Gibson Les Paul Doublecut

The Gibson Les Paul Doublecut is a double-cutaway version of the Gibson Les Paul electric guitar.

1960 SG Special
renamed from “Les Paul Special Doublecut” in the late 1959, due to the discontinuation of Les Paul affiliation.[1]


Except for Gibson Custom Shop/Historic models, there are currently four types of the Les Paul double cut model.

Custom Shop models
  • Les Paul Doublecut Longhorn
Historic models include

Les Paul Junior DoublecutEdit

1959 Gibson Les Paul Junior (TV Yellow)

One of the first Les Paul Doublecut is the Les Paul Junior Doublecut released in 1958. Like the singlecut version of the LP Junior, it has a single "dog-eared" P-90 single coil pickup. This Les Paul doublecut is currently only available as a Gibson Custom Shop/Historic Reissue model, called the "1958 Junior Doublecut." The Junior, in both its singlecut and doublecut forms, was originally Gibson's "student" model. The initial price of the Les Paul Junior was originally $49.50.

Les Paul Special DoublecutEdit

It is also one of the least expensive Les Paul guitars available. It appears that Gibson has since decided to discontinue much of the faded lines, including the Les Paul Special Double cut for its 2009 lineup.

A much more expensive and historically accurate version of this guitar, the 1960 Les Paul Special, is available as a Custom Shop/Historic Reissue model.

For many years after 1960 no Les Paul Doublecut guitars were produced by Gibson, and when Gibson did start making doublecut Les Pauls again, they were re-issues closely following the original Les Paul Special flat-top (no carved maple cap) design, with P-90 pickups rather than humbucker pickups. In the interim, during the 1970s, a small boutique USA guitar producer, Hamer, began making both flat-top and carved-top doublecutaway guitars very similar to the then-dormant Gibson designs. These Hamer versions of doublecutaway Les Pauls got widespread publicity for their use by the members of the rock band Cheap Trick and others.

Les Paul Faded DoublecutEdit

The Faded Doublecut has its origin in the Les Paul Special Doublecut, which is an all-mahogany flat-top guitar with P-90 pickups first produced from 1958–1960. The "Faded" model is called such because the nitrocellulose finish is not thick and glossy like the original vintage examples or Custom Shop double cut Les Pauls. This finish style is easily susceptible to play wear, thus many examples appear to have been "relic'ed" in the factory, but the wear is real. The body is composed of multiple mahogany (usually four) pieces and is sold with a gig-bag (as opposed to a hard-case).

Doublecut design

The Doublecut had one major design change: the original models had the neck pickup mounted closer to the neck/body join which resulted in a weak neck join. This was changed by moving the neck pick up further into the body.

Other faded finish models

The "Faded Doublecut" is one of a series (at least as of 2007) "faded" models being the SG, Les Paul (single cut with humbuckers) and Flying V. All of these models are made in the USA.

Les Paul Standard & Pro DoublecutEdit

Gibson Les Paul DC (with stetsbar)

The Les Paul Standard and Pro models of the doublecut LP are a newer concept, based on an arched-top Les Paul with humbucker pickups, similar to the Hamer design. The Pro has 22 frets; the Standard has 24 frets. The Standard "Plus" has gold hardware. Unlike other 2-pickup single cutaway Les Pauls, these Gibson doublecutaway versions have one master volume and one master tone control (singlecut Les Pauls with two pickups have two sets of tone and volume controls, one for each pickup). Many believe these newer archtop doublecut Les Pauls were developed in response to the high-end guitars of Gibson competitor Paul Reed Smith (PRS), whose PRS guitars most typically have a doublecut design and master tone and volume controls, and whose production eventually went from a small shop (as Hamer's has stayed) to an assembly-line production rivaling Gibson's. This opinion is further supported by the fact that the first of Gibson's archtop doublecut Les Pauls, the now-discontinued Les Paul Studio doublecut (produced in the late 1990s), had 24 frets, as opposed to Gibson's more standard 22 frets. 24-fret necks are featured on some PRS guitars, and are more popular with heavy metal players who often solo at the high end of the neck.

Notable UsersEdit

See alsoEdit

  • Gibson Melody Maker (1959-1971) - an entry level guitar model similar to Les Paul Junior but with thinner body.
  • Gibson Spirit       (1972-1985) - a guitar model similar to Les Paul Junior DC but with cutaway at 20th fret.


  1. ^ a b Duchossoir 1998, p. 210, Les Paul Special & SG Special, "The Les Paul Special was introduced in 1955 as an intermediate model between the regular Les Paul guitar and the lower-priced Junior and TV instruments. Like the latter, the Special underwent two successive body redesigns in 1958 and 1961 while the Les Paul affiliation was discontinued in late 1959. The model was then renamed SG Special without any apparent changes in the specification other than the removal of Les Paul marking. Overall four variants of the Special can be distinguished between 1955 and 1965.”, “Les Paul Special (1955-1958) ...”, “Les Paul Special (1955-1958) ...”, “Les Paul Special (1959) ...”, “SG Special (1959-1961) ...”, “SG Special (1961-...) ..."
  2. ^ Duchossoir 1998, p. 205, Les Paul Junior & SG Junior
  • Duchossoir, A. R. (1998). Gibson Electrics: The Classic Years: An Illustrated History of the Electric Guitars Produced by Gibson Up to the Mid-1960s. Musical Instruments Series (revised ed.). Hal Leonard Corporation. ISBN 978-0-79359210-4.

External linksEdit