Book

Chapter 9.36 – Wood Preferences

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TOP WOODS NOTE: Martin used various terminologies to identify the types of spruce they employed for instrument tops. At various times Martin referred to red spruce as Appalachian, Adirondack, Pennsylvania, White Mountain, West Virginia, New York, Ontario, Vermont, Eastern or East. (All these terms will be used interchangeably as the spruce used from any of […]

Book

Chapter 9.35 – Virzi Tone Producer

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It has been known for some time that The Gibson Co. installed Virzi Tone Producers in some of their more expensive instruments. The Gibson F-5 mandolins are probably the most frequently encountered of the Gibson instruments which have a Virzi Tone Producer installed. In their catalogue for 1924 Gibson offered to install the Virzi device […]

Book

Chapter 9.34 – T-Bar Neck Reinforcement

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The introduction of the steel T-bar neck reinforcement is directly related to introduction of T-frets (for information on T-frets see Chapter 9.14-Frets and Fret Material). Once Martin had decided to switch to T-frets they were presented with the problem that the compression wedging effect of bar frets was no longer available. In order to compensate […]

Guitars

2005 T. J. Thompson Sunburst OM-28 Guitar (Serial Number 0558)

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This guitar has the serial number “0558”. In T. J. Thompson’s terminology the first two number indicates the year (2005) that the guitar was ordered and “58” represents this as the 58th guitar he has made. As with many of T. J.’s guitar it is made to exacting standards to emulate a 1930 Martin OM-28, […]

Guitars

1932 Martin 00-21 Guitar (Serial Number 49621)

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Serial number 49621 was stamped on January 5, 1932 and cleared final inspection on July 3 that year. The tuners are Grover G-97 clipped plate machines with seamed metal butterbean buttons. Style 21 features: Back and sides: Brazilian rosewood Top: Red spruce (Adirondack) Purfling: Lines Binding: Celluloid Back stripe: Herringbone Other period features: Scalloped X-bracing […]

Guitars

1931 Martin OM-28 “Dark Top” Guitar (Serial Number 48807)

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Serial number 48807 is one of the few known “dark top” OM-28 guitars. Only ten can be accounted for in the Martin records or have appeared on the market. All ten come from the one batch of twenty-five OM-28’s stamped on October 28, 1931, which leaves open the possibility that the whole batch were made […]

Guitars

1930 Martin OM-28 Guitar (Serial Number 45303)

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Serial number 45303 was stamped on December 31, 1930 and cleared final inspection on February 21, 1931. As this guitar was made after April 1930 it has a belly bridge and retains the small OM pick guard that wasn’t replaced by the larger size guard until March 1931. The tuners are Grover #89 Deluxe banjo […]

Guitars

1929 Martin 00-28 Guitar (Serial Number 39944)

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Serial number 39944 is a 1929 00-28. It was stamped on October 16, 1929 and cleared final inspection on March 5, 1930. Being almost 5 months in production was very unusual for the time, especially since it appears the batch the guitar comes from were out of the finish shop on November 12, 1929. Clearly, […]

Guitars

1896 “Orange Top” Martin 0-28 Guitar

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This guitar is interesting for a couple of reasons. First, it is dated “April 7, 1896” under the top and is signed “FHM” (Frank Henry Martin). This is not unusual since most Martin guitars were dated from about 1885 and most were signed from around 1894 to 1916. However, Martin guitars from 1894 to 1896 […]