GIBSON USA LTD Les Paul Studio LTD Swirl "Silver Swirl + Obeche" (2011)


It’s well known that when it comes to musical instruments, wood and water don’t mix. Controlling the humidity and moisture content of timber is crucial to the manufacture of not only guitars, but stringed instruments in general. So when in May 2010, the Cumberland River in Tennessee broke its banks and flooded the city of Nashville, home to Gibson’s largest manufacturing plant, there were disastrous consequences for all the finished and part-built guitars as well as the valuable wood stocks that were in the factory at the time. Gibson weren’t the only musical casualties of the 2.3 billion dollars worth of damage that the floods caused; many musicians, engineers and sound companies lost everything that was held in various storage facilities in the city. However, the flood water eventually receded, and as soon as the Gibson plant was clear, it was noticed that the river had left incredibly beautiful swirling patterns on the factory floors. Seizing an opportunity to salvage something from the disaster, Gibson was inspired to use the patterns for a new finish, and a year on from the flood launched the Anniversary Flood/Swirl Les Paul.


With an unbound neck and chrome hardware. A welcome feature is the weight-relieved chambered mahogany body, which gives the guitar a completely different feel from a standard Les Paul, with a lot more acoustic resonance while unplugged. The frets are well finished and the guitar has been ‘Plekked’ so the action and intonation are perfect and the nut cut correctly. Other features on the Swirl  include a silver Gibson logo and Les Paul Model on the headstock. There’s also a ‘50’s profile mahogany neck and Obeche' fretboard with trapezoid markers which feels good and chunky and the model is honoured with a set of Grover machine heads. Pick-ups are a Gibson 490R in the neck and 490T in the bridge which is standard for a Les Paul Studio.


This is a good feeling guitar. Nice action and tone. The pickups sound great and everything works as it should. The guitar hasn't actually been played according to its original owner. Whilst that may appear true, judging by the frets and clearcoat, shes has undoubtedly suffered some steaks of lacquer checking which is evident to the top of the guitar.  Judging by other existing models this seems to be a consistent issue for the majority of the swirls/floods on the market today and is likely due to the heavy application of lacquer. Nevertheless, shes ultimately otherwise Very Clean with no impressions, dents or scratches. Comes in a Gibson hardshell case with Case Candy.


  • Specifications

    Serial Number: 125011465

    Time of manufacture: 2011

    Place of manufacture: Nashville Plant, USA

    Neck Shape: 50's shape Neck profile

    Fingerboard: Obeche

    Fret Condition:  Virtually no Fret Wear

    Weight: 8.3 Pounds

    Action: Professionally set-up Low action

    Overall Condition: " Very Good Condition"

    Colour: Silver Swirl

    Originality: 100% Original.

    Dings, Scratches, other: Some finish related checking to the top. Nothing else to report. - Please See Pictures Below.