1978 Gibson L5-S

This is a vintage 1978 Gibson L5-S solid body electric guitar with the original hard case. This particular example, serial number 72358022, is in very nice, mostly (99%) original condition, and with a couple of bucks, could easily be restored to be 100% with no evidence of previously changed parts.

Without a doubt considered Gibson’s fanciest solid body guitar, the L-5S has always been considered a luxurious and stunning guitar. This particular example was well-loved and thoroughly enjoyed, and while it isn’t in pristine collector’s condition, it is still in very excellent completely restore-able shape. It is 100% all original aside from one replaced tuner, and replaced pickup rings. The tuner was replaced without additional holes, and without further drilling or enlargement of the existing ferrule hole. It will properly restore without forensic proof of it ever having been changed.

Introduced in 1972, the L5-S was a solid body incarnation of what is arguably Gibson’s most beautifully designed guitar, the L5, and is considered by many owners the pinnacle of their collection. The L5-S was a particularly fine guitar, and the first high end jazz solid body. As the name suggests, it was related to the L5 archtop. The two guitars shared many features including: a single-cutaway body, ebony fingerboard with block inlays, flowerpot headstock inlay, L-5 tailpiece with contrasting silver on gold, and the multilayer binding throughout.

In 1974, the L5-S was issued humbucker pickups, replacing the undesirable recording pickups that it was originally appointed with in ’72. Like a traditional Les Paul Standard with respect to the electronics, it wails and produces glorious harmonics with it’s humbucking pickups. When played clean you can hear L-5 jazz tone influence, albeit without the woody bottom.

The Cherry Sunburst finish is surprisingly intact, and remains very attractive. The maple top and back do not exhibit an inordinate amount of figuring, though flame is clearly visible. There is some expected fret wear on the first few frets, but it still plays amazing. The neck is straight and it does not exhibit much playing wear.

The electronics (pickups, pots, switch) are all original. The original gold hardware is in correspondingly nice shape, and if one were to spend the time to replace the Kluson SealFast tuner, and buy black original pickup rings (easy), this would easily be a $4,500.00 guitar.