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  1. #1

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    May I ask the lucky people here who have Gibson LeGrands to measure your scale length for me?
    I do know they are supposed to be 25-1/2", But I understand that can vary. And one more thing, are you happy with your LeGrand?
    thanks, Joe D
    I'm Sorry Jabbs and Archtop guy, I posted this in the wrong spot.

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  3. #2

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    Joe,

    If you are willing to wait, I would bet that Gibson would build you a LeGrand in any scale length you like. Talk to Steve at Wildwood Guitars. He seems to be pretty connected with Gibson and can probably get you what you want in a reasonable time frame. I am guessing what you really want is a Johnny Smith with a 50's (thick C) neck profile. (25 inch scale length, 1 3/4 nut full contact neck.)

    All of the Gibson Johnny Smith guitars (1962-1984) will have a pretty shallow neck profile. That was the style in those days. In the 90's the thicker 50's neck profile came into style. But a custom LeGrand with the Johnny Smith specs and a 50's neck might be the perfect fit for you.
    _____________________________________________
    "When the chord changes, you should change" Joe Pass

  4. #3
    Quote Originally Posted by Stringswinger View Post
    Joe,

    If you are willing to wait, I would bet that Gibson would build you a LeGrand in any scale length you like. Talk to Steve at Wildwood Guitars. He seems to be pretty connected with Gibson and can probably get you what you want in a reasonable time frame. I am guessing what you really want is a Johnny Smith with a 50's (thick C) neck profile. (25 inch scale length, 1 3/4 nut full contact neck.)

    All of the Gibson Johnny Smith guitars (1962-1984) will have a pretty shallow neck profile. That was the style in those days. In the 90's the thicker 50's neck profile came into style. But a custom LeGrand with the Johnny Smith specs and a 50's neck might be the perfect fit for you.
    SS, that's what I might do. I've reached out to Garrett. Let's see what he says. Yes if I could get a LeGrand to JS spec, I'd be very happy. Hopefully, TMZ can make it happen. If not I might take you up on the WW contact.
    thanks bro.
    JD

  5. #4

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    Good luck Joe !!!!!!!


    big

  6. #5

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    Another idea is to have Heritage build that guitar. Jim Deurloo and Bill Paige are still there and can certainly match and, more likely exceed, the craftsmanship of the Gibson CS on a special order. They built Johnny Smiths for both Gibson and Heritage.

    If I were to pursue that, I'd ask for a Golden Eagle with a 1 3/4" nut and 25" scale. You can get inlays to match the Heritage or the Gibson versions of the JS. You can specify the exact neck dimensions, too. And they will install any pup you want. All of this will be at a lower price than Gibson.

    The problem with either a Gibson or Heritage custom build is the resale value.

    Under new ownership, Heritage has elevated to a new level. The facility has been updated and the shop is more organized. Check out the website.

    Guitars - Heritage Guitar

    They just launched their first limited edition solid body. It's very retro. Even the pickups are made on an original Parsons Street roller. Check it out.

    New Limited Edition H-157W - Heritage Guitars - Heritage Owners Club

    Personally, I don't think I'm mature enough to order a truly custom guitar from Gibson or Heritage. I've gotten by on what's available. I lack the confidence of knowing what I'd want in two years. All I know is that I don't know.
    MG

  7. #6
    Hey guys,
    I was just trying to qualify/disqualify the LeGrand.
    If they are 25-3/8 and up, then I'd probably be better off living with my sold formed. At 25-5/16 it's right there.. IF it was the 24-3/4 it was supposed to be, it would be a no brainer. The scale on the LeGrand resale at TMZ right now is 25-3/4!!!
    Scale length is important to me and will get more important to me in the future.
    I guess when it's all said and done, I will end up with the right guitar.
    Funny thing, maybe the very thing I am chasing after are 2 guitars I've already owned.. The Heritage Johnny Smith and the Gibson Herb Ellis.
    I will supply the baseball bat, all somebody has to do is hit me with it next time I do something stupid again, which knowing me, will probably be real soon..
    Joe D

  8. #7

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    JD

    Bull... you're just doing what we all do man, change partners again and again and again...

    Big

  9. #8

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    Quote Originally Posted by Marty Grass View Post
    The problem with either a Gibson or Heritage custom build is the resale value.
    I do not think a Gibson LeGrand built to JS specs would be worth any less than any other LeGrand. And it might have more value (but probably not as much extra value as the extra cost of the custom order).

    The problem with any Heritage is the resale value. Most archtop players want a guitar that says Gibson on the headstock. I am guessing that the Gibson Super 400 headstock is one of the features that Joe wants. I cannot blame him for that, both for resale value reasons and also for looks.
    _____________________________________________
    "When the chord changes, you should change" Joe Pass

  10. #9

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    Quote Originally Posted by Joe DeNisco View Post
    Hey guys,

    Funny thing, maybe the very thing I am chasing after are 2 guitars I've already owned.. The Heritage Johnny Smith and the Gibson Herb Ellis.
    I will supply the baseball bat, all somebody has to do is hit me with it next time I do something stupid again, which knowing me, will probably be real soon..
    Joe D
    Joe, I have bought another example of guitars that I have sold. Sometimes we don't know what we have until it is gone. It is all part of the process.
    _____________________________________________
    "When the chord changes, you should change" Joe Pass

  11. #10

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    you need a real vintage Gibson Johnny Smith.
    be patient and one will pop up sooner or later.
    patience, patience, patience.....

  12. #11
    You are right SS. And MG, I greatly appreciate you trying to help. I am a Gibson guy. That fact by default should make me a Heritage guy, but for some unknown reason, I am not. I think the reason is, I am just f'ing ignorant.
    The 25" scale is regarded by many of us here as pretty desireable. However, a Gibson branded one is such a unicorn. Oh well..
    i think I have concluded that I will modify my Solid Formed a bit so it pleases my eyes. I've gotten used to the guitar and because of that, for me, it plays really well. The biggest mistake I've made is I gave up on it after I compared it acoustically to my D'Angelico Excel. What the hell was I thinking..
    i need to stop searching for fancy arrows and learn to shoot my bows better.
    Thanks guys.
    Joe D

  13. #12
    Quote Originally Posted by wintermoon View Post
    you need a real vintage Gibson Johnny Smith.
    be patient and one will pop up sooner or later.
    patience, patience, patience.....
    That one you turned me on to at LaVonne would have the trick. I just couldn't see paying what they are asking and they won't come down. Problem is, if I had more money to spend I would have been set a while ago. I just can't afford to overpay. There are a bunch of beautiful Johnnys all over the place, just sitting.
    Thanks WM.
    JD

  14. #13

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    Joe, if I compared all of my guitars to my DA Style A and my DA Style B, I would be down to two guitars, the DA Style B and the DA Style A.
    _____________________________________________
    "When the chord changes, you should change" Joe Pass

  15. #14
    Marco, you are the human quote machine..

  16. #15

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    Just a note about Peter Wagener at Lavonne Music in Savage,Mn. I've known Pete for almost 40 years now, and have never know him to overcharge anyone for any peice of equiptment. Maybe the market has fallen on archtops as of late and that's why they are now asking less $$ and are also not selling well. But 2 dealers I would never hesitate buying from are Lavonne Music(Peter Wagener) or Dave's Guitar(Dave Rogers) in LaCrosse, Wisconsin. Definitely 2 of the best people who know there wares as well as their customers.

  17. #16

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    My 1998 LeGrand's scale is about 25-1/2, exactly measured on the G string which is the longest (tune-o-matic) it is 25,4
    I'm happy with it, it's light and small (3 inch depth and shorter body than my L5), i use it for solo, duo and quiet trios but would not use it in a band with a loud drummer. I did change the pickup twice because i was not happy with the original BJB, am currently using a 12 pole Kent Armstrong.
    Last edited by JazzNote; 06-25-2016 at 02:26 PM.
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    JazzNote

  18. #17

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    Quote Originally Posted by wintermoon View Post
    you need a real vintage Gibson Johnny Smith.
    be patient and one will pop up sooner or later.
    patience, patience, patience.....
    that makes two of us .......
    Last edited by JazzNote; 06-25-2016 at 02:27 PM.
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  19. #18

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    Quote Originally Posted by jads57 View Post
    Just a note about Peter Wagener at Lavonne Music in Savage,Mn. I've known Pete for almost 40 years now, and have never know him to overcharge anyone for any peice of equiptment. Maybe the market has fallen on archtops as of late and that's why they are now asking less $$ and are also not selling well. But 2 dealers I would never hesitate buying from are Lavonne Music(Peter Wagener) or Dave's Guitar(Dave Rogers) in LaCrosse, Wisconsin. Definitely 2 of the best people who know there wares as well as their customers.

    And for me, I figure I only ever need to find one go-to person in an industry. That is probably the ( retired ) career salesman in me. I would hope people would buy from me once and then conclude they didn't have to shop around as much anymore. I'd be their go-to guy from them on.

    And we have 2 stores like that ! And I can personally vouch for one - Dave's - without hesitation.

    We should count our blessings !!

    MHO .

  20. #19

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    I'm just curious as I've never played any of them, but does a Guild Artist Award come anywhere near the vibe and sound of a Legrand/JS? I know the X700's were a shot at the L5's.
    (see Image):


  21. #20

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    Quote Originally Posted by Stringswinger View Post
    I do not think a Gibson LeGrand built to JS specs would be worth any less than any other LeGrand. And it might have more value (but probably not as much extra value as the extra cost of the custom order).

    The problem with any Heritage is the resale value. Most archtop players want a guitar that says Gibson on the headstock. I am guessing that the Gibson Super 400 headstock is one of the features that Joe wants. I cannot blame him for that, both for resale value reasons and also for looks.
    If we were talking resell value on a new L5 vs a new dual humbucker Golden Eagle, I'd agree. But we're talking a LeGrand. Like L5's, I see lots of LeGrand's priced in the stratosphere...i.e., priced for display purposes only, for they aren't being sold anywhere near those prices, in spite of saying Gibson on the headstock.

    I've seen 3-4 LeGrand's sell the past 2 years for nearly $5k...I thought that was a reflection that the market is soft on LeGrand's?

    My point is, just because it says Gibson on the headstock doesn't mean it's a popular guitar that will have automatic resell value. Performance wise, from what I've read here and elsewhere, I think an average acoustic GE will run circles around most and LeGrand...but I've never personally owned a LeGrand, and never will.

  22. #21

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    Quote Originally Posted by helios View Post
    I'm just curious as I've never played any of them, but does a Guild Artist Award come anywhere near the vibe and sound of a Legrand/JS? I know the X700's were a shot at the L5's.
    (see Image):
    I don't know a single person here that's owned each, at the same time. I've owned the AA. It's depth makes it an acoustic force to be reckoned with, especially if you can find one reasonably priced near $3500. They're out there if one looks. Good luck finding a LeGrand for even $5500.

  23. #22

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    Quote Originally Posted by 2bornot2bop View Post
    I don't know a single person here that's owned each, at the same time. I've owned the AA. It's depth makes it an acoustic force to be reckoned with, especially if you can find one reasonably priced near $3500. They're out there if one looks. Good luck finding a LeGrand for even $5500.
    I owned a '69 Gibson JS, and an 80's(?) Guild AA, not at the same time but back-to-back. From my best recollection:

    JS: Wide but slender neck, very comfy profile, 25" scale. Lightly built guitar, lively, bright. Body depth slightly narrower than most, very comfy. Never really liked the smaller floater (on any guitar). Very prone to fb.

    AA: "Fuller" profile neck, D-ish, also very comfy, neck felt more "solid," less vibrant. I *think* 25.5" scale(?) Heavier built guitar, darker, "firm" tone. Deeper body, less comfy under the right arm. Nice full pickup, would have like to have experimented with something else but never got around to it. Less prone to fb.

    Overall, the JS was more of a lighter, brighter, more comfy acoustic-y arch top. The AA felt/sounded more like a full-size Electric L5CES, but with a floater.
    Last edited by Woody Sound; 06-25-2016 at 03:51 PM.

  24. #23

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    This whole thread on JS, GE and LeGrand is quiet compelling. I own a dead mint Hutchins period LeGrand -and have had 2 golden eagles. In my opinion the LeGrand is more vibrant , balanced and just easier to play - and an overall superior pedigree........no disrespect to GE owners, the GE's are the best value on the market......without a doubt. I do not own a JS yet- but currently pursuing one right now thanks to my buddy Joe D and Jazznote. Stay tuned !!

  25. #24

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    My comments about taking a serious haircut when selling either a highly customized Gibson or Heritage are true though. I don't know what Gibson would charge to change the scale and nut width on a LeGrand, but I'll bet the upcharge would be substantial. If I decided to sell it in a year, I might recover half of my investment. The same would be true of a Heritage. But the initial investment would be quite a bit lower for the Heritage.

    On the other hand, if I knew that I was going to keep the guitar for a long time, the money aspect wouldn't matter that much. Truth be told, my heart rate goes up a bit when I see the Gibson headstock, too.

    My limited experience with Guilds has been positive. The two Johnny Smiths I've owned were at least on the same level as the Gibson Johnny Smiths I've played over the years. That's not just my opinion. That's the opinion of three guys who used to build Gibson Johnny Smiths. In fact all three thought there was nicer trims (binding and inlays) on the Guilds. Of course if you need a wider nut and shorter scale, the Guild won't do.

    My current Artist Award is in the same league as any other archtop I've owned. But I've definitely played some AAs that were not nearly as impressive. I suppose that variability is true with almost any brand.

    Joe, good luck with the hunt. Remember that it's the journey, not the destination, that life's about.
    MG

  26. #25

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    Marty,
    Very valid points and I entirely agree. Especially the journey- which to me is the exciting and most enriching part of the process. It's the people, stories, history and connections that create lasting memories that we are all so blessed to enjoy.
    I just love the valuable input and collective experience this forum offers.....it's priceless.

  27. #26

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    Quote Originally Posted by Steve Longobardi View Post
    This whole thread on JS, GE and LeGrand is quiet compelling. I own a dead mint Hutchins period LeGrand -and have had 2 golden eagles. In my opinion the LeGrand is more vibrant , balanced and just easier to play - and an overall superior pedigree........no disrespect to GE owners, the GE's are the best value on the market......without a doubt. I do not own a JS yet- but currently pursuing one right now thanks to my buddy Joe D and Jazznote. Stay tuned !!
    Well, for twice the price one would hope the pedigree would be better!

    One doesn't expect a Chrysler 300 to ride like a Mercedes 300.

    It's almost unfair to compare the two instruments as they share many many different attributes beyond price.

    I've owned some 8/9 GE's, so many I stopped counting. I could not get a consensus on any two of them. Each was unique to itself, especially so in voicing. I owned two that were exceptional, and one that was stellar....Unlike LeGrand's, each GE, or Heritage for that matter, is a custom build. I've owned GE's that were very vibrant...some not as much...several tap tuned. Good luck getting a tap tuned LeGrand, even for twice the price.

    That's what it comes down to for some of us...the cost of diminishing returns raises its head. But if one must have a Gibson to be satisfied, nothing else will do.

    In audio, buyers frequently feel the need to justify the amount of money they've spent, when a lesser amount of money could have acquired superb sound for far less. Same goes for guitars. "Best" is subjective and in the mind of the beholder.

    If a LeGrand is more "vibrant" than a GBJSA, I'd like to hear one...for I've heard nothing that had the harmonic vibrancy of a GBJSA...and they're commonly available for less than $5k.

    Quote Originally Posted by Marty Grass View Post
    If I decided to sell it in a year, I might recover half of my investment. The same would be true of a Heritage. But the initial investment would be quite a bit lower for the Heritage.
    That's my thinking. $4500 for a new GE, vs $9k for a new LeGrand. Good luck getting $7k for a used Legrand.

    I'm easily getting $3500 for a year old GE.

  28. #27

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    2b ,
    You bring up very valid points and resale value is consistent with market perception. As I noted, the GE is arguably the best value on the market. I for one have never really been into Gibson Archtops, but mainly boutique builders....,but im finding some of the Gibsons to be quite nice and seem to retain value. The key is buying all these guitars used - at the right price, except of course custom builds. As with anything else, the loss is consistent with spend.
    I hope I didnt offend any GE owners, I would buy one in a minute - they are great guitars. As for Guild Benedettos at 25.625 scale .....they are certainly vibrant.....but known to be fatiguing .

    Sent from my GT-N5110 using Tapatalk
    Last edited by QAman; 06-25-2016 at 05:20 PM.

  29. #28

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    I know I'll get in trouble w/ some of you here, but here goes! Heritage is certainly capable of making some excellent guitars when they put their minds to it. And I've owned a bunch H-535,Roy Clark, H-550, Millenium Ultra.
    But I never felt the Golden Eagle was of the quality of Gibson archtops L-5C, Le Grand, J.S., etc Way to bright and thin of a top and back, and pencil thin necks as well. Gibson carved tops while not always having larger neck profiles, definitely have thicker tops and backs, which translated to a fuller tone acoustically. Maybe this just comes down to individual preferance, but I've never played a GE Heritage that I ever wanted to buy. And although the Gibson price is much more I definitely wanted to buy it, not that I could afford it LOL!
    Just an aside I had Frans Elferink build me a 16&1/2" x 2&1'2" 25&1/2" scale 1&3/4" nut width ( Basically a George Gobel L-5C w/ floater) for around $4k and it's as good as any comparable Gibson I've played. There's a similar Elferink for $3k in the For sale forum at the moment. I have no affiliation w/ the seller!

  30. #29

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    Both of my LeGrands were 25.5" scale length. Over the years I've found that when sellers advertise an anomalous scale length, they usually don't know how to measure it.

    Danny W.

  31. #30

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    My LeGrand measures precisely 12.655 from leading edge of nut to center of 12th fret. ( 12.655 x 2 = 25.310)

  32. #31
    That's the way I measure scale length too.
    The SB one at TMZ right measured that way added up to 25-3/4.
    Crazy..

  33. #32

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    Wow - 25.750 is crazy !

  34. #33

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    Quote Originally Posted by jads57 View Post
    I know I'll get in trouble w/ some of you here, but here goes! Heritage is certainly capable of making some excellent guitars when they put their minds to it. And I've owned a bunch H-535,Roy Clark, H-550, Millenium Ultra.
    But I never felt the Golden Eagle was of the quality of Gibson archtops L-5C, Le Grand, J.S., etc Way to bright and thin of a top and back, and pencil thin necks as well. Gibson carved tops while not always having larger neck profiles, definitely have thicker tops and backs, which translated to a fuller tone acoustically. Maybe this just comes down to individual preferance, but I've never played a GE Heritage that I ever wanted to buy. And although the Gibson price is much more I definitely wanted to buy it, not that I could afford it LOL!
    Just an aside I had Frans Elferink build me a 16&1/2" x 2&1'2" 25&1/2" scale 1&3/4" nut width ( Basically a George Gobel L-5C w/ floater) for around $4k and it's as good as any comparable Gibson I've played. There's a similar Elferink for $3k in the For sale forum at the moment. I have no affiliation w/ the seller!
    Given the OP, a Gibson owner, is probably missing his Heritage JS, it's proof that no two guitarists hear alike.

    Pencil thin necks? Isn't that a common complaint of 60's Gibsons too?

  35. #34

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    Quote Originally Posted by Joe DeNisco View Post
    ... The scale on the LeGrand resale at TMZ right now is 25-3/4!!!
    Really? Scale is measured as the distance from the nut to the 12th fret x 2.
    You might want to get them to measure it again. Then again.
    Quote Originally Posted by JazzNote View Post
    My 1998 LeGrand's scale is about 25-1/2, exactly measured on the G string which is the longest (tune-o-matic) it is 25,4.
    Quote Originally Posted by Steve Longobardi View Post
    My LeGrand measures precisely 12.655 from leading edge of nut to center of 12th fret. ( 12.655 x 2 = 25.310)
    Quote Originally Posted by Joe DeNisco View Post
    That's the way I measure scale length too.
    The SB one at TMZ right measured that way added up to 25-3/4.
    Crazy..
    Quote Originally Posted by Danny W. View Post
    Both of my LeGrands were 25.5" scale length. Over the years I've found that when sellers advertise an anomalous scale length, they usually don't know how to measure it.
    There's enough slop in hand measurement to come up w/different perceptions. Center of the fret? Center of the board? Three decimal places? Times two? I prefer the general approach - I measure a bunch of times and go to the nearest understandable and averaged-out imperial measurement. I suppose metric is more understandable to our European friends. 25 3/4"? - possibly a custom order, more likely just wrong.
    Last edited by Hammertone; 06-25-2016 at 10:14 PM.
    "Somebody get me out of this chair." - BOB WILLS
    Hammertone is a registered Hofnerologist.

  36. #35
    2b, I do miss the HJS for a lot reasons. It was a Goto type of guitar. Very light weight, great neck, beautifully full balanced sound and 25" scale.
    It was really nice. And the price was right. But I am trying to buy a similar Gibson at nearly twice the price. I should have my head examined.

  37. #36
    Quote Originally Posted by Hammertone View Post
    Really? Scale is measured as the distance from the nut to the 12th fret x 2.
    You might want to get them to measure it again. Then again.





    There's enough slop in hand measurement to come up w/different perceptions. Centre of the fret? Center of the board? Three decimal places? Times two? I prefer the general approach - I measure a bunch of times and go to the nearest understandable and averaged-out imperial measurement. I suppose metric is more understandable to our European friends. 25 3/4"? - possibly a custom order, more likely just wrong.
    hammertone, we are talking about Gibsons, not Hofners. My Solid Formed is supposed to be 24-3/4 and it is 25-5/16.
    Plus the guy knows what he is doing and I won't belittle his intelligence. I trust him.
    JD

  38. #37

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    Quote Originally Posted by Joe DeNisco View Post
    hammertone, we are talking about Gibsons, not Hofners. My Solid Formed is supposed to be 24-3/4 and it is 25-5/16. Plus the guy knows what he is doing and I won't belittle his intelligence. I trust him.
    JD
    Hofner and Gibson both get it wrong all the time in their literature. The machines that cut fret slots don't get it wrong. I'd be happy to belittle his intelligence for you, if you'd like.

    Ooooh, ooooh…better idea:
    What you REALLY want instead is a Hofner Chancellor. 25 1/4" scale. 17" body. 3" rims. Very similar overall size to a JS. Carved top/back, floating pickup,pickguard-mounted controls, gold and ebony bits. And the 22-fret neck is glued down to the top just like a JS. And the top is carved the way JS wanted, with the recarve following the shape of the guitar. In fact, I bet that, if Johnny was alive, and Hofner paid him a pile of money, he'd be endorsing the Chancellor and it would be called the Johnny Smith guitar! Or the Johann Schmidt guitar! Yeah! Coincidentally, I have one for sale/trade on this very forum! That's the ticket!

    With apologies to Joe E. Ross...
    Last edited by Hammertone; 06-25-2016 at 11:22 PM.
    "Somebody get me out of this chair." - BOB WILLS
    Hammertone is a registered Hofnerologist.

  39. #38

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    FWIW in 1979 I bought a brand new Gibson JS. I loved the pickup and the sound. I disliked the pickguard cable jack and the neck profile was wide and thin. I have only played 2 LeGrands and though not a big fan of the BJB I find the LeGrand to be superior at least to me. The build quality on the 2 LeGrands I played was a step above L5's. I could not find a flaw anywhere and I am very critical. I believe Citations and LeGrands are Gibson's very best. Best builds, woods, and QC.
    Probably like the Aaron Cowles days only one guy builds them. The LeGrands I played had wonderful necks and better sustain than my JS but it might be because of the tun-o-matic. They both feedback easily. You need to be far away from your amp. The LeGrand is my next guest. I am lusting the lemon burst one at TMZ.
    Joe I love you bro but their is no getting around the fact that you are going to have to lay down some serious scratch to get what you want. 2b gets the good deals and we were put on this earth to stimulate the bad economy.....:-)

  40. #39
    Great post bro.
    You are right. I really can't play with the big boys. If my latest attempt falls short, I will concede.
    I am in awe of what you got already. The Lemonburst LeGrand should be the last straw. You are welcome to live with me. I have cases of rice a roni and spam in the basement that we could live off of for a couple of years..
    Happy Birthday brother!

    Joe D

  41. #40

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    Neck relief could make it measure a little shorter. As for longer, some guys measure from the trailing edge of the nut, not the leading edge. Some measure from nut to E2 saddle. Go figure.

    There is chum in the waters and the remoras are out in full force.

    Joe, if you want a custom jobbie, the closest thing to a custom Gibson Johnny Smith that Gibson won't make you is a Mark Campellone. Mark can make you a Standard or Deluxe or Special with a 25" scale length, 1.75" nut width, 3" rim depth, carved top, the works...and with a nice Campellone headstock and binding too.

    http://mcampellone.com/Models/standard.htm
    http://mcampellone.com/Models/deluxe.htm
    http://mcampellone.com/pricing.htm

    For $4950 with no fancy inlays (as Jimmy D'Aquisto would want them) or binding, Mark is the best deal going. Ask Mark about tap-tuning and you'd probably get, What note do you want it to be tap-tuned to?
    Last edited by Jabberwocky; 06-26-2016 at 12:41 AM.

  42. #41

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    Quote Originally Posted by Marty Grass View Post
    Joe, good luck with the hunt. Remember that it's the journey, not the destination, that life's about.
    True. The destination is, well, not really so appealing.
    Beauty is as close to terror as we can well endure. -Rainer Maria Rilke

  43. #42

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    Quote Originally Posted by 2bornot2bop View Post
    ...Pencil thin necks? Isn't that a common complaint of 60's Gibsons too?
    Yeah, they're not highly desirable too and limited to five years, between 1964 and 1968. But not the 60s Johnny Smiths; those have the 1.75" nut.

    Heritage took off where Gibson left off: NORLIN Gibson with all its foibles. No two Heritages sound alike. With Gibson, you get the bog-standard predictable Gibson house sound. Maybe that is not good enough for some.

    What does tap-tuning mean? What does it really do?

    I think it bears repeating, beware the man with only one gun because he knows how to use it very well. 8-9 Golden Eagles, 2bop? All I can say is that you owned 8-9 GEs. Do you keep any guitar long enough to take its full measure?

    What does tap-tuning mean? What does it really do?
    Last edited by Jabberwocky; 06-26-2016 at 12:56 AM.

  44. #43

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    I love my Le Grand especially after the techs at Rainbow set it up right. It will be 23 years old this year. I ordered it just a few months after they introduced it in '93.

    It is one of the best sounding acoustic archtops that I've played .... some of the vintage pieces I've played may have the edge on which is better, but not by much

    Matched to the right amp the electric tone can be quite good .. and I still have the original BJB pickup ....

    Floaters can sound thin to me in some otherwise very good amps ... I am usually able to find an amp that works well with them after a few tries

    I met Jim Triggs while visiting a '94 Nashville guitar show (or maybe it was the '94 NAMM?) and he made a wooden bridge for me and his bridge is still on there ... I prefer that to the tunomatic that it came with


    I've only had my hands on a couple for Johnny Smiths and they were kind of dead acoustically .... both were 60s models IIRC .... so maybe a 70s or later model will be better .... I'm a Gibson fan, but I have not liked any of the 60s Gibson archtops that I have encountered.

  45. #44

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    AJL of Finland does a fancy natural version for $5469 USD:

    AJL Guitars | Archtop Guitars



    Maple Archtop Guitars

    My main goal with these 17-inch archtop guitars is to have an acoustically superior guitar, with good separation, volume projection and a classic vintage look. Top and back are handcarved and graduated in the traditional Cremona-style. Without compromise in the chosen woods and hardware, every part is a top drawer. "Stealth" volume pot is hidden behind the edge of the pickguard. Different choices are available for pickups.
    Technical data

    Scale length: 25 1/2"
    Body size: 17 inch
    Top: Solid European spruce
    Back & sides: Solid masterclass flamed maple
    Neck: Solid masterclass flamed maple, two piece, rosewood stripe
    Neck dimensions: 43mm at the 0-fret, 54mm at the 14th fret
    Fingerboard: Ebony with m.o.p. inlays and side dots
    Frets: Jescar EVO
    Bridge: Brazilian rosewood with gold plated thumbwheels
    Hardware: Grover Imperial tuners, Fingerstyle tailpiece. All gold-plated
    Truss-rod Two-way adjustable, two unidirecional carbonfiber rods
    Inlays: Genuine Mother of pearl
    Pickguard: Bound tortoise-style with hidden volume control
    Finishing options: Natural, Aged, Traditional sunburst, Tobacco sunburst, Bordeaux

  46. #45

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    Quote Originally Posted by 2bornot2bop View Post
    ...I've owned some 8/9 GE's, so many I stopped counting. I could not get a consensus on any two of them...
    In other words, wildly inconsistent.

    Quote Originally Posted by 2bornot2bop View Post
    if a LeGrand is more "vibrant" than a GBJSA, I'd like to hear one...for I've heard nothing that had the harmonic vibrancy of a GBJSA...and they're commonly available for less than $5k.
    Go play one. Better yet, own one for a good number of years and then comment. You have no experience, brah. Harmonic vibrancy of the GBJSA? Yeah, that 25 5/8" scale length helps...if you can play it for any length of time. That is the overwrought language of an audiophool.

    Quote Originally Posted by 2bornot2bop View Post
    ...That's my thinking. $4500 for a new GE, vs $9k for a new LeGrand. Good luck getting $7k for a used Legrand.

    I'm easily getting $3500 for a year old GE.
    $4500 for a new GE? The last quote I received was $6300. And yeah, you get 45 cents on the dollar when you sell it one year on.

    Most of us are not into flipping guitars; we actually buy them to play them. My 2012 Le Grand costs me $5500 used all in. I still have it. If a guitar is great, I don't think about resale although i am aware of resale values.

    That Lemonburst Le Grand is a smorgasbord of YUM. I'd buy it if I can afford it but I can't but that is my problem, not Gibson's.

    Gibson Custom Shop Le Grand Archtop Electric Guitar Lemonburst | The Music Zoo

    Gibson LeGrand scale length-20796_le_grand_lb_12045001_1-jpg

    No doubt it brings up the hackles in some.

  47. #46

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    When it comes down to reductive reasoning, why buy a Heritage at all? Go to Mr. Wu and he will whip one up for the princely sum of...Jiu Bai Mei Jin! Nein Hun-led Dollahs...
    Last edited by Jabberwocky; 06-26-2016 at 01:38 AM.

  48. #47

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    The rapier wit of the Jabber remains unequaled!

  49. #48

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    It is kind of funny how circular all these guitars are. Here is a timeline of sorts:

    Gibson invents the L-5
    D'Angelico makes a hand built guitar somewhat based on the L-5
    Johnny Smith plays a superb D'Angelico
    Guild makes the Johnny Smith Artist award based on JS's DA
    Johnny Smith gets mad at Guild
    Johnny Smith has Gibson make a Johnny Smith model (Guild's model now becomes the Artist award)
    When Gibson moves to Nashville and Heritage begins, Johnny Smith has Heritage build a Johnny Smith model (Gibson alters the scale length and nut size of the Johnny Smith and calls it the Legrand)
    Bob Benedetto redoes the Guild Artist Award. Johnny Smith plays one and endorses it and it goes full circle back to being the Johnny Smith Award (Heritage stops making the Johnny Smith model).

    Guild archtop production in the US ceases and Johnny Smith dies. So there are no more new Johnny Smith guitars or Artist Award guitars. All that is left is the LeGrand.

    And we jazz guitar players have to sort through this mess to figure out what we like.
    _____________________________________________
    "When the chord changes, you should change" Joe Pass

  50. #49

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  51. #50

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    Quote Originally Posted by helios View Post
    The rapier wit of the Jabber remains unequaled!
    I have rapist's wit, helios. I fook up most threads... and nobody wants it.

    And funny, Joe, all you asked about in your OP was the scale length of the Le Grand and for those with any real experience of the Le Grand to pipe in.

    Paisan, take a trip to TMZ. You have got the chops to find out for yourself its "harmonic vibrancy". That is what my last girlfriend said to me, she's packing her dildo because it has got more vibrancy than I do. Sorry, hun, I don't run on batteries, you know.

    That Energizer Rabbit ad...I know whom their target market is.
    Last edited by Jabberwocky; 06-26-2016 at 02:43 AM.