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Guitar: Martin LX1E

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GUEST,Cappuccino 27 Jul 23 - 03:20 PM
Stilly River Sage 27 Jul 23 - 07:16 PM
Stilly River Sage 27 Jul 23 - 07:20 PM
GUEST 28 Jul 23 - 05:02 AM
GUEST,Ray 28 Jul 23 - 07:45 AM
GUEST,Mark 28 Jul 23 - 04:20 PM
GUEST,Kenny B (inactive) 31 Jul 23 - 05:25 PM
Cappuccino 12 Aug 23 - 03:28 PM
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Subject: Tech: Martin LX1E
From: GUEST,Cappuccino
Date: 27 Jul 23 - 03:20 PM

(I think I'm going to come up as a Guest, but I'm actually Cappuccino from Norfolk, UK, and I can't find the login!)

Does anyone have experience of using the Martin LX1E, which is a very small-bodied 'travel' guitar or 'parlour' guitar. I've just bought one because I'm getting old and doddery and my fingers ain't what they used to be, so I thought an small easy-to-handle guitar might help.

Out of the box, the fitted strings are quite tight; I can't bend the top two as I would like. I suspect Martin fit 13-56s, or something like that. I have always used Martin 10-47s on my other guitars, and wonder if I can fit them on this... but I have heard other users say that very light gauge don't work well on a small guitar.

Does anyone have any helpful experience?

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Subject: RE: Tech: Martin LX1E
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 27 Jul 23 - 07:16 PM

Don Firth was a long-time Mudcat member, professional guitar instructor and performer who was also in a wheelchair in the last couple of decades of his life and had to reduce the size of the guitars he played. He talked often about the small guitars he was using, and comparing notes with others. is a post that he refers to in the thread I've linked beneath this. (I had to go fix a broken link, but it does work now.)

Small Guitars? is a really old Mudcat thread with a lot of linked related threads at the top of the discussion.

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Subject: RE: Tech: Martin LX1E
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 27 Jul 23 - 07:20 PM

And the Go-Guitar he linked to isn't working for me, but a search brings up this. I remember reading about this when Don was doing his research. It appears that the man who ran the previous website retired ~ 2017.

You asked about a specific Martin guitar, and others may have discussed it in these threads. There may also be tips in here that aren't brand-specific.

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Subject: RE: Tech: Martin LX1E
Date: 28 Jul 23 - 05:02 AM

Thank you!

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Subject: RE: Tech: Martin LX1E
From: GUEST,Ray
Date: 28 Jul 23 - 07:45 AM

For any given instrument type, the shorter the scale, the heavier the strings that tend to be used. I use light or mediums on my “big” guitars but always mediums on my parlour. Other than that, it’s down to “feel” and whatever you’re happy with. Go too light, and the bass strings will be too floppy.

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Subject: RE: Tech: Martin LX1E
From: GUEST,Mark
Date: 28 Jul 23 - 04:20 PM

An lx1e has a 23 inch scale length, which is pretty short. I think you'll find 10s very floppy unless you tune up a tone or so. I'd try 12s or 11s first if I were sticking to EADGBE.

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Subject: RE: Tech: Martin LX1E
From: GUEST,Kenny B (inactive)
Date: 31 Jul 23 - 05:25 PM

On a Martin 00016GTE I use Elixir mediums and the volume is competitive but doesnt drown the more mature voice

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Subject: RE: Guitar: Martin LX1E
From: Cappuccino
Date: 12 Aug 23 - 03:28 PM

Thank you. I was not happy with the 13-56 that are strung in the factory, and wondered if I had wasted my money. Yesterday I noted a set of Martin 10-47s that I had hanging around, and thought sod it, I'll try them!    They do seem fine, and I'm not worried about the lack of volume, because I do little live work these days (mainly home recording). Yes, they may be a fraction floppy in the bass... I'll try 11-52s next!
Thanks, everybody.

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