provide.net/~cfh/gibson.html#serial

Gibson Serial Numbers, early to mid 1970's.

All models, stamped in back top of headstock. "MADE IN U.S.A." stamped below the serial number in back top of peghead, in the same size type, and on two lines with "U.S.A." below the "MADE IN":

Number Year
------ ----
6 digits + A 1970
000000's 1973
100000's 1970-1975
200000's 1973-1975
300000's 1974-1975
400000's 1974-1975
500000's 1974-1975
600000's 1970-1972, 1974-1975
700000's 1970-1972
800000's 1973-1975
900000's 1970-1972
A + 6 digits 1973-1975
B + 6 digits 1974-1975
C + 6 digits 1974-1975
D + 6 digits 1974-1975
E + 6 digits 1974-1975
F + 6 digits 1974-1975

You may have a 74-75. That could still be a great guitar for the money.
Last edited by Bizazz at Jan 13, 2009,
#9
Wow - you may have one hell of a find there. The P-90 LP's are very rare, at least original ones. Congrats! I bet it sounds amazing.
I wondered why the frisbee was getting bigger, then it hit me.
#11
If you can, take a picture of the back of the headstock, back of the neck, and the of the body from the side.
#12
Quote by some_dude_2
If you can, take a picture of the back of the headstock, back of the neck, and the of the body from the side.


Sorry man, I don't have access.

But it does have Made in U.S.A. underneath the number, I remember that. What does that mean besides it's made between '69-'75? Were they making good quality LP's then or were things kind of cheap, I don't really know the history that well...(Besides the basics about PAF's)
#13
Quote by Wirsteve
Sorry man, I don't have access.

But it does have Made in U.S.A. underneath the number, I remember that. What does that mean besides it's made between '69-'75? Were they making good quality LP's then or were things kind of cheap, I don't really know the history that well...(Besides the basics about PAF's)


1970 is when Norlin bought out Gibson. During the Norlin era a bunch of changes were made to the Les Paul design in order to reduce costs and reduce warranty claims. If you look at the guitar you should notice that the neck is most likely a 3 piece neck (laminated wood is stronger and more stable than solid wood), and it may also have a 'pancake' body (if you look at it from the side you'll see two separate pieces of mahogany with a maple slab in the middle). The Norlin era is seen as one of the low points in Gibson's history.

That said... there's only one way to know if it's any good or not, and that's to play it. Some Norlins are dogs, and some are great. Same is true of every year.
#14
Quote by some_dude_2
1970 is when Norlin bought out Gibson. During the Norlin era a bunch of changes were made to the Les Paul design in order to reduce costs and reduce warranty claims. If you look at the guitar you should notice that the neck is most likely a 3 piece neck (laminated wood is stronger and more stable than solid wood), and it may also have a 'pancake' body (if you look at it from the side you'll see two separate pieces of mahogany with a maple slab in the middle). The Norlin era is seen as one of the low points in Gibson's history.

That said... there's only one way to know if it's any good or not, and that's to play it. Some Norlins are dogs, and some are great. Same is true of every year.


What he said...

The Made In USA stamp appeared in very late 69 or early 70. While the Norlin era is panned, there have been some very good players who use guitars from that time period. It just depends on the guitar.
#16
Alright, it's to my understanding that I've come across an early 70's LP. Which would be part of the Norlin era am I correct (which is not a good thing?). I thought it sounded alright...but as far as the Norlin era is concerned, what should I look for when I check it out again? Is there going to be errors or poorly put together portions of the guitar?
#17
I'm by no means an expert on these things. IMHO the Norlin bias is both real and perceived.

The Norlin era signaled a shift away from the original LP construction. The one piece body went away for example. The volute was added on the neck. Yada Yada. In addition, production numbers went way up. There are fewer of the older models around (supply - demand), making them more desirable. Others swear by the features and quality of construction.

There are "players" from all eras however. This guitar may be a player, regardless of the fact its a Norlin. You have to be the judge.

There's no right or wrong answer.
#18
Quote by Wirsteve
Alright, it's to my understanding that I've come across an early 70's LP. Which would be part of the Norlin era am I correct (which is not a good thing?). I thought it sounded alright...but as far as the Norlin era is concerned, what should I look for when I check it out again? Is there going to be errors or poorly put together portions of the guitar?


Just play the guitar and judge it that way. Most of the Norlin era changes were to improve the construction of the guitar, though some would argue (correctly) that it changed the tone of the guitar.....for the worse (debatable).

And really, if the guitar sounds good, who really gives a sh*t about the details?
#19
Well it's a real gibson, it looks good, it sounds good, it feels good. What's not to like? Just because some changes in that era were made that caused them to be known to have more dodgy guitars in that era doesn't mean it's bad. It's lasted over 30 years, i doubt it'll be breaking down on you anytime soon.
#20
Alright, thanks a lot guys...

And I've been looking for information (thanks again) and I also found a photo on this website http://www.myrareguitars.com/1970guitars.html

The 1974 LP '55 reissue on that site is exactly what it looks like, so I've come to the conclusion that an early-mid 70's LP '55 reissue is what it is. I don't really know how rare it actually is but I plan on going to play it again (to make sure I'm not just horny for another guitar) and probably picking it up if all goes well.

But again, thanks a bunch for all the information. I started out thinking it was made in the sixties...now it seems it has been pinpointed.