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1956 top wrap and more!

Tom Wittrock

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The 1956 Gibson catalog showed the Goldtop with the common "strings through the bridge", but the Custom was top wrapped!

LP%20Custom%2056%20catalog%20topwrap.JPG



What I also noticed was: The neck pickup has mounting screws in the corners.
Was the standard at that time? :hmm

The very first type of 52 Goldtop had that corner mounting on the bridge pickup, and that feature quickly disappeared.
Now it is back in this photo. :ganz
 

J.D.

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Neck pickup looks like the older "staple" polepiece type.
 
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Every single 1st version (non-PAF) '50s Les Paul Custom I've seen had the Alnico Staple neck pickup mounted with diagonale screws and the P-90 bridge pickup mounted with centered screws.
Or did I misunderstood your question?
 

Tom Wittrock

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Every single 1st version (non-PAF) '50s Les Paul Custom I've seen had the Alnico Staple neck pickup mounted with diagonale screws and the P-90 bridge pickup mounted with centered screws.
Or did I misunderstood your question?

That was my question. I'm not as well versed in Customs. :)
 

goldtop0

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Thanks for that Tom:2cool

What is the general opinion of the neck 'staple type' pup for those of you that have played them.
eg would it be brighter than a neck humbucker or P90?
 

JJ Blair

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I'd like to point out the smaller size of the last inlay, btw.
 

DEVILBAT

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Thanks for that Tom:2cool

What is the general opinion of the neck 'staple type' pup for those of you that have played them.
eg would it be brighter than a neck humbucker or P90?

IMHO the 50's alnico Customs are the best buy fro the buck out there....also....Tune o Matic bridges appear in 53 on them...while Gibson was still getting the wrap goldtops together then! Great guitars!
 

goldtop0

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IMHO the 50's alnico Customs are the best buy fro the buck out there....also....Tune o Matic bridges appear in 53 on them...while Gibson was still getting the wrap goldtops together then! Great guitars!


I appreciate your comment that these are Great guitars.........but.......why are they great guitars............is it only because they cost less than other LPs.........??
I asked about the 'staple type' neck pup in my previous post.
 

JJ Blair

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It is not impossible that the picture was touched up for print in the catalogue. The strings look abnormaly large.

Yes, but I don't see why they'd fix that one detail. My '58 has a small inlay, and I've had people argue that it must have had the fretboard replaced, even though I can't see why you'd refret a Fretless Wonder, and I see no evidence of that ever happening. I think these things just happened sometimes.
 

Gibsongt

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My 56 LP Custom did not have those knobs. Maybe that was an old picture in the catalog?
 

Gibsongt

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Thanks for that Tom:2cool

What is the general opinion of the neck 'staple type' pup for those of you that have played them.
eg would it be brighter than a neck humbucker or P90?

The staple pickup in my 56 Custom, sounded good. For me, it did not have the clarity that I get with a P90 in my 54 and 56 Goldtops. Different guitars...YMMV.
 

Tom Wittrock

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Yes, but I don't see why they'd fix that one detail. My '58 has a small inlay, and I've had people argue that it must have had the fretboard replaced, even though I can't see why you'd refret a Fretless Wonder, and I see no evidence of that ever happening. I think these things just happened sometimes.

I've seen numerous Fretless Wonders refretted. :wah
 

J.D.

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It also appears that the ABR-1 adjustment screws point backwards toward the stop tailpiece and not forward towards the pickups.
 
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Yes, but I don't see why they'd fix that one detail.



My '58 has a small inlay, and I've had people argue that it must have had the fretboard replaced, even though I can't see why you'd refret a Fretless Wonder
, and I see no evidence of that ever happening



. I think these things just happened sometimes.

Seeing the grain of the printed picture, without touchup, the last inlay may have looked like touching the fret which could have been not desirable for the catalogue.
An other explanation could be that the guitar used for the catalogue picture was a prototype, or pre-production model, that differed from the later production models on this aspect.

I don't see what a refret has to do with a replaced fretboard. One usually doesn't need to replace the fretboard to do a refret and, if for some reason the fretboard is replaced, the new fretboard would come fretted.

It is not uncommon to find guitars with details different from the model's regular specs, but this is very different to have, for instance, nickel plated hardware instead of gold plated, than different inlay size, which requires serious change in tooling at an industrial level.
 
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It looks to me like all three inlays are different sizes in this picture. :hmm :ganz

I noticed that too. I didn't mentioned it in my post for the sake of a simplier explanation.
As the last 3 inlays of the Les Paul Custom up to 1960 (except this one pictured on the catalogue) are of the same width, the possibility that the inlay would have looked like touching the fret is more likely to happen on the last inlay than the other ones, the frets getting obviously closer the higher you go on the neck.
If the artist who touched up the photo did the last inlay, it is not unrealistic to think, IMO, that he (or she) took care (or was asked to) of the next inlay as it would have "looked better" with the last inlays of decreasing sizes.
I'm trying to find a rational explanation.
 
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