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  #1  
Old 06-30-2008, 03:19 PM
garyyoung garyyoung is offline
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Default Best Martin guitar for strumming?

I'm looking to upgrade to a Martin guitar, but I am strictly a strummer. Can you recommend the best model(s) for balance and dymanics when strumming? Are there other brands I should consider for my purposes? I'm looking to spend in the $2500 - $3500 range. Thanks!
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Old 06-30-2008, 03:30 PM
Tsckey Tsckey is offline
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Well in the early days of Bluegrass, before Doc Watson and others liberated the guitar as lead instrument, lots and lots of guitarists wailed away on D-18s, D-28s, and D-35s, they still do. All are in your price range

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Old 06-30-2008, 04:15 PM
grantgsc grantgsc is offline
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Default Strumming Martin

I have an OM28 Marquis. It is excellent strummer. But my Dread Martin listed below is just awsome. Interestingly, it has an Eng. top.
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Old 06-30-2008, 04:27 PM
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rmyAddison rmyAddison is offline
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If you are strictly a strummer I think you should look at dreads. I own all the Martin sizes and would generally categorize them as:

strumming -dreads
fingerpicking - short scale 000's
nice all around - OM's

Of course you can use any guitar for any style, some are just better suited than others.

I would look at D-28 Marquis, D-18GE, HD-28V and HD-35 to get the flavor of Martin dreads, the bargain being the HD-28V, wonderful guitars.

If you want to look at other brands too try Collings, Bourgeois and Santa Cruz, they all make great guitars. But if you want the classic Martin sound for rosewood I would say the HD-28V and for Mahogany the D-18GE.

If you want to spend more the D-28MM (Marquis Madagascar) is a tone to the bone monster. Happy shopping.
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Old 06-30-2008, 04:29 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by garyyoung View Post
I'm looking to upgrade to a Martin guitar, but I am strictly a strummer. Can you recommend the best model(s) for balance and dymanics when strumming? Are there other brands I should consider for my purposes? I'm looking to spend in the $2500 - $3500 range. Thanks!
Hi Gary...
Hello and welcome to the forum. Glad you joined, and I will toss in my few cents worth.

I'd go to a shop that handles better brands, and play every Martin, Gibson, Taylor, Collings and Huss & Dalton you can put your hands on. Suspend your budget till you find the guitar you cannot live without and then spend whatever it takes to bring it home.

There are amazing instruments out there, and what you need to find is the one that makes you sing.
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Old 06-30-2008, 04:32 PM
banpreso banpreso is offline
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if you are strickly a strummer, and don't mind the dread body, you'll want a martin dread. the D-18GE is a good place to start, or HD-28V.

other brands to consider will be stonebridge dread, gibson AJ, webber dread, breedlove triditional series dread maybe, collings dread, bourgeouz, stanta cruz, all that.

just gotta find a good place and play a few to get the idea.
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Old 06-30-2008, 04:37 PM
HHP HHP is online now
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Dumb question, but when you say you are a "strummer" are you saying you only play rhythm or that you play lead and rhythm with a flatpick?
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Old 06-30-2008, 04:53 PM
Ed422 Ed422 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ljguitar View Post
Hi Gary...
Hello and welcome to the forum. Glad you joined, and I will toss in my few cents worth.

I'd go to a shop that handles better brands, and play every Martin, Gibson, Taylor, Collings and Huss & Dalton you can put your hands on. Suspend your budget till you find the guitar you cannot live without and then spend whatever it takes to bring it home.

There are amazing instruments out there, and what you need to find is the one that makes you sing.

As usual, Larry has come very close to hitting the nail on the head. The only thing I'd change in his comments;

Don't limit yourself to those brands but think about limiting yourself to your budget (or what you could scrounge up in a short amount of time). In the range specified, there are some darned fine instruments. Play everything in the budget and not just the top end of the budget. IMO, if you can't find a "gotta have" with that budget, you're just not trying. Remember to try to budget in a few dollars for setup tweaks.

Ed
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Old 06-30-2008, 05:14 PM
Chesapeake Chesapeake is offline
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The nice thing about a dread is there's no reason you can't do anything you want with it. Nothing wrong with "just strumming," but a really good one might inspire you to go further.

I have a Martin D-28 Marquis and a Martin HD28VC, virtually identical guitars, both with Adirondack (red spruce) tops. I really should sell one (I also have a Martin D-35 - definitely over-invested in dreads), and at one point had listed the Marquis, but have decided to keep both because I just love 'em both. They have big voices - bright trebles and bottoms that sound like pipe organs. Whether I'm "just strumming," or running a bass line (which in a jam almost sounds like an upright bass), or flat- or fingerpicking a melody, well, let 's just say it makes me real happy.
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Old 06-30-2008, 05:17 PM
woodruff woodruff is offline
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D-35, just nothing like it for strumming. great old martin tone.

and gibson AJ.
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Old 06-30-2008, 05:21 PM
john bange john bange is offline
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I have to agree with HHP...flat pick,thumb pick, thumb only...might get a different choice. john bange
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Old 06-30-2008, 05:35 PM
urbanmike urbanmike is offline
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i know you said that you really want to get a martin, but considering your price range, i would recommend you at least try a santa cruz dreadnought.

martins are great and i love them, but santa cruz seems to have the great traditional dreadnought tone along with a special "oomph" in them that makes me love them even more.
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Old 06-30-2008, 05:58 PM
Michael T Michael T is offline
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Got my son a D-28 this year. Sat down with a D-28, D-35, HD-28 & simply loved the balance and over all sound of the D-28 (saved a few dollars too).
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Old 06-30-2008, 07:22 PM
maurerfan maurerfan is offline
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Garyyoung - I'm a martin fan ... own three myself; a D-18, a 000-18GE and a custom 14-fret 00-21. All strum very well. If you like the dry, open, airy voice of a vintage Martin, you would probably like the 000-18GE (mahogany/redspruce) ... a very fine guitar that is within your price range. I think it strums at least as well as it fingerpicks. Good luck.
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Old 06-30-2008, 08:08 PM
Ranger1964 Ranger1964 is offline
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I'm a rosewood/spruce dread fan. For me it came down to the HD-28 and HD-35. The HD-35 was a little too much, the HD-28 was perfect. I like the sound of the scalloped bracing and the low profile neck fits my hand better than the mod v.
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