Up for sale, a 1978 Greco EX800 Explorer in near-mint, 100% original condition and in perfect working order, complete with the original hardshell case. One of the more unique and rare "lawsuit era" instruments produced at the beginning of one of Japan's most storied periods of guitar production, the EX800 faithfully replicates Gibson's original Explorer design with superb build quality.
If your brain immediately goes to early Van Halen territory, we can hardly blame you, as this guitar features identical construction to the Ibanez Destroyer model 2459 used extensively on Van Halen I. The EX800 is the same instrument under a different name, with a more Gibson-esque headstock logo, made in the famed Fujigen factory alongside its Ibanez Destroyer cousin. Same factory, same guitar!
The EX800 is loaded with the original pair of Maxon-made U-2000 humbuckers (the Super 70 humbuckers in the Ibanez iteration are also Maxon-made). These pickups feature Alnico V magnets and are articulate and warm, with good top end growl, sustain, and punch, responding well to thick overdrive. Each pickup reads 7.8k ohms, firmly in the medium output PAF range, delivering an open, dynamic top end response. The solid ash body has prominent grain, highlighted by a transparent ambered Natural finish and paired with a three-piece maple neck and glued-in long tenon neck joint. The guitar has a particularly resonant and clear natural acoustic tone, with the midrange complexity and clear note attack inherent in ash. This Explorer weighs 8lbs 6oz, professionally setup here at Mike & Mike's Guitar Bar with 11-49 strings, low action and accurate intonation.
The three-piece maple neck has a slender C-shaped profile carve with moderate shoulder and a fast feel, measuring .810” deep at the 1st fret and .915” at the 12th. The extremely dark, tight-grained rosewood fretboard features perfect medium jumbo fretwire, and the guitar plays cleanly up the 24 3/4“ scale with a straight neck and a responsive, optimally-adjusted truss rod. The bone nut measures a full 1 11/16” in width. On the headstock, the original Greco-branded chrome tuners turn smoothly, and the A78-prefix serial number dates to January of 1978.
On the body, all of the electronics function as intended with untouched solder joints on the harness, full-size pots which date to '78, and Maxon-made U-2000 pickups that have six-digit stamps on the baseplates dating back to 1977. The long neck tenon is visible in the neck pickup cavity. The hardware includes a Nashville-style Tune-o-Matic bridge and corresponding stopbar, both of which have bright chrome plating. Plastics include the original gold bonnet knobs and white multi-ply pickguard.
The gloss finish (referred to as "African Korina" in the Ibanez catalog) is stunningly clean, with cosmetic wear limited to a couple tiny finish chips on the body points, a bit of chatter along the back treble-side upper bout edge, and just a few additional tiny marks and faint finish scratches in the clear coat. The ambered gloss finish on the neck profile is immaculate.
The original black tolex hardshell case with form-fit blue plush interior is included.