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Antoria refurb advice

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I have a 70s lawsuit era lefty Les Paul Custom in black that I've had since 1996(£90 from A1 music in Manchester) Mahogany body and showing it's age

It came with gold hardware which was tatty in 96 so I replaced with shiny chrome. I still have the original hardware in a bag in my office somewhere but I've ordered new gold hardware to freshen it up. 

The front and back of the body are pretty good but the sides at it's widest points on both sides are dinged and a bit tatty. 

I'm not sure whether to leave as is or refinish and repaint or do something else to stop things from getting worse. Also the centre bit of the split diamond inlay raised and split and looks naff. IMG_20220504_181014.thumb.jpg.3ca37a644377e460cc24ac343b4b4b60.jpgIMG_20220504_181034.thumb.jpg.366f4201e3674e3e19639a535eee7b01.jpgIMG_20220504_181116.thumb.jpg.cc7ba35f43d6ed88168bf6891007cb35.jpgIMG_20220504_181056_edit_381926424709951.thumb.jpg.e72c04d42178bb960fbb2ea1bfa9f4d4.jpgIMG_20220504_180931_edit_381966913253695.thumb.jpg.2e1219c6bced892bf994176c082f87ae.jpg

Any advice is welcome


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I had a 'Shaftsbury' version of that guitar back then (well, I say 'I'; in fact I bought it for John Mac, our 2nd guitar at the time, as he couldn't afford one himself. It ended up in my parent's attic, and goodness knows what happened to it...). I'd not recommend a paint job, prefering to let it wear its battle scars with pride, whilst keeping it from gathering more. It's possible, and relatively easy, to touch up the bouts, but it'll be difficult to match the black's lustre. Let it age gently and peacefully.

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Maybe a very light sanding of the problem areas, a bit of touch up and a few light coats of lacquer to keep it where it's at without going overboard. 

It's going on for 50 years old so I don't want to do too much. 

Refitting the original hardware would have been nice but I've too much on to go hunting for it at the mo. 

Would like to get a new piece for the split diamond inlay as it bugs me the way it is. 

I had a bit of a play with it before I stripped it down and it's just so easy to play and sounds great. 

It's a heavy beast though. 😁

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Posted (edited)

Well I went for light sanding and lacquer approach on the edges to keep it's wear damage. 

It will need some more flatting once my wet and dry arrives and will match the sheen on the untouched front and back all being well. 

Cleaned and fed the fretboard after doing the frets and polishing. 


Also being lefty means used guitars are harder to find and I saw this Aria Stg 004 local to me and a deal was struck for £35. Hss with coil split toggle. The body is great apart from one ding. 

It had been unloved for a long time with black strings and frets, the action was so high you could limbo under it. The truss rod was way out as the neck had a forward bow. 

The truss was tweaked and the fretboard cleaned and the frets polished. Left the neck a couple of days to settle a bit but it needed a really good tweak to get suitable relief. 

The action was still higher than I like and the bridge setting were as low as they'd go so I shimmed the neck. 

Much better and some light work on the nut brought it all together. 

Wiring wise I shielded the cavities and wired for one master tone. 

The middle tone pot was split open and the track cut at one end. 

Refitted and wired for a neck blender pot. 

So one end it's open circuit so no loading, then by turning it slowly brings the neck pickup in circuit for more choices with all pickups on position 2 and neck blending with the bridge humbucker/split single.

Happy with it, it plays well and has an array of tones. 

The knobs are righty which is messing with my ocd and not sure whether to put a black pickguard on it. IMG_20220508_150802.thumb.jpg.22320a90289c995c8cfcde61fcfa2a2f.jpgIMG_20220508_150738_edit_590493113706251.thumb.jpg.cc6ba12e9f953265b80f5f2ac2d5f3c0.jpg

Hopefully the gold stuff for the Antoria will be here soon so I can finish it. 


The delays are costing me money with little side projects. 


A graphite nut has arrived for my recent Epiphone Express Sg Special 3/4 scale so I may replace the shimmed and recut original righty nut if I get bored. 


Edited by Syemon
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