This kinda blows .... http://www.warmoth.com/Guitar/Bodies...rect.aspx?i=27
I only say that because I have nearly saved up some munay-checkage to buy an Explorer bass body that I wanted to use to make own "Exploiter". Shoot! I've been wanting to do that for ages, now I can't. Major league suckage!
I checked Warmoth's bodies in stock for one and .... nothin.
One thing for certain, I'm not gonna go right out and buy some Gibson or Epiphone now just because I can't buy an exact duplicate of the Explorer bass body. Other shapes will work for my purposes. For that matter I'm sure I could pay a luthier to cut me out a "replacement" body with an ever-so-slight shape difference. I wasn't going to leave it stock shaped anyhow.
If you try to buy any Gibson body type from them (T-Bird, Explorer, SG, Flying V, Les Paul, and maybe one or two others I may have missed) you get that same "NOT NO BUT HELL NO!" page that I linked above.
Warmoth has been offering those styles for years, perhaps decades. Suddenly Gibson has a stick up their butt about it. Do they really think folks are going to buy a Les Paul from Gibson rather than buy a body from Warmoth? People that buy that stuff want to DIY an axe, they aren't in the market for a complete guitar. I realize that Warmoth supplies untold numbers of luthiers and builders that sell "copies" .. but what Gibson is failing to understand is that all this will serve to do is have Warmoth design some ever-so-slight difference in the body shapes, rename them to something obvious (the "Less Paul" or perhaps "Single Cut") and perhaps even increase sales due to an improved design. Forced Evolution.
It takes teensy tiny minute design changes to legally sidestep design copyrights, an audience will never ever be able to tell the difference between a "real" Gibson and a copied body shape, even if it is done to respect the copyrights.
It seems Gibson may not have heard the phrase "be careful what you wish for, you just may get it!"
There's most likely a multitude of facets in this issue, many sides to take, many points of view to snuggle up with. I'm sure the litigation must be all encompassing ... I mean even companies like Dean, ESP, Carvin, many others, make Les Paul, Explorer, Flying V, et-al ~copies~ .. so I would guess Gibson is taking on everyone. I suppose it is going to depend on the judge that oversees the case. I mean, what exactly will define what a Les Paul looks like? Or how close/far from one body shape (or another) does something have to be before it's in violation of the design copyright? Could get ugly.
Whatever man .... I just work here.
Just for trivial reasons, here's what I was going to do to it ... so it's not like it was going to be an exact ~dupe~ of the Explorer ....
Or perhaps Cut#7 .. a dehorned Cut#5.
My feelings exactly, John.
These times we live in!