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In Brattleboro: Japanese Lowden

Willie-O 21 Feb 02 - 01:08 PM
catspaw49 21 Feb 02 - 01:14 PM
Willie-O 21 Feb 02 - 01:25 PM
Wesley S 21 Feb 02 - 01:43 PM
catspaw49 21 Feb 02 - 02:11 PM
mooman 21 Feb 02 - 02:35 PM
C-flat 21 Feb 02 - 03:19 PM
Rick Fielding 21 Feb 02 - 04:15 PM
Willie-O 23 Feb 02 - 08:09 PM
Ned Ludd 24 Feb 02 - 05:56 AM
C-flat 24 Feb 02 - 06:16 AM
van lingle 24 Feb 02 - 07:53 AM
Willie-O 25 Feb 02 - 07:32 PM
Rick Fielding 25 Feb 02 - 09:27 PM
mooman 26 Feb 02 - 06:02 AM
Willie-O 26 Feb 02 - 09:22 AM
Rick Fielding 26 Feb 02 - 11:23 AM
GUEST,joelkaminer 06 Mar 11 - 03:22 PM
Midchuck 07 Mar 11 - 10:38 AM
GUEST,Chuck 26 Jul 12 - 08:01 PM
AllisonA(Animaterra) 27 Jul 12 - 08:21 AM
maeve 27 Jul 12 - 08:34 AM
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Subject: In Brattleboro: Japanese Lowden
From: Willie-O
Date: 21 Feb 02 - 01:08 PM

A year and a half back I acquired a Japanese-made Lowden guitar from Mr R Fielding, as referenced in this thread .

You don't see many of them around, but I just noticed that my favourite American music store to visit has one!

That would be Maple Leaf Music in Brattleboro Vermont.

Here's something anyone looking for a great reasonably priced dreadnought should check out. (and tell us about it). Description as follows:

Lowden G7P !984 Used $950.00 It's been a long time since we've seen a used Lowden guitar. So we're very happy to be able to offer this fine instrument for sale! Made in Lowden's Japanese factory, it has ovankol back and sides and a spruce top. Basically it is in excellent condition. The original pick up is long gone, though the tone and volume knobs and the end jack are still present; the wiring is also there so a new pick up installation will be very easy. The original bridge has been replaced. The new one is an exact copy of the original except that we had it made with a straight saddle so pick up possiblities would even exist. (Baggs or Fishman would work fine.) One problem is that all the hinges on the case are broken so the case comes in two parts. I assume a new one could be purchased through Lowden, but we are not dealers. The guitar sounds great and looks fabulous!!!!

Willie-O
Intensely curious


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Subject: RE: In Brattleboro: Japanese Lowden
From: catspaw49
Date: 21 Feb 02 - 01:14 PM

About what?

It's another Japanese Lowden and you like the one you got from Rick. What's to be curious about? Are you saying you're thinking of buying it? Should I be intensely curious about that? If so, you'll have to give me some time to work up to it....Check back in a few days and I'll let you know how I'm doing.

Spaw
Ardenty Bland


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Subject: RE: In Brattleboro: Japanese Lowden
From: Willie-O
Date: 21 Feb 02 - 01:25 PM

Nope, I'm not in the market. Just wondering if anyone in the central New England area might be interested enough to check this instrument out. I haven't seen any of these guitars that are actually branded as Lowdens. (mine is no-name-on-it, some are Flambeau).

And I'm wondering what the hell is ovankol? The one I got is honey-coloured mahogany sides and back, far as I know.

A Lowden, especially with the name on it, in good shape for under $1000, even US $, is a helluva deal for someone.

W-O


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Subject: RE: In Brattleboro: Japanese Lowden
From: Wesley S
Date: 21 Feb 02 - 01:43 PM

Willie O - My Lowden 12 string is from Japan. It's back and sides are also ovankol - the top is cedar. I understand that ovankol is from Africa. One article I read said that it has a tone quality between mahogany and rosewood. The Taylor website might have some info about ovankol.

I would describe this particular guitar as has having a very clean , crisp, smooth quality with lots of projection. Perhaps all ovankol guitars sound this good - I don't know. As much as I love that 12-string I might be forced to sell it to finance other instrument purchases. I have a Collings on order and I'm getting the itch for an F style mandolin.


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Subject: RE: In Brattleboro: Japanese Lowden
From: catspaw49
Date: 21 Feb 02 - 02:11 PM

Ovangkol has been used a lot by Taylor and some others. It's general properties (see chart) are close to Indian Rosewood and has similar tonal qualities according to many folks. It's a good bit less expensive and more available in some parts of the planet.

Spaw


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Subject: RE: In Brattleboro: Japanese Lowden
From: mooman
Date: 21 Feb 02 - 02:35 PM

Ovangkol is an excellent guitar wood as is the closely related Bubinga. My Lakewood has solid Ovangkol back and sides. The sound is somewhere between mahogany and Indian rosewood, perhaps slightly closer to the rosewood as 'Spaw has said.

I have a Flambeau/Lowden, c.1983, cutaway body with walnut back and sides. It has been an excellent workhorse for about 13 years. As with Willie-O's Vermont Lowden, the undersaddle pickup was stripped out when I bought it but the endpin jack and pots were till there. I subsequently fitted a large DiMarzio transducer directly under the bridge (no bridge pins design) and used the existing wiring and this gives a much warmer sound than the original system. Any feedback I control with an external graphic equalizer.

Mine cost me UKP 110 secondhand which was a pretty good bargain in my book!

Best regards,

mooman


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Subject: RE: In Brattleboro: Japanese Lowden
From: C-flat
Date: 21 Feb 02 - 03:19 PM

I've never come across "Flambeau" in the U.K. Is this another Lowden brand? I have played a "Tremeleux" which was described to me as a "copy Lowden" and I'm wondering If this is the same.


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Subject: RE: In Brattleboro: Japanese Lowden
From: Rick Fielding
Date: 21 Feb 02 - 04:15 PM

For what it's worth, Willy-o had my former baby completely re-vamped and it sounds Friggin' marvelous! Believe me if I hadn't been too stupid to get it re-fretted, I'd have noticed the change in a heartbeat and NEVER sold it.

Heather's reading this over my shoulder, and has reminded me that being the fickle sod I am, my relationships NEVER last more than 10 years, so I'd have sold it anyway...Plus, I'd just found "Woody" my 50 year old Martin 0-18, and "Pearl" my no-name Brazillian beauty.

Currently I'm playing "Hoot", my 1974 Gibson J-50 Deluxe.

It never ends.

Rick


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Subject: RE: In Brattleboro: Japanese Lowden
From: Willie-O
Date: 23 Feb 02 - 08:09 PM

C-flat: there is a lot of rumour and conflicting information about the five years or so that Lowdens were not made in Ireland and were sort of made in Japan.

Flambeau was definitely a brand name that these guitars were marketed as, at quite a reasonable price. ($300- $400 Cdn, early 80's). They didn't much resemble the completely distinctive Lowdens of today, and have a more than casual resemblance to a Gibson J-50, but they were at least designed by George Lowden, and were and are a great players' guitar, play great and sound huge, with no frills or excessive ornamentation. I don't consider them copies, they are a lower-end Lowden. Haven't heard of Tremeleux.

A number of these guitars, like mine/once Rick's, never had ANY brand name on them. Others from that same production period in Japan were actually branded as Lowdens. The latter are undoubtedly a case of the name adding to the value. I don't know if they are much different in appearance/construction to what I have. That's why I'm curious about this guitar in Brattleboro.

W-O


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Subject: RE: In Brattleboro: Japanese Lowden
From: Ned Ludd
Date: 24 Feb 02 - 05:56 AM

Tremeleux are a french Lowden lookalike of good quality. Spittin' image.


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Subject: RE: In Brattleboro: Japanese Lowden
From: C-flat
Date: 24 Feb 02 - 06:16 AM

Thanks for clearing that up Ned and W-O.


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Subject: RE: In Brattleboro: Japanese Lowden
From: van lingle
Date: 24 Feb 02 - 07:53 AM

this from a lowden catalog i obtained when i purchased my L27f in 1987 (please forgive 1-hand typing): lowden models s5, g7, g9, f9 and g7(12)have all been crafted in the lowden tradition of craftmanship and design. the back and sides are of laminated tonewoods and the soundboards are all solid wood. the necks are of a simplified laminated construction which still ensures a warp resistance which is superior to one-piece neck construction. these modifications, together with a slightly modified bracing system and use of chrome plated machineheads, make it possible for these instruments to be available to musicians at a very reasonable price.

specs on the g7:
top- spruce
back and sides- ovankol
neck- 2 pc. mahoghany
bridge-rosewood (pin-type)

a g7cp is pictured on the opposite page w/ the caption: electro acoustic cat-away(sic)model by g7.

there is no date on this catalog. one difference i noticed between the above instruments and the solid wood models is that they have dark pickguards instead of clear ones.
and willie, you described the g7 in vermont as a dreadnought and the ones i'm seeing here have the more common lowden shape? regards, dave

0

0

0


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Subject: RE: In Brattleboro: Japanese Lowden
From: Willie-O
Date: 25 Feb 02 - 07:32 PM

Thanks for the details Dave. So it's laminated ovankol sides and back????? Interesting. I'd a thought that the point of using a wood I'd never heard of is that it would be cheaper and therefore solid.

I know nothing. But it's a start.

Bill


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Subject: RE: In Brattleboro: Japanese Lowden
From: Rick Fielding
Date: 25 Feb 02 - 09:27 PM

Dreadnought is a VERY specific shape. To the best of my knowledge, Lowden never built or designed a dreadnought. Generall those early ones we're talking about were "J" models. Exactly like slope shouldered J-50s.

Rick


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Subject: RE: In Brattleboro: Japanese Lowden
From: mooman
Date: 26 Feb 02 - 06:02 AM

For anyone who's interested here is a link to one of my webpages with piccies of my cutaway Flambeau/ Lowden.

Best regards,

mooman


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Subject: RE: In Brattleboro: Japanese Lowden
From: Willie-O
Date: 26 Feb 02 - 09:22 AM

OK Rick, it's not a dreadnaught! I give! I am guilty of using the D-word when I mean "big". As in, "non-O-style".

Did the peghead of formerly-your guitar look like Mooman's in the pic, before you trimmed it? I notice the one in the picture has a different, simple curve than the compound curve Lowdens have.

W-O


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Subject: RE: In Brattleboro: Japanese Lowden
From: Rick Fielding
Date: 26 Feb 02 - 11:23 AM

Yes it DID Willy! Don't ask me WHY I trimmed it...sometimes I'm simply an idiot...no more no less.

Other idiotic (instrument related) things I've done:

added a seventh string to a Deering six string banjo (a high octave G on the third string.

Moved my fifth string peg up to the seventh fret on ALL my banjos (except an expensive Vega) for twenty five years. The theory behind this was to re-create Seeger's "Long-neck" tuning, without the "long-neck" weight.

On the other hand, some of my modifications really worked. Such as: Octaving the SECOND pair of strings on my 12 string guitars (use a "7" or "8" guage). Really makes them sparkle, even in a LOWWWW tuning.

Completely revamping my autoharps with removable bars.

My repair guy Bruce Dowd calls people like me "Landscapers"! Ughhh!

The devil makes me do it!

Rick


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Subject: RE: In Brattleboro: Japanese Lowden
From: GUEST,joelkaminer
Date: 06 Mar 11 - 03:22 PM

how can i buy it


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Subject: RE: In Brattleboro: Japanese Lowden
From: Midchuck
Date: 07 Mar 11 - 10:38 AM

Maple Leaf Music is on my short list of stores you don't want to go into with a credit card with any significant amount of available credit left on it. And unlike Elderly and some of the ones in the South, it's within reasonable driving distance of me. I have to make myself be afraid.

Peter


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Subject: RE: In Brattleboro: Japanese Lowden
From: GUEST,Chuck
Date: 26 Jul 12 - 08:01 PM

I Have a Lowden Model G9 Guitar SN#4139 purchased in 1993, I emailed the Lowden Co. a few years ago, asking the year built and where that this guitar was mane in Japan. You can find the story of these guitars on the Lowden web site. Mine sold new for $1400 Chuck


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Subject: RE: In Brattleboro: Japanese Lowden
From: AllisonA(Animaterra)
Date: 27 Jul 12 - 08:21 AM

Like Midchuck, I don't.live far from Brattleboro and never need much of an excuse to go there (my daughter and I were there yesterday!) PM me if you'd like me to go check out the Lowden!!


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Subject: RE: In Brattleboro: Japanese Lowden
From: maeve
Date: 27 Jul 12 - 08:34 AM

Willie-O posted about the Brattleboro Lowden back in 2002. Could be it's no longer available. :)

I also used to love to wander around Brattleboro however, so go ahead and wander!


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