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  #1  
Old 01-31-2012, 10:11 AM
Andromeda Andromeda is offline
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Default Baritone 12 string?

Since I am really into the baritone now I was wondering who makes a good baritone 12 string. I know Taylor's Leo Kottke model can be tuned to C# but does anyone else make a baritone 12?
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Old 01-31-2012, 10:29 AM
drive-south drive-south is offline
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The answer is yes, and there are 2 flavors to choose from.

!2-string baritones based on the old Stella like the one Leadbelly played. These are 26.5 inch scale and designed to be tuned C# - C#. These are ladder braced and produce a very dry growl. These are available from several builders including Del Arte, Tod Cambio (Fraulini), Michael Hauver, Ralph Brown, and others.

Modern-style baritone 12's have X-bracing for a more balanced tone. One builder making these is Joe Veillette. I'm guessing that many custom builders would offer them as well. These would probably have a longer scale (27-29") and would be tuned A-A or B-B.

I'd love to play one, but I have a feeling I would tire quickly due to the heavy tension and the mass of the heavy strings.
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Old 01-31-2012, 10:44 AM
mchalebk mchalebk is offline
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I realize that most guitarists are not interested in carbon fiber instruments, but it might be worth considering for instruments like this. For instance, check out this Emerald 12-string baritone/bass, tuned E to E (an octave lower than standard with all octave courses). This video gives an idea of what this is capable of. I would think the 30.5" scale would be perfect for a typical baritone tuning.

Just something to think about.
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Old 01-31-2012, 10:56 AM
blue blue is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by drive-south View Post
I'd love to play one, but I have a feeling I would tire quickly due to the heavy tension and the mass of the heavy strings.
I no desire to play a twelve. The difference in size between the octaves and the fat strings sound like a nightmare. Wouldn't be a matter of tension in my mind buy of smushing your fingers down hard enough to fret the octaves. Love my 6, but no thanks on the 12 for me.
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Old 01-31-2012, 12:35 PM
AtlJohn AtlJohn is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by blue View Post
I no desire to play a twelve. The difference in size between the octaves and the fat strings sound like a nightmare. Wouldn't be a matter of tension in my mind buy of smushing your fingers down hard enough to fret the octaves. Love my 6, but no thanks on the 12 for me.
Howdy blue -

You might try playin a 12 to see for yourself! I used to play one exclusively, and there are things i played flawlessly on it that i have no prayer of currently playing on a 6. The action is typically very low, and if somebody with my small hands who now plays a standard 1 11/16" neck could handle it, most anybody could.

Cheers,
-js
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Old 01-31-2012, 12:42 PM
Neal Neal is offline
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I've got a Dell'Arte, though it's only 26.5" scale. There's really no difference in comfort, even with heavy strings, when they're set up properly, my opinion anyway. You tune 3-4 steps below standard, so the tension is very comfortable.

When I got it, the dealer had put lights on and tuned it to standard. Now that was difficult and uncomfortable and sounded like poo.

They are lap pianos. Here's some eye candy (my opinion, of course)- the only sunburst Dell'Arte Leadbelly made.


And it's brother 12ers-
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Old 01-31-2012, 02:08 PM
blue blue is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AtlJohn View Post
Howdy blue -

You might try playin a 12 to see for yourself! I used to play one exclusively, and there are things i played flawlessly on it that i have no prayer of currently playing on a 6. The action is typically very low, and if somebody with my small hands who now plays a standard 1 11/16" neck could handle it, most anybody could.

Cheers,
-js
I've owned many standard 12s. It's the idea of a twelve with a .070 or greater low string I don't like.
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Old 01-31-2012, 03:35 PM
Neal Neal is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by blue View Post
I've owned many standard 12s. It's the idea of a twelve with a .070 or greater low string I don't like.
Don't knock it till you've tried it. Though in your case, you probably wouldn't want to run out and spend a few grand on one right now....
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Old 01-31-2012, 03:45 PM
blue blue is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Neal View Post
Don't knock it till you've tried it. Though in your case, you probably wouldn't want to run out and spend a few grand on one right now....
Frankly it's not the cost, or my trepidation at the octaves. It's the whole 12 string thing! I'm so done with 12 strings. The tuning. The blood loss during string changes...

Kind of like red sports good. They look great... With other people driving them

Of course when I see one you KNOW I'm picking it up and giving it a go!
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Old 01-31-2012, 03:46 PM
niko niko is offline
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Stella-like 12 string are wonderful imho.
Also look at Martin J12SO Sing Out 60th Pete Seeger, a 12 string with a 27.5 scale length :
http://tinyurl.com/87nd5vl

and for your listening pleasure :
Doug Young - 12-String Yamamoto Baritone - Solo Guitar
http://youtu.be/k4wcqyoBkp4

Nicolas
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Old 01-31-2012, 03:51 PM
Neal Neal is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by blue View Post
Frankly it's not the cost, or my trepidation at the octaves. It's the whole 12 string thing! I'm so done with 12 strings. The tuning. The blood loss during string changes...

Kind of like red sports good. They look great... With other people driving them

Of course when I see one you KNOW I'm picking it up and giving it a go!
I hear you on that. I played uke pretty much exclusively for 6 years, played that tricone in the pic above, and.....
Sometimes it only takes one thing. Just one thing to tip you over the edge, and that was it for me.
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Old 01-31-2012, 03:55 PM
Neal Neal is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by niko View Post
Stella-like 12 string are wonderful imho.
Also look at Martin J12SO Sing Out 60th Pete Seeger, a 12 string with a 27.5 scale length :
http://tinyurl.com/87nd5vl

and for your listening pleasure :
Doug Young - 12-String Yamamoto Baritone - Solo Guitar
http://youtu.be/k4wcqyoBkp4

Nicolas
Nicolas, that 12 Doug Young is playing is totally different tonally from my Dell'Arte, both so beautiful, but different. He's got 2 inches on me. I wonder what strings he's using.
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  #13  
Old 01-31-2012, 07:27 PM
Mycroft Mycroft is offline
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One of those "got away" instruments was a Franklin Stella-style 12 string from the late 80s. 26.75 scale, and tuned down to C-C. It had the trapeze tailpiece, which takes the stress off the top and allows for lighter bracing. Great instrument. I'll bet that he still makes it. Froggy Bottom also does a Stella style, designed in conjunction with Paul Geremia

And if you can find one, Lance McCollum made a hell of a Baritone 12.

TW
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  #14  
Old 02-03-2012, 09:04 AM
drive-south drive-south is offline
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There was also some Stella-style instruments built by Nick Kukich (Franklin Guitar Co). I played one at Mandolin Bros store a few years ago. It was slightly different from the other offerings as it had a solid peg head with enclosed tuners and pin bridge. He made no attempt to recreate the Stella purfling design or build an accurate copy of Leadbelly's guitar.

For someone looking for a more modern instrument, the Veillette offerings are the cat's meow! One of Joe's specialties is making unique instruments like the Gryphon, Terzilla, and baritone 12.

http://www.veilletteguitars.com/index.shtml

Joe is somewhat of an Energizer Bunny in that he is always innovating.
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Old 02-03-2012, 09:36 AM
tadol tadol is offline
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Definitely should look at the Yamamoto - he had a fan-fret baritone 12 string at Healdsburg that was extremely nice -
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