In the pulse-pounding conclusion of this story, I shall regale you with the exciting…
Actually, upon further reflection, I decided to just cut my losses and shim the nut. How did it work? Well… the guitar plays great, but I feel like I’m not getting enough sustain on the open G string.
UPDATE – After careful examination, I determined the nut was leaning in, ever so slightly. This meant the string was lying flat over more of the surface of the nut than it should have, which killed the sound a bit. Once I figured this out, I was actually able to remove the shim. Oh happy day!
In reality, I’ve probably taken this guitar as far as it can go. And with all of my Les Pauls as a group, I’ve learned a good lesson – I love the way a Les Paul looks and sounds, but I don’t love how it plays. You can put bigger frets on it, you can improve the pickup, but a Les Paul is a Les Paul. I love them, but… more often than not, I find myself reaching for my wide-thin necked PRS SE Custom 24.
I thought putting jumbo frets in this thing would make me love it, but… I just don’t. The moral of the story is this: if you love a guitar, you know. If you think “I might love this guitar if I change out X,” you’re likely wrong. If you don’t love your guitar, you don’t love it.
If you do love your guitar, by all means upgrade all the parts. Why the hell not?
So now I have an Epiphone Les Paul with jumbo frets and a Pearly Gates bridge pickup. It’s going to get played, but mostly it’s going to hang on my wall.