Why are 50's Martins less expensive than 50's Fenders?

Discussion in 'Acoustic Soundboard' started by mikej89, Sep 21, 2020.

  1. StratoMutt

    StratoMutt Senior Stratmaster

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    I have a magnificent six string, an HD 28. My bucket list guitar since I was a teen.

    The bracing on a 12 is stiffer to accommodate the extra string tension. Six strings would not drive the top properly.

    I have come to like the D12-28 far more than I ever thought I would. Such a blast to play. Choral sounding, big and loud, but does soft and sweet very well too.

    [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Sep 22, 2020
  2. Groovey

    Groovey Most Honored Senior Member

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    Buddy Holly didn't play a Martin.
     
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  3. mikej89

    mikej89 Senior Stratmaster

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    Do you own the '46? If so that would be worth a ton too!
     
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  4. Groovey

    Groovey Most Honored Senior Member

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    Dang right! Fills a room for sure.
     
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  5. StratoMutt

    StratoMutt Senior Stratmaster

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    Elvis played a post war D-28.

    I love Fender and their comparative brief history. A mechanical / electrical wonk starts a guitar company post WWII. Real thinking outside the box.

    German immigrant C.F. Martin started making parlor sized guitars in 1833 in NYC. He moved to Nazareth, PA some years after (1850s) and have been made there ever since. Before the Civil War.

    All family owned the whole time. I'm less than 1.5 hours away and have done four factory tours.

    They invented the X brace for flat tops and the Dreadnought, the most copied acoustic guitar in history.

    I'm a Martin slut alright.
     
    Last edited: Sep 21, 2020
  6. StratoMutt

    StratoMutt Senior Stratmaster

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    The HD-28 is loud too. It is braced for 13-56 strings which is what I use.
     
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  7. Groovey

    Groovey Most Honored Senior Member

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    Apologies to OP @mikej89 didn't intend to hijack your thread.

    Not enough for me to sell Dad's welcome home from the War gift. Mom bought it with the money she made soldering radios for The Effort. 100$. Rosie the Riveter bought her boy a Martin! And he played the crap out if it.
    It's a 0018. Not a boomer. More of a parlour guitar. Mellow and sweet, rich and full.

    imagejpeg_1.jpg
     
  8. Tremoluxer

    Tremoluxer Strat-Talker Gold Supporting Member

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    Q: Why?

    A:




    Granted, most of Jimi's Strats were '60s, but he made Strats retroactively cool.
     
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  9. StratoMutt

    StratoMutt Senior Stratmaster

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    Post war Martins can fetch a decent price, though not like the more ubiquitous electric Gibsons and Fenders.

    Martin models from the 30s command the highest prices. 1937 is the model year considered to have some of the best Dreadnoughts ever built.
     
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  10. RL21980

    RL21980 Strat-O-Master

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    Anything post WWII is always more $$$ in Martin land. Pre war dreads and OOO are bank. Brazilian rosewood... Get out your checkbook.
     
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  11. Groovey

    Groovey Most Honored Senior Member

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    True. But no one was looking at Elvis' guitar....
     
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  12. StratoMutt

    StratoMutt Senior Stratmaster

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    Read an article in Guitar Player, late 70s. The author argued Jimi may have saved the Strat as it was not a "cool" instrument for the rockers then. Surf Rock was not cool - the line from Third Stone From the Sun mentions this...
     
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  13. Groovey

    Groovey Most Honored Senior Member

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    Your an animal!! But heavier strings will get that top moving.
     
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  14. StratoMutt

    StratoMutt Senior Stratmaster

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    I'll say. He had one of those awful leather covers on his.

    "Yes, I'll put this tacky showoff sound deadening thing on my excellent guitar"! He was not the only one.

    Don't think Elvis was a real guitar player either ...
     
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  15. StratoMutt

    StratoMutt Senior Stratmaster

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    Yep. A traditionalist, really.

    It is the gauge recommended by Martin. No string bending - at all. I can do some mild vibrato. It was not intended to be a Blues box.

    Again, it is all about the bracing for what intended gauge strings. 11s are iffy on that guitar, 12s are OK. 13s are loud and cut through well for chord work.

    In the Bluegrass world, the 28 series Dreadnoughts are well suited to rhythm guitar, where as the 18 series with their mahogany back and sides are more treble-y and cut through for lead work.

    Different Bluegrass players will use both for both roles. I like the fullness and bass from the 28.
     
    Last edited: Sep 21, 2020
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  16. StratoMutt

    StratoMutt Senior Stratmaster

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    LoveL.gif

    Now that would be an outstanding Blues gitfiddle!

    I used "gitfiddle" as I read somewhere someone mentioned you never see that word here. You have now!
     
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  17. Dibbs

    Dibbs Strat-Talker

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    Simple S&D. What's more popular, a Martin acoustic, or a Fender Strat, with some dialed in, top end SC pups?
     
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  18. EC Strat

    EC Strat Senior Stratmaster Gold Supporting Member

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    I’ve been gassing for an HD or a modern deluxe D 28 I love martins too but seems like their standard D 28 is so hit or miss nowadays. I went to a guitar shop that has tons of hard to come by and vintage acoustics. Played 4 D 28’s (current production) and only would’ve taken home one of them. The modern deluxe was fabulous though.
     
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  19. StratoMutt

    StratoMutt Senior Stratmaster

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    Extended through Martin's entire history? They did not start sell in significant numbers until the 20s. Hard to call that one.

    The first Dreadnoughts were actually labeled and made for a NYC store named Ditson. The Ditson Dreadnoughts were considerably smaller than the models Martin started producing in greater numbers in the early 30s.

    There was the 12 fret model first, then the 14 fret. This refers to the fret at which the body joins the neck. They still make both 12 and 14.

    The first Martin 12 string, the D12-35 was a 12 fret introduced in 1965. The 14 fret D12-28 followed in 1970 and has been continuously made since then. My 12 is a direct descendant of the 1970 model.
     
    Last edited: Sep 21, 2020
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  20. StratoMutt

    StratoMutt Senior Stratmaster

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    How so? Their quality is very consistent and has been for many years. They had some dogs in the 70s and 80s, a few with the bridge glued in the wrong spot.

    The 28 series Dreads have mushroomed in the models available. Too many maybe.

    The biggest complaints about the HD-28s are they are "boomy". Scalloped braces in the "post war" position. I'm not a great player. Like my HD just fine.

    Bone bridge pins mitigates some of that alleged deficiency along with a risky I mod I did myself; slotted the bridge and now use solid, not slotted pins.

    Look at the line now - they are sporting the golden era "forward shifted" bracing from the 30s.

    I'm not kidding - the current crop of 28 series Dreads are closer to the originals have been in many years, minus the cork sniffy maybe wood.
     
    Last edited: Sep 21, 2020