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C. F. Martin 0-18 Flat Top Acoustic Guitar (1954)
C. F. Martin 0-18 Model Flat Top Acoustic Guitar (1954), made in Nazareth, PA, serial # 135351, natural lacquer finish, mahogany back, sides and neck, spruce top, rosewood fingerboard, Ameritage hard shell case.
This is a Martin 0-18 from 1954, well-played but not abused. The mahogany body carries the typical period features including tortoise celluloid binding on the body edges, tortoise celluloid pickguard, long-saddle Brazilian rosewood bridge, and a nicely ambered thin nitrocellulose lacquer finish. The headstock is adorned with the "CF Martin" gold decal on the face and individual Waverly openback tuners with hexagonal bushings.
This guitar, like all made prior to 1964, is the product of the "old" red brick Martin factory, before the move to the modern facility down the road that year resulted in many changes in the way the guitars were made. These small body 0s are lovely-sounding instruments; this one has plenty of volume (more than many expect in a smaller guitar) and a surprisingly deep, well-balanced tone. This is a superb-playing and sounding guitar, showing the signs of decades of use but still a wonderful player's instrument.
Overall length is 38 3/4 in. (98.4 cm.), 13 9/16 in. (34.4 cm.) wide at lower bout, and 4 1/4 in. (10.8 cm.) in depth at side, taken at the end block. Scale length is 24 3/4 in. (629 mm.). Width of nut is 1 11/16 in. (43 mm.).
This is fairly well-worn but very original guitar, richer sounding with more punch than many 0-size instruments. The top has some notable pickwear around the sound hole rim (which is a bit chewed up on the edges) and in front of the pickguard. The finish overall has a varied collection of dings, scrapes, and dents, heaviest on the back where there is also one deep ding into the wood. The back of the neck is surprisingly clean with only some light wear and none of the deep capo dings often found on well-played Martins.
The top has only one old spruce grain split in the almost inevitable spot off the top edge of the pickguard. The lower bout bass side sides has a number of short repaired grain cracks, while there is an area of moisture-based discoloration to the finish on the lower treble side. There is a strap button added just above the heel, set into the neck block. The neck has been reset and the frets crowned; playability is excellent. This is a nicely worn-in small-body flat-top, already played and enjoyed for 65 years and ready for the next century. It is housed in a high quality Ameritage hard shell case. Overall Very Good + Condition.
Item # 8904
This item has been sold.
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