How to Spot a Fake Gibson Les Paul in Seconds

(Image credit: Damian Fanelli)

Recently, we shared some incredibly popular advice from guitarist Kennis Russell"How to Spot a Fake Fender Stratocaster in Seconds."

Russell made the video because, at some point, he bought a used Strat at his local guitar shop and soon realized it was fake.

Well, this sort of thing seems to happen to Russell fairly often, because that's also the back-story to his follow-up video, "How to Spot a Fake Gibson in Seconds," which you can stream below.

"I picked up a fake Gibson Les Paul Custom Goldtop at my local pawn shop." Russell writes. "Within a few seconds of playing, I realized it was a fake, and a bad fake at that. In this video, I compare this fake Gibson Les Paul Custom to an Epiphone Les Paul Custom and a Real Gibson Les Paul. Here are the things I identified as fake: poor binding, the truss-rod cover, the fret inlays, the bridge, the serial number, the headstock, logo, tuners and more."

Basically, if you have doubts about a recent purchase—or if you just want to be prepared for the future—tou might find some valuable information here.

For more videos by Russell, be sure to drop in on his YouTube channel, which you'll find in this general region.

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Damian Fanelli
Editor-in-Chief, Guitar World

Damian is Editor-in-Chief of Guitar World magazine. In past lives, he was GW’s managing editor and online managing editor. He's written liner notes for major-label releases, including Stevie Ray Vaughan's 'The Complete Epic Recordings Collection' (Sony Legacy) and has interviewed everyone from Yngwie Malmsteen to Kevin Bacon (with a few memorable Eric Clapton chats thrown into the mix). Damian, a former member of Brooklyn's The Gas House Gorillas, was the sole guitarist in Mister Neutron, a trio that toured the U.S. and released three albums. He now plays in two NYC-area bands.