#1
I like vintage guitar sound. I always wanted a Gibson Les Paul, an old one. Then I learned about the epic awesomeness of Lawsuit replicas. Found an Aria Custom Les Paul, a black beauty replica. It's 425$. Made in Japan and all. What do you think?
Is there anything better I could buy? What are in your opinions the best lawsuit guitars?


http://montreal.kijiji.ca/c-ViewAdLargeImage?AdId=504074677&Keyword=aria%20black%20beauty


Thanks in advance.
Last edited by vincent.drouin. at Sep 1, 2013,
#2
this is THE guitar I learned to play on, have always wanted to get ahold of another. sounded great, played great. go with this, it's a safe bet.


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#3
Just remember that the Law-suit Gibsons were made when most Japanese guitars were crap. So just because it is a LS clone does not mean it is good quality, try before you buy or you could be getting screwed
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#4
how do you know it was made in japan?

unrelated - the headstock isn't an open book design, so what makes it a lawsuit guitar?
#5
Jebus more misinformation.
There was only one lawsuit by Gibson and it was against Ibanez for use of the open book headstock. Ibanez stopped using it and Gibson dropped the suit before it ever went to court. Anyone claiming any other guitar is a lawsuit guitar as far as Gibson goes is full of it.

Quote by gregs1020
how do you know it was made in japan?

unrelated - the headstock isn't an open book design, so what makes it a lawsuit guitar?



Greg young people today who were never even born back then think just because the guitar was made in Japan and was a Les Paul copy it's a lawsuit guitar.
Gone from the facts to a urban legend full of BS.
Moving on.....
Last edited by KenG at Sep 1, 2013,
#6
Research the specific model before you buy. These guitars sell for anywhere from $100 to over $1000 on eBay. Know what you’re buying.
#7
Quote by KenG
Jebus more misinformation.
There was only one lawsuit by Gibson and it was against Ibanez for use of the open book headstock. Ibanez stopped using it and Gibson dropped the suit before it ever went to court. Anyone claiming any other guitar is a lawsuit guitar as far as Gibson goes is full of it.

Well...sorta.

As you say, Ibanez' parent company was the only one sued over the use of a Gibson-style headstock. However, because of the legal precedent set by Gibson's victory- even though it was out of court- a host of other Japanese companies (and ONLY. japanese companies) that were making Gibson knock-offs at the time (with similar headstocks, logos and other design features) ALSO changed their designs to be less infringing, and are properly called "lawsuit" guitars- they were also in Gibson's crosshairs. Those companies include, but are not limited to: Ibanez, Tokai, Greco, Fernandes/Burny, Takamine, Matumoku, Aria, Westone and Electra*.

(They have also sued Fernandes, PRS and other companies at other times for infringement, but guitars in those lawsuits are not considered "lawsuit" guitars.)


* FWIW and FYI, some industry vets have purchased the rights to the Electra name brand, logos and corporate ID and resurrected the brand, relaunching it with the Omega as their first model. And yes, it IS an LP-style guitar.

http://www.electraguitar.com/
Sturgeon's 2nd Law, a.k.a. Sturgeon's Revelation: “Ninety percent of everything is crap.”

Why, yes, I am a lawyer- thanks for asking!

Log off and play yer guitar!

Strap on, tune up, rock out!
#8
That looks like my 1977 Bradley. Same headstock shape and double arrow head inlays. It was probably made in the Matsumoku Factory in Japan. The wiring harness is a pcboard too (just look in the control cavity. Great player.

And no, it's not a lawsuit.
--- Joe ---
77 Bradley LPC || 07 PRS CE22 || 11 PRS MC58 Artist || 95/02 Fender Strat || 99 Gibson LP DC Std Lite
06 Ovation Elite-T || 12 Martin GPCPA4
Boss GT100 || Peavey Stereo Chorus 400 || Peavey Bandit 75 || Roland JC77
#9
hey ken! i know, i'm just havin' some fun.



Quote by Auriemma
That looks like my 1977 Bradley. Same headstock shape and double arrow head inlays. It was probably made in the Matsumoku Factory in Japan. The wiring harness is a pcboard too (just look in the control cavity. Great player.

And no, it's not a lawsuit.


i'd like cavity shots of the control cavity and under the pups myself.

the case does look very mij 80's but...

the fact that it's not an open book leads me to believe it may be a later 70s but more likely an 80s or later built export headstock.

here is a late 70s export head stock. but that's also about the time they went from aria pro ii to just aria.






that said, for $425 i'd probably hit it if the thing played nice and was a nice set neck.
Last edited by gregs1020 at Sep 1, 2013,
#10
Quote by dannyalcatraz
Well...sorta.

As you say, Ibanez' parent company was the only one sued over the use of a Gibson-style headstock. However, because of the legal precedent set by Gibson's victory- even though it was out of court- a host of other Japanese companies (and ONLY. japanese companies) that were making Gibson knock-offs at the time (with similar headstocks, logos and other design features) ALSO changed their designs to be less infringing, and are properly called "lawsuit" guitars- they were also in Gibson's crosshairs. Those companies include, but are not limited to: Ibanez, Tokai, Greco, Fernandes/Burny, Takamine, Matumoku, Aria, Westone and Electra*.

(They have also sued Fernandes, PRS and other companies at other times for infringement, but guitars in those lawsuits are not considered "lawsuit" guitars.)


* FWIW and FYI, some industry vets have purchased the rights to the Electra name brand, logos and corporate ID and resurrected the brand, relaunching it with the Omega as their first model. And yes, it IS an LP-style guitar.

http://www.electraguitar.com/



Ibanez was never sued. The case was dropped and never went to court and this occurred in conjunction with Ibanez's new line of guitars replacing the copies (Artist , Performer, Iceman etc) which Ibanez had started voluntarily before Gibson went after them. Other manufacturers weren't pursed because they were selling outside of the North American market (where Gibson patent is binding) while Ibanez was selling here.
There were a lot of shitty Les Paul copies out since the early 70's and only a few that were actually built anywhere near the level of a Gibson. Most copies had plywood bodies with formed veneers to affect a "carved" top and bolt on necks to boot. I know I owned one (Taro) and could've bought an actual Ibanez copy for $200 new.
I also worked in a Music Store in late 79 or so we sold models of the Ibanez Artist, Performer an Iceman guitars but o Les Paul knockoffs.
The "legend" is these lawsuit guitars were so good Gibson sued them which is for the most part total BS. This myth has no doubt led to some people paying way too much for what was originally a $175-250 guitar (a la PT Barnum!)

Gibson attempted to sue PRS but the courts ruled in PRS's favour over the single cut which did not have the open book headstock & could not in the court's opinion be confused with Gibson's Les Paul.
Moving on.....
#11
yeah "law suit model" is a way over used and often wrong term applied to any 70s Japanese copy guitar. as mentioned the actual guitars that this applies to were exact copies most often attributed to Ibanez and were made in 74-75 area. it was really only the top of the line set neck versions and those are the ones that command real money these days. as mentioned the many bolt on versions were usually made of inferior materials and not worth more than $200 these days. while some are nice players they hardly are great guitars.
#12
Ibanez was never sued.


Yes they were. Ibanez didn't change their guitar design & production based on a simple C&D letter. Even if it never went to trial and was settled before anyone set foot in Court would not change the fact that papers were filed (with fees paid) to the Court and legal notice was given via appropriate methods and both companies consulted with their respective attorneys.

Or, to put it more succinctly, once you have gotten something from a process server notifying you that you are being sued, you're being sued; you're a participant in a lawsuit. Whatever happens after you get notice doesn't change that fact.
Sturgeon's 2nd Law, a.k.a. Sturgeon's Revelation: “Ninety percent of everything is crap.”

Why, yes, I am a lawyer- thanks for asking!

Log off and play yer guitar!

Strap on, tune up, rock out!
Last edited by dannyalcatraz at Sep 1, 2013,
#13
I have a 1970's Japanese LP clone (pics in my profile) it was my first guitar. It is a bolt-on with a ply cap. IMO the build quality is pretty good( I still play it live almost 20 yrs after I first got it.


I have had a Gibson LP studio years ago, and the studio was built much, much better. But The Sanox I have is a very nice playing and sounding guitar. It is a mix of a LP standard and a LP custom, and I really enjoy playing it and it sounds awesome.
2002 PRS CE22
2013 G&L ASAT Deluxe
2009 Epiphone G-400 (SH-4)
Marshall JCM2000 DSL100
Krank 1980 Jr 20watt
Krank Rev 4x12 (eminence V12)
GFS Greenie/Digitech Bad Monkey
Morley Bad Horsie 2
MXR Smart Gate
#14
Quote by dannyalcatraz
Yes they were. Ibanez didn't change their guitar design & production based on a simple C&D letter. Even if it never went to trial and was settled before anyone set foot in Court would not change the fact that papers were filed (with fees paid) to the Court and legal notice was given via appropriate methods and both companies consulted with their respective attorneys.

Or, to put it more succinctly, once you have gotten something from a process server notifying you that you are being sued, you're being sued; you're a participant in a lawsuit. Whatever happens after you get notice doesn't change that fact.



Fine. However Ibanez didn't change their design because of Gibson, it was already in the works which is why the lawsuit was dropped.
Moving on.....
#15
Quote by KenG
However Ibanez didn't change their design because of Gibson, it was already in the works which is why the lawsuit was dropped.

Interesting claim, but I cannot find evidence to support it.

Can you point me in the direction of proof?
Sturgeon's 2nd Law, a.k.a. Sturgeon's Revelation: “Ninety percent of everything is crap.”

Why, yes, I am a lawyer- thanks for asking!

Log off and play yer guitar!

Strap on, tune up, rock out!
#16
Quote by dannyalcatraz
Interesting claim, but I cannot find evidence to support it.

Can you point me in the direction of proof?



Maybe not proof but certainly seems to be more knowledgeable on dates and info than some Wiki idiots. Also goes along with stuff I heard around that time, as I started playing guitar in 74 and had moved onto electric by 76.

<http://www.guitarattack.com/destroyer/lawsuit.htm>

Here's an interestingn excerpt

On June 28, 1977, Norlin, the parent company of Gibson, filed a lawsuit against Elger (Ibanez) in Philadelphia Federal District Court . The case was "Gibson Vs. Elger Co." with Gibson claiming trademark infringement based on the duplicate "open book" or "moustache" headstock design of the Ibanez copies. Allegedly Gibson had threatened to sue Elger/Ibanez for a long time regarding the use of the headstock which Norlin claimed as a Gibson trademark. Ironically, by the fall of 1976 Ibanez had redesigned their headstocks to look much like those found Guild guitars. The new headstock design even appeared in the 1976 catalog! So, conspiracy theorists, by the time the lawsuit was actually filed, the headstocks had already been changed.
Moving on.....
Last edited by KenG at Sep 2, 2013,
#17
I've seen the 1976 Ibanez catalog mentioned on that website you linked to- there are a variety of different kinds of headstocks (including some that looked like Fender's) on the instruments in it.

Even if Ibanez didn't make any Gibson style headstocks that year, the lawsuit and subsequent resulting settlement would have been about 1) damages (if any) up to that point and 2) securing a court order or enforceable agreement never to use a Gibson style headstock again. So Ibanez' actual intent in 1976 would be immaterial to Gibson's goals in proceeding with the lawsuit.
Sturgeon's 2nd Law, a.k.a. Sturgeon's Revelation: “Ninety percent of everything is crap.”

Why, yes, I am a lawyer- thanks for asking!

Log off and play yer guitar!

Strap on, tune up, rock out!
Last edited by dannyalcatraz at Sep 2, 2013,
#18
Quote by dannyalcatraz
I've seen the 1976 Ibanez catalog mentioned on that website you linked to- there a a variety of different kinds of headstocks (including some that looked like Fender's).

Even if Ibanez didn't make any Gibson style headstocks that year, the lawsuit and subsequent a settlement would have been about 1) damages (if any) up to that point and 2) a court order or agreement never to use a Gibson style headstock again. So Ibanez' actual intent in 1976 would be immaterial to Gibson's goals in proceeding with the lawsuit.



Since they settled "out of court" there would be no court order period. There is no mentioned of any monies being paid so it's hard to say but generally if funds are paid the standard phrase "an undisclosed amount" is usually presented. In this case it isn't but who knows.
My main point in this discussion was the Lawsuit term is wildly miss-used and applied to guitars that were not made by Ibanez. And as the article writer points out (not my source BTW, I found the article just today) there's a lot of hype that's undeserved. With people who weren't even born then (little lone old enough to remember) blowing the whole thing way out of proportion.
Moving on.....
Last edited by KenG at Sep 2, 2013,
#19
Quote by KenG
Since they settled "out of court" there would be no court order period.


Which is why I also said "or agreement never to use a Gibson style headstock again" (edited while your were posting to add further clarity with the additional word, "enforceable").

Because such agreements ARE enforceable in court.

There is no mentioned of any monies being paid so it's hard to say but generally if funds are paid the standard phrase "an undisclosed amount" is usually presented. In this case it isn't but who knows.


I suspect the main issue for Gibson was to get Ibanez to stop using its headstock design and ensure they never did again...and by doing so, warn the other Japanese guitar makers to do likewise. So any damages could have been negotiated away in order to swiftly secure an agreement to that end.

My main point in this discussion was the Lawsuit term is wildly miss-used and applied to guitars that were not made by Ibanez.


True, but as others on the Internet assert- and I agree- "lawsuit guitar" is properly applied to other comtemporaneoulsy made Japanese (only) guitars which had similar design issues...and whose makers all changed their designs after Ibsnez settled.

And as the article writer points out (not my source BTW, I found the article just today) there's a lot of hype that's undeserved. With people who weren't even born then (little lone old enough to remember) blowing the whole thing way out of proportion.


Agreed, there! Collecting- of any kind- is full of all kinds of hype and irrationality!

(I should know: I collect a lot of different things... )
Sturgeon's 2nd Law, a.k.a. Sturgeon's Revelation: “Ninety percent of everything is crap.”

Why, yes, I am a lawyer- thanks for asking!

Log off and play yer guitar!

Strap on, tune up, rock out!
#20
lawsuit is just a term that gets thrown around whenever possible to make the guitar seem more valuable etc.

at the end of the day the TS has what looks like a decent guitar for $425.
#21
at the end of the day the TS has what looks like a decent guitar for $425.


Agreed? Agreed?

Agreed!
Sturgeon's 2nd Law, a.k.a. Sturgeon's Revelation: “Ninety percent of everything is crap.”

Why, yes, I am a lawyer- thanks for asking!

Log off and play yer guitar!

Strap on, tune up, rock out!
#22
A very good guitar indeed.
--- Joe ---
77 Bradley LPC || 07 PRS CE22 || 11 PRS MC58 Artist || 95/02 Fender Strat || 99 Gibson LP DC Std Lite
06 Ovation Elite-T || 12 Martin GPCPA4
Boss GT100 || Peavey Stereo Chorus 400 || Peavey Bandit 75 || Roland JC77