1964 Gibson LG-0 Flattop Guitar

LG-0s are fun guitars. My friend Susie plays her Epiphone-branded one (a "Caballero") as her main-and-only and they're a staple for plenty of touring acts and recording studios. They've got a woody, bluesy, rootsy sound that has plenty of kick and clarity. Like a lot of ladder-braced guitars, the sound pops right out front and so they often sound a lot better to the audience than the player.

This one arrived here for consignment in untouched, original condition -- complete with its Gibson chip case and hang tag. It had an original plastic bridge on it, though, which was beginning to wear-out and needed replacing. After that and other work it plays bang-on fast, it's stable, and it sounds great. Dedicated fingerpickers will get the most out of these guitars but flatpickers who don't just thump chords and play in a bit of an old-fashioned style will find them killer for country-blues or rootsy Americana styles.

Being a '64, this guitar still has the wider/bog-standard 1 11/16" nut width rather than the '65-and-up "narrow" nut width which started at 1 5/8" and shrunk a little every year there after approaching 1969.

Repairs included: a neck reset, fret level/dress, replacement rosewood bridge, new bone saddle, some brace regluing, and setup.

Top wood: solid mahogany

Back & sides wood: solid mahogany

Bracing type: ladder

Bridge: rosewood

Fretboard: rosewood

Neck wood: mahogany

Action height at 12th fret: 3/32” bass 1/16” treble (fast, spot-on)
String gauges: 52w, 40w, 30w, 22w, 16, 12 custom set

Neck shape: medium-smaller C

Board radius: ~10-12"

Truss rod: adjustable

Neck relief: straight

Fret style: wide/low

Scale length: 24 5/8"

Nut width: 1 11/16"

Body width: 14 1/4"

Body depth: 4 3/8"

Weight: 3 lbs 11 oz

Condition notes: it's crack-free in the wood though the finish shows plenty of weather-check and hairline "crackle." The bridge is a replacement (in style a lot like a late-'50s Gibson bridge) and is a little larger than the original plastic one, though it's patterned on it. I had to make it longer to cover the original (misplaced) bridge marks. I had to mildly-trim the pickguard's lower edge to fit the new bridge's profile but it's not obvious at all. The saddle is also a replacement but the pins are original. The tuners are original and are slightly fussy but hold just fine. As you might expect, being a ladder-braced guitar the top has some deflection/minor belly behind and under the bridge. It's nothing to worry about and is on every LG-0 and LG-1 I've ever worked-on. The top binding is also split at the waist on the treble side but is glued-pat in position. It's not obvious.

It comes with: its original chip case and hang tags. The original bridge, saddle, and mounting hardware are in the case pocket.


Bob said…
My compliments to Susie... an Epiphone FT-30 Caballero was my first "good" guitar c. 1963 in high school and college... and graduated college with a used Epiphone FT-130 Frontier, probably also made c.'62-'63. I felt the Frontier was the Hummingbird for people who didn't want a guitar with a picture of a hummingbird, just cactus flowers and a lariat. ;-)

I'm curious whether that those parallel model Epiphones and Gibsons had the same width and thickness necks. I always felt both Epiphones were slim and narrow, but that may be because my next four guitars were so different -- a brand-x 12-string and three slotted-head Martins (00-16C, 0-18K and 00-21).