Being in the guitar resell and also from buying for a major chain let me put the easiest way in to spot a fake Gibson or Fender.It's very easy and can be fast or slow depending on which guitar it is.First if you think the deal is too good to be true..then it is unless a seller is willing to give you all information about the guitar.If your not a qualified buyer(maybe not a pro but know guitars very well)or a starter looking for something decent to start out on learning but want a Gibson or Epiphone or Fender.First if it is not listed in the add.Ask a question is a great way to get this information.Always ask for full serial number on guitar.I am yet not to ask a legit seller of an instrument and not get one.If seller refuses to give you and show a picture of at least a partial that is a good sign also other than stated in the ebay comments about fake guitars from China and other countries as well.Next once you get the serial number if it is a Gibson or Fender especially, call the factory their data base is very extensive and they can tell you if the serial is at least databased.Now this is not true for all Gibson guitars for some of those have not been registered but all they need to verify it is a picture of the guitar and a picture of the serial number and they send to Gibson they actually get back to you pretty quickly.
Fender can do the same thing and again if a seller refuses to give you a pic of the serial to verify by calling manufacturer then again it is more likely a fake.Now i am talking about sellers from the U.S. Very few do this here in the U.S. but some do.And to let them know if they read this and to those of you reading who do not know.This is a Federal Crime and is not treated litely through our court systems.Selling fakes might be good business for a little while to those who choose to do it here in the U.S. But i would not want to be in your shoes if caught.And you will when you sell to a knowing buyer like myself how to spot one after having it in hand.But also something i never seen in ebays spotting fake Gibsons and such.These people are getting very smart and are starting to buy the real deal pick-ups and bridges and machine head(tuners) usually used and they are starting to match the weight of the guitar(another give away if you purchase one) e.g. a Gibson Les Paul Standard weights in at 9.5 lbs.Most fakes weigh in arounf 6.5 to 7 lbs but i have seen these fakes weigh exactly 9.5 lbs.So your best friend is always the serial number first.Asking a seller specific questions that they cannot answer and the way they answer is helpful but not always true.Some sellers honestly do not know what they have but again going to the source with the serial is your best friend.If they refuse to give you serial number then you know the rest of the story.Be smart when buying a Guitar on ebay.If you don't know i am sure with as many people that play guitar in the U.S. now you can find someone who would know how and what to ask a seller and be able to tell by their answer's(if any).Ask someone on ebay that is respected seller of instruments and i am sure you will find at least one that would help.Ask Ebay to look into it.I am not sure of their policy on it but they should help.If all else fails and your in doubt.Go with your gut feeling after trying the above and i think most of us on here buying guitars and wanting to make sure we get what we pay for.Ask the question's people,don't get burned on a fake.Lat but not least.If you buy a fake the worse thing you can do is attempt to resell it on ebay anyway,but i highly suggest not selling it at all.Once finding out it is a fake contact Ebay trust and safety,have the evidence it is a fake and whom you bought it off of(never delete sellers information until you know and it is always on the receipt from paypal you get so as i have always seen).