Small-Bodied Guitars

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Small-Bodied Guitars

Postby savage » Tue Nov 08, 2005 10:31 pm

I've found that Martin has a few small bodies guitars... but as you know, money is somethin that is extremely... ellusive... for me. I've always preferred smaller sized acoustics. Can anyone throw some brands at me that produce some 00 sized guitars (like the gibson blues king)?
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RE: Small-Bodied Guitars

Postby crowduck » Tue Nov 08, 2005 11:15 pm

A good 'economical choice' is the Johnson L-Style which can be had off eBay for $149. It's a copy of the Gibson L-00, and is pretty much the dimensions of a Nick Lucas Special 14 fret. These have a solid spruce top, and are Very well made for the price. If you level the frets, and upgrade at least the saddle to bone, you'll have a great guitar.
Another good choice is the Art & Lutherie AMI made in Canada with native woods. Small body, maybe not exactly L-00. These are excellent little 'parlor' guitars, and can be found used for less than $200 USD. I got mine off eBay for $90, and it's great.
If you can afford $450, there's the Washburn R301S that Harley from this forum recently found available in L.A., brand new from 1993.

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RE: Small-Bodied Guitars

Postby savage » Tue Nov 08, 2005 11:39 pm

thanks a bunch crowduck. I was unaware that johnson made a 00 sized guitar. As for the others, i'll look into them. Thanks again, haha. I've been meaning to sell my cruddy acoustic/electric so i can buy a descent one.
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RE: Small-Bodied Guitars

Postby 1four5 » Wed Nov 09, 2005 12:42 am

You'all might laugh at me, but oh well :). Over a year ago I had gotten a hold of a 70's era Yamaha FG-75. Man what a perfect guitar. Beat up, but what a little player. Suprising tone and volume. Also suprisingly well built. I reached for it more than anything else. Well, I had payed @ $20 for it at goodwill, so when a kid at a friend's church wanted to learn, I gave it to him. I missed it bad. I was kicking myself in the ass for giving it up, I wished I'd have given him one of my dreads. So I went on a search, playing a bunch of smaller guitars at local music shops. I really liked the baby Taylor. I ended up buying a Japanese made Fender parlor guitar from a friend. MAN WHAT A PIECE OF CRAP it was, and I traded it away within several weeks. I ended up putting my big money towards a new Bendaway, and ditched the idea of finding a good parlor guitar.

Last month, luck went my way, and goodwill netted me another 70's era FG-75. I had forgotten how sweet the first one was, either that or this one is even better. It cost a whopping $41, and I aint giving this one up. What I really like about it,is that the fretboard width doesn't shrink with the size of the guitar. I've played a lot of nice stuff at the stores, and sure, some play and sound better...but for the money, nothing touches it. It's also nicely beat up, so a little more soul from time to time won't freek me out.
http://www.ukeblue.com/fg75.jpg
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RE: Small-Bodied Guitars

Postby crowduck » Wed Nov 09, 2005 12:50 am

Savage,

Here you go:

http://cgi.ebay.com/Johnson-L-Style-Sol ... dZViewItem

This outfit says it has the solid top for $149, and the non solid for $127, and free shipping in the USA. I'm very pleased with mine. I own a real Gibson Nick Lucas Special, and I can vouch for the Johnson being a pretty close copy 'sizewise'. I was looking for this L-00 model guitar and did a lot of reaearch that led me to the Johnson, and then later I got the Nick. It is the model guitar that Bob Dylan played in the 60's, and he can be seen playing it in the movie "Don't Look Back". That one was a NL Spec with plain spruce top and Martin pickguard, a replacement due to the fact that Bob had crushed the original top by storing some harps inside the case. Gibson actually made a model to match recently.

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RE: Small-Bodied Guitars

Postby savage » Wed Nov 09, 2005 2:12 am

seems to be a good price for the solid top. I checked out the Art and Lutherie AMI. The company is a branch of the Seagull company whos guitars Ive found to be very high quality. Is it me or does the AMI look a little tinier than the L-style? They both seem to be good guitars. The johnson, however, sounds like it would meet my taste more having "more low end". The smaller sized parlor guitars that I like best are the ones with a bit more bass.

1four5, if the price is right and the guitar is fair, I see no reason to be embarassed or ashamed. The way I see it, if you come across a good deal, you spent your money in a wiser manner than most who generalize by brands rather than an individual instrument which my prove just as worthy if not more.
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RE: Small-Bodied Guitars

Postby savage » Wed Nov 09, 2005 3:29 am

http://cgi.ebay.com/Johnson-L-Style-Aco ... dZViewItem

is this the same one? looks like it, but it doesnt say solid top. The model is the same.
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RE: Small-Bodied Guitars

Postby panhead74 » Wed Nov 09, 2005 3:43 am

If I recall, the A&L AMI has a narrower neck than the Johnson.

I have been thinking about a "small body" parlor size for a while and I emailed Pappy at Coast to Coast. Without C to C this board wouldn't exist, so if I decide to buy the Johnson, I'd get it from John.

The model is JG-535-S, and you can call them at 800-776-5015...mention that you're a member of this board and he'll do you a deal.

Me...I gotta wait until spring. I'm saving my money to heat my house this winter, with number 3 fuel oil at $2.50 a gallon.
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RE: Small-Bodied Guitars

Postby crowduck » Wed Nov 09, 2005 3:47 am

Savage,

Yes, you're correct, the AMI is thinner than the Johnson. The Johnson, like the Nick Lucas L-00 is much thicker/deeper at the lower bout, and does have a 'bigger' bass/lowend. The AMI though, is still Very Nice, and has a decidedly 'bluesy' sound, as many small bodied guitars do. I find the Johnson to have 'rounder/fuller' tone, and less 'blusey' in character, more general purpose. Other differences are, 12 fret on the AMI, and 14 fret on the Johnson. And the finishes are much different as well, the Johnson being high gloss inpenetrable polyurethane, and the AMI a soft satin that still allows the wood grain to show through. I like them both, but find the AMI 'just right' grab when I'm on the couch or easychair. As pointed out by 1four5 there are sometimes some good deals at goodwill, try http://www.shopgoodwill.com/default.asp
And there are always lots of Stella's & Harmony's on eBay. I recently got a 1971 Stella Model 941 Grand Concert in 'mint condition' for $105.

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RE: Small-Bodied Guitars

Postby panhead74 » Wed Nov 09, 2005 3:48 am

Savage:
That looks like the 530 model with the laminated top. It's worth the extra thirty bucks to hold out for the 535 solid top.
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RE: Small-Bodied Guitars

Postby savage » Wed Nov 09, 2005 4:30 am

yeah, id rather have the solid top. And I would also like to buy it from pappy if i can.
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RE: Small-Bodied Guitars

Postby david » Wed Nov 09, 2005 4:57 pm

If you take the time to look around you can sometimes find little Stellas, Kays and such floating around used and cheap. Some of them aren't worth carrying home if they gave them to you, but others are quite good.
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RE: Small-Bodied Guitars

Postby mikey448 » Wed Nov 09, 2005 5:01 pm

I have been looking for a small body guitar myself, thanks for starting this topic. I keep hearing about Seagull guitars and how nice they are and I found this Grand Parlor guitar that they make, does anyone know anything more about them, I have never even seen a Seagull guitar. Although cheaper would keep my wife happy.

http://www.iwantguitars.com/?product=585

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RE: Small-Bodied Guitars

Postby crowduck » Wed Nov 09, 2005 9:59 pm

Mikey,

Seagull and Art & Lutherie AMI are both made by Godin in Canada.
Read about them here:

http://www.godinguitars.com/

The Seagull, I believe, is solid top, while the AMI's are of laminate's.
That being said, although the AMI is 'inexpensively' made, with painted headstock logo, binding, and soundhole deco, it has an understated character all it's own.

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RE: Small-Bodied Guitars

Postby mikey448 » Wed Nov 09, 2005 11:07 pm

Thanks CrowDuck for the link and info. If I had paid a little more attention to the previous posts I might of figured some of that out myself.........I am a little slow sometimes.

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