• Guys, we've spent considerable money converting the Les Paul Forum to this new XenForo platform, and we have ongoing monthly operating expenses. THE "DONATIONS" TAB IS NOW WORKING, AND WE WOULD APPRECIATE ANY DONATIONS YOU CAN MAKE TO KEEP THE LES PAUL FORUM GOING! Thank you!

Hey it's Mat from Gibson Product Development - AMA

matkoehler

Well-known member
Joined
Sep 12, 2014
Messages
411
Hey Matt,

I recently tried to order a M2M 1959 ES345 Reissue and was told Gibson will not build a 345. What’s the reason behind that?
Thanks for the quesiton. Yes I mentioned earlier a Historic Reissue 345 is one platform I would very much like to add to the portfolio but we are capacity constrained with our current ES-335 and ES-355 models at present. When the time is right we will bring it into the fold...maybe a Historic ES-330 too. There have been some supply chain issues with Varitone components which is another reason we are being cautious. In the mean time I'm sure you *could* order a M2M ES-335 with a split parallelogram fingerboard and 3-ply body binding!

Here's a question for you -- when reintroduced, Mono or Stereo?
 

sputnik

New member
Joined
Aug 4, 2018
Messages
28
Thanks for the quesiton. Yes I mentioned earlier a Historic Reissue 345 is one platform I would very much like to add to the portfolio but we are capacity constrained with our current ES-335 and ES-355 models at present. When the time is right we will bring it into the fold...maybe a Historic ES-330 too. There have been some supply chain issues with Varitone components which is another reason we are being cautious. In the mean time I'm sure you *could* order a M2M ES-335 with a split parallelogram fingerboard and 3-ply body binding!

Here's a question for you -- when reintroduced, Mono or Stereo?
Thanks for the response. Completely missed where you mentioned that earlier. I’m sure the 345s would be huge. They seem to be becoming popular with some of the blues guys.

I would vote Mono.
 

JoeC

Member
Joined
Oct 25, 2019
Messages
91
Matt, this is amazing!

I have three burning questions
1) Will modern CS Les Pauls fade as they did in the past?
2) My 2018 Custombucker v. my 2020, I understand potted v. unpotted. It seems as if the 2018 is barely potted? Are the differences I am hearing the pots and capacitor differences? I know different guitars sounds different. The 2018 is Braz Board as well.
3) Brazilian Fret Boards? Is there a difference from Indian?
Thanks
 

Dr. Green

Well-known member
Joined
Dec 12, 2018
Messages
683
Well, yes and no -- the saddles from the 50s started life pretty sharp and angled, similar to what you see on current reissues. The Kalamazoo factory milled them down, and rarely with any consistency. Some were still quite tall and others appear flattened. In any case, the new ABR-1 assembly we are working on was based from scans and it will utilize the look of milled saddles without losing so much height as to jeopardize the break angle over the back of the bridge to the stop bar. Kind of a happy medium. Hope that makes sense!

That's interesting information - thanks !

you have me curious .... besides the bridge what other aspects of the LP Historics do you have slated for possible update ?
 
Last edited:

matkoehler

Well-known member
Joined
Sep 12, 2014
Messages
411
Matt, this is amazing!

I have three burning questions
1) Will modern CS Les Pauls fade as they did in the past?
2) My 2018 Custombucker v. my 2020, I understand potted v. unpotted. It seems as if the 2018 is barely potted? Are the differences I am hearing the pots and capacitor differences? I know different guitars sounds different. The 2018 is Braz Board as well.
3) Brazilian Fret Boards? Is there a difference from Indian?
Thanks
Thank you sir!
1) The answer is yes they might fade a little, but only over long periods of time...not in a matter of days in store windows as with the 58-59 bursts. And if they fade it would not be to the extent of a lemonburst or anything like that...just a muting of the red like you'd see with an old car. To quote Tom Murphy "instead of fading it yourself, order the color you wanted it to fade into!" That's the way to do it! Ha.
2) It is entirely possible that some 2018 Custombuckers were unpotted...it was a rolling change. It would be tough to tell without removing the cover. But I've also heard from Edwin that the earliest Custombuckers were unpotted as well...then at some point it became some sort of QC demand that everything was wax potted, hence the change. I do think the pots in particular have a huge affect on the character of a pickup. More than the capacitors IMO.
3) Technically yes Brazilian is a little more dense compared to Indian RW on average. But Indian is very close. Visually Brazilian tends to have wild grain which is aesthetically appealing to some. But the Indian RW we have been getting in lately is a dark and dense and wonderful. I don't think there are a lot of perceptible differences in tone between the two, but if I had to guess I would say because Brazilian is more dense it may have more of a sweet, bright tonality compared to Indian.
 

Midnight Blues

Well-known member
Joined
Feb 20, 2011
Messages
1,651
Hey Mat,

Welcome back!

I'm the proud owner of 4 Les Pauls (2 of which, I've owned for close to 50 years), a 355 (Alex Lifeson "Inspired By" model) along with a Wes Montgomery L-5 and am contemplating ordering another Les Paul.

What I'd like to order, if possible, is basically the new Peter Frampton "Phenix" model. However, I'd like for it to have the appointments that it had during his Humble Pie days, i.e. no aging, with white binding, black tip switch and pup rings, no weight relief (unless it was "weight relieved" during the sanding process) and a '60s neck profile.

Is that a possibility?


Thank you and
cheers.gif

Matt
 

matkoehler

Well-known member
Joined
Sep 12, 2014
Messages
411
That's interesting information - thanks !

you have me curious .... besides the bridge what other aspects of the LP Historics do you have slanted for possible update ?
Mainly the parts, yeah...with the new scanning technology we have no excuse not to create new prints based on original parts. Also nice to have a vault full of killer reference guitars. If and when changes are made, I'm sure 99% of people won't notice...current parts are great. I just like the idea of continuing to push the limit if we have an opportunity.
 

matkoehler

Well-known member
Joined
Sep 12, 2014
Messages
411
What I'd like to order, if possible, is basically the new Peter Frampton "Phenix" model. However, I'd like for it to have the appointments that it had during his Humble Pie days, i.e. no aging, with white binding, black tip switch and pup rings, no weight relief (unless it was "weight relieved" during the sanding process) and a '60s neck profile.
Thanks for the question Matt! If you order a M2M based on an Artist Model, it wouldn't be accepted. So you'd have to base it off of a non-Artist platform like the 3-pickup '57 Les Paul Custom and then just list out what you'd like changed. It's already solid mahogany and not weight relieved and a 60s slim neck profile should be no problem (although I'm a big fan of the CC#22 "Colletti" Les Paul Custom neck profile...surprisingly slim and kinda V-shaped...if that sounds appealing to you at all, you won't be disappointed).
 

deytookerjaabs

Well-known member
Joined
Nov 6, 2016
Messages
1,551
Full disclosure: I'm not personally a proponent of "needing" this type of stuff.

However. What do you think about Custom Shop spending a couple bucks to reissue proper old pots? (hell, sell them as accessories too)

8pY3ZPn.jpg

(stolen from mlp)

The old centralab ones had solid molded large hunks of free standing carbon as their resistive track. There are new pots you can get with "hot molded carbon elements" as the track but the pot itself is different: the taper isn't the same, the housing is fully sealed and the larger size is awkward for guitar use thus they're more suited to wah pedals or amps. Last I checked "historic" pots still had a carbon composite laid into the wafer for their track, they just don't look the same when opened up.

Basically, you'd have to get a supplier to put the hot molded element in a normal guitar pot and also specify the proper taper, hardly rocket science here.

Some believe this makes a big difference (ridiculous rabbit hole), either way I would consider it something that is possible to do if one is on a quest to get everything right down to the thumbwheel regardless of tone.
 

Torshalla

Active member
Joined
Sep 26, 2020
Messages
175
Welcome Mat, I think it is great that you are making yourself available to answer questions on the forum, really appreciate your time and input!

A few questions I would like to ask:
- I hear great reviews of Murphy Lab guitars (feel, looks and tone) and I would love to buy one… probably will if a Slash or Kirk Hammett model comes out of the Lab in the near future… however the finish peeling issues reported by several owners have me worried. I understand this is a very sensitive topic and I do not expect a miracle answer in this thread… but I really hope there will soon be clear communication from Gibson to explain what the problem was and how it has been fixed. That would put my mind at ease and convince me to buy one…
- are you able to share any info about when we can expect to see Kirk Hammett models come out of the Gibson Custom Shop? :) (even better wouod be to have some teaser on what to expect but I understand that s not the place / time maybe haha)
- same question about a potential next Custom Shop Slash model
- will Gibson make a Brazilian run available for export to Europe in the near future? (With Cites)

Thanks again for your time!
 

matkoehler

Well-known member
Joined
Sep 12, 2014
Messages
411
Full disclosure: I'm not personally a proponent of "needing" this type of stuff.

However. What do you think about Custom Shop spending a couple bucks to reissue proper old pots? (hell, sell them as accessories too)

The old centralab ones had solid molded large hunks of free standing carbon as their resistive track. There are new pots you can get with "hot molded carbon elements" as the track but the pot itself is different: the taper isn't the same, the housing is fully sealed and the larger size is awkward for guitar use thus they're more suited to wah pedals or amps. Last I checked "historic" pots still had a carbon composite laid into the wafer for their track, they just don't look the same when opened up. Basically, you'd have to get a supplier to put the hot molded element in a normal guitar pot and also specify the proper taper, hardly rocket science here.

Some believe this makes a big difference (ridiculous rabbit hole), either way I would consider it something that is possible to do if one is on a quest to get everything right down to the thumbwheel regardless of tone.
I agree that pots are and were huge part of the tone recipe, and when we redeveloped the wiring assembly ahead of 2019, we spent a lot of time on them. Lots of listening. Requesting changes to the construction from our preferred vendors was our first request -- to mimic the 50s Centralab design as much as possible. But that was not something they could accomodate. Where we landed is a CTS pot that has a specific 50s Gibson/Centralab taper and improved tolerance. They're fantastic! Most similar to the 500K CTS pots Gibson was using in the 1960s, of course. Best pots we have used since then IMO.
 

JoeC

Member
Joined
Oct 25, 2019
Messages
91
Thank you sir!
1) The answer is yes they might fade a little, but only over long periods of time...not in a matter of days in store windows as with the 58-59 bursts. And if they fade it would not be to the extent of a lemonburst or anything like that...just a muting of the red like you'd see with an old car. To quote Tom Murphy "instead of fading it yourself, order the color you wanted it to fade into!" That's the way to do it! Ha.
2) It is entirely possible that some 2018 Custombuckers were unpotted...it was a rolling change. It would be tough to tell without removing the cover. But I've also heard from Edwin that the earliest Custombuckers were unpotted as well...then at some point it became some sort of QC demand that everything was wax potted, hence the change. I do think the pots in particular have a huge affect on the character of a pickup. More than the capacitors IMO.
3) Technically yes Brazilian is a little more dense compared to Indian RW on average. But Indian is very close. Visually Brazilian tends to have wild grain which is aesthetically appealing to some. But the Indian RW we have been getting in lately is a dark and dense and wonderful. I don't think there are a lot of perceptible differences in tone between the two, but if I had to guess I would say because Brazilian is more dense it may have more of a sweet, bright tonality compared to Indian.
Thanks so much Matt, So glad you are here.
What did you mean in #2, you feel capacitors do affect tone more than pots? The improved taper on the anniversary pots seems to help dial in the character of the pick-ups but maybe not tone? Thoughts?

Also, I agree with you on Brazilian but also the increased density I feel helps sustain. All subjective and variable I am sure. If Gibson had a choice of Brazilian or Indian because Brazilian was available, would it be all Brazilian?

Thanks Again for all of your educated answers
 

matkoehler

Well-known member
Joined
Sep 12, 2014
Messages
411
Welcome Mat, I think it is great that you are making yourself available to answer questions on the forum, really appreciate your time and input!

A few questions I would like to ask:
- I hear great reviews of Murphy Lab guitars (feel, looks and tone) and I would love to buy one… probably will if a Slash or Kirk Hammett model comes out of the Lab in the near future… however the finish peeling issues reported by several owners have me worried. I understand this is a very sensitive topic and I do not expect a miracle answer in this thread… but I really hope there will soon be clear communication from Gibson to explain what the problem was and how it has been fixed. That would put my mind at ease and convince me to buy one…
- are you able to share any info about when we can expect to see Kirk Hammett models come out of the Gibson Custom Shop? :) (even better wouod be to have some teaser on what to expect but I understand that s not the place / time maybe haha)
- same question about a potential next Custom Shop Slash model
- will Gibson make a Brazilian run available for export to Europe in the near future? (With Cites)

Thanks again for your time!
Thanks for the questions!

1) I was hoping someone would ask about the Murphy Lab finish issues from earlier this year. In an interview I was quoted as saying it was a 'storm in a teacup,; which I still believe because it was limited to one specific batch of instruments with an unusually dark red aniline dye back color. As far as I know, all the dealers and customers who received the instruments had them replaced through our Customer Service department. But anyway, later in the interview I explained that one has to treat Murphy Lab instruments the same as they would vintage examples and be aware of rapid changes in temperature and environment. Somehow those two separate thoughts were regarded as one -- that I was blaming poor acclimation by customers for the ML finish issues. Not the case! But I digress.

Long story short, the storm in a teacup has long ended and Murphy Lab is putting out truly astonishing vintage-looking and feeling instruments. I realize we have lost some consumer confidence because the few photos of affected instruments were widely circulated. It doesn't make it any easier that the whole purpose of the Murphy Lab is to produce instruments that are aged, so many folks who bought great examples of Murphy Lab offerings started second-guessing every checking line and wear mark. I hope that helps explain the issue and the context but more importantly I hope you try out a Murphy Lab guitar and see that you have nothing to fear...they're incredible.

2) What I can tell you is that Kirk Hammett is a complete gem of a human being and super fun to work with...I am SO excited for his upcoming collection...it's going to be epic. I can also tell you that it will probably be a while before the first run of instruments given that we already have a lot of irons in the fire. But we're prototyping some cool Custom Shop pieces for him now...some that you expect and some you won't. Then we'll move to Gibson USA and then Epiphone. I really can't wait.

3) There are a couple Custom Shop Slash models being talked about now...one is a bit of a revival and the other is all-new.

4) Good question re: CITES for exporting Brazilian Rosewood instruments. Every time we have done a run, we've looked into this but because we're at the mercy of government approvals both outgoing and incoming, our legal team has had no luck moving things along at a pace that suits product development and logistics. Doesn't mean we're going to stop trying, however. We would love to be able to offer Brazilian RW guitars globally.
 

matkoehler

Well-known member
Joined
Sep 12, 2014
Messages
411
Thanks so much Matt, So glad you are here.
What did you mean in #2, you feel capacitors do affect tone more than pots? The improved taper on the anniversary pots seems to help dial in the character of the pick-ups but maybe not tone? Thoughts?

Also, I agree with you on Brazilian but also the increased density I feel helps sustain. All subjective and variable I am sure. If Gibson had a choice of Brazilian or Indian because Brazilian was available, would it be all Brazilian?

Thanks Again for all of your educated answers
I said the opposite: "the pots in particular have a huge affect on the character of a pickup. More than the capacitors IMO." I stand by that. Good pots make for good tone. Can't say the same is necessarily true with capacitors.

If there was a sustainable and consistent supply of Brazilian Rosewood, absolutely we would be using it. But dark Indian Rosewood is pretty great also.
 

Torshalla

Active member
Joined
Sep 26, 2020
Messages
175
Thanks for the questions!

1) I was hoping someone would ask about the Murphy Lab finish issues from earlier this year. In an interview I was quoted as saying it was a 'storm in a teacup,; which I still believe because it was limited to one specific batch of instruments with an unusually dark red aniline dye back color. As far as I know, all the dealers and customers who received the instruments had them replaced through our Customer Service department. But anyway, later in the interview I explained that one has to treat Murphy Lab instruments the same as they would vintage examples and be aware of rapid changes in temperature and environment. Somehow those two separate thoughts were regarded as one -- that I was blaming poor acclimation by customers for the ML finish issues. Not the case! But I digress.

Long story short, the storm in a teacup has long ended and Murphy Lab is putting out truly astonishing vintage-looking and feeling instruments. I realize we have lost some consumer confidence because the few photos of affected instruments were widely circulated. It doesn't make it any easier that the whole purpose of the Murphy Lab is to produce instruments that are aged, so many folks who bought great examples of Murphy Lab offerings started second-guessing every checking line and wear mark. I hope that helps explain the issue and the context but more importantly I hope you try out a Murphy Lab guitar and see that you have nothing to fear...they're incredible.

2) What I can tell you is that Kirk Hammett is a complete gem of a human being and super fun to work with...I am SO excited for his upcoming collection...it's going to be epic. I can also tell you that it will probably be a while before the first run of instruments given that we already have a lot of irons in the fire. But we're prototyping some cool Custom Shop pieces for him now...some that you expect and some you won't. Then we'll move to Gibson USA and then Epiphone. I really can't wait.

3) There are a couple Custom Shop Slash models being talked about now...one is a bit of a revival and the other is all-new.

4) Good question re: CITES for exporting Brazilian Rosewood instruments. Every time we have done a run, we've looked into this but because we're at the mercy of government approvals both outgoing and incoming, our legal team has had no luck moving things along at a pace that suits product development and logistics. Doesn't mean we're going to stop trying, however. We would love to be able to offer Brazilian RW guitars globally.
Thanks for taking the time to answer these questions Mat, greatly appreciated.
Nice to hear about the good collaboration with Kirk, I am looking forward to hearing more about the Custom shop models and saving up for when they come out, as well as the Slash ones… even better if they come from the Murphy Lab then :)
Regarding Brazilian runs, I understand the difficulties with exporting them… keeping my fingers crossed though.
Thanks again!
 

amorrow

Active member
Joined
Oct 24, 2005
Messages
217
1) I was hoping someone would ask about the Murphy Lab finish issues from earlier this year. In an interview I was quoted as saying it was a 'storm in a teacup,; which I still believe because it was limited to one specific batch of instruments with an unusually dark red aniline dye back color. As far as I know, all the dealers and customers who received the instruments had them replaced through our Customer Service department. But anyway, later in the interview I explained that one has to treat Murphy Lab instruments the same as they would vintage examples and be aware of rapid changes in temperature and environment. Somehow those two separate thoughts were regarded as one -- that I was blaming poor acclimation by customers for the ML finish issues. Not the case! But I digress.

Long story short, the storm in a teacup has long ended and Murphy Lab is putting out truly astonishing vintage-looking and feeling instruments. I realize we have lost some consumer confidence because the few photos of affected instruments were widely circulated. It doesn't make it any easier that the whole purpose of the Murphy Lab is to produce instruments that are aged, so many folks who bought great examples of Murphy Lab offerings started second-guessing every checking line and wear mark. I hope that helps explain the issue and the context but more importantly I hope you try out a Murphy Lab guitar and see that you have nothing to fear...they're incredible.
Hey Mat, thanks for reaching out on the forum and taking time to answer questions. And thanks for your response specifically to the Murphy Lab finish concerns. Two of the best guitars I've ever had the chance to play are my two Murphy Lab heavy aged. Picked up a 54 and a M2M 59 with some Page #1 specs (which is now at the CS for a refinish).

My 54 with lighter back still pretty much looks and feels as it did when I received it, but the 59 with darker cherry back began to lift/flake around the strap pins and jack plate area and gradually get worse over a few months. Mine wasn't as severe as others have posted online, and I was very reluctant to send it in given how much I love the guitar otherwise. But after talking with customer service and sending it in for evaluation, I was pleased to hear that repair/refinish was an option rather than just take a chance on a replacement. Can you confirm whether anything has changed with the process on the dark cherry models to correct the issue?
 

L.A.Man

Well-known member
Joined
Apr 13, 2003
Messages
1,141
Matt what caused the finish to flake off the MLabs?

How many guitars were affected?

why does there appear to be so much disappointment in the customer service regarding returns or replacements.

if you were truly misquoted regarding your comments about the CC line, what did You actually say?
 
Top