We received a stunning Collector Choice 18# Dutchburst Les Paul from Gibson (picture of the actual guitar below)
With the Custom Collector’s Choice series, Gibson asked some of the world’s most prominent collectors of rare instruments what their most prized guitars were – some belonging to very famous previous owners or simply being incredibly rare models – and using modern technology, they’ve recreated precise renditions. Now a very lucky few can buy their very own piece of Les Paul history.
With #18 in the series, comes a supremely cool 1960 Les Paul Standard that was originally finished in a Dark Burst finish, living out its life as a hard-working musician’s playing partner until it was sold on to its second owner in 2012. The model was bought in Holland in 1961 – acquiring its “Dutchburst” title – and spent countless hours in the hands of a guitarist who was part of a cruise-ship jazz trio. As a result of its long-life and the incredible care taken to keep it in perfect condition, the Dutchburst has developed a unique tonal character, as well as a distinctive aesthetic that makes it one of the most coveted Les Pauls in the world.
In order to make an exact copy of the beloved Dutchburst, the Gibson Custom team – working in co-operation with the current owner – used modern scanning technology to capture every minute detail, including: the precise curvature of the top, accurate renditions of each critical angle and curve on the body, the slender neck profile, and extensive testing of the delightfully balanced PAF humbuckers.
The Dutchburst’s body has been made from a single piece of solid, one-piece mahogany topped with a 2-piece, unique maple top. Each one was hand-selected to accurately emulate the look of the original. The mahogany/maple combination is the basis for that customary thick, full-bodied Les Paul tone, with miles of sustain, neatly clipped by a hint of snappiness, but always remaining clear and articulate throughout.
The perfectly calibrated neck is crafted from genuine mahogany with a maple spline, and carved to the slender ’60s profile taken from the original Dutchburst. Atop it rests a one-piece Indian rosewood fingerboard, adorned with nitrocellulose trapezoid inlays. The neck is cut to the classic 12″ radius, which is perfectly suited to smooth, effortless string bending. The gorgeous Cream binding blends in with the fret markers perfectly to create a delightfully comfortable and extremely fast neck. The nylon nut has been cut using the Gibson PLEK system, with absolute accuracy for consummate precision.
After spending countless hours testing the original PAFs in the Dutchburst, the Gibson Custom team designed and built two Custombuckers to accurately bring to life that enigmatic “burst-tone”. The pickups can be controlled using the three-way tone selector switch, as well as the traditional tone knob arrangement consisting of two Volume Controls and two Tone Controls with “Bumblebee” capacitors.
Kluson Deluxe Green Key double-band tuners ensure that strings are kept firmly in tune, no matter how hard you rock out. The head has been angled to Gibson’s tried and tested 17 degrees, guaranteeing that string tension is maintained between the tuning machines and nut – aiding in the delivery of a highly resonant tone and fantastic sustain. The headstock features the vintage Black and White bell-shaped truss rod cover, just below the Gibson Pearl inlay.
To provide a firm seating for the strings and to allow easy attenuation of intonation and string height adjustment, an ABR-1 nickel-plated thumbwheel bridge is fitted. The bridge is coupled with the nickel-plated, lightweight aluminium stopbar tailpiece to enhance and support the strings’ connection to the body. Vintage Gold Gibson Top Hats with silver inserts are employed in the roles of the two independent volume and two independent tone controls.
Short of going back in time, the Dutchburst offers the closest possible rendition of an outstanding ’60s Dark Burst finish. The Gibson Custom team have meticulously hand-aged the finish to match the hard-earned character of the 50+ years old Les Paul, right down to the subtle rubbing on the top.
The Dutchburst comes with its very own brown exterior, Gibson Custom Shop hardshell case. Whether you’re at home, in the studio, at a gig or on the road, your pride and joy is well-protected in its bespoke case. Gibson have also included an engraved and leather bound certificate of authenticity for each model, as well as an extra switch plate in the case.
With painstaking accuracy, the Gibson Custom Team have reproduced a heavenly instrument that truly embodies the classic Dark Burst Les Paul of the early 1960s – from the distinctive look to the enigmatic tone -, a fitting tribute to a guitar that is a perfect example of what a Les Paul could be – a workhorse and a beauty.
Gibson have stated that a limited run of up to 300 models will be made, but this is dependent on the availability of appropriate materials, so act fast to avoid disappointment and secure yours today.