Neck and fret question on 76 LP Custom

Meclazine

New member
OK,

The '76 had a maple neck with a mahogany body. The maple necks were introduced in 1975 and never used before on the LP Customs.

As such, LP Customs pre-75 are worth more in the vintage market as they have mahogany necks.

With regard to the overall weight of the guitar, the full mahogany body is part of the attraction with the LP Customs in the 1970's. They do sound amazing and if you want a light and resonant version with patent sticker pickups, try some late 60's - early 1970's SG's. They still scream and are incredibly light in comparison.

With regard to the binding, if you want to keep the value of the guitar, dont break the binding on the edges of the frets. An expert luthier can refret without breaking the binding, but as the frets are extracted, you get small cracks in the binding at each fret. This is a common way to pick refretting.

We recently had 1 78 LP Custom which was refretted:

1978 Gibson Les Paul Small.png

After the refret, each fret position on the binding had a tiny crack. Not something that you would see easily or feel, but you could find them if you looked carefully.

To get the special refret Jimi has already mentioned, you need to spend $600-1K. So the guitar is only worth $3-4K max, so preserving the original nature of the guitar is only something you would do if it is a family heirloom guitar.

My advice would be to try a few different Les Pauls and see if you like the feel of the frets over the binding. Otherwise, keep the binding up high.

I would never shave the binding down and put the frets over the top with the angled edges like a Standard. It devalues the guitar and makes it look like the refret was not done properly.
 
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Mickster

Well-known member
Thanks for the detailed info Meclazine. As it stands, I have not yet decided what to do except to keep my playing on the LP to a minimum. I have several other guitars. I have yet to come across a refretted LP for some reason. And I still don’t have a repair shop I know I can trust. I think my real problem is that I really don’t want to alter my very favorite and very first good guitar. The cost is not the issue.

As for finding another guitar that feels as good or like my LP.........no luck.
 

RFR

Well-known member
Thanks for the detailed info Meclazine. As it stands, I have not yet decided what to do except to keep my playing on the LP to a minimum. I have several other guitars. I have yet to come across a refretted LP for some reason. And I still don’t have a repair shop I know I can trust. I think my real problem is that I really don’t want to alter my very favorite and very first good guitar. The cost is not the issue.

As for finding another guitar that feels as good or like my LP.........no luck.

However you choose to do the refret, the guitar will feel differently from what you've become used to. No getting around that. :)

As to 'cracks' the binding, that isn't a sure sign of a refret. They can occur on their own as a result of the wood swelling and shrinking. The fingerboard shrinks, the ends of the tangs are poking at the binding.....crack. wood expands and cracks, metal.....not so much. Binding plastic can get brittle. Lot of stuff going on there.
It happens. :D

[MENTION=3102]Maclazine[/MENTION] That's a beautiful custom :thumbs up:
 
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