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Posts posted by sbpark

  1. Any of these guitars are more than perfectly suitable for "country". I'd say take the one that feels and sounds best to you. 

    J45's are iconic for the classic country singer/songwriter. They just get the job done and pair amazingly well when sung with. D28's (and D18's) are kind of the de-facto, go-to standard for Bluegrass flat picking. HD28's would work well too for all of the above, but I personally am not a fan and think they sound very unbalanced with an overly scooped midrange, a little muddy in the low end, and can get lost in the mix when played with a bunch of other people. HD28's do fingerpick really well though.

    As far as the modern Deluxes go, I haven't played on where I preferred it over a Standard Series. 

    I would sell the J45, but if you're looking for a guitar to compliment it, A D28 would be a wonderful addition to a J45. You'd have the long scale vs. short scale thing covered, You'd have the rosewood and mahogany thing covered,  singer/songwriter and flat picking thing covered, etc. 

  2. I know every guitar should be based on it's individual merits, and don't like to lump guitars tougher and define them all  good or bad based on the era it was made, but I'm wondering what a near-mint Gibson Dove from 1985 is worth these days? Looks like Ren Ferguson joined Gibson in 1986, a year after this one was made. What should one expect as far as overall construction, type of bracing, how tru to the originals, etc. of a Dove from this year? Would this just be a shell of it's former incarnations from the past, or are these the real deal? Thanks in advance!


  3. Regardless of when the guitar was made, what materials the guitar is made out of or what the company was going through at any particular period in time, what's most important, as you pointed out already, is how the guitar feels and sounds in YOUR hands. 

    I'd much prefer a guitar that was from one of Gibsons worst periods historically as long as it sounded and felt amazing, over a guitar that came from a supposed high point in the company's history that sounds like garbage. 

  4. I've had a slew of J45's, a couple J200's and an AJ. Currently all I own is a D-18, and it's my favorite acoustic. Funny thing about D-18's, they're kind of "generic" sounding, but at the same time have no shortcomings or negatives that all the other guitars I mentioned have had in one way or another. The D-18 does everything those others guitar do all rolled up into one guitar. I play everything from old school country, singer/songwriter stuff, to picking fiddle tunes and going to the occasional Bluegrass jam, and the D-18 does it all.

    With all that said, I don't really thing you could go wrong with keeping either the AJ or HB. AJ's are monsters, they roar and are LOUD, and they also do really well when fingerpicked, but when using a pick you have to be really aware of your attack and how you play because these are loud guitars. The AJ was a bit much for me when singing and playing at the same time because the AJ ca be a bit overpowering. Not a super complex sound, and ended up not being my first choice when I was also singing.. Id say if you go to a lot of jams or play Bluegrass I'd lean more toward the AJ, but OP doesn't seem to play that type of music, so in this case I'd probably be more inclined to keep the HB. He already has a D-18, so you have the regular-scale, dreadnought thing covered. The HB is a bit mellower, sweeter and shorter scale, so it seems like it would offer a little more variety. 

    The AJ and D18 means you'd have two regular-scale, powerful dreads.

    The HB and D-18 would mean you had one regular scale and one short scale guitar and one has more power while the other is a little sweeter. More variety.

    Then, to make it even more complicated, someone suggested a J45. I'd still take the HB in this situation if my other guitar was a D18. Like I said in the beginning of this reply, I've had a slew of J45's and currently have a D18. Speaks for itself right there. 

  5. 2 hours ago, j45nick said:

    You could probably swap your D-35 even for a modern Hummingbird, which is likely to be a better guitar than a 1970-'72 Hummingbird. There are good Norlin era Gibsons, but on average, they don't hold a candle to modern Bozeman guitars. Older isn't always better.


    I ended up respectfully declining the guys offer. I'd rather just hold out and sell the guitar or wait until someone makes a trade offer on something I'd really like. A newer Hummingbird would be great. I also wouldn't mind just selling the guitar. It really is an incredible D35 with a huge sound, I just love my D18 and always reach for it before reaching for the D35. 

  6. I was recently offered a trade for a 1970 Hummingbird. Pics are below. Guitar looks to be in really nice shape. Owner says it's never had any repairs, no cracks, damage, etc. Original case as well. May go check it out, but was wondering if anyone could shed any light on the Hummingbirds from '70-'72. (The SN# is 734639 and comes back as a '70-'72) I know that there are duds and great examples from all eras, but without ever really playing any Gibson acoustics from the 70's, I know many aren't really into these because some had the double-X bracing and suffered in the QC department. Any info on specs or things to look out for would be greatly appreciated. Thanks!







  7. I've never been a fan of Grovers in J-45's. Consequently, I don't mind them on the Martin D-35. 

    I swapped out the Grovers on my J-45 Standard with some Kluson 3-on-a-plate tuners and never looked back. Just needed some conversion bushings from StewMac and some polish to buff out the "raccoon eyes" left by the Rotomatics. Took me easily under an hour start to finish. 












  8. For me at least I don't think it has anything to do with the fretboard radius. The reason I do not like flat picking on a J45 is because of the shorter scale length. I prefer the longer scale length of the Advanced Jumbo and Martin dreads. Even with heavier strings the J-45 feels floppy. I like a bit more resistance. a Martin scale length dread of longer scale AJ and some 13's and that's the way to go for flat picking, and for that type of playing my D-18 crushes a J-45.

  9. I bought a 2017 J45 in 2016. There is a 2017 stamp on the back of the headstock and the serial number (that's also on the back of the headstock) dates it a 2016, with matching serial number on the label visible through the sound hole. Gibson is/was releasing the following year's models early, similar to what automobile makers do. I also have a Fender that has a 2017 serial number on the back of the headstock, but the stamp at the heel (on the same neck) says 2018. Go figure.

  10. The YamahaFG Series has always had a reputation of being a killer value. They're VERY affordable guitars that are made well and are very consistent and sound pretty good. With that said, I don't think they are mind-blowing in how they sound, but they do sound really good, especially for what these can be had for, mores if you buy one used. Pennies on the dollar. 

    I had a Yamaha FG441-S for many years. Bought it brand new around 1997. A few years ago the action started creeping up and couldn't justify a forking out for a neck reset so I just sold it for next to nothing to a guy who bought budget guitars for school music programs. I was really nice guitar. 

  11. 1 hour ago, bobouz said:

    For the fingerpicking style I play 99% of the time, I typically want a punchy & percussive tone, with even string to string balance and fairly quick decay.  Gibson & Guild maple bodies are at the top of my list in delivering this, and Gibson's short-scale fingerboards are the cherry on top.

    I've owned quite a few Martins & still have two.  They're nice guitars, but in particular I do not care for the 16" radius fingerboard (which Gibson is unfortunately adopting on a number of newer models), and their darker tones generally do not work well for me.

    All of that said, I do have a soft spot for the 000 body in mahogany, having played a 1970 00-18 for twenty years - and now it's replacement, a 2000 000-16.  Quite crisp tonally, and the body size is very comfy.

    Bottom line:  There's more than one way to skin a cat, or find a good guitar.


    You should check out the 000-15M. All mahogany, and if you want a wider fretboard, LA Guitar Sales does a Custom Shop model with a 1 3/4" nut. Seriously awesome fingerpicking guitars and very affordable. 

  12. 2 hours ago, billroy said:

    The impression I've developed is the J45 and D18 are the foundational models for a collection and  you build from there... then everything gets compared to those 2 as you add on.  

    Then building the collection on the Gibson side I'd be thinking of adding on an SJ200, Hummingbird, Jumbo Reissue, and LG something or other.  Then build the equivalent Martin based collection, and then add a Collings and Froggy Bottom for comparison.  And I'd like a 12 string.


    You should also consider tossing in a nice Advanced Jumbo in there!

  13. I own four acoustics...two Gibsons (J45, AJ) and tea Martins (D-18, D-45)

    My first love was Gibson acoustics, but I am also smitten with my Martins. They all have their own voice and each has it's "thing" it does better than the others. My J45 is growly and sweet at the same time. My AJ is a bluegrass/flatpicking monster and is LOUD. The D45 has this three-dimensional presence, almost like ti has it's own built in reverb, and is killer for both finger picking and singer songwriter stuff. The D-18 is probably the best "all-arounder" of the bunch. I can do everything with this guitar and be happy...flatpicking, fingerpicking, bluegrass, singer-songwriter. It does it all. Very woody and "old school" sounding, if that makes any sense. Old school country, bluegrass and fiddle tunes just beg to be played in the D-18.

    Yo see a lot of people wanting to compare and agonizing over deciding between J45's and D-18's. To me they're not even close in comparison. Different body shapes,, different scale length, ever so slightly nut width on the Martins (mine are 1 3/4"). I sort of think of the J45 as a small-body guitar in a larger guitar's body and string mine with 12's. D-18's are a flat pickers dream, are monsters with 13's. has a larger body, longer scale neck, overall bigger voice.

    I've always thought the D-18 is pretty much the Swiss Army knife of acoustic guitars. If you could only have one guitar and play Bluegrass and fiddle tunes in your repertoire it's hard to beat a D-18. The "newer" (post 2012) D-18 Standards when they went to the 1 3/4" nut with, and back to scalloped and forward shifted bracing are pretty darn sweet., If you don't play any Bluegrass or fiddle tunes the J45 is tough to beat. Of course, neither of these are hard, fast rules. 

  14. 10 hours ago, jvi said:

    just wrong sparky, vintage means more than age...


    There are many definitions used to determine if a guitar is "vintage", so neither of us is wrong, only a difference of opinion.

    I'll put it you you this way...just because a guitar meets criteria as "vintage" (use whatever criteria or definition you'd like), doesn't automatically mean it's anything special, desirable or valuable. It can still be defined as vintage and be a worthless p.o.s., and just because you aren't keen to certain guitars made during a certain era doesn't automatically discount them from being defined as vintage. You may not like it, but that doesn't discount it from being something. 

  15. Seems a bit excessive to refinish the entire top for a few CA glue drips and dribbles. I'm sure there is a way to fix this to a satisfactory state, and even to the point where you can hardly notice the screw up without having to refinish the guitar. As a previous poster has mentioned, CA glue is used extensively in guitar repair and a skilled repair person should be able to scrape the existing flops down, then do some delicate sanding and finally buffing to get it to a good place. Pictures would really help. 

  16. 28 minutes ago, BluesKing777 said:

    About 2002 or so, I desperately wanted the new Martin OM-15 (all mahogany) but there were none for sale anywhere here. There were dozens of the 000-15 and I bought one with a cutaway and a pickup system - 000c-15e.....but the OM had 1 3/4 nut while the 000 had 1 11/16"....cramped for fingerstyle. I played it a lot as it had a beautiful tone, cramped or not. In 2015 or abouts, I bought a 1944 Martin 0-17 all  mahogany, also 1 11/16' cramped nut, dripping with mahogany tone. The neck had been reset and it was so bad previously that they had to put a wedge under the end of the neck. The 15th fret on the first string just goes 'plink' and it is amazing how often I play that note since I know I can't!

    But the tone just seeps out of the old thing, 75 odd years old, so the 000 though larger of body, is long gone to a happy player somewhere. While there was some family resemblance - sorry - no contest!😏






    Again, as many have already stated, you can't make blanket conclusions on an entire era/decade/period of guitars based on one example from that time. There will be amazing ones, great ones, good ones and awful ones from every period, new and old, vintage and modern, etc. You're also comparing a 0 size Martin to a 000 size Martin. Only thing in common is the name on the headstock. Would be like comparing a J45 and a LG0 and saying you prefer one over the other thinking it's apples and apples. 

    And jsut because these two guitars in the video look the same/very similar on the outside and both have the "35" in the model name doesn't mean they are even remotely the same or similar under the hood, because they are not. 

  17. 1 hour ago, Jinder said:

    On the neck angle issue, Gibson went through a really poor period with neck sets, from 2002 through to around 2014/15. Neck angles, especially on SJ200s, were atrociously arbitrary. When I bought my 2015 SJ200, I picked it from a batch of five, all of which had different neck sets. Mine was the best of them in terms of build, tone, playability and neck angle. Two flat-out needed a neck reset there and then, barely 2mm of saddle showing and you could deliver a fridge under the strings. A bandmate owned a 2004 J45 RW which had a horribly underset neck and my 2003 SJ200 needed a reset by 2008.


    I've played very few Hummingbirds and Doves with poor neck angles mind you, and no L-00s. The first wave of Bozeman guitars were, in my experience, all very well built in terms of neck geometry. I wonder whether it was an issue with worn tooling that later led to the angle issues. Possibly the same for Martin. I've seen some of the CEO series Martins with very poor neck sets.

    Latter-day Gibsons (ie 2015 on) seem to have VERY well set necks, with tall saddles for plentiful adjustment over time. That's something of a criterion for me as a buyer and player, so I'm very glad to see that they've got on top of the issue, I'm sure it was the source of quite a bit of warranty arseache.


    Looks like Gibson actually acknowledged the issue and remedied it, while Martin, for whatever reason apparently hasn't done a thing about it. 

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