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User Name Thread Name Subject Posted
Anonny Mouse Folk Guitar (37) RE: Folk Guitar 09 Mar 06

Well, we'd all like to go get us some Martins! But if yer just startin' out or looking for something a bit more economical, the brand I hear mentioned the most in these here parts are from Godin (Seagull, Norman, Art & Lutherie, Simon & Patrick). Since you already have a Seagull, you know what I'm talkin' about. Some of Martin's lower end instruments (the 15 & 16 series) get good reviews...but they aren't a low priced, and some feel once ya get below the "18" series, you may not get the best bang fer yer buck or pound!

Frankly, I ain't real crazy about the China brands--read lots of stories of possible "green" wood used, and cracks and the like-and Blueridges, while driving some Martin nuts nuts, only have a 1 yr. warrantee. I think ya gotta also watch out for the Guild "GAD" series as they're made in China too-probably the SAME PLANT as the Blueridge/Johnson gits. Breedlove has the "Atlas" series-reasonable, but Korean. Cort-another decent, but imported git. Personally I gotta say I've been most impressed with Larrivees of late, esp the lower end ones which are solid woods thru and thru...usually satin finish. Since FMC bought up Guild and Tacoma, they're both made out west in the Tacoma plant--and those gits were pretty sweet too, but the bridges look a little weird on 'em. But they're resonably price-wise-the Tacomas-and I played a reeeeeel nice little Tacoma OM that was SWEET sounding. I'd avoid Gibsons if they were from the Norlin years--they really screwed up a vaunted American brand...I think they're comin' back tho in the Q/C dept.

Thing is it's a smorgasbord out there now and there are even a coupla US luthiers who'll BUILD you a handmade git for under 2k-which is pretty good. Like everyone says--play a bunch of whatever, ignore what it says on the headstock...and get the one that sounds the best to you. Also-if you have a pal you can take along who plays, give the gits yer trying to him--and sit about 4-5 feet away and listen. It can make a lot of difference.

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