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1998 Epiphone by Gibson Les Paul Standard Goldtop, Japan Fujigen


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Up for sale, a 1998 Epiphone by Gibson Les Paul Standard Goldtop in exceptional, 100% original condition and in perfect working order. Crafted in Japan at the Fujigen factory, this Epiphone was a result of the longstanding partnership between Gibson USA and their Japanese distributor, Yamano-Gakki.

Designed only to be sold within the Japanese domestic market and featuring Gibson's "open book" headstock shape, this uncommon Epiphone iteration of the classic Les Paul Standard platform features a carved maple top, solid mahogany body and neck with a long tenon joint, and a bound rosewood fretboard. The stock humbuckers are in the vein of a lower-wind PAF, metering at 7.3k ohms, delivering both clarity and warmth. This Epiphone weighs 9lbs 12oz, professionally setup here at Mike & Mike’s Guitar Bar with 10-46 strings, low action, and spot-on intonation.

The mahogany neck has a medium C-shaped profile carve with just enough roundness in the shoulders at the nut, gaining additional heft further up the fretboard, measuring .840” deep at the 1st fret and .965” at the 12th. The bound rosewood fretboard has pearloid trapezoid inlay, and the medium jumbo fretwire is nigh flawless, benefitting from a level and crown. This guitar plays cleanly up the 24 3/4“ scale with a straight neck and a responsive, optimally-adjusted truss rod. The nut measures 1 11/16” in width, carved from bone for optimal note clarity and sustain. The headstock features Gibson's distinctive "open book" shape, something only offered on Japanese-made domestic market Epiphone instruments, as well as a “Gibson”-embossed truss rod cover. The original Kluson-style tuners with lightly greened keystone buttons turn smoothly and hold accurate pitch, and the back of the headstock retains the “Made in Japan” script text and inked serial, dating production to 1998.

The electronics function as intended, with the pickups wired to the stock harness and governed by a standard Les Paul control configuration. Hardware comprises the nickel-plated ABR-1 bridge and stopbar, both of which have a very faint dusting of surface patina. Plastics include a quartet of gold speed knobs, cream pickup rings and switch surround, and a cream single-ply pickguard.

The gloss Goldtop finish is notably well-kept, with cosmetic wear limited to a few dings on the back and body perimeter. The neck profile retains its smooth gloss, with two cleanly filled marks on the carve behind frets 2 and 9 that are imperceptible to the palm.

A gigbag is included.