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Help 1986 les paul standard

Jules

New member
Joined
Feb 6, 2021
Messages
12
Sorry for the huge post, I just have a lot of thoughts, and am curious and looking for some clarity here.


So, Im looking into 1986 standard as my first les paul. Its actually for sale by a friend, but I want to do my own homework. It's been hard to find info on this specific year, as I feel like the 80s customs, notably the early ones, kind of eclipse info about mid 80s standards. In addition, when I have been able to find info on 80s standards it seems as though articles usually breeze of 86, focusing more on the lio's, strings and things, KMs, and the late 80s guitars, and the early 90s birth of reissues (if Im understanding the time line right). When I have actually found listings of 86s that aren't customs, they tend to be two piece tops with beautifully decent flame, that isn't the crazy tiger striped maple (not my thing, though I do love some mellow to medium wavey flame and burls/grain circles and the like). I have found a listing on reverb of a three piece top, with a slightly cracked headstock wing, but the description isn't overly divulging. Also, most of the prices have seemed to have fluctuated since a lot of posts on these guitars, I've read people saying they'd never spend X amount of money for a Norlan (I've read 86s aren't technically Norlan, though they probably are, in the sense that they are probably assembled with stock that was possibly cut etc from 85 etc.) However, I see them for sale on Guitar Point, CME, Reverb, Ebay, etc for pretty high, though I do know realize, that just because they are listed for such, doesn't necessarily mean they are worth it. So alas I am a new member here, and looking for wisdom from those who aren't new to the les paul game, as am I.

-So according to the serial if Im not mistaken, its a true 86--(8xxx6502) May 2nd. 11.4lbs
-I read somewhere on the forum that someone had a theory that mid April 1986 (or another month) that Gibson possibly ran our of stickers for the Shaws. My friend assures me they are real Shaws, though I haven't actually seen the bottoms or anything for the ink # as well as the other metal stamped serial (nor do I know how to confirm them if I did see the bottoms of the pups)

-The guitar is Heritage Cherry which is, well, quite cherry red, not a deal breaker but not a my favourite, Its a pretty nice paint job, not near as bad as some, but maybe seems weirdly brighter red, and or cheaper than other red bursts from other decades perhaps. but like I said not a deal breaker, I might grow to love it! I play a green burst flamed maple 1997 PRS ce22, because as an 18 year old who knew nothing about electric guitars, it sounded the best to me, despite being...a bitter sweet combo of amazing craftsmanship, and kinda of an ugly strat/Ibaneze/lp all at the same time. So I think I could handle a cherry Lp (I just love the shape of an lp with a small headstock)

-My friend (not knowing I am interested in his guitar, but asking if I new anyone looking) seemed to really believe that its a great guitar, and something special, (he's a drummer I toured with last winter, and has an 80s black custom, and a 70s recording series, so as much as he likes the guitar, he said he doesn't need three, and could use the money being in the middle of restaurant start up) So I felt like he was being honest when he told me how much he admired the guitar and pickups etc and didn't want to list it online because he'd rather see it go to someone in our community so he could maybe see it being enjoyed from time to time. However he got a killer deal on it knowing a pawn shop owner and is looking to make a grand off it, I figured I'd offer him 500 more than what he paid for it instead of the full 1000. If he agrees, It would hopefully be a good deal for both of us, but I don't know values on LPs enough. I'd be offering him $3000 CAD for it, and it comes with a brown and pink hard case that I think is original? before they started with the chainsaw cases? Is that a decent price now days, or would I be better off just getting something newer? It has a real rosewood fretboard. I happen to know Gibson's CEO's mom, and thought about asking her if her son could cut me a deal somehow, but, I don't want to be that guy? So, 3000 for an 86 standard?

-I KNOW BEGGARS CAN'T BE CHOOSERS, and would be stoked to have a lp but it'd be stretch for me to swing it, so obviously I'd want it to be a good one. He told me the headstock angle is apparently good (Im assuming not too steep?).
-The Gibson logo has closed "b" and "o" and a dot over the i. Which is weird because some people reported them being open with no dot for this year? Or is there a difference between the 80s reissues and the 80s standards? by the looks of the bridge I think my friend's is a Nashville guitar.
-Im curious about the neck angle as I think I'd prefer the strings to be not crazy high off the body ( however pretending Im playing a giant electric-violin-guitar-beast could be maybe be cool? aka not the end of the world)
-Im curious if 86 had the wide or thin cutaway binding (I'll have to see it in person and hear it anyway, but if someone knows off the top of their head that'd be awesome)
-Was there ever a year/(s) where the body was strangely shaped? pointier cutaway, or something bizarre? Were original bursts deep carved or more shallow, and how would that compare to an 86?
-Again something I'd have to check in person, but if anyone knows it'd be helpful,--is 86 in the "fretless dream" territory or did they get bigger frets at this point? I'd prefer bigger frets.
-Also, 300k pots? would I need to get 500k to open'r up?

Anyway, I know there are not "good years" and "bad years" and duds can be light or heavy, but just as an overall educated guess, is it something worth jumping on? I'll post pics as soon as I figure out how to post them on here!


If you've been patient enough to make it through my scattered rambles thank you! And if you have any advice in choosing a Les Paul it'd be most appreciated!


Jules
 

El Gringo

Well-known member
Joined
Apr 8, 2015
Messages
3,981
Greetings and Welcome to the Party and glad you could join us ! First off the Norlin era always gets ragged on and that is not fair as a lot of good instruments were produced during the Norlin era . So disregard the Norlin haters . I like my Les Paul's to be at least 9lbs and don't care for the lightweight ones . Next i think yours will have the wide binding in the cutaway . 86 was the start of the Henry era , so there were probably stuff that continued into the start of the Henry era , which that would not faze me in the least as my first childhood electric which I still have and play is a 9lb Les Paul Custom which is awesome . Not sure about the Shaws , but I can tell you I have all of my Les Paul's loaded with ThroBak MXV-SLE-101 Plus pickups with A5 magnets and they are a mid range beast and growl with tone and pair so well with my Marshall 2555X's . Getting rid of the harness if yours have 300k pots is a good idea and ThroBak has great harness as well www.throbak.com . Make sure there is NO headstock break as that would be a deal breaker and don't believe the crap about it will be stronger after a break which I have a bridge I could also sell you for cheap as well . Avoid it at all costs because it will be a massive headache to avoid at all costs -trust me on that one because there are to many Les Paul's out there in perfect working order and it truly is a buyers market . Also as you mentioned Reverb it's not a bad idea to check it out and compare prices and specs to get a better feel , just like doing some home work before reaching for your wallet . I would not have any hesitation to make the purchase as everything you have mentioned sounds good to me and I wish you the best and please play the guitar first and then go from there . Please report back and Best Wishes as this is always exciting !
 

rick c

Member
Joined
May 28, 2016
Messages
273
-He told me the headstock angle is apparently good
An odd comment as the headstock angle is a factory design feature so it can't be "good" or "bad". As El Gringo notes, watch out for a headstock break. This headstock comment would worry me. Please get and share pictures of the back of the neck.

-The Gibson logo has closed "b" and "o" and a dot over the i. Which is weird because some people reported them being open with no dot for this year? Or is there a difference between the 80s reissues and the 80s standards?
I have three 80's Gibsons; 80 ES-Artist, 87 Les Paul Custom and 88 ES-335; they all have the same Gibson inlay with a dot over the i and a closed b and o.

- by the looks of the bridge I think my friend's is a Nashville guitar.
Yes. It looks like a Nashville. Better, higher resolution pictures would help.

-I'm curious about the neck angle as I think I'd prefer the strings to be not crazy high off the body
Another factory design feature; it is what it is. I can't tell from the pictures but I can't see anything obviously wrong.

-Im curious if 86 had the wide or thin cutaway binding
Google pics is your friend; they all look like they have wide cutaway binding.

-Was there ever a year/(s) where the body was strangely shaped? pointier cutaway, or something bizarre?
Yes - pointy bits are not consistent. Again, Google 86 Standard and you will see many pics showing a more curved, less sharp point. My 87 Custom has a much sharper point.

- Were original bursts deep carved or more shallow, and how would that compare to an 86?
I don't know. I recall watching a Trogly episode where he discussed top side carves and mentioned that a Custom close in age to mine was not as deep dished as older ones. My 87 has a very pronounced dish. The black guitars show it more.

-Again something I'd have to check in person, but if anyone knows it'd be helpful,--is 86 in the "fretless dream" territory or did they get bigger frets at this point? I'd prefer bigger frets.
I'm confident that the fretless wonder frets disappeared in the mid 70s to be replaced by medium jumbos.

-Also, 300k pots? would I need to get 500k to open'r up?
Yes/no/whatever... This really is a personal preference thing. If it's got 300ohm pots and you don't like it then change but I'd advise trying it first; your complete signal path determines the final sound and you may be really happy with the guitar as it is. Your friend has stated that he "admired" the pickups so again don't change anything unless you don't feel the same way.

A few more comments:
- The "Tim Shaw" thing is a huge can of worms. To quote a very wise and respected member of our group: "The Tim Shaw PAF's are a specific model pup. I know, I gave them the Tim Shaw
label 20 yrs ago, on this forum. A TS PAF has specific prefix codes in ink stamp of 137 or 138 followed by a date. Unfortunately too many refer to any pickup with an ink stamp or non Ttop coilforms as Tim Shaws. They are not, unless they have the above prefix. Nickle or Gold covers but not chrome." I thought my 87 had Tim Shaws until a few weeks ago! I still don't know exactly what I have; I've been advised that it is "probably a 490" but I have not been able to find a 490 with an identical baseplate as mine. Who cares? My guitars, I'm not planning to sell them and I love the way they sound.
- Have you ever played a Les Paul? You will find it very different from the PRS. I have a EBMM Majesty that weighs nothing compared to the LPC and feels completely different; longer scale length, very different neck feel, different unplugged resonance/tones. I love my LPC but I have read threads about people not "bonding".
The only way to find out is to do it but before spending a lot of money, why not go to a guitar store and just try out some LPs to get a feel of them?
 

Triplet

Active member
Joined
Mar 13, 2006
Messages
1,584
11.4 lbs, ugh. That's a non-starter. 81/2 to 91/2 lbs is the sweet spot for me. The heavier ones I bought when I was younger and didn't think weight mattered, gather dust, now.
 

Big Al

Well-known member
Joined
Apr 24, 2002
Messages
14,235
It is a boat anchor, run of the mill mid 80's Standard. You seem to know little, if anything, and yet you have very specific questions about spec's you seem ignorant of. What's the good headstock angle, and why? Shaws?? No, what do you know of Shaws and why are they special. Neck set determines bridge height and ALL Lesters have high bridges compared to PRS or Fenders with minimal neck angles.

Have you played Les Pauls?

Really, it seems you don't want to do your homework, you want answers for the test.

I see nothing special or noteworthy about that guitar other than it is a heavy ass shoulder breaker of a seemingly well cared for Standard fairly typical of that vintage. Don't get hung up on micro specs you don't know or understand. What is your deal with the logo? Is an 86 better than an 87 or 85?? Experienced Les Paul players may develope a preference for specific specs and will often seek out certain years with guitars that have those small differences.

You want a used Les Paul at a good price or something specific? If you know what you want, define it and we can help. If you want to know if that guitar looks right, it does too me. I see nothing other than a typical 1986 Standard. Good guitars.
 
Last edited:

Jules

New member
Joined
Feb 6, 2021
Messages
12
Greetings and Welcome to the Party and glad you could join us ! First off the Norlin era always gets ragged on and that is not fair as a lot of good instruments were produced during the Norlin era . So disregard the Norlin haters . I like my Les Paul's to be at least 9lbs and don't care for the lightweight ones . Next i think yours will have the wide binding in the cutaway . 86 was the start of the Henry era , so there were probably stuff that continued into the start of the Henry era , which that would not faze me in the least as my first childhood electric which I still have and play is a 9lb Les Paul Custom which is awesome . Not sure about the Shaws , but I can tell you I have all of my Les Paul's loaded with ThroBak MXV-SLE-101 Plus pickups with A5 magnets and they are a mid range beast and growl with tone and pair so well with my Marshall 2555X's . Getting rid of the harness if yours have 300k pots is a good idea and ThroBak has great harness as well www.throbak.com . Make sure there is NO headstock break as that would be a deal breaker and don't believe the crap about it will be stronger after a break which I have a bridge I could also sell you for cheap as well . Avoid it at all costs because it will be a massive headache to avoid at all costs -trust me on that one because there are to many Les Paul's out there in perfect working order and it truly is a buyers market . Also as you mentioned Reverb it's not a bad idea to check it out and compare prices and specs to get a better feel , just like doing some home work before reaching for your wallet . I would not have any hesitation to make the purchase as everything you have mentioned sounds good to me and I wish you the best and please play the guitar first and then go from there . Please report back and Best Wishes as this is always exciting !
Wow! Hey thanks @El Gringo for taking the time! Helped confirm some thoughts I was mulling over. I've read a little bit about the shaws, and saw ThroBak and Wizz come up, I guess dont fix em if they aren't broken and of course everything needs to go through an ear test. I don't know much about pots either, but I had read that some people think the 300s were just often too dark, but useful for higher out put pickups. The youtube videos I've seen of Tim Shaws being measured seem to have around 7-8k ohms reading, (hope Im saying that right k vs ohms or both) so maybe it'd be worth changing the harness and pots would add to the guitar as I guess thats pretty low. But i wouldn't want to ruin the low open output sound, hopefully it'd just make them more dynamic and clearer highs? anyway thats all hypothetical at this point (I wonder if I'd be able to hear it or if it would be just placebo haha). And thanks for the bridge offer!

Sounds like you really love your Custom! :)
 

Jules

New member
Joined
Feb 6, 2021
Messages
12
First off @rick c thanks for the crazy detailed response to all the very specific question/concerns I had!

-I had never heard of anyone talking about different headstock angles, but with all the changes throughout the les paul history I was open to it being a real thing but was having a hard time finding info on it. I wouldn't be surprised if they all vary a bit as craftsmanship and wood does, but as long as the design wasn't deliberately varied. So thanks thats one less thing I'd need to worry about. That goes for the neck angle too! Again something I had read someone mentioned, and it caught me off guard wondering if it was something to be watchful of! Same with the pointy cut away and carve depth, I hadn't even considered this until four or five days ago when my friend mentioned he was looking to let go of his guitar. After considering it, I started wondering if I could see different proportions in different pictures of guitar haha or if it was just my mind playing tricks, like when you say a word over and over until it starts sounding weird, or you're trying to tell the difference between in ear monitors and after a while they all just sound the same haha. So thanks, its interesting that they did carve them deeper and shallower at times, I wonder if the machines/forums were getting older and so used that they started loosing their shape until they noticed the difference.

-Im stoked that the frets are a bit bigger, I recently did a set up for a client's old Aria les Paul professional and his truss rod doesn't do anything its broken or stripped, and it had a high fret, so filed it down, and re crowned it, and luckly the neck relief was 0.011-inch so it was pretty close, but it has such small and worn frets, that getting the action right at the nut, as well as the worn out nylon/plastic bridge that had been on backwards so there were huge string ruts in both high and low e saddle pieces....took some fiddlin to get it low, but with the lack of relief, not buzzing, but getting the nut low enough for the small frets etc. However, In some ways it was really nice to play with those little frets, but when I play a guitar with bigger frets it just feels good.

-"Yes/no/whatever... This really is a personal preference thing. If it's got 300ohm pots and you don't like it then change but I'd advise trying it first; your complete signal path determines the final sound and you may be really happy with the guitar as it is. Your friend has stated that he "admired" the pickups so again don't change anything unless you don't feel the same way."
haha thanks for your input! Ya I need to just try and get my hands on it with a nice amp for a few hours. However my city is on a hardcore covid lockdown with a curfew makes things a bit tricky. But about the pots, and the signal path, got me wondering how many people who claim the 300ohm pots are took dark, considered using an eq pedal? I saw a video of Tom Bukovac using a moded eq pedal to just bring clarity to a warm neck pickup on a 335--sounded amazing, and seemed like a good subtle lead/boost pedal.

-Thanks for explaining the Shaw stamp process etc. I've heard some people thing they're mediocre, some people love em, I guess they all vary, as do opinions, my friend just talked about them like they were something special. But it sounds like they're not terrible at least! Maybe they'll be special to me too! Im glad you are happy with your mystery pickups! haha

-have played les pauls, but not that many nice ones, I also have a gibson j-185 from bozeman, and I love the shorter scale (granted a long scale martin does have something special for flat picking or a heavy right hand) PRS are I think are supposed to be 25 flat, so in between. I have a love hate with my PRS, not sure if its just been the revolving door of amps and my struggle to dial in a good tone, (mine was stolen, so Im usually trying out what ever is available) or if I just subconsciously want my PRS to be a les paul. I think I've always new one day I'd be chasing a les paul. Maybe this is my chance. However it IS a super heavy one, the PRS is around 9lbs which I've done 3 set shows and long sessions without thinking thinking twice about, but over 11lbs seems likethose extra 2 lbs could be that final straw that broke the camel's back. I'll just have to borrow it if I can.

Anyway thanks again!
 
Last edited:

Jules

New member
Joined
Feb 6, 2021
Messages
12
.oops somehow posted the same reply twice
 
Last edited:

rick c

Member
Joined
May 28, 2016
Messages
273
Jules: There are many LP owners that also have PRS guitars; I've played a few but never owned one. There's so much that goes into what is the right guitar for the specific application. I've never weighed my guitars but as commented earlier my EBMM Majesty is a breeze to play, never goes out of tune despite a trem and is flyweight (just over 7lbs according to Google) compared to my LPC. It also has no imperfections other than "black chrome" wear on the bridge cover. It must be an ideal gigging machine although I've never gigged it. On the other hand my LPC is killer and I love it; it has a host of tiny imperfections but non that matter when it comes to feel and play; if I was a 'mojo" person, these would all be mojo things. In comparison to what I've read on many forums, my old 87 is relatively stable tuning-wise and it is a "boat anchor" (it is not a "Lite") compared to the Majesty but it's never been a problem for me; I'm confident it does have some weight relief. I should note I own a Shergold double neck that is a "boat"; it makes the LPC feel flyweight. Eye candy for today:

girls.jpg
 

Jules

New member
Joined
Feb 6, 2021
Messages
12
11.4 lbs, ugh. That's a non-starter. 81/2 to 91/2 lbs is the sweet spot for me. The heavier ones I bought when I was younger and didn't think weight mattered, gather dust, now.
Haha ya, I like heavy guitars, Gary Rossington seems like he throws the weight of the body around and then bends the string against that motion kind of while he shuffles around groovin. But posture and spines are priceless haha! and 11 plus pounds is not small feat. I think your sweet spot sounds about right, I played a lp ribute in the studio a little while ago, and as I was happy to play a les paul, and as comfortable the light weight was, it did seem a bit strange and too light. Thanks for your input! cheers!
 

Jules

New member
Joined
Feb 6, 2021
Messages
12
It is a boat anchor, run of the mill mid 80's Standard. You seem to know little, if anything, and yet you have very specific questions about spec's you seem ignorant of. What's the good headstock angle, and why? Shaws?? No, what do you know of Shaws and why are they special. Neck set determines bridge height and ALL Lesters have high bridges compared to PRS or Fenders with minimal neck angles.

Have you played Les Pauls?

Really, it seems you don't want to do your homework, you want answers for the test.

I see nothing special or noteworthy about that guitar other than it is a heavy ass shoulder breaker of a seemingly well cared for Standard fairly typical of that vintage. Don't get hung up on micro specs you don't know or understand. What is your deal with the logo? Is an 86 better than an 87 or 85?? Experienced Les Paul players may develope a preference for specific specs and will often seek out certain years with guitars that have those small differences.

You want a used Les Paul at a good price or something specific? If you know what you want, define it and we can help. If you want to know if that guitar looks right, it does too me. I see nothing other than a typical 1986 Standard. Good guitars.
Well, I tried to do as much homework as I could find, reading mike's articles on this site as well as anywhere else on the internet that I could find videos or articles pertaining to 86s, but I have only been at it for about a week now, because I never looked too far into it until this guitar came up for sale, AND It is a time sensitive sale; I thought coming to this form was the best way to get some confirmation on a whole load of weird stuff I had read and watched on the internet that made me second guess things.

The head stock angle, and neck angle, were just aspects I had seen others write about, and didn't know if those were real variables or not given the lack of information I could find on the topic. I didn't want to end up forking over money for a guitar, to find out later it was the one year where they changed some angles and did weird stuff.

I have played les pauls and am aware the way the string and neck angle align at the bridge, and therefore are high off the body like a violin. I just didn't know if there was again, some guitars where this is more emphasized more than others, and if there were, I would rather have the straighter one.

As for the logo, I don't really care too much about aesthetics, apart from the "S" looking a little funny, I was more asking because in Mike's article on this site about the 80s lps, he mentioned 86s with two piece not three piece tops, and open "b" and "o" , and no dot over the "i." However, the 86 that Im interested has closed letters and dot--so I wondered, if there was a difference between a 80s standard, and an 80s pre historic reissue and thats why the others had different letters and two piece tops. So I was looking again for confirmation. And I guess it seems that the guitar I'm interested in is indeed legitimate which can only mean that Gibson did lps a few different ways in the same year, or the article is inaccurate. Basically I just wanted to double check the legitimacy of the guitar seeing as how those details didn't line up with the article yet the serial number does, as does the seller's story.

"The year 1986 saw the change in ownership of Gibson from Norlin Industries to a group headed by Henry Juskiewicz. The Les Paul Reissue for this year, 6 0713, has a dark flat sawn sunburst flame top, large black side dot markers, brown backplates, “Gibson Deluxe” tuners, a Gibson logo with open “b” and “o”, but no dot over the “i”. This guitar has an identical weight to the 1985 model, at 8 lbs. 9 oz.
The open “b” and “o” and use of brown backplates continued from this point forward with Les Paul Reissues. However, the lack of a dot over the “i” in the logo continues from this point until the end of the decade and then reappears in the 90’s." --1983-1993 Gibson Les Paul Reissues: Another Small Step Toward the ’59 Dream?

As for the pickups, the seller was just raving about them, but is a drummer who likes to read and when he does play guitar plays the other two, so I wasn't sure if he was being biased and overly optimistic about the sale. And yes maybe I don't a ton about shows, other than they are apparently one of the first attempts at recreating the PAFs and that the budget was low, and some say Tim wasn't really actually that involved, others say he was, he couldn't use the same wire because of budget etc, and some people love them some don't and some people think burst buckers at half volume are in the same ball park. I don't play much high gain stuff so I think lower output pickups are the tail Im on at the moment.

And yes, basically Im looking to know if the guitar looks right. Im wasn't really actively looking hard for a LP, (though I've always wanted one) and so when this sale opportunity came up, I thought maybe if it was something a little bit special because the year and pickups, it would be worth eating lentils for a few months over. And compared to other prices I see online (though they seem too high) $3000 CAD seemed like a good deal, but thats only my own conclusion, and being new to the LP game, I came here wondering if it was:

----A legitimate guitar, anything slightly special, and a good price point. --- Or would it be better to just go for something 2019-2020----

Sorry if I came off as talking shit or annoyingly naive, was just genuinely looking to bounce some concerns off anyone willing! Thanks for your frankness and pragmatic input!

 
Last edited:

Jules

New member
Joined
Feb 6, 2021
Messages
12
Jules: There are many LP owners that also have PRS guitars; I've played a few but never owned one. There's so much that goes into what is the right guitar for the specific application. I've never weighed my guitars but as commented earlier my EBMM Majesty is a breeze to play, never goes out of tune despite a trem and is flyweight (just over 7lbs according to Google) compared to my LPC. It also has no imperfections other than "black chrome" wear on the bridge cover. It must be an ideal gigging machine although I've never gigged it. On the other hand my LPC is killer and I love it; it has a host of tiny imperfections but non that matter when it comes to feel and play; if I was a 'mojo" person, these would all be mojo things. In comparison to what I've read on many forums, my old 87 is relatively stable tuning-wise and it is a "boat anchor" (it is not a "Lite") compared to the Majesty but it's never been a problem for me; I'm confident it does have some weight relief. I should note I own a Shergold double neck that is a "boat"; it makes the LPC feel flyweight. Eye candy for today:

View attachment 12907
Wow nice! Ya the right guitar for the right application is a fun choice! I think that I may never let go of my PRS because its so versatile if you don't have a tele or strat or lp, it and kind of do them. But nothing like the actual guitars.

I played some kind of EBMM an Axis Super Sport or something, played it at a jam once, felt really solid, like it was just quality! Yours looks like a serious machine! That custom is a beaut! I love ebony fretboards they look and feel so good! Nice guitars! Also nice pick choice haha I often use, almost always, .96mm matt dunlops too!
 

Big Al

Well-known member
Joined
Apr 24, 2002
Messages
14,235
Well, I tried to do as much homework as I could find, reading mike's articles on this site as well as anywhere else on the internet that I could find videos or articles pertaining to 86s, but I have only been at it for about a week now, because I never looked too far into it until this guitar came up for sale, AND It is a time sensitive sale; I thought coming to this form was the best way to get some confirmation on a whole load of weird stuff I had read and watched on the internet that made me second guess things.

The head stock angle, and neck angle, were just aspects I had seen others write about, and didn't know if those were real variables or not given the lack of information I could find on the topic. I didn't want to end up forking over money for a guitar, to find out later it was the one year where they changed some angles and did weird stuff.

I have played les pauls and am aware the way the string and neck angle align at the bridge, and therefore are high off the body like a violin. I just didn't know if there was again, some guitars where this is more emphasized more than others, and if there were, I would rather have the straighter one.

As for the logo, I don't really care too much about aesthetics, apart from the "S" looking a little funny, I was more asking because in Mike's article on this site about the 80s lps, he mentioned 86s with two piece not three piece tops, and open "b" and "o" , and no dot over the "i." However, the 86 that Im interested has closed letters and dot--so I wondered, if there was a difference between a 80s standard, and an 80s pre historic reissue and thats why the others had different letters and two piece tops. So I was looking again for confirmation. And I guess it seems that the guitar I'm interested in is indeed legitimate which can only mean that Gibson did lps a few different ways in the same year, or the article is inaccurate. Basically I just wanted to double check the legitimacy of the guitar seeing as how those details didn't line up with the article yet the serial number does, as does the seller's story.

"The year 1986 saw the change in ownership of Gibson from Norlin Industries to a group headed by Henry Juskiewicz. The Les Paul Reissue for this year, 6 0713, has a dark flat sawn sunburst flame top, large black side dot markers, brown backplates, “Gibson Deluxe” tuners, a Gibson logo with open “b” and “o”, but no dot over the “i”. This guitar has an identical weight to the 1985 model, at 8 lbs. 9 oz.
The open “b” and “o” and use of brown backplates continued from this point forward with Les Paul Reissues. However, the lack of a dot over the “i” in the logo continues from this point until the end of the decade and then reappears in the 90’s." --1983-1993 Gibson Les Paul Reissues: Another Small Step Toward the ’59 Dream?

As for the pickups, the seller was just raving about them, but is a drummer who likes to read and when he does play guitar plays the other two, so I wasn't sure if he was being biased and overly optimistic about the sale. And yes maybe I don't a ton about shows, other than they are apparently one of the first attempts at recreating the PAFs and that the budget was low, and some say Tim wasn't really actually that involved, others say he was, he couldn't use the same wire because of budget etc, and some people love them some don't and some people think burst buckers at half volume are in the same ball park. I don't play much high gain stuff so I think lower output pickups are the tail Im on at the moment.

And yes, basically Im looking to know if the guitar looks right. Im wasn't really actively looking hard for a LP, (though I've always wanted one) and so when this sale opportunity came up, I thought maybe if it was something a little bit special because the year and pickups, it would be worth eating lentils for a few months over. And compared to other prices I see online (though they seem too high) $3000 CAD seemed like a good deal, but thats only my own conclusion, and being new to the LP game, I came here wondering if it was:

----A legitimate guitar, anything slightly special, and a good price point. --- Or would it be better to just go for something 2019-2020----

Sorry if I came off as talking shit or annoyingly naive, was just genuinely looking to bounce some concerns off anyone willing! Thanks for your frankness and pragmatic input!

It is difficult for me to post, so don't mistake my curtness for anything other than a need to get to the point. You perfectly illustrate how ignorance of a thing can be made more confused by poor research, or more correctly by knowing little you jump into detailed aanalysis without any basic understanding. You got it all wrong.

You research specs for 1950's REISSUES!! A completely different thing from the STANDARD PRODUCTION MODEL LES PAUL STANDARD. Not a 1959 limited production Reissue guitar you seem to have done your homework on. Something made clear in the articles you cite. Pickups, same thing. Late 50's PAF humbuckers.

FORGET IT ALL, FOR CRIPES SAKE!!

Try it. If you like it, buy it. If not don't and find another. That simple.
 

Scott L

Member
Joined
Nov 4, 2008
Messages
867
Be careful of " Paralysis by Analysis " - your friend does not know your interested and it may get sold out from under you.
 

Big Al

Well-known member
Joined
Apr 24, 2002
Messages
14,235
Be careful of " Paralysis by Analysis " - your friend does not know your interested and it may get sold out from under you.

Exactly. Overthink yourself right out of a guitar, by getting hung up over fanatics, nit picking spec details of a completely separate model, built to appease our fanatical nit picking, spec obsessed nature as uber fanboys of 50's Gibson guitars, and apply that to the regular, pro quality old standby model made for sane, non Vintage 50's infected folks.

Not saying Jules might not fall victim to the deadly 59 Burstites in time, but don't dive in blind. Good lord don't anyone tell him about the side dots!
 

bratpack7

Member
Joined
Nov 28, 2003
Messages
241
Jules.

I have an 85 Standard, I bought it new. When I joined this forum 16 years ago I had a lot of questions. And somebody (might have been Big Al) told me to do some research.
So I did, and I realized it doesn't matter. I love my guitar and will never sell it.

After all these years I don't know if I have Shaws or not, I don't if the pots are 300 or 500 or whatever. I just dig the sound of it.

If you like that guitar and it does it for you, just buy it. And have fun researching.
 

Big Al

Well-known member
Joined
Apr 24, 2002
Messages
14,235
The 80's Les Pauls are fine Les Pauls and they are high quality. Research is for finer points. If, let's say you have strong preferences for certain spec details, either functional, (neck profile, headstock pitch, pickups etc...), or cosmetic, (logo, top, colors, vibe etc...), you can zero in on eras that certain models may have the features you know you now need.

But it is personal preference born from experience. Other folks may have strong contrary notions but unless you have a solid basic frame of reference, you may end up with an apples vs oranges situation that will not grant any real insight or satisfaction.

You cannot learn what you want till you know what you do not. Check it out and see, you'll either like it or not. Act accordingly.
 
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