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Kay Les Paul copy guitar identification?

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  • Kay Les Paul copy guitar identification?

    First, I am new to this forum and appreciate anyone who takes the time to read this. I've had this guitar since around 1992. I have been unable to find out any information on this guitar because I unfortunately have little to start with. There are no serial numbers or any ID numbers of any kind anywhere. I have checked on the headstock, on the body where the neck bolts on and in the body where the pots and switch are. I even tried finding a source code on the pots but the only numbers there are D550K... nothing indicating a date for the pot. I've tried searching the internet and have attempted to contact several people with no response. Any information anyone can provide would be greatly appreciated. If there are any questions, I'll do my best to answer them to the best of my knowledge. Please note at some point the tuners were upgraded to Grovers. Perhaps more mods were made to it making it that much more difficult to identify. Thanks!

  • #2
    The styling makes me think late 70's, early 80's, but that is just a guess. Earlier Kay electrics were more unique shapes, and the later stuff were flat out copies of other makers like Gibson and Fender. Kay serial numbers start with a K, and the closest I can find is a K30, but that has trapezoid inlays, rather than LP custom type inlays. So, not quite correct. Kay used to number things such that the first digit was the body style, so it could a K3XXXX of some kind. Not much help, I know, but it is pretty hard to guess what it is, as Kay made lots of special runs for department stores and such, so it might be a limited run like that, which makes it really hard to even guess. The original serial number was on a sticker on the back of the headstock or neckplate, but it is probably long gone. Anyway, I've never seen one exactly like that.

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    • #3
      tiltsta: Thanks for your reply, that's more information than I've received from anyone I've tried emailing or contacting. Yes, if there was a serial number on a sticker, it's long gone because I've never seen it. I appreciate your input!

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      • #4
        In the emortal words of Sgt Schultz, "I know nutting". Just wanted to say that it's a beautiful historical piece. American made?
        My 9/11 Tribute Song: https://vimeo.com/49284582

        The 9/11 Wall of Shame (caught stepping in it):
        http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=T3s4_dkKn8Y
        http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=x6Xoxaf1Al0
        http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-jPzAakHPpk
        http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4n7uJ...feature=relmfu
        https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QU961SGps8g

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        • #5
          I would guess Japanese, but, again, I am no expert. I think Kay had wrapped up US manufacture by the early 60's or so.

          You can try to pull the neck off. I think Kay stamped the heel of the neck with a date code with the first two digits being the year, and the last 4 being month/day or production number. Might be more info in there are well. If there is a stamp, it might give you more leads.

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          • #6
            Thx Tilts, I couldn't remember if Kay caved in like Harmony and sent their manufacturing abroad as well. Let's not forget that Elmore James made his mark on a Kay -60's American made.
            My 9/11 Tribute Song: https://vimeo.com/49284582

            The 9/11 Wall of Shame (caught stepping in it):
            http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=T3s4_dkKn8Y
            http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=x6Xoxaf1Al0
            http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-jPzAakHPpk
            http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4n7uJ...feature=relmfu
            https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QU961SGps8g

            Comment


            • #7
              fretmonster: Not sure where it was made, either. No stamps or markings that I can find anywhere. I would probably agree with tiltsta that its Japanese, but again, not sure. It's pretty heavy and actually seems to be well made. Thanks for checking it out. By the way, nice Hogan's Heroes reference.

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