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1973 Gibson Les Paul Personal

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SN#: 885841

Body Width: 14" Scale length 24 3/4" Nut Width: 1 11/16" Neck depth, 1st/12th frets: .81/1.00

Materials: Solid Honduran mahogany body and neck; solid ebony fingerboard, solid bone nut.

Hardware: Original gold hardware includes twin Gibson logo low impedance pickups; ABR-1 Tuneomatic bridge; Kluson Super 'Waffleback' tuners; Gibson logo Bigsby vibrola; master volume, treble, bass and Varitone 'Decade' tone controls; phase switch; 3 way tone selector switch; black reflector cap control knobs; XLR mic connector with volume control; engraved truss rod cover. Vintage correct wide bevel 5-ply pickguard.

Notes: Over seven decades, Gibson has released literally hundreds of Les Paul models. Here's the one played by Les himself.

Since its inception in mid-1952, no guitar in history has been produced in as many variations as the iconic Gibson Les Paul. As of this writing, a rough estimate puts the number at over 350 different versions and counting, not including the scores of LP clones issued under the Epiphone logo. Though they've been built in every color under the rainbow, it's safe to say that no Les Paul ever made is anywhere near as radical as the model Les designed for himself: the Les Paul Personal.

Making its debut in 1969, the Personal was the summit of the Gibson solid body line, and by far the most expensive Les Paul produced to that day. With a whopping $675 price tag, this upmarket model was some $80 more than the formerly paramount Les Paul Custom. But price was hardly its only distinction, as its highly advanced electronics made the Personal the single most versatile electric guitar Gibson has produced, before or since.

Renowned as a technological innovator, Les Paul went all out on this model, designed for his own performances and recordings. The slanted low-impedance pickups, embossed with the Gibson logo, produce a signal with markedly superior clarity and detail, enhanced by a control system of unparalleled flexibility. In addition to its master volume control, the Personal has separate controls for treble and bass, a pickup selector switch, a phase switch, and a three-way selector switch that activates various combinations of the tone controls. 

If this weren't enough, the guitar is wired with a ten-position variable tone control dubbed the 'Decade' switch. This multi-voiced tone shaper has factory presets similar to the Varitone control of Gibson's premium ES-345 and 355 semi-hollow electrics, but much more subtle in effect To the best of our knowledge, it's the only such control ever offered on a Gibson solid body guitar.

Not only was the Personal the most technically advanced Les Paul, it's also the biggest, with a 14" figured mahogany body a full inch larger than standard LP models. Upmarket features include the solid ebony fingerboard, Super 400 peghead inlay, and all gold hardware, including the factory Bigsby vibrola. The guitar plays normally through a 1/4" output jack on the bass side, and is supplied with a low-to-high impedance adapter cable, for use with any conventional guitar amp. However, the guitar is also factory fitted with an additional XLR jack on the upper bass side near the neck, designed for mounting a gooseneck mic to the guitar. Complete with its own dedicated volume control, the mic signal is audible if a stereo cable is attached to the 1/4" output jack. Look, Ma...no hands!

This outstanding example is crafted with handsomely figured Honduras mahogany with a lustrous deep walnut finish. Carefully maintained with all original finish, hardware and electronics, the only addition to this gleaming instrument is a recent vintage correct wide bevel 5-ply pickguard. Remarkably free of pick or fingerboard wear, the instrument shows only some very light thumbwear and some scattered finish nicks, mostly confined to the back. With smooth low action over a fresh high-precision setup, the tapered D profile neck is a model of comfort, with fine original fretwork in great shape.

With its premium price tag well out of reach of rockers of the day, the Les Paul Personal was extremely limited in production, with only 370 built over its scant five year run. Gibson shipping records indicate that only two examples of this premium model were produced in its final year, and with a serial number from 1973, this would appear to be one of the last pair ever built. Complete with its original deluxe plush lined hardshell case, this rare and distinctive model is a matchless addition to any collection of Gibson's rarest and finest. One only: call now.

Setup: Trussrod tension and neck relief adjusted; bridge height adjusted; bridge compensation set; bridge wheels and tuners lubricated; fingerboard and bridge oiled; body and neck cleaned and hand polished.









































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