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kramster 12-03-2017 04:37 AM

Most Collectable CF or Ekoa 30 Years From Now
For some reason just thinking about this. { 30 or 100 years even }

CA Cargo comes to mind.. (Pre PV)

tbeltrans 12-03-2017 07:56 AM

Well, that would be nice since I still have my three pre-Peavey Cargos and they are doing just fine. I also have spare tuners (CA Guitars was using Gotoh 510 miniatures at the time) and pins, since I planned on keeping these for a long time and somehow just sensed that CA Guitars probably wouldn't last forever.

It is really interesting to see some of the stuff I have become valuable to other people. I have seen a number of music books that I have, selling at (in my opinion) ridiculously high prices. A good example is the Mick Goodrick "Mr. Goodchord" series of books. I have all three, and the third is especially rare. Some of those cool old Charles Hanson books are now going for upwards of $30. I picked up a bunch of these for $3 - $4 at Half Price Books years ago. Since I have no intention of selling because I use this stuff, I won't be cashing in, but it is fun to watch what people are willing to pay.

But, then, I have a 1917 Martin 0-18 from when Martin was still making these with Brazilian rosewood back and sides (they switched later that year to mahogany and used that forever after). This guitar sold new for about $30 back then. I also have a 1925 Martin all Koa soprano ukulele that probably sold for less than that back then too.


Acousticado 12-03-2017 08:08 AM

I’m also a very happy pre-Peavey Cargo owner. Got mine new in ‘’s the charcoal ‘Road Tough’ finish which Peavey dropped although many consider it as the best tonally.

As for the Cargo being collectable, I never considered that it would be at all, let-alone THE most collectable among so many fine composite guitars. I guess I better leave it original then...wouldn’t want to lose value by hot ridding it the way so many did with old Strats, including removing original finishes.:eek:;)

Kram owns and/or has tried a good many of the composite guitars out there, and I’m actually quite surprised that he’s made this assertion about the Cargo.

tbeltrans 12-03-2017 11:34 AM

Of the CF guitars I have played (a few Rainsong models such as the Parlor series and a few larger models, an early Emerald X7, several other original CA Guitars models), the original Cargo is by far my favorite. From what I have read here, more and newer models and makers are arriving in the market. I have not had access to these, so maybe I would find a new favorite when exposed to these newer offerings.

By the way, all three of my Cargos are identical. They are pre-Peavey and have the wine color RT finish. I also much prefer the RT finish over anything else. I preferred the wine color because it seemed more subdued than some of the other choices at the time (around 2007). Unfortunately for me, the exposed carbon fiber that I have seen on various CA Guitars models, gives me a headache. It does something to my eyes, so I really couldn't live with that finish. I really liked the OX, except that the ones I saw all had that finish.

I find it interesting that all the things some other people used to complain about regarding the Cargo in the old McNichol forum, are things that I really like - the very short scale of the Cargo, the wide fretboard, the small size. To me, the solution to holding the Cargo is to use a strap. Regarding the short scale, I treat the Cargo as a 12 fret instrument with some extra reach. The wide fretboard is great for me for fingerstyle. The Cargo is still one of the most comfortable guitars I have ever played. It is a real asset also to be able to leave them laying around my condo instead of worrying about humidity (or lack thereof).

Edit: Regarding the RT finish, the main complaint people seemed to have is that if you had a pickup in the Cargo, then you would get the noise from your fingers and/or hand rubbing against the top. I play in a classical style technique, so my fingers only touch the strings and I get no rub noise even with the installed K & K pickups, which seemed to be the worst offenders for this type of noise.


Earl49 12-03-2017 11:36 AM

I have no idea what might be collectable over time. It is impossible to know what might become trendy decades from now. Something rare (very few made) that really speaks to a certain style or used by a celebrity (yet to be determined). Over time I actually expect that wood guitars will fade from popularity to some degree, and more instruments will be made of composites as tone wood gets scarcer and economies of scale help bring prices down. The day will likely come when a wood guitar made of the now "normal" tone woods will cost more than a composite. Or maybe it will be some really cool harp guitar.....

My first experience with the Cargo was pre-Peavey at Aloha Music Camp in 2007 when someone I knew bought one. Later that week I visited Hilo Guitars & Ukulele and very nearly bought one myself. It would have been a raw finish model w/o pickups for about $750, just like Acousticado's. That seemed like a killer deal (half the price of the lowest model Rainsong) but we already had our full complement of baggage flying home. I really should have called in a mail order shortly thereafter, but never got around to it. My wife ended up buying a Peavey Cargo (gloss blue with pickup) in 2013 for around $1200, just a month before the prices shot up to $1800. She did not care for the matte finishes -- either Raw or Road Tough -- and it's her guitar.

In 2010 we were at the NAMM show and spent considerable time at the CA booth, where there were some interesting options, including the Blade electric guitar. But CA went under just months later.

We were already pretty familiar with CF, having owned a Rainsong for several years at that point, and having auditioned RS and CA's at Elderly during a visit to family in Michigan. Our LGS in Anchorage actually carried Rainsong back then (and does still) to help deal cope with dry Alaskan winters.

Captain Jim 12-03-2017 12:06 PM

Hard to know what will be collectable 3 or more decades from now. With the range of really good carbon fiber guitars being made currently, I wouldn't be surprised if some of these make that list. Since no carbon fiber guitars are being made in huge quantities, the scarcity may help the future demand. I have to think that the Savoy (made with e-koa) and any of the Emerald woodies (each unique) stand out.

I can't imagine I'll be around to find out, and no grandkids to pass any of my current "collection" to. So, I guess I will just enjoy them all now. :)

tbeltrans 12-03-2017 02:44 PM

For those who are concerned/interested in collectability of CF guitars, I suggest buying one of each. Then whatever people decide is collectible years down the road, you will be good to go. :)

As for my little collection, I suppose whoever inherits them after I'm gone will want to take these Cargos to "Antiques Road Show", where they will be "worth" $75,000 each "at auction". :)


MiG50 12-03-2017 04:17 PM

I know that the original Rainsong neck has become pretty collectible already, and the most sought-after collector's CF is probably a Rainsong 12-string. Guitars tend to get more collectible after they are discontinued, so that's a fine place to start. Hence the collectibility of the pre-Peavey CA.

kramster 12-03-2017 06:58 PM

Da Blade and 12 string

AZLiberty 12-03-2017 07:50 PM

I suspect that the original Rainsongs made in HI will be somewhat collectable similar to the original Lemon Grove Taylors.

Not that I think they are better, but often a factory move will bump up the price of the pre-move instruments.

kramster 12-03-2017 08:17 PM


Originally Posted by AZLiberty (Post 5556993)
I suspect that the original Rainsongs made in HI will be somewhat collectable similar to the original Lemon Grove Taylors.

Not that I think they are better, but often a factory move will bump up the price of the pre-move instruments.

Also they made a couple Jazz boxes too.

Uncle Pauhana 12-04-2017 02:26 PM

30 or 100 years in the future? Well, scarcity is always a factor in collectibility, but quality and uniqueness are also important. Guitars produced in large quantities, no matter how high their quality, will not be any collector’s “holy grail”, although they still may be in demand for players. And it’s likely that the supply of late 20th-early 21st century carbon guitars will suffer less from attrition than wood guitars because, well, they are carbon fiber.

So I would look for Levioras and certain one-of-a-kind Emeralds – those handmade by Alistair personally – to be of interest to collectors.


Kray Van Kirk 12-04-2017 02:58 PM

Kramster - what's the nut width on the CA 12-string?

tbeltrans 12-04-2017 03:35 PM

From what we have seen so far with acoustic guitars from the distant past, it seems the better known brands have been in the highest demand. Old Martins seem to top the list, followed by Gibson. Then there are a couple of brands that have more recently come to collectors' collective attention, but mostly the unknown brands don't seem to command the big money. I wonder if the CF market is big enough for any maker to attract much attention well into the future. Also, since it is a developing technology, the "good" ones may not yet have been designed and built.


J.R. Rogers 12-04-2017 03:39 PM

I agree with Kramster. I'm thinking the original CA Blade prototype that they put up for sale at one time...

Even more rare is the "pro" version they apparently released in very limited quantities.
Those Rainsong Jazz boxes would probably be a close second.


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