FAKE! “Chibson” Jimmy Page #2 Les Paul Teardown

Here are some shots inside a fake Chinese (Chibson) Jimmy Page #2. I have no idea which factory in China is turning these out. The guitar seems to be a mishmash of a lot of different fake Chinese parts, including fake Epiphone branded pickups and fake Grover machine heads.

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When this was brought in to me it was an absolute dog of a guitar, totally unplayable, sharp fret edges  and buzzing like the proverbial. But! after a days work it turned into a very playable LP copy.

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I have no idea what the customer paid for this, but certainly less than the Gibson genuine USA made models which start at £2.5K used and go all the way up to £17K for a Tom Murphy Custom Shop aged one.

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Let’s start by throwing away all the hardware!

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The body appears to be some kind of mahogany covered with an attractive thin flamed maple veneer.

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No USA Gibson trussrod nut here – this has the 4mm metric hex nut.

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These ‘Chrovers’ machine heads are actually not bad. No slippage, looseness or friction. Those forgers have even stamped JP #2 158 on the back! Any idea what the 158 relates to?

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First thing to do with the fretboard is to make sure the frets are fully secured into the rosewood before a fret leveling. Most of these frets let out a dull ‘thonk’ when tapped with a piece of bone suggesting they are loose.

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After paste waxing the board, here I use a micro pippet to slide water thin cyanoacrylic glue under the frets – a great way to secure loose frets.

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Leveling the frets and beveling the edges.

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Durable and shiny as it is, I’m not a fan of poly finishes. Dulling the finish with some 2000 grit and soap.

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Horrible horrible plastic injection molded nut.

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Replace this with a camel bone nut.

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Stamped Epiphone, whether they are or not is anyone guess.

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I was going to throw these away but I’m curious to hear what they sound like after being wax potted. Neck reads 8.2k and the bridge 8.7k.

 

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Nothing wrong with the wiring. Linear 500k volume pots which have a very smooth curved shelf. Log tone pots 500k. I actually prefer Linear volume and Log tone pots. Log volumes seem to act like an on/off switch.

 

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Melting up some paraffin wax – in this case tea lights. Take the stalks out when they’re melted.

 

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Use a double boiling pot as this stuff is flammable.

 

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All strung back together with new bridge and tail piece. Ceramic pickups sound great with a nice snappy bite (not in fact too far away from Pagey’s sound). The guitar also now has much improved sustain after securing the loose the fretwork. Not a bad LP at all  (and quite lightweight 9lbs). Fancy selling it to me ??

3 responses to “FAKE! “Chibson” Jimmy Page #2 Les Paul Teardown

  1. I have this guitar, same headstock stamps as well although I’ve no idea what they mean, if anything as they’re clearly re-cycled. The guitar is beautiful, built really well and with the exception of the tuners all hardware has been replaced with jonesyblues hand wound fully aged un-potted JP#1 PAF-TTop pups (they sound killer & with the harness are built such that they are not microphonic) & 21 tone Jimmy Page harness with 4 CTS500K push pull pots + Short Nickel Switchcraft 3-way toggle switch. The tail piece/bridge were replaced by the previous owner. The only thing that bugs me is the fretboard is some sort of engineered hardwood rather than rosewood. 😦
    I don’t sweat the Gibson™ infringement, it could say FORD for all I care. Fender Custom Shop does an Artiste Series Rory Gallagher relic’ed strat for over CDN6k after all which is a blatant rip off of a dead artist. That’s just they way the world works mang.

  2. I think it’s great that there are crappy knock-off’s getting imported by folks who can’t afford a Gibson but are too snobby to play an Epiphone. Having these swamp the local Craigslist is absolutely great for guitar players, especially the young and inexperienced who can get ripped off and learn what the world is REALLY like.

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