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Hey it's Mat from Gibson Product Development - AMA

Jruano

Member
Joined
Jul 31, 2002
Messages
35
Hey Mat, just picked up a Murphy Lab extra heavy relic 59 LP new from Fullers here in Houston. He custom ordered a batch in Bourbon burst. It weighs right at 8 lbs and is so loud and resonant unplugged! I have 3 questions:
1. Does the Murphy lab select its own wood or do they just use whatever is sent to them? The heavy and extra heavy relics in particular seem to have light and resonant bodies.
2. Does Murphy himself work on or inspect the extra heavy relic? It’s so damn good and i can’t help but wonder. I’ve competed the checking, etc to my 1955 LP jr and the ML is right on the money!
3. What wood is used for the body? Is Fiji the same as Honduran and is it new or old?
Thanks in advance!
Following
 

Finlando

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Joined
Apr 11, 2022
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3
I thought for a long time about what kind of business should open. My choice was kentucky llc because it is cheap and reliable. It also provides good profits in the future and does not require much effort, so it is worth considering this option. Someone may have already heard about it? I'm just starting this business now
 
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jb_abides

Well-known member
Joined
Apr 6, 2005
Messages
4,012
@matkoehler

Would you please comment on pickup placement and spacing on the newer ES-335/345 from Nashville [versus Memphis]... Any changes?

More importantly can you provide accurate measurements, with any variances?

I am seeing 15 mm along the fret board (where top screw would be), then ~45 mm for neck pickup ring, then either 57, 58, 59mm in-between the neck and bridge rings... this variation is the concern. What's the right measure for Nashville.

Trying to get a left long guard made, as Gibson Customer Service won't provide one (mine shipped without, unmounted, undrilled... "AS-IS"). No aftermarket maker I've contacted has yet crafted one specifically for ES Nashville, so I am trailblazing and there are no ES righties available at my local dealers to take a direct measurement from.

BTW this would be a good accessory to stock, also Lefty parts, but I understand if it's trifling to you guys.

Many Thanks!
 

renderit

Well-known member
Joined
Jan 19, 2009
Messages
10,566
My '58 reissue came with the long guard.

I could trace it in crayon for you...
36125239504_276d696dc5_4k.jpg
 

matkoehler

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Joined
Sep 12, 2014
Messages
392
Hi Matt, I have an Epiphone question...

I ordered a Epiphone JJN Gold Glory in September (2021) from my local dealer. They were up front with me and told me they could not give me an exact date when it would come in. They said it could be 4-6 months. Well, I talked to them in March of this year (six months) and they gave me an estimated arrival date for September (2022).

Is it really taking a full year to get an Epiphone now?
Hi, thanks for your question. Yes I'm sure you've heard all about the global supply chain issues and container shortages, and it is affecting our guitars made overseas. But in addition to that, demand has never been greater...orders go out well beyond a year currently. It will be worth the wait, I promise! :)
 

matkoehler

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Joined
Sep 12, 2014
Messages
392
Hi Mat, I am told Gibson basically does a pre PLEK on necks before installed? The accurate intonation does not translate to a fully assembled guitar. I have gotten two of my Custom Shop LPs professionally PLEK with a machine and both times tonal quality has been much improved. Besides saving money, why would the Custom Shop not PLEK high end guitars? The Murphy's seem to come out better ( from playing in the store not owning one yet). Thank You
No, I'm not sure how that would work. We definitely PLEK after the neck has been fitted, usually on a whitewood (unpainted) guitar but if they make it to final assembly needing an adjustment, it goes back to the PLEK again. Not sure why you heard that CS was not PLEK'ing instruments. We use PLEKs for all Gibson-branded guitars without exception. Thanks for the note!
 

matkoehler

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Joined
Sep 12, 2014
Messages
392
Mat,

Greetings!

Don't know if you can help me or not, but you don't know if you don't ask, so here goes.

This past Monday, April 4, 2021, I bought a used 2002 Custom Shop Reverse Firebird I, ( HSF1CRNH1 ) .

The guitar came with a COA but it's in a black Gibson USA case. This guitar when new would have come with the old Gibson Custom Art Historic logo on the case. I know it's not possible to get that case any more so here is my question:

What will it take for me to get a Gibson Custom case like one of the ones you are currently shipping with certain Custom Shop Reverse model Firebirds? I have spent all week searching for one but I've not had any luck. In fact, Gibson doesn't even list a Firebird case of any type on their website under accessories.

My thinking is this: Gibson is currently selling some Reverse Firebirds with Gibson Custom Cases. ( blue one on the Mod Shop earlier today ) Why can't I get one if you're shipping them?

Any help is greatly appreciated.


THANKS,

Bob Mosher

View attachment 17612
Hi Bob, beautiful guitars. The Gibson USA case you have with your 2002 Gibson Custom Shop Firebird is the correct on for the era; these had just been developed for CS on a custom order basis at that time, and a Custom Shop branded case had not been made yet.

We do intend to offer our latest and greatest Historic Reissue Firebird cases aftermarket...just trying to steady the supply chain from our vendor before we do so. Hope that helps!
 

matkoehler

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Sep 12, 2014
Messages
392
I agree with everything said, especially physical changes in wood post sanding, finishing, curing will affect the original fret set up. However, a proper PLEK is not just a mechanical machine process. To do it properly it should be done with a master Luthier analyzing data and making adjustments in conjunction with set-up.
Some misinformation above regarding how we address issues that may arise after being PLEK'd...we absolutely inspect the frets and setup during final assembly and send back to the PLEK if needed. Regarding data analysis, the PLEK does all of that automatically when it scans each guitar, generating tons of data that we use to identify issues, trends, etc.
 

matkoehler

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Joined
Sep 12, 2014
Messages
392
Hi Mat,

Thank you for taking the time to answer our questions! I got a Murphy Lab 68 custom ultra light aged with a June build date and was received by me in June as well. Upon receiving the guitar I let it acclimate for a day and opened it up, the checking was pretty subtle and looked great! A few days into owning it the checking process seemed to continue and at times I could even hear the finish cracking. The neck has a long, deeper finish crack that feels like it's lifting and it's starting to run the whole length of the neck. Should I worry about this or is it normal?
Oops answered this twice - sorry about that!
 

matkoehler

Well-known member
Joined
Sep 12, 2014
Messages
392
Mat -

what is the story about the maple I see on maybe 5% of the Historic LP which are extremely wide and straight to the point where there are just a few stripes .... I have noticed that they look "killer " and really sell fast. Is this something you look for ? in fact what is it you look for ?

for example do you look for mineral flecks to give it an aged look ? Do you look for crazy Begal tiger maple ? flat grain or quarter sawn ?

if you could get exactly what you wanted in a huge batch of Maple .... what would you want it to be comprised of ?
What you're referring to I call "wide flame" and yes it is rarer to see and commonly commands a bit more money aftermarket as I've seen with older CS models. Personally my tastes change year to year, but wide flame will never not be super attractive to me. I know a lot of dealers who like mineral streaks and I agree it gives the guitar an aged look, but personally I'd rather not have them if I was making something for myself.

I will say the flametops we have been using for Custom Shop these days are the best I've seen in my time at Gibson...all really strong. Thanks for the message!
 

matkoehler

Well-known member
Joined
Sep 12, 2014
Messages
392
Hey Mat, just picked up a Murphy Lab extra heavy relic 59 LP new from Fullers here in Houston. He custom ordered a batch in Bourbon burst. It weighs right at 8 lbs and is so loud and resonant unplugged! I have 3 questions:
1. Does the Murphy lab select its own wood or do they just use whatever is sent to them? The heavy and extra heavy relics in particular seem to have light and resonant bodies.
2. Does Murphy himself work on or inspect the extra heavy relic? It’s so damn good and I can’t help but wonder. I’ve even compared the checking, buckle rash, hardware, etc to my real 1955 LP jr and the ML is right on the money!
3. What wood is used for the body? Is Fiji the same as Honduran and is it new or old?
Thanks in advance!
Congrats! Glad to hear and happy to answer your questions.

1. No, it is whatever is sent to them but if this was a custom ordered run for Fuller's they may have picked the tops or specified what they wanted. Their CS representative would have facilitated that, not Murphy Lab...they just focus on the aging!
2. Absolutely, he inspects every single guitar and he personally works on the heavier aging levels and any aged artist models we may be making.
3. It is the same genus species as Honduran Mahogany, Swietenia Macrophylla, grown sustainably in Fiji for the last 60 years. We use it for reissues because it's lightweight and always very good quality. More on this here: https://www.mahoganywoodfiji.com/faq.html
 

matkoehler

Well-known member
Joined
Sep 12, 2014
Messages
392
@matkoehler

Would you please comment on pickup placement and spacing on the newer ES-335/345 from Nashville [versus Memphis]... Any changes?

More importantly can you provide accurate measurements, with any variances?

I am seeing 15 mm along the fret board (where top screw would be), then ~45 mm for neck pickup ring, then either 57, 58, 59mm in-between the neck and bridge rings... this variation is the concern. What's the right measure for Nashville.

Trying to get a left long guard made, as Gibson Customer Service won't provide one (mine shipped without, unmounted, undrilled... "AS-IS"). No aftermarket maker I've contacted has yet crafted one specifically for ES Nashville, so I am trailblazing and there are no ES righties available at my local dealers to take a direct measurement from.

BTW this would be a good accessory to stock, also Lefty parts, but I understand if it's trifling to you guys.

Many Thanks!
Thanks for the questions! Are you referring to the current Gibson USA models? We do not currently offer a long guard on any Gibson USA ES models, so that is probably why we can't supply one. But it should have shipped with a pickguard installed unless it was a special run for a dealer or something. Regarding the dimensions, the distance between pickup cutouts on the current Gibson USA pickguard is 0.605". Let me know if you have any more questions.
 
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jb_abides

Well-known member
Joined
Apr 6, 2005
Messages
4,012
Thanks for the questions! Are you referring to the current Gibson USA models? We do not currently offer a long guard on any Gibson USA ES models, so that is probably why we can't supply one. But it should have shipped with a pickguard installed unless it was a special run for a dealer or something. Regarding the dimensions, the distance between pickup cutouts on the current Gibson USA pickguard is 0.605". Let me know if you have any more questions.

It's a USA (non-Custom) 'ES-345 Sixties Cherry' like this:

tag1s2lidlutdmelutw7.jpg


It was a Demo Shop, sans guard, be it long or not. Customer Service said because it was Demo, no guard. Perhaps I get a better answer from someone you know... ? ;)

So, inches to mm, 0.605" would be 15.367, right?

That does NOT seem right for measuring bottom of the neck ring to top of the bridge ring, which is something like 57, 58, or 59 mm...

This was from aftermarket maker, for another ES
1650994797849.png

But I can't measure exactly, plus don't have a Memphis example to baseline if the new Nashvilles are different.
 
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Zoomer

Active member
Joined
Feb 1, 2005
Messages
2,356
Hi Mat,

What strings did Gibson use on the 2006 Jimmy Page double neck EDS-1275 - I want to restring the guitar. Due to the headstock the strings for the d & g are short. Thank you !!!
 

clapciadrix

Member
Joined
Nov 3, 2007
Messages
40
Hi Matt,
Ive purchased a couple of new (2020-2022) VOS aged Gibsons and would like to ask about the technique used to age the pickup covers and to raise the question: is the aging department going too fast?
Is anyone making sure that the technics employed to get the desired effects of aging, are not watered down by a quest to turn out the most product in the least amount of time?
So many people have worked so hard to get the great Les Paul specs back to their former glory that it seems a shame to go with aging technics not of the same quality.
Gibson finally got the necks calibrated to correct specs, likewise body carve. Hyde glue. Redone knobs, pu rings, finish etc. Everyone obviously putting in a lot of hard work to get the specs right.
I understand that custom shop has re-designed bridges coming. Great! We’re on our way! And Im sure everyone has and is working their hardest and striving for the best results. Excellent.
So why allow aging techniques that are clearly not on par with the other upgrades Gibson has been doing? It seems like Gibson sometimes takes two steps forward and one step back.
In 2015 when the new pickup covers debut, I thought they were perfect. Time would add the patina I wanted. Time would oxidize the shine like real ones in the old days. The dullness of the corner edges shape, the screw holes, the nickel are all perfect and amazing.
Now, it seems, to achieve some sort of “aged” look, a chemical looks to be brushed on to deteriorate the nickel. To my eyes and experience, it looks like nothing I’ve seen commonly in the wild.
I ”get“ the look Gibson is trying to achieve, but it is permanent and it’s not very convincing. Most old nickel covers may be scratched, but they aren’t chemically etched.
Which leads me to the headstock aging of the Murphy Lab ultra-aged Les Pauls. I don’t own one, but when I shop for one I notice the incredibly obvious sand paper marks used to age/reduce the les Paul decal. I have to ask myself that if it can so obviously be seen, why doesn’t QC not take a break and re-exam their process? The aging needs to stay on par with all the other upgrades being done at the custom shop. Like they say, you‘re only as good as your weakest link. And right now, the aging is your weakest link.
I think Gibson needs to slow down and get some unbiased inspection. There is a difference between natural aging and aging something to where it looks like a movie prop. Subtle not loud. Thanks for checking in here. I appreciate your time.
 

0 2339

Member
Joined
Feb 8, 2017
Messages
165
Hey Mat, hope you're doing alright. Not sure if it's been asked before, but I always wondered why the tailpiece location on reissues doesn't match the originals? Modern = perpendicular to strings; Vintage 50s/60s = slight angle/not perpendicular to strings...

43631074gj.jpg



Thanks and please ignore if it's been covered before ;)
cheers, chris
 
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