Whitstable Guitars

A selection of good quality, used guitars and specialising in imports from Japan since 2008

1997 Epiphone Elite Les Paul Special Heritage Cherry Finish. Made in Japan & new hard case



Well, here's another rarity I was able to find in Japan. It's a 1996 Epiphone Elite Les Paul Special. "Nothing unusual there!" I hear you say, which is true until you look at the headstock. Not an Epiphone headstock at all but more of a Gibson "open book" shape. That's because it was built at the Fujigen-Gakki facility in Japan. From 1988-1998 Distributor Yamano Gakki was building guitars for the Gibson company and branding them as Orville. In around 1996-1998 they changed the logo from Orville to Epiphone Elite. They later changed again to Epiphone Elitist but all the guitars are made at the same factories, are  superb and highly sought after. This one was built at Fujigen. This is the first Elite Les Paul Special I have had & I have to say, it's superb. Top quality construction. Gibson USA pickups

The overall condition is good for a 20+ year old guitar although there are a few small knocks and dents around the edges. The worst of these I repaired but the other marks add character IMO and the guitar just looks great. The neck is lovely. It's slim & a C profile and very playable. 

As you can see from the photos, I have taken a photo of the base of the pickups which, like a lot of other Gibson pickups, are unbranded. Goodness knows why but I'm reliably informed that this was a common practice by Gibson

Epiphone Les Paul Special Specifications

Body Material: Solid Mahogany with a set neck 

Neck material: Mahogany

Fingerboard: Rosewood

22 medium frets with dot inlays

Scale Length 24" 

Width at 1st fret 42.5mm

Width at 12th fret 52.5mm

Weight: 3196 grammes (7lb 7oz)

Vintage Oval Button tuners 

Tune-o-matic bridge & stop bar tailpiece

Black/W/B 3 ply  pickguard

2 x P90 Pickups

3 way switch

2 x Volume & 2 x Tone Controls

New Thomann fitted hard case

Hard Case

As said many times, all my guitars come shipped in a new black hard case which is included in the price. I find this is the safest way to avoid damage in transit.  Alternatively, if you are collecting the guitar and, like some buyers have cases coming out of their ears, that's no problem, I'll adjust the price (usually around a £30 discount) and I can usually find you an old gigbag to take the guitar away in. The only hard and fast rule I have is that I won't ship a guitar in a gigbag

If you are further interested in this guitar, you can either email me with any queries & I'll do my best to get back to you within 24 hours.

Or, you can buy easily and safely using the paypal "buy now" button. Don't forget to select the right option using the drop down menu on price, i.e. Collection, UK shipping or EU shipping. If in doubt, please email me first as Highlands & Islands can sometimes be a little dearer for shipping