Monday, April 25, 2011

GIBSON THE PAUL CIRCA 1978 - rewired

Make Your Guitar
Gig Proof
Upon removing the back cover over the potentiometers and switches of this Gibson The Paul guitar, we can see some colored wires (green & black). These wires weren't factory installed. They were basic 14 gauge wire from the local electronic store and that itself isn't bad but the vinyl was melted and wire is exposed. I wanted to limit potential electrical shorts and to make this guitar road worthy and gig proof.

I took this picture of the wiring prior to swapping it out.

I bought the new vintage wire from Stew Mac. This wire is called vintage pull back 22AWG gauge (Link) wire. I carefully removed the old wire using my Weller Soldering iron. Using the old wire as a length template and then double checking the length. I carefully replaced the wire lead between the potentiometers and input jack. I also replaced the two 0.022 mf (microfarad) capacitors.
This photo shows the replacement vintage wire.

Sorry about the blurred photo's! The important part is to make certain you make good solder joints. I prefer the 60/40 lead solder (Read about solder here). The solder joint should be smooth and shiny. The last thing you want to happen at a gig is to have a guitar lose connection from a loose wire. Double check all of the work you have completed!
Put it all back together and tested it before replacing the cover. It looks better to me now because I like the vintage pull back wires and I like working with those wires as well.

The Gibson THE PAUL guitar is unique because it is a flat top. It's not carved. I like the ebony neck and jumbo frets. This guitar has a the non original Gibson TP-6 tail piece with fine tuners. The guitar isn't the lightest guitar as it is solid walnut. The finish on the neck it well worn. It has stock Grover tuners and simple dot abalone inlays. The owner paid $400 for it back in 1978. Nice tone and plays well with a neck a "hair" larger than the later Les Paul 1960 series necks on the Les Paul Classics. I don't like the 17 degree neck angle but that is about it. Nice guitar and if you can find one a used one - Buy it!

This is the Gibson THE PAUL

This guitar has been played!

A little buckle rash!!

The owner of this guitar!


Matthew Tildesley said...

Recently bought my second The Paul. Sold my first one decades ago and always regretted it. In between I had a deluxe Goldtop, but both The Pauls were/are nicer, much nicer to play. (All 3 were made in 1979.)

Scott said...

Matthew, I am lucky enough to play a wide variety of guitar for a living. I've played genuine Les Paul from 1959 & 1958, old Strat, and Tele's. Nevertheless, "The Paul," is more comfortable with its beveled edges and contours than most Les Paul's. I can't part with my THE PAUL. I hope you enjoy your reunion with your old friend. Scott

Matthew Tildesley said...

Cheers, mate! I'm with you on all fronts. This is a guitar for life.

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