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Cravin' a 12-String

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The Resonator 20 Jul 99 - 12:54 AM
Big Mick 20 Jul 99 - 01:01 AM
Roger in Baltimore 20 Jul 99 - 06:22 AM
Bugsy 20 Jul 99 - 07:58 AM
catspaw49 20 Jul 99 - 10:26 AM
Bert 20 Jul 99 - 01:39 PM
Rick Fielding 20 Jul 99 - 04:22 PM
Legal Eagle 20 Jul 99 - 07:22 PM
Duane D. 20 Jul 99 - 08:31 PM
JSTPLNFOLK 20 Jul 99 - 09:29 PM
bseed(charleskratz) 20 Jul 99 - 09:43 PM
Tony Burns 20 Jul 99 - 09:53 PM
Mudjack 21 Jul 99 - 12:51 AM
Rick Fielding 21 Jul 99 - 01:29 AM
Paul Jay 21 Jul 99 - 01:41 AM
O'Boyle 21 Jul 99 - 02:21 AM
alison 21 Jul 99 - 04:26 AM
murray@mpce.mq.edu.au 21 Jul 99 - 07:36 AM
lloyd61 21 Jul 99 - 09:12 PM
BK 21 Jul 99 - 09:52 PM
The Resonator 22 Jul 99 - 12:24 PM
Rick Fielding 22 Jul 99 - 12:31 PM
catspaw49 22 Jul 99 - 02:07 PM
Bluejay 22 Jul 99 - 03:37 PM
Bryant 22 Jul 99 - 03:54 PM
BK 23 Jul 99 - 12:33 AM
Rick Fielding 23 Jul 99 - 01:43 AM
Mark Roffe 25 Jul 99 - 01:30 PM
GUEST,Doug Poulton 04 Nov 04 - 01:49 AM
Gurney 04 Nov 04 - 02:20 AM
Davetnova 04 Nov 04 - 07:01 AM
the one 26 Nov 04 - 10:12 AM
Terry Allan Hall 26 Nov 04 - 11:17 AM
GUEST,Jim 08 Sep 06 - 11:07 AM
Richard Bridge 08 Sep 06 - 07:03 PM
GUEST,twohands 26 Dec 07 - 11:48 AM
Stringsinger 26 Dec 07 - 12:04 PM
Mark Ross 26 Dec 07 - 12:38 PM
GUEST,Roger in Baltimore 26 Dec 07 - 01:57 PM
GUEST,Jeff 26 Dec 07 - 11:22 PM
GUEST,TJ in San Diego 27 Dec 07 - 01:09 PM
Lowden Jameswright 28 Dec 07 - 07:06 AM
Ross Campbell 01 Jan 08 - 10:42 PM
Bee-dubya-ell 01 Jan 08 - 11:29 PM
Mrs Scarecrow 02 Jan 08 - 05:02 PM
banjoman 03 Jan 08 - 06:14 AM
Bru 03 Jan 08 - 09:57 AM
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olddude 07 Dec 09 - 11:22 AM
John MacKenzie 07 Dec 09 - 12:01 PM
Gerry C 07 Dec 09 - 12:01 PM
kendall 07 Dec 09 - 12:54 PM
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kendall 07 Dec 09 - 07:39 PM
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Gurney 08 Dec 09 - 12:51 AM
kendall 08 Dec 09 - 04:47 AM
Bugsy 12 Jun 10 - 10:08 PM
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Subject: CRAVIN' A 12-STRING
From: The Resonator
Date: 20 Jul 99 - 12:54 AM

Help! I've got a love jones for a 12-string guitar, but don't know what's a good buy. Anybody have any suggestions? My nose is wide open, as the folks used to say. I really can't consider spending thousands of dollars, just a few hundred. Help me make them bells ring on a 12-string. Thanks!


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Subject: RE: CRAVIN' A 12-STRING
From: Big Mick
Date: 20 Jul 99 - 01:01 AM

See if you can find a used Guild, my friend. There are lots of good 6 strings, but the folks over at Guild just flat know how to make a 12. Mine is a vintage mid 60's 12 and she just hums a bar or two and I am putty in her (easy here, Mick)...........better stick with hands. I was about to say sound hole......thought better of it......then thought of.........never mind, you get the drift. They are great music makers. Find one and enjoy.

All the best,

Mick


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Subject: RE: CRAVIN' A 12-STRING
From: Roger in Baltimore
Date: 20 Jul 99 - 06:22 AM

I can only second Mick's post. You might find it difficult to find even a used Guild within your economic limits.

The twelve string is a curious beast and to my way of thinking there is more difference in the sounds of 12 strings than there is between 6 strings. I would encourage you to begin to make the rounds of as many used instrument stores as you can. Play as many 12's as you can stand.

Because there is considerably more tension on the guitar, 12 string's have to have sturdier construction. They tend to be more expensive than a similar 6-string. I think you will need go above $500 to get one that "works". So, make the rounds of those used instrument stores. Keep on playing the instuments and saving your money. Do not accept a guitar that is just OK in sound or in playability. If you accept a lower standard you will wind up not playing it at all.

I love my Guild 12-string, 1967 vintage. It cost me $1000 back about 10 years ago.

Roger in Baltimore


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Subject: RE: CRAVIN' A 12-STRING
From: Bugsy
Date: 20 Jul 99 - 07:58 AM

I take it you are in the USA. I can only agree with the previous contributors about the Guild. However, a good Australian hand built guitar is the Maton. You may find one around and the seller may not know it's worth. You may well get it for the price you are looking at and if you do you have got a real bargain. Good luck.


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Subject: RE: CRAVIN' A 12-STRING
From: catspaw49
Date: 20 Jul 99 - 10:26 AM

Guild is truly the 12 of choice, although you can find the occasional one in other brands that have a great sound. Guild also seems to be (around Mudcat at least) the choice of discerning thieves, and you don't have to count Brother Fielding in that as he has owned 2369 guitars of which 834 have been stolen. Do I have those figures right RiB?

You also might check with the Implosive Pedro Guitar Company in Tejaxawatchi, Mexico. They make a 12 that can be tuned to standard 6-string pitch, and when left in a closet overnight, I'm told, have a tremendous sound. Again, check with Rick Fielding.

Play a lot...you'll find one.

Spaw


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Subject: RE: CRAVIN' A 12-STRING
From: Bert
Date: 20 Jul 99 - 01:39 PM

I picked up a used Alvarez for $350 a while back. Sounds good enough to my ol' tin ears. All I gotta do is learn to play the darned thing.

Have a friend who has a really nice looking Seagull with a cedar top which he claimed was really cheap but very good value.

Bert.


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Subject: RE: CRAVIN' A 12-STRING
From: Rick Fielding
Date: 20 Jul 99 - 04:22 PM

Mick et al are speaking the truth. If you've got 5-700 bucks you can find a used Guild. (might have belonged to me a few years ago) I've had every brand known to humans and what I use now (a 12 year old Takimine) is pretty darn good, and if it gets stolen..well at least it isn't my wonderful vintage harmony (which is also out there. For some reason used Martin 12s have not kept their value (although they're decent instruments) and can be found for about 7-800)
As far as new instruments, I'd reccomend Larrivee (at about 1200 yankee) or Taylor (bout the same).
Good pickin'
rick


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Subject: RE: CRAVIN' A 12-STRING
From: Legal Eagle
Date: 20 Jul 99 - 07:22 PM

A friend of mine checked every 12 in Bath and Bristol and then bought a Kincade. Some say they are too light to be durable. Another friend of mine had a Maton which he sold to a third friend of mine, and after a bit of neck massage it plays and sounds very nice but the tuning stability is poor. Said second friend now has a Martin and the tuning stability is still poor. The Landolas (12s, not 6s) have a thing a bit like a truss rod in reverse to reduce twist on the bridgeplate and seem to tune suspiciously easily for a 12. My brother in law has a mid-price Yamaha and it too tunes OK. Basically, if it feels like a cricket bat, it may not be the most wonderful sound, but you will probably still be playing it while the owers of "fine" guitars are either tuning or gone to find a luthier to do repairs. Old EKOs are likely to be good value and to last well, but the guitar snobs will laugh.


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Subject: RE: CRAVIN' A 12-STRING
From: Duane D.
Date: 20 Jul 99 - 08:31 PM

Ditto on all the info on Guild. I bought my F-112 back in 1973(new) for under $300 and it was, perhaps, the best instrument purchase I ever made. Mine has been mellowing in the intervening years and the sound still excites me musically. I don't know what's out there on the market nowadays, but a few years back I heard folks raving about Yamaha 12-strings as being the best of all the Yamaha line. Best Regards, Duane.


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Subject: RE: CRAVIN' A 12-STRING
From: JSTPLNFOLK
Date: 20 Jul 99 - 09:29 PM

Not sure what your needs are but a possibility is Ovation.You would have to be o.k. with that particular sound in a guitar, and be able to hang on to it,but they're very affordable and they are built very strong which ensures playability and dependability. My favorite Guild is the maple back and sides. Awsome guitars.


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Subject: RE: CRAVIN' A 12-STRING
From: bseed(charleskratz)
Date: 20 Jul 99 - 09:43 PM

I decided to buy a second twelve string (I had sold my first years ago) when I fell in love with a Seagull in a local store. I brought my three year old Epiphone six string in as a trade, and because I had bought it there I thought they'd give me a fair price. When they offered me only 25% of what I had paid I got pissed off an went down the street to Guitar Center where I bought a used Celebrity (Ovation)--I never play it, partly because I love my Wildwood banjo so much, partly because that slick round back feels so weird, and partly because I am never satisfied with the way it tunes. I wish I had paid twice as much for the Seagull. --seed


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Subject: RE: CRAVIN' A 12-STRING
From: Tony Burns
Date: 20 Jul 99 - 09:53 PM

I have a Seagull 12 that I'm happy with. A couple of my friends that have played it say it's the easiest playing 12 they've tried.


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Subject: RE: CRAVIN' A 12-STRING
From: Mudjack
Date: 21 Jul 99 - 12:51 AM

Mick's Guild gets high marks but the cost can set you back a bunch. Tony mentioned Seagull and my observation would have me leaning towards it in a 12 strg. I'm usually price motivated and I look at used instruments where sometimes you can find exceptional values for a decent price. Go for it and good luck.
Mudjack


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Subject: RE: CRAVIN' A 12-STRING
From: Rick Fielding
Date: 21 Jul 99 - 01:29 AM

I think the prices I've mentioned will seem a bit low to some (I used American dollar figures) but Toronto has always had lots of used instrument stores and the deals ARE good here.


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Subject: RE: CRAVIN' A 12-STRING
From: Paul Jay
Date: 21 Jul 99 - 01:41 AM

Hey Res, I looked for years for a 12 string that had what I considered the "right sound" for me and bought a Taylor......I LOVE IT!!!!. I traded in another guitar I had and got it for $200+shipping form Mass Street Music in Lawrence, Kansas. I think they have a web site though I'm not sure. Another store that has even better prices is Harmonic Arts (also in Lawrence). HOWEVER>a great place that is often overlooked is THE PAWN SHOP. I would suggest that if you don't have a lot of experiance with guitars you take a friend who does. I have bought several guitars for friends in pawn shops for around $200-$500 and they have all been great buys, but BE CAREFUL! Happy Shoping Paul


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Subject: RE: CRAVIN' A 12-STRING
From: O'Boyle
Date: 21 Jul 99 - 02:21 AM

Guild is great. Seagull is great and inexpensive. You can pick up a Seagull for under $300 if you play hardball with the dealer. But...friends don't let friends play Ovations.

Rick


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Subject: RE: CRAVIN' A 12-STRING
From: alison
Date: 21 Jul 99 - 04:26 AM

Hi,

There's a 12 string 1972 Takamine at this site for $500.

Foundit while I was off hunting for an undersized Samick... now no one happens to have one they don't want do they? Just trying it worked for the uilleann pipes *grin*

slainte

alison


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Subject: RE: CRAVIN' A 12-STRING
From: murray@mpce.mq.edu.au
Date: 21 Jul 99 - 07:36 AM

There is one reasonably good Yamaha 12 string guitar and I played one that I borrowed for a while. Unfortunately I don't recall the model any more. I saw it in shops in Sydney second-hand for the equivalent of $300 US. On the other hand I am told that there is a pretty bad model of the Yamaha 12 string too.

Murray


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Subject: RE: CRAVIN' A 12-STRING
From: lloyd61
Date: 21 Jul 99 - 09:12 PM

I have an eight year old Epiphone I never play, while I wish to sell it I would not want to sell it to anyone on this string, because, the bridge is showing signs of lifting. I have kepted it tuned down all this time but the the bridge is still going to be a problem.

Be careful and pay the money to get a Guild.

Lloyd


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Subject: RE: CRAVIN' A 12-STRING
From: BK
Date: 21 Jul 99 - 09:52 PM

If you can find a used Guild for a good price, w/a good straight neck, needing little repairs, & not seriously abused, it is probably the way to go. Though Guild 6-string's are more variable, their 12's are (were) usually great; I own a Martin, a Gibson, a Cheap Alvarez, and a heartbreaking Takamine (in 12-strings) The first 3 sound quite good; possibly the old Gibson's the best but it's huge (more-or-less classical width) neck is a major handful. I too have encountered some used Yamaha's that seemed good.

In terms of newer 12's, I'd have to fall back on what many other's have said; for the hi-$$ it's hard to fault the Taylor's I've played, but amazingly enough, I've been almost equally impressed by the Seagul 12's; they appear to be more consistant than their 6's, & really excellent, &, while less pretty, sound & finger great - Somewhat hard to beat at any price, & they are extremely reasonably priced, if you shop well.. I'd look seriously at several of the Seagull 12's before buying anything. As many others have said - If at all possible, get around, play a lot of 12's before comitting. Of course, there'll always be another time...

As for the heartbreaking Takmine: Solid top, rosewood sides & back, beautiful.. outstanding sound, (w/your eyes closed you might well have thought it was one of the great Guilds), fingered well, great price due was cracked. Went to disassemble it to do needed repairs & found the &**%$#**&@ neck is DOWELLED ON!!! CHEAP TRICK!! DISGUSTING!! Can't de disassembled in the normal mannagable manner & hardly worth repairing... DO NOT BUY A TAKAMINE unless you can bet your life it will not need major repairs.

1 man's opinion

Cheers, BK


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Subject: RE: CRAVIN' A 12-STRING
From: The Resonator
Date: 22 Jul 99 - 12:24 PM

You all are great. Keep those cards and letters coming!


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Subject: RE: CRAVIN' A 12-STRING
From: Rick Fielding
Date: 22 Jul 99 - 12:31 PM

You mean my "Tac" has a dowelled neck? Those rotten swines!! Sounds great though.
rick


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Subject: RE: CRAVIN' A 12-STRING
From: catspaw49
Date: 22 Jul 99 - 02:07 PM

Reso, you're betting some great responses here. Rick Fielding is probably a hundred times better picker than I am and I'm sure that RiB and Mick and a lot of the others are a whole lot better too. But I love stringed instruments and do have a certain intimacy with acoustics and the way instruments are built. If you'll notice, Guild is preferred, but there are LOTS of others. The comment was made that 12's differ in sound more than 6's.......True. And I have to add that not everyone likes the same type of sound. What do you like? Boomy, heavy bass types; jangly thinner sounds; ringy with moderate overtones; softer texture but with volume and more harmonics; some combination of all this? Believe me, they're all out there.

Every instrument builder has gone through periods of better and worse instruments. Every small builder has a problem now and then. Rick's Tak came from a period (as does my 6 string Tak) when they were dead copying Martin and they were doing a better job than Martin was at that time. Ovation has built three distinctly different sounding 12's over the years. Gibson had a particular sound that you either loved or hated. Designs are infinitely different as are construction methods. Some 12's are designed to sound their best ONLY when tuned down one and a half or two steps. Strings, bridge saddles, and string attachment (thru bridge/pins/ what material) all have a greater effect on a 12. And then there is the "one-off" factor......everybody who builds any stringed instrument is plagued and blessed by it. Even the big boys with computer assisted assembly to insure accurate assembly deal with it. Some seemingly identical guitars can have very different sounds. No two pieces of wood are alike, a variable that's always there. I read a piece by Jean Larrivee, a truly great luthier and builder, discussing the one-off factor that was just terrific. It was in "Acoustic Guitar" better than a year ago and was part of some builder compilation article. Wish I still had it, but basically he said it was unavoidable, good or bad.

Play a lot of them----Have a friend play them----Listen with your back turned. Or shoot craps and buy something you know is generally reliable to have the sound you want. I went thru a long search awhile back and couldn't find diddly. I finally said to hell with it and saw that Elderly had a pre-82, pre-Adamas, Ovation...one of which I'd owned before and I thought, "This'll do til something better comes along." It was incredibly cheap and the guys said it was in fine shape. It arrived, was unpacked, warmed-up, tuned up and I wondered what the hell happened. Great sound, more like Guild than Ovation, but softer textured like Larrivee......whatever it is, it satisfied me and it's gotten fine comments from listeners. It's not even like the pre-82 Ovations...the one-off factor again......and though I may buy more guitars, if I ever have any money again, I wouldn't dream of giving this girl up.

Have a good time. Ain't it fun finding a new friend? And don't forget to check out the Implosive Pedro Guitar Company......I mean, Rick had one, you know?

catspaw


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Subject: RE: CRAVIN' A 12-STRING
From: Bluejay
Date: 22 Jul 99 - 03:37 PM

TO RESONATOR: Allow me to be esoteric, here. Rather than advice on a particular brand of twelve string, I offer applause on your desire to own one. I felt the same way for many years, finally buying a Guild F-112 for 300 dollars. I haven't hardly played my six string since, keeping it mostly in alternate tunings. The twelve string just has such an awsome TONE, it's hard to resist. They say you can't play lead on a twelve string, but that's a crock. Listen to Kottke. Get a straight neck set up right, and it's not any harder than a six. In fact, I get into the music more because of the TONE, so I think I play BETTER lead on my twelve string. I just get off on the guitar! Now my six string's no slouch; 1974 Guild F-47 that I bought new, and is also perfectly set up. But there's something about the sound of a twelve string. Find one you can play and identify with, no matter the brand. There are great Gibsons and Takamines out there,too. If I had unlimited funds, I'd probably look for a Larrivee or Taylor, (the ones I've played are quite a step above my Guild). But I'm not rich, and until I am, my bottom of the line Guild twelve string is WAY MORE than adequate. Keep your eyes open!!!


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Subject: RE: CRAVIN' A 12-STRING
From: Bryant
Date: 22 Jul 99 - 03:54 PM

Be careful though. I bought a kinda low end ($500 US) Norman 12-string mostly because, like Bluejay, I simply adore the sound of a 12. I don't play it too often though because the tone just isn't there. It's not really a bad guitar either, it stays reasonably in tune and is fairly easy to play, but it just won't ring properly. And while that's kind of unfortunate in a 6 string, it's death for a 12.

It could be the "one off" thing people have mentioned above -- I don't know. Play as many as you can get your hands on (even ones you know you can't afford) just to compare tones. Hope you find a gem.

Bryant


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Subject: RE: CRAVIN' A 12-STRING
From: BK
Date: 23 Jul 99 - 12:33 AM

Rick: don't know how many of which models/years of 'Tac's have dowelled necks - not sure what year mine is, but I'd sure hope that at least some of the 'Tac's are not dowelled, but dammit, mine is!

I've noted many a 'Tac w/very decent sound, indeed! It seems like such a cheap trick in an otherwise decent instrument; haven't looked seriously at a 'Tac, no matter how attractive, since.

Mine is an "F-400S" ser #79100822, bought from a flea market dealer, w/a permanent stand, off hwy 59, in Houston abt 8 or 9 yrs ago. May that will help you guess if your's is of similar vintage, & possible the same or similar dowelled construction

Cheers, BK


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Subject: RE: CRAVIN' A 12-STRING
From: Rick Fielding
Date: 23 Jul 99 - 01:43 AM

Well mine's about 10 years old, and I ain't takin' the neck off to find out. Did see an article in Sing-Out many years ago about converting your Martin Six to a twelve string. I'll bet the folks who did that had a lot of experience with neck removal!
rick


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Subject: RE: CRAVIN' A 12-STRING
From: Mark Roffe
Date: 25 Jul 99 - 01:30 PM

I like my 70's Takamine 12-string, though it's not quite as lovable as much as the '60's Guilds I've played. I don't think I'd invest in a neck reset for it (if it ever needs one), so I don't care too much how the neck's attached. I bought it used 2 years ago for $200 at 5th String in Sacramento. They even threw in a cheap cardboard case.

Mark


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Subject: RE: CRAVIN' A 12-STRING
From: GUEST,Doug Poulton
Date: 04 Nov 04 - 01:49 AM

I too crave a 12 string. Has anyone out there played a Martin J12-40?


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Subject: RE: CRAVIN' A 12-STRING
From: Gurney
Date: 04 Nov 04 - 02:20 AM

My first guitar, bought unassisted, was a 12. The action was so high that you needed hands like a gorilla to play more than two numbers. It ended up as a 6 with a 5mm-high bridge. Still my favourite, but the 2-inch neck makes it hard to switch to anything but a Spanish. Lovely tone, though.


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Subject: RE: CRAVIN' A 12-STRING
From: Davetnova
Date: 04 Nov 04 - 07:01 AM

Many years ago I had a Hagstrom 12 I can't remember which model except that it had a very flashy tailpiece. It was the easiest playing 12 I've ever had my hands on an rang beautifully. If you see one jump at it.


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Subject: RE: CRAVIN' A 12-STRING
From: the one
Date: 26 Nov 04 - 10:12 AM

it's name says it all jj joyce.


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Subject: RE: CRAVIN' A 12-STRING
From: Terry Allan Hall
Date: 26 Nov 04 - 11:17 AM

I currently own 4 12-stringers...a Taylor 355 (standard tuning), 2 Guild F-212XLs (open G and Open D/DADGAD) and a cheap guild-oid knock-off (Nashville strung)...

Guilds and Taylors are the way to go...worth every penny and then some!


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Subject: RE: CRAVIN' A 12-STRING
From: GUEST,Jim
Date: 08 Sep 06 - 11:07 AM

Terry - If you're still around, what does "Nashville Strung" mean when you're talking about a twelve-string? Do you just use all high octave strings for each pair?
I have a six-string Nashville tuned guitar. I buy a set of twelve-string strings and use the lower octaves for an old Martin O-18 and the higher course for the Nashville tuned guitar.


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Subject: RE: CRAVIN' A 12-STRING
From: Richard Bridge
Date: 08 Sep 06 - 07:03 PM

Anent Davetnova's post, I am selling my Bjarton BJ12E (a Hagstrom with the name of the factory where they were actually made on the headstock). It has a factory magnetic pickup between the neck and the soundhole, the electrics of which now work properly, and it has a B-Band undersaddle (now). It plays very easily for a 12 (setup by Brian Rodgers) and has a big old-fashioned sound. There are some pix at Hagstrom UK

I am fighting with a digital cameral to get some more pix

I bought it off Nikolai Kehlett and imported it from Denmark and have since spent real money on the setup and the B-Band. PM me if you are interested.


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Subject: RE: CRAVIN' A 12-STRING
From: GUEST,twohands
Date: 26 Dec 07 - 11:48 AM

sure have enjoyed reading the thread, and realized it might be a lead to find a specific guitar like i once owned, actually a ouple of times too... the Epiphone Nova (and a number i dont recall) but it was a jumbo style laminated construction and a characteristic oval soundhole with a bridge that was unusual too, stylized with a pickguard that flowed together. i let mine go when i need cash and have kicked myself a thousand times since. anyone know where i might locate one for sale?


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Subject: RE: CRAVIN' A 12-STRING
From: Stringsinger
Date: 26 Dec 07 - 12:04 PM

There is a new guitar being made on the order of the old Stella that Leadbelly played.
It handles the Leadbelly tuning which I understand puts the 6 and 5 string in double octaves, the 4,3 in regular octaves and the 2 and 3 doubled in union. It's tuned lower
than the Guild which is comparable in pitch to the standard guitar.

Pete Seeger drops his tuning a whole step. I think Leadbelly's lowest string was C a major 3rd below the guitar E.

The problem is knowing what style of music is to be played on a 12.
Leadbelly style playing does not work for certain kinds of music and the higher strung Guild
doesn't work for the Leadbelly sound. The problem is Leadbelly had such a unique sound,
there is really no one who can duplicate it. People have tried like Fred Gerlach and even Pete but it just doesn't have the same quality. Leadbelly's style remains elusive.

Pete Seeger once told me that he'd give up his style of playing banjo if he could play
like Leadbelly.

Frank Hamilton


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Subject: RE: CRAVIN' A 12-STRING
From: Mark Ross
Date: 26 Dec 07 - 12:38 PM

Frank,

I think Leadbelly actually tuned his guitar to B(and maybe sometimes Bflat). The sixth course was a double octave, the third in unison, everything else was where it normally is on a 12-string. Which guitar now being made are you thinking of?

Mark Ross


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Subject: RE: CRAVIN' A 12-STRING
From: GUEST,Roger in Baltimore
Date: 26 Dec 07 - 01:57 PM

Michael Hauver is a luthier who manufactures a guitar "similar" to the old Stella twelves. The key may be in the use of a ladder style of bracing rather than the typical "X" pattern of today. His website is www.hauverguitars.com. His address is 3663 Harpers Ferry Road, sharpsburg, Md. 21782. Phone 304-876-8181.

His "Barbecue Bob" model is designed to be tuned to B or C. I think it is the closest I have heard to a new 12 that sounds like an old Stella.

You won't get the Lead Belly sound unless you tune that low. You'll need heavier gauge strings than the "medium" gauges sold by most manufacturers.

His work was reviewed in Acoustic Guitar magazine in January of 2007. http://www.acousticguitar.com/leveltwo/LuthiersWorkbench-514.aspx#2923.

Roger in Baltimore


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Subject: RE: CRAVIN' A 12-STRING
From: GUEST,Jeff
Date: 26 Dec 07 - 11:22 PM

Been playing alot of 12 string of late as mine wife ownes a fine old Takamamine 12 all solid mahogany w/built in pu. Have been able to listen to some recordings where Eric Darling was the 12 string player. "Walk Right In" is one that comes to mind. Have had a couple of 12's in my time a '69 D-12-35S and a D12-28 and sold them both. This is is the first time I've actually decided to make a study of the instrument. Had an opportunity years ago to play Bob Gibson's Bozo in Chicago backstage at a benefit and must say it was w/o question the finest 'aural' experience of my life. The thing that's most impressive is the fact that one can't 'bullshit' your arppeggio notes, hammerons and pulloffs on a 12. One sluffed note can ruin the whole sequence...I love how hard it's making me work. The combo of lead/rhythm is relatively easy until you factor in the fact that EVERY ovtave note needs to ring or it sounds like a big 'thud' in the middle of an otherwise vituoustic passage. No cheap 'upstrokes' will get it done, everything's got to be solid and down. Love it. It's makeing me a better musician. I see why the statement 'real men have 12s'. I'm hooked and hopeless.


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Subject: RE: Cravin' a 12-String
From: GUEST,TJ in San Diego
Date: 27 Dec 07 - 01:09 PM

My son recently bequeathed to me an Ovation acoustic-electric 12 string. It was given to him by one of his bandmates. I can see why. The neck is not bad, but played as an acoustic, It seems shallow and a little "tinny." I have yet to try it on a good sound system, but it is awkward to hold and, with 12 strings and the accompanying tension, I don't need to fight a slippery back. Guilds and Taylors both sound, feel and play great to me, if getting toward the stratosphere in price these days. An injury has left my left hand a little weaker, so I'm sticking to six for now.


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Subject: RE: Cravin' a 12-String
From: Lowden Jameswright
Date: 28 Dec 07 - 07:06 AM

12 string guitar at reasonable price - look no further than Norman - no contest......


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Subject: RE: Cravin' a 12-String
From: Ross Campbell
Date: 01 Jan 08 - 10:42 PM

I've been playing a Fylde 12-string (Falstaff) as my main guitar for about fifteen years (after various Fylde 6-strings and citterns/bouzoukis). I keep a capo on the second fret and use a dropped-D tuning from there. I can capo all the way up the neck with minimal re-tuning, and the reduced string tension makes it really easy to play without losing too much resonance.
On visits to Australia I have played John Warner's Maton 12-string and my niece's Martin 12-string (don't know the model) - both great-sounding guitars, but I'd still prefer my Fylde.

Ross


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Subject: RE: Cravin' a 12-String
From: Bee-dubya-ell
Date: 01 Jan 08 - 11:29 PM

I have two 12-strings, a maple Guild jumbo, and an all mahogany Martin J12-15. Two totally different creatures. The Guild has a big jangly sound with more overtones than should be allowed by law. The Martin has a smaller body and a much crisper and more precise sound. I recommend either, depending on what sound you're looking for. Used non-vintage Guilds can usually be found for about $1,000 USD. The Martin J12-15 sells for about $850 new, which should equate to around $600 used.


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Subject: RE: Cravin' a 12-String
From: Mrs Scarecrow
Date: 02 Jan 08 - 05:02 PM

I am very pleased with my Crafter, lovely sound and very affordable may be I was just lucky


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Subject: RE: Cravin' a 12-String
From: banjoman
Date: 03 Jan 08 - 06:14 AM

At the risk of lowering the tone amid all those famous makes, I previously owned a Stella which played well but needed fingers like mole grips to hold down a chord. I found a second hand Washbourn Cutaway 12 string about ten years ago and have never wanted anything else. It holds its tune and has a low very playable action and the built in electrics give a wide range of sound effects. Its also the easiest 12 string to tune that I have ever handled.
A very good instrument and well worth considering if your looking for a decent 12 string.


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Subject: RE: Cravin' a 12-String
From: Bru
Date: 03 Jan 08 - 09:57 AM

Starting off on an old 12 stringer with high action and heavy strings (remember Monopole in the 60's?) isn't the worst thing you can do. If nothing else, and you don't give up - you end up with good strong fingers.

I've got seven of 'em (12 stringers, that is) and four of them get played all the time. Always tuned guitars by ear, but I've used an electronic tuner for the last couple of years. To be fair - with the exception of my useless B20/12 Norman - they all stay in tune even after a good session at the local singaround.

Nicest to play is my old 60's Epiphone; nicest sounding (by a whisker) is my Martin.

12 stringer - I love 'em.


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Subject: RE: Cravin' a 12-String
From: GUEST,Ian Gill
Date: 07 Dec 09 - 11:16 AM

Any opinions out there on the 'Faith' 12 strings ? I bought one on impulse at the end of last Summer from Mansons in Exeter and have been very, very happy with it - at a fraction of the 'big name' cost.


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Subject: RE: Cravin' a 12-String
From: olddude
Date: 07 Dec 09 - 11:22 AM

I wish I could play one. I had a 12 string 1967 Martin that I gave to my brother about 4 years ago. My old fingers just don't have the strenghth or feeling any more for a 12 ... so I just pick my d-28.

When I did play a 12, I always thought the Guild was even much better than my Martin ... and it had a beautiful sound. My brother probably traded it for beer


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Subject: RE: Cravin' a 12-String
From: John MacKenzie
Date: 07 Dec 09 - 12:01 PM

Bought a Tanglewood 12 last year, and I love it.


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Subject: RE: Cravin' a 12-String
From: Gerry C
Date: 07 Dec 09 - 12:01 PM

I'd recommend the Freshman FA-200 E12: rich, detailed tone, good action out of the box (and even better when properly tweaked), plenty of volume (my neighbours might say too much...) and very reasonably priced: what's not to like?

GC


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Subject: RE: Cravin' a 12-String
From: kendall
Date: 07 Dec 09 - 12:54 PM

I've played most ofthem, I've owned some of them and none of them can be compared to the Apollo 12.


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Subject: RE: Cravin' a 12-String
From: Amos
Date: 07 Dec 09 - 01:30 PM

ver since their introduction in the early ’60s, Guild’s jumbo 12-strings have been the standard against which other guitars are compared. They’ve turned up in the hands of players as diverse as Ralph Towner and Slash. The plainly appointed and affordable mahogany F212XL has long been a players’ favorite despite the fact that it was discontinued in the 1980s. Guild has now reissued the F212XL with a list price of $1785.

    Taylor’s foray into the 12-string market is no less auspicious than Guild’s. There are many who believe that 12-strings are the company’s claim to fame, and their playability is undisputed. The 355 ($1,558) is the most recent and least expensive addition to Taylor’s impressive 12-string lineup.

    On the surface, the 355 and F212XL have a lot in common. Both feature jumbo bodies, solid mahogany backs and sides, solid spruce tops, ebony bridges and fingerboards, and chrome Grover mini-tuners. But that’s where the similarities end. The F212XL is a slightly heavy instrument, and the chunky, unbound neckâ€"which, like that of all Guild’s 12-strings, features double truss rodsâ€"contributes to its solid feel. The guitar I received was set up very nicely right out of the box, and all the woods used were of high quality. I especially liked the super-dark ebony used for the fingerboard and bridge. The F212XL features a high-gloss nitrocellulose finish and a traditional dovetail neck joint.

    Although the size difference is minimal, the Taylor 355 feels sporty compared to the Guild. It’s quite a bit lighter in weight and has a very flat neck (bolted to the body) and action so low it would make many six-strings jealous. The back and sides of the guitar are attractively striped mahogany with a satin polyester finish, and the high-gloss top shows some nice cross-grain. Except for the streaked and relatively light colored ebony used for the bridge and fingerboard, the materials used to build the 355 are not observably different than what goes into models higher up the Taylor hierarchy. I was disappointed, however, with the guitar’s scratchy frets.

    After playing both guitars, I found it hard to pick a clear favorite. The Guild offers an amazingly rich low-end rumble paired with the kind of volume that is sure to make heads turn. The hefty neck makes playing on the upper frets quite a workout, and the guitar’s tone also changes up in that range. The Taylor, on the other hand, sounds extremely even and feels amazingly playable all the way up the neck. Its tone is brighter and a bit quieter than the Guild’s, but its great sustain and quick response give it a character all its own. I would guess that the Guild’s fat tone and killer volume might win over the player who primarily strums chords and accompanies him or herself singing, while fingerstylists might be more drawn to the Taylor because of its playability, response to a soft touch, and more defined tone.

    I applaud Guild for having reissued an old favorite, and Taylor for offering a remarkable value. The Guild F212XL and Taylor 355 offer the quality of materials and craftsmanship that will make either one the last 12-string you’ll ever need.

    Excerpted from Acoustic Guitar magazine, December 1999, No. 84.


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Subject: RE: Cravin' a 12-String
From: GUEST,999
Date: 07 Dec 09 - 06:01 PM

Try some. See what you like/what works. Guild is right up there, but it ain't up there by itself.


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Subject: RE: Cravin' a 12-String
From: kendall
Date: 07 Dec 09 - 07:39 PM

Guild makes a fine guitar, so does Taylor and Martin, the problem is they are built so clunky to keep them from falling apart they are heavy as a bucket of hogs livers.
My Apollo is much lighter and the heaviest part is the tuning keys.


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Subject: RE: Cravin' a 12-String
From: GUEST,Jim P
Date: 07 Dec 09 - 11:12 PM

I can't say if my old 70's "lawsuit" Tak has a doweled neck or not -- no way I'm taking it apart to find out! What I can say is that it has a fantastic sound, and plays like butter. I don't like the "jangle" sound you get from some 12s; the old Tak is sweet. I've fairly recently switched back to a 6 string for a while to try and hone my skills on it, but when playing for pure pleasure, I pull out my 12. One thing that I can say about it that I've noticed it does NOT have in common with other 12s I've tried: the thing stays in tune marvelously, even when the weather abruptly changes.


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Subject: RE: Cravin' a 12-String
From: Gurney
Date: 08 Dec 09 - 12:51 AM

I just acquired a J & D brothers (Jack & Danny Brothers) Taiwanese 6-string. They make 12s too, and if my 6 is a fair sample, anyone contemplating a new, economically priced guitar should look at one from this maker. With my 6, build quality, finish, tuning stability and playability are excellent, and tone is very good.

Never heard their 12s, though.


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Subject: RE: Cravin' a 12-String
From: kendall
Date: 08 Dec 09 - 04:47 AM

Anything but a Framus.


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Subject: RE: Cravin' a 12-String
From: Bugsy
Date: 12 Jun 10 - 10:08 PM

So, did you get a 12 string in the end? If so, what did you get?

CHeers

bugsy


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Subject: RE: Cravin' a 12-String
From: Midchuck
Date: 13 Jun 10 - 10:17 AM

Getting a 12-string in the end would be even more painful than a 6.

Incidentally, Kendall is right (I hate it when that happens) about the Appoliono 12s. I've never played a 12 that would beat his, in my subjective opinion.

Peter


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Subject: RE: Cravin' a 12-String
From: Bugsy
Date: 14 Jun 10 - 02:07 AM

Hmm, One has to be so careful what one says and how one says it, doesn't one Middy? Me old Cock Sparra.

CHeers

Bugsy


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Subject: RE: Cravin' a 12-String
From: GUEST,racerx
Date: 16 Aug 10 - 12:51 AM

Is someone looking for a 12 string? 74' f212xl primo condition.

http://reno.craigslist.org/msg/1900727888.html


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