Gibson has a long and glorious history of crafting top-notch electric 12-string guitars, from the elegant ES-335-12 of 1965, to the EDS-1275 that enabled Led Zeppelin’s Jimmy Page to segue seamlessly from the 12-string intro to “Stairway to Heaven” to the ripping 6-string solo in live performance. Now Gibson USA merges its 12-string expertise with a legendary electric for what might be the most powerful-sounding and best-playing rendition of the breed ever created: the Les Paul Traditional 12-String. The guitar is equipped with all the hallmarks of the popular Les Paul Traditional, including its legendary tonewoods, groundbreaking hardware complement and sensational humbucking pickups, with minor alterations to make it a solid and smooth-playing 12-string electric. To top it all off, the Les Paul Traditional 12-String is available in your choice of the three most popular Les Paul finishes—Heritage Cherry Sunburst, Goldtop and Ebony Black—all in high-gloss nitrocellulose lacquer, and complemented with traditional vintage-cream binding and pickguard and gold speed knobs.
Like all of the finest Les Pauls, the Les Paul Traditional 12-String starts with a body made from choice mahogany, weight relieved for your comfort, and capped with a carved maple top (Grade-A maple used beneath the Heritage Cherry Sunburst finish). This combination offers a time-tested marriage of tonewoods that combines the best elements of mahogany’s depth and richness and maple’s clarity and definition. To this foundation, Gibson USA adds a glued-in Grade-A maple neck for the extra stability demanded by the string tension of this 12-string model. The neck is carved to a fast, comfortable ’60s profile that measures .800″ deep at the 1st fret and .875″ at the 12th, and is topped with a Grade-A rosewood fingerboard with 22 medium-jumbo frets and traditional acrylic trapezoid inlays. In order to accommodate six extra strings without cramping your playing style, Gibson USA ekes out a little extra real estate on the ‘board by extending the width of the PLEK-cut Corian™ nut to 1.750″. The extended headstock remains true to Les Paul style, with a mother-of-pearl Gibson inlay and gold “Les Paul Model” silkscreen, a truss-rod cover engraved with “Traditional,” and 12 high-quality Mini Grover tuners.
The pickups are the final key factor in blasting the Les Paul Traditional 12-String through sonic territory into which 12-string electric guitars rarely venture. A ’57 Classic in the neck position and a ’57 Classic Plus in the bridge provide singing chime, sweet in-between tones, or brilliant leads at the flick of a three-way switch, providing more guts and glory than you’ve ever heard in a 12-string before. Both pickups are made in the style of Gibson’s legendary PAF humbuckers, with Alnico 2 magnets and 42 AWG wire, with extra turns in the bridge pickup’s coils for added grind and gusto. An iconic Tune-o-matic bridge and stopbar tailpiece, both modified for the 12-string, provide firm anchors for excellent resonance and sustain, and easy intonation adjustment. All in all, it’s a classic “Traditional” electric 12-string, and one of the most powerful and versatile 12s ever produced.
Each guitar comes protected in a plush-lined hardshell case with black exterior, and includes owner’s manual and adjustment literature, along with Gibson’s Limited Lifetime Warranty and 24/7/365 customer service.
Orville Gibson founded the company in 1902 as “The Gibson Mandolin-Guitar Mfg. Co., Ltd.” in Kalamazoo, Michigan to make mandolin-family instruments. Gibson invented archtop guitars by constructing the same type of carved, arched tops used on violins. By the 1930s, the company was also making flattop acoustic guitars, as well as one of the first commercially available hollow-body electric guitars, used and popularized by Charlie Christian. www.gibson.com