Les Paul Standard Gold Top + 1953 Gibson GA-30 Combo amplifier Guitars

1952 Gibson Les Paul Standard Gold Top + 1953 Gibson GA-30 Combo amplifier

Color: Gold Top, Rating: 9.25, Sold (ID# 01998)
Call to Inquire: (818) 222-4113


An All Original and Near Mint 1952 Gibson Les Paul GoldTop
Complete with an Original Matching 1953 Gibson GA-30 Amplifier


1952 Gibson Les Paul Standard Gold Top + 1953 Gibson GA-30 Combo amplifier


This totally original 'under-the-bed' Les Paul Standard Gold Top weighs just 8.70 lbs. and has nice, fat nut width of just over 1 11/16 inches and a standard Gibson scale length of 24 3/4 inches. Solid mahogany body with a gold-finished solid carved maple top. One-piece mahogany neck with a wonderful fat and thick profile. Brazilian rosewood fretboard with 22 original thin (.070) frets and inlaid pearl trapezoid (crown) position markers. The top of the guitar has single cream binding and the fretboard has single white binding. Headstock with inlaid pearl "Gibson" logo and with "Les Paul Model" silk-screened in gold. This is a very early Les Paul with no serial number on the back of the headstock as usual. Two-layer bell-shaped black on white plastic truss-rod cover secured by two screws. Individual single-line "no-name" Kluson Deluxe tuners (stamped inside "2356766/PAT APPLD.") with single-ring tulip-shaped Keystone plastic buttons. Two original P-90 pickups with cream plastic covers and outputs of 8.30k at the neck position and 7.91k at the bridge. Single-layer cream plastic pickguard secured by metal side bracket and top screw. Four controls (two volume, two tone) on lower treble bout plus three-way pickup selector switch on upper bass bout. 1952 (5/8 inch tall) gold plastic barrel-shaped "Speed" knobs. The potentiometers are stamped "615 0689 218" (IRC, May 1952) and the two original capacitors are stamped "Grey Tiger Type GT 452 .02 MFD 400 VDC." Combination "wrap-under" trapeze bridge/tailpiece with "Pat Pending" stamped on the edge, secured by two screws and the strap button. This sixty-five-year-old "time-capsule" is in near mint (9.25) condition. There is some very fine finish checking and two tiny 'dings' (the size of a match-head) on the top and a few miniscule surface indentations on the back. The frets are original and show just the tiniest amount of playing wear. This guitar is without a doubt one of the finest and most original examples that we have ever seen and most fortunately the neck angle on this example is perfect, just like a late '53 "stop-tail" and therefore makes this a really playable guitar - somewhat unusual for a 'Trapeze-Tailpiece' guitar… and - it's also one of the best sounding P-90 Les Paul's we have ever heard! Housed in its original Gibson "four-latch" shaped brown hardshell case with pink plush lining (9.25). Included with this amazing 'time capsule' is the original Gibson Amplifier complete with original four-page "Gibson Model GA-30 Amplifier Instructions." There is also lots of case candy including the original tri-fold hang tag, the original tan leather guitar strap, an original (1951) Gibson eight-page Gibson catalog showing the GA-30 amplifier, an original (1954) "L.D. Heater Music Co." 'Les Paul Models' information sheet, original case key in it's manilla envelope, the original "Gibson Guitars Pick of the Stars" in original plastic case, an original boxed set of Gibson Mona-Steel strings (1st, 3rd, 4th & 6th strings only) and two early fifties Les Paul and Mary Ford 45 rpm records.

"The first Gibson Les Paul solidbody electric guitar, known simply as the Les Paul Model then but now better known by its descriptive nickname 'gold-top', first went on sale during 1952" (Tony Bacon, 50 Years of the Gibson Les Paul, p. 15).

"The new Les Paul guitar was launched by Gibson in 1952, in the summer, priced at $210, which was about $20 more than Fender's Telecaster sold for at the time…Today, a gold-finish Les Paul model is nearly always called a gold-top thanks to its gold body face…The new gold-top's solid body cleverly combined a carved maple top bonded to a mahogany base, a sandwich that united the darker tonality of mahogany with the brighter sonic 'edge' of maple. Paul said that the gold colour of the original Les Paul model was his idea. 'Gold means rich,' he said, 'expensive, the best, superb'" (Tony Bacon, 50 Years of the Gibson Les Paul, pp. 20-21).

This is a near mint GA-30 Combo which puts out a healthy 14 watts. Light brown tolex covered cabinet with single wide rectangular, brown cloth bordered grill opening with "Gibson" in brass on brown cloth in center of grill. Cabinet measurements: 22 1/4 inches wide x 17 1/2 inches high x 7 1/2 deep. Weight: 27 lbs.
One 12 inch Jensen Alnico 5 PM speaker stamped "1880 D1" on cone and "P12S C5465' and "220330" (July 1953) on casing. One 8 inch Jensen Alnico 5 PM speaker stamped "3997 H3" on cone and "5013" (March 1950) on casing. Two channels with one 'microphone' and two 'instrument' inputs.
Base mounted chassis with six tubes: 2 x 6V6GT (output); 1 x 6SC7; 2 x 6SJ7 (pre-amp); and 1 x 5Y3GT rectifer.
On/off switch; 2 amp fuse; 1 tone control; 2 volume controls. Potentiometers stamped 615 0689 305 (IRC, Feb 1953).

This amp is in near mint condition (the power cord has been replaced with a three-prong plug). The GA-30 is somewhat of a 'Jekyll and Hyde' - it can be very sweet but it can also turn quite 'nasty' (in a very nice way) when pushed… it is a truly spectacular little combo. This (the first version) of the GA-30 was manufactured between 1948 and 1954.

Although the Gibson company is primarily known for it's fine guitars, the Gibson EH Series amp (late thirties) pre-dates anything made by Fender or Marshall. The Gibson amps go way back and there have been some really interesting models… "Gibson’s midline amp was changed for the third time in three years, as the short-lived GA-25 (which replaced the short-lived BR-4) was superseded by the identically priced GA-30. Cosmetically, the porthole speaker openings were replaced with a large, rectangular picture frame-style with a Gibson logo across the middle.
The 1949 Electric Guitars catalog showed the GA-30 with a two-knobbed control panel, as on the 25 (this was a new photo, not a reprint of the 25 from the ’47-’48 catalog), although most GA-30s had separate volume controls for the mic and three instrument inputs. An extra 6SJ7 preamp tube was assigned to the mic input to accommodate the extra volume control, in turn requiring the twin 6J5 phase inverter of the 25 to be replaced with a single 6SC7 to maintain a six-tube chassis. The two 6V6 power tubes and 5Y3 rectifier were basically unchanged.
A bass “Tone Expander” switch inserted/bypassed a low-frequency blocking capacitor in the negative feedback loop of the Instrument channel circuit; on the two-knob version, the switch was located on the control panel between the volume and tone controls, on the three-knob version, the mic input was moved into the row of instrument inputs and the Tone Expander was installed directly below, in its place.
The deeply textured “dark brown leatherette” covering of the 25 and early GA-30s was short-lived, replaced after about a year by a smooth, light brown material. This model would run until the change to the more powerful top-mounted chassis two-tone model in 1954." (Vintage Guitar Magazine).

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