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Value of a 1968 Les Paul Custom, Beat Up?

comcf

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Oct 22, 2018
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I am no collector and buy to play. But I do care about resale value as I don't want to lose too much when moving on to the next one. Maybe @moonweasel can chime in?

I have a lead on a 1968 LP Custom. It's player grade with mostly original finish, a well done headstock repair, no original pickups, two original pots and both caps. The bridge is original, no idea about the tailpiece. Someone put some of those 70s mini switches near the pots. It needs a refret, which I am not afraid of. Lots of mojo. I do have a couple of pre t tops I can put into this one. Really, really comfortable to play.

I see good condition examples listed at $16K+. The seller is asking $8K. What are people's ideas about the price? Would appreciate if anyone can reference a guide or links with comps from the last two-three months.

This isn't the guitar, but just to give some idea:

IMG_0068_49931371-2f5a-4897-8f2f-9dd559047340.jpg
 

comcf

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Oct 22, 2018
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I am curious about reference points, if anyone has any. Does anyone have access to a vintage guitar guide, if there is such a thing? Were there any recent “player” listings? There’s a 69 Standard with a neck break, refin, and routed for hums on Ebay now and the current bid is $4,500.
 

latestarter

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If $8K is the player grade rate for a repaired 68 then things have moved faster than I had thought. I guess the issue is, supply and demand. How often does one come up? I understand your conundrum comcf.
 

corpse

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New holes drilled in the top are a problem for me. You don’t have any pics of the one you want to buy. The conditions you describe bring it to fair/ poor condition in my mind.
imagine trying to sell it. BTW- I have a 69 GT converted to hums without a break but with some fuckery on the HS so I did the thinking and laid out the money. You are Still way north of $4500 at $8k. You really can’t use a good condition guitar for one that has had that much work and see it as a straight-line value.
also- how long has it been for sale?
 

Grog

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Apr 7, 2012
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I am curious about reference points, if anyone has any. Does anyone have access to a vintage guitar guide, if there is such a thing? Were there any recent “player” listings? There’s a 69 Standard with a neck break, refin, and routed for hums on Ebay now and the current bid is $4,500.
Here is a shot from the current VG Price Guide…………

BFRk8F5.jpg
 

El Gringo

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To me a neck brake or headstock break is a no go . Then factor in mini toggle switches = yuck . For that price tag pass and board goes back to square .
 

jrgtr42

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Mar 24, 2005
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$8k is too much for that many issues.
Maybe 4 or 5k? It won't ever be a collector item, but it'll likely hover around that area.
If it was mine, beside the refret, I'd likely have the mini-toggle removed.
 

Progrocker111

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Are you sure its a 68? These bridges when original were rare, i have ever seen them on 71-72 Les Paul Customs, not on 68.
 

sh944

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Jan 19, 2007
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I was wondering the same thing. I am fairly certain the rectangular bridge didn’t show up until mid ‘71, although I am sure there are folks on this forum could confirm or correct me. Have you confirmed if it has the long tenon?

The guitar is worth whatever you are willing to pay for it, but it’s too rich for my blood.
 

rays44

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Jul 24, 2001
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I have an early '69 with 1pc body, 1pc neck, long tenon, center seam 2pc top and dotted "i". The only thing that keeps it from being a '68 is the control cavity route (which is actually historically correct}. I see absolutely no tonal difference in the 14 degree headstock pitch. It has 2 filled holes where mini toggles were. If the toggles were there I would have kept them. The guitar will never be a clean collector piece but it was priced accordingly. It is a great sounding guitar that I will never sell. No breaks and no refin. In today's market, I would estimate its value at around $7000. IMO the guitar you're looking at is priced high at 8k. Unless you had the chance to play it and see if it was "special" or at least have a no questions asked return option, I would pass at 8k. That kind of money can get you some very nice alternatives. The thing is, there are few, if any comparibles. You have to work your way down from the benchmark high based on the issues. People can ask whatever they want but In the end, it worth what someone is willing to pay. Choose wisely.
 
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El Gringo

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Are you sure its a 68? These bridges when original were rare, i have ever seen them on 71-72 Les Paul Customs, not on 68.
Did the 1968 Les Paul Customs have the 14 degree peghead radius ? Also while I am on this subject what was the official reason for the switch to the 14 degree peghead radius ? Was it a tooling issue in KZOO ? If so was it that they had to come up with new equipment tooling wise ? for the re launch of the Les Paul model ? which seems absurd as Gibson makes many different necks for all of there models . Or was it to distinguish between golden era models and modern reissues ?
 
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sweiger

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Did the 1968 Les Paul Customs have the 14 degree peghead radius ? Also while I am on this subject what was the official reason for the switch to the 14 degree peghead radius ? Was it a tooling issue in KZOO ? If so was it that they had to come up with new equipment tooling wise ? for the re launch of the Les Paul model ? which seems absurd as Gibson makes many different necks for all of there models . Or was it to distinguish between golden era models and modern reissues ?
Yes, 14º headstock degree came as early as mid 1965. I've read the reason was to lower the risk of a headstock break.
Later (1970 ca.) they added the infamous volute on back of the headstock. At first rather subtle, a little later in the seventies the volute became bigger -and more disliked.
 

sweiger

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I'm sure 1968 Gibson management (President Stanley Rendell et al) didn't think of the 50's and early 60's as "golden era". At that time, for them the instruments from the Ted McCarty era was just a product, which they had made more efficient and cheaper to manufacture.
Just my 2cents o.c.
 
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El Gringo

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Thank You Kindly Sweiger for the info . Come to think of it the reasoning behind the change to the peghead is absurd , but probably borne out of the SG''s with there thin necks .
 

sweiger

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Thank You Kindly Sweiger for the info . Come to think of it the reasoning behind the change to the peghead is absurd , but probably borne out of the SG''s with there thin necks .
You're welcome :) The 17º headstock angle makes for a more fragile neck, if the guitar falls to the ground. I don't think thin necks were the issue per se, only if the guitar hits the floor, or if in the case & handled rough.
 
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