The Twelfth Fret ~ Since 1977 ~

2003 Epiphone Elite Les Paul Standard (NO LONGER AVAILABLE)

Price: CDN $999.99
US Price: US $796.36
*US dollar exchange varies daily
Class: Used
S/N: F300197, built at the Japanese Fuji-gen plant in 2003
Here's something relatively rare - from 2003, a Japanese-made Epiphone Elite Les Paul Standard. Many players are aware of the Epiphone Elitist, but they appeared in 2002 as Epiphone Elite. By 2004, the name changed to Elitist due to copyright complaints from Ovation. The only difference between the Elite and Elitist models, other than the dates of manufacture, is a change from the Elite to Elitist decal.

The Epiphone Elite Les Paul Standard was built in this version from 2002 to 2005, as a reproduction of a late 1950's plain top Les Paul. In late 2003, the sticker on the back of the head changed from 'Elite' to 'Elitist'. It features USA Classic pickups and US-style hardware including Grover Roto-Matic tuners and speed knobs.

This example dates to 2003 and was built in the Fuji-Gen plant. It's very well built with traditional Les Paul construction - a one piece mahogany back with a nice, though somewhat plain, two-piece maple cap. The neck is mahogany with a rosewood fingerboard - the frets were installed after the binding, unlike Gibson's traditional practice. This means the end of the fret bead is visible, and there's a bit more playing surface. The headstock is the somewhat wider Elite design. The neck profile is quite comfortable, reminiscent of a slimmer late 1950's shape.

This guitar has been played - there is some fretwear and a couple of dents on the back. It's currently strung with light guage strings and it might benefit from a setup. A gig bag is included.

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