Epiphone Les Paul upgrades

Epiphone Les Paul upgrades

I know this post is sort of off topic but I have a new Epiphone Les Paul standard that I’m wanting to upgrade.

I’ve already upgraded the tuners to new Grovers. What I want to know is if it’s possible for me to have a gibson pickup switch installed?

I’d also like to upgrade the pickups… Possibly to burstbuckers or maybe the 498 500t combo… Can this be done also?

I’m young and don’t have a lot of money… But I really love this guitar and would love to do something more with it. Any other ideas you guys could give would be much appreciated. Wait for explanation


This is NOT off topic at all.

Most of the Epi Les Paul Standards that I’ve seen already have Grover tuners. I’m not sure if you replaced the original Grovers or did your guitar have a set of stock tuners on it when you purchased it?

I’m pretty sure this can be done. Someone else will chime in soon to confirm this …or there’s a remote possibility they’ll refute it. :open_mouth:

I’d be damned if this couldn’t be done. There’s many guitarists that switch out the pickups on the Epiphone Les Pauls…, as long as the pickups can fit in the pickup cavities. If they don’t fit in the cavities, you can always carve the cavities or fill them in so that your pickups fit properly.

The pickup switch can easily be replaced, on my LP I use a Switchcraft. If you haven’t done one, you should have it done by a technician.
You should be able to change pickups too, but that is all personal preference. I’m partial to Seymour Duncan. On my Les Paul, I have never changed them. It’s a 71 Custom. I would always recommend getting a guitar with pickups you like. It sounds obvious , but when you start adding up the upgrade costs you can generally just get the guitar the way you want it for the same price without the hassle. Epiphone makes great guitars at affordable prices.
If you love how the guitar feels and plays I guess it makes sense to do upgrades, but I’d rather look for a beat up Gibson with the upgrades built in. One of the best ways to get a deal on a Gibson is to buy one that has had the headstock repaired. It is very common due to the downward angle of the headstock to get a crack near the nut. The value of the guitar goes down dramatically, but if it was repaired properly it will be stronger than a brand new guitar. It happened to mine when a straplock failed. After the shock wore off I realized it stayed in tune better, and I’ll never sell it, so the resale value is not a factor.

@gabaghoul , like others have said you can change anything you want and it’s good to explore all the options. If you want to learn luthiery or just mess around it’s probably better to do it on something cheap that doesn’t matter or else get somebody good to do it for you or else advise you on how to do it.

My 2 cents worth?

The label on the headstock, or lack of it, the finish, or lack of it, the “feel”, whatever that is, don’t matter. As long as it stays mostly in tune and doesn’t have any dead spots or a lot of “wolf” note issues you’re in the ball park. Hardware makes a difference but that’s easily changed so it’s not important either.

What’s important on a glue neck guitar (bolt-ons are different) is the body, neck and the glue joint. It’s the wood and how they interact and it makes a big difference. Each one of these guitars is a unique combination of those three elements You need to try a bunch of them at the same time, acoustically and through a decent amp and do a lot of listening. At some point you need to try some high dollar old Gibsons for a reference point. But remember there are some great players who are happy with no-name guitars. It’s all about how that wood stuff sounds to you. Get that part right and it’s easy to learn what different hardware (strings, picks, and amps too) sounds like.

One disclaimer here, I’m excluding the world of digital modeling from this rant. That’s a whole different ball game.

Just my 2 cents worth.

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I’ve got an Epiphone custom pro koa torn apart on my work bench at this very moment. I bought it brand new back in March. The first thing that I did was level and crown the frets correctly. I then removed the pickups and pots. The cavities had no shielding at all not even that crappy paint. I used aluminum tape to shield everything. I’m installing a Seymour Duncan JB in the bridge and a 59 in the neck. The stock pickups have short legs and the Duncans have long ones. I had to go back and ream the neck cavity slightly to accommodate the longer legs. The stock pots have those annoying quick connectors. So I had to get new CTS pots to replace them. The shafts on the new pots are larger than the stock chinese garbage. At this point I had to carefully ream the holes larger attempting to not chip the finish. All that’s left now is to solder everything back together.
So just be aware that when modifying a guitar, one thing leads to another.

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I’ve never been a Gibson guy - just found the guitars too heavy for me, but I dig their sound completely. The only thing I can offer is this website:


A great way to try new pickups without breaking the bank. I replaced my pickups on my old Yamaha super Strat (you remember those things!) pickups with a set of Nemesis pickups from Entwistle. Just about the best upgrade I’ve made to any guitar ever. Those things are amazing!