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1984 Greco Mint Collection JS55 John Sykes Custom Black Beauty Vintage Guitar Ebony, Japan Fujigen


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Up for sale, a 1984 Greco JS55 John Sykes Custom “Black Beauty” in exceptional condition and in perfect working order. From the first year of this model's production and part of the famed Greco Mint Collection, this Personal Series model was crafted in Japan's Fujigen factory. A staple in the ‘80s riff realm, Sykes is most notably known as a guitarist for both Thin Lizzy and Whitesnake. Featuring John’s signature black/silver aesthetic with mirrored pickup surrounds, this lawsuit-era LP truly delivers the goods, with incredible attention to vintage Gibson spec. And while no legal action was taken against Greco for these guitars, Gibson did commission the same factory to make their "Orville" line of instruments which were produced concurrently with this model and exclusively sold within Japan.

The JS55 model features a carved maple top, mahogany body, long neck tenon, "Screamin" PAF pickups, braided pickup leads, full-size pots, and a brass nut. It's a lively and powerful sounding instrument, and the craftsmanship is evident in the great playability and classic range of Les Paul tones. At 10lbs 9oz, this Greco dishes out plenty of natural sustain and sonic heft, qualities translated faithfully through the PAF-style humbuckers. Featuring alnico magnet construction, the bridge pickup is dynamic and clear with a touch of midrange growl and a round bass register, while the neck pickup is fat, yet detailed. This Greco benefits from a professionally setup here at Mike & Mike’s Guitar Bar with 10-46 strings, low action, and spot-on intonation.

The neck has a medium C-shaped profile carve at the nut, gaining additional heft and roundness in the upper registers, measuring .850” deep at the 1st fret and .975” at the 12th. The bound rosewood fretboard is a notably dark cut with pearloid block inlay and stock medium jumbo frets which show light wear beneath the plain strings on the crowns of frets 1-8. This guitar plays cleanly up the 24 3/4“ scale with a straight neck and a responsive, optimally-adjusted truss rod. The brass nut measures 1 11/16" in width. On the headstock, the guitar features a small volute, multi-ply binding, nickel-plated Gotoh tuners with Grover Rotomatic-style buttons, and clean pearloid "tulip" inlay designed to be reminiscent of Gibson's "split diamond" look.

All of the electronics function as intended; the three original full-size pots date to ‘84, with one modern CTS 500k replacement, and the pickups are wired with the same high quality braided leads seen on genuine Gibsons. Both humbuckers retain the PAF-style “Screamin 1982” decals on their baseplates. Nickel-plated hardware includes the ABR-1-style bridge and stopbar, with just a faint speckling of surface patina, and plastics comprise the mirrored pickup surrounds, quartet of reflector knobs, and black switch tip.

The gloss Ebony finish is framed by multi-ply binding, with cosmetic wear limited to a small area of buckle rash on the back central to the waist and a handful of minor dings on the body as a whole, largely relegated to the back and lower bout perimeter. The neck profile retains its smooth gloss, with a scant few shallow marks along the profile length that have no impact on playability.

A gigbag is included.