The Mudcat Café TM
Thread #71908   Message #1315262
Posted By: GUEST,Sterling Webb
03-Nov-04 - 11:01 AM
Thread Name: Sigma Guitars
Subject: RE: sigma guitars

Daniel is right. The naming scheme for Sigmas was originally by size, composition, and quality. The sizes were Dreadnought (D), Grand Concert (GC) or 000, C for classical, and so forth. R is for rosewood, M for mahogany, S for sapele, B for bubinga, J for jacaranda. Originally 7 was the highest quality grade.

So, a DR-7 (the top of the line) is a rosewood dreadnought of top grade, the DM-5 a mahogany dreadnought of lesser grade, and so on.

In 1980, the model lines and designations were changed to capitalize on Martin model names: the DM-18, DM-19, DR-28, DR-28H, DR-35, DR-41, DR-45. But the older model types were also continued as well for another 4 years (1980-84).

My guess would be that the DR-14 is a souped up DR-11, just like Daniel surmised. I've never heard of the DR-14 before so I get to add a new one to my list. I've heard the DR-11 called the rarest Sigma model (just one on eBay in the last 2-3 years), but a DR-14 would have to trump that for rarity!

I've just bought a Sigma that I can't identify. It has the old-style (1970-79) logo with the word SIGMA inlayed in pearl instead of the usual gold leaf, something I've never seen before. It is solid rosewood and spruce, with a Martin-style bridge (not an adjustable thingee) and with pearl snowflake dots on the fretboard and abalone inlays around the soundhole and top bindings. It has a "normal" (two-piece) back and encased tuners (not sealed). It's missing its paper label, so it's a mystery model with great sound.

If anybody has ever seen one like that and can help me identify it, please reply.

Many of these higher quality models appear to have been produced in very small numbers (like 100 to 150), at intervals, as needed to fill in the high-end of the dealer offerings.

Sorry I hadn't figured out the page breaks (first-time poster) and it all came out in one lump. I think I've got it now.

Sterling Webb