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janicekla 03-30-2001 11:57 AM

Comments on Tacoma?
Anyone own a Tacoma? I like the way they look but haven't had a chance to play one. The prices seem to hear some comments on these.

JayGon 03-30-2001 01:07 PM

Hey Janice.

When I bought my Taylor 410, I was also considering a nice Sitka/flamed maple Tacoma limited model dread. Tacomas have, IMO, a big sound like Taylors do. I think it has to do with their bracing. They may appear to be competitively priced to the Taylors, but don't include cases. I know a Taylor/Tacoma dealer who uses them to sell more Taylors because of this since Taylors are superior guitars.

I find the action sometimes a bit high and the necks are mostly rosewood rather than ebony, I think. I did play a koa parlor model that was real nice recently, however. They do have a lot of nice appointments, e.g., abalone, ivoriod binding, etc. for the price.

I find their Chiefs to have a surprisingly big sound, but the little Papoose less so, esp. copmpared to the Baby Taylors and considering the price tag difference.

Hope this was helpful.


janicekla 03-30-2001 01:48 PM

Thanks, Jay. I appreciate the info. I recently purchased an 814C, which I love. I am helping a friend look for something a little less expensive and I thought Tacoma might be a good option. I am surprised they do not come with a case. It makes a difference when the case is made for the guitar--fits like a glove. I have a small Guild acoustic electric in a SKB Case and it slides around a little--I use a towel under it to try to keep it from moving too much. The case is a plus with Taylors.

mapletrees 03-30-2001 03:17 PM

I believe Tacoma has hardshell cases available for all (or most of) their models, it's just they aren't figured into the list price.....could be wrong but I don't think so...

They seem very good to me except for the fact that you wouldn't be able to use a soundhole pickup with the ones with the crazy offset hole....

I find them a lot like Taylor in the fact that they feel alive when you play them....same sort of feeling as when you're holding an active kitten.....Martin doesn't do that for me.....

[ 03-30-2001: Message edited by: mapletrees ]

RL 03-31-2001 01:23 AM

Hello All,

Our local music store got in Tacoma's and Taylors about the same time.

There is nothing wrong with Tacoma's as they are good guitars. With Tacoma's, you need to know what you are buying. Unlike Taylors which always use solid wood at the 300 level and above, some Tacomas are all solid wood, some partially solid with laminate sides and back....or some variation in between.

Also, the Tacoma's I've seen that are less expensive do not use the ebony fretboard but rather rosewood.

It's interesting that our local music store sold more Taylors in the first month that both the Taylors and Tacomas came in than they did Tacomas. And usually, that store's customers are more in the lower price range on acoustics.

One other thought if I may....

If you get a Tacoma built with the same components of a Taylor, all solid wood, ebony fretboard etc...the Tacoma will cost about what the Taylor will cost...(Taylor 300 - 400 series).

But like I said, Tacoma is a good guitar.

I know hear that they are starting up an Olympia line which will be made in a foreign market.

Perhaps someone knows something about the Olympia line?

Take care all

trombone 03-31-2001 05:16 AM

I am not well versed on the Olympia line, but I have seen some while out shopping.
I was not impressed.
I have been moderately tempted by three Tacomas. The Olympias did nothing for me. None of them had the sound quality of the regular Tacoma line, and the workmanship was not as good. They just seemed cheesier. The logo doesn't even look good!
But if someone was in the market for one of those cheap plywood bangers it would be as good as anything else out there.
I would go and play both the Tacoma and Taylors to get a feel of what you can get for your money. The nicest Tacoma I played was still a fair chunk of change -- which means I could get a Taylor for the same price. Maybe not as fancy, but still solid wood and good workmanship, excellent warranty, and of course, excellent sound.
It's amazing that sometimes you can find a really good cheaper guitar out there. My first "nice" guitar was a Martin Shenandoah. Nice lacewood veneer for back and sides, narrow neck dred, but it sounds really nice. Not 814brz nice, but better than most Martins I've played. Maybe that's because it was made in Japan!!
Which really brings one back to the need to go play a bunch before deciding on which one to take home.

Noflatpick 03-31-2001 01:37 PM

I've played some Tacomas, and they didn't seem like bad guitars. They're made about 90 miles down the road from me in,(can you believe it??), Tacoma, Wa.

Hey, Ricky Skaggs plays one, they must be OK.

JW 04-01-2001 04:15 AM

Ive got a JK50CE Tacoma and its just great. Its a six string jumbo cutaway Solid top and solid Koa back. The sides are Koa laminate but still a fine guitar and one of the best looking non taylors Ive got. It came with the baggs electronics and a hardshell case. Out the door price was 1280 dollars. I use it for stage and recording and I think its a fine guitar.It came set up so well I havent changed a thing. For somone who doesnt have the bucks to shell out on a Taylor its a great alternative.JW

franchelB 04-01-2001 02:20 PM


Originally posted by Janice:
Anyone own a Tacoma? I like the way they look but haven't had a chance to play one. The prices seem to hear some comments on these.
Right after I bought my 410E in July 1996, Tacoma just came out with the DM10 and DR 20...and I was sooo tempted. The things I didn't like were the clear pickguard and a gigbag that came with the guitar.

franchelB 04-02-2001 02:38 PM

...and IMHO, Tacoma is the "new Taylor".

Bill Nichols (CaptBill) 04-02-2001 06:28 PM

Of the Tacomas I have played they have impressed me as a good guitar, certainly a good stage guitar. I also like that they are made in the U.S. but none that I have tried approach the sound of my Taylors. So overall a good guitar but not a Great guitar.

Dancing Bear 04-15-2001 07:49 PM

Nice Guitar compared to some, and is less expensive than Taylor. The fret work on the two I looked at made me stick with Taylor.

1934 05-30-2001 04:41 PM

I bought a Tacoma PK30E4 after buying my 714CE. Let's face it, trying to compare them is like trying to compare NY to LA, 2 completely different animals. I bought the Tacoma Parlor guitar because I wanted a small bodied guitar, & Taylor's Grand Auditorium is still quite a bit larger than a parlor guitar. Mine has the Koa laminated sides & back, which I am quite happy with. To quote a friend of mine that deals in guitars from the 1920's & 30's "Personally, I think this business about a guitar having to be "all solid - no laminated" woods is a bunch of crap! It is pure "guitar-nerd snobbery". Especially when it comes to the sides of an instrument .... it is my belief that the sides do not effect the tone in a critical way, whether they're solid wood, or not. This same "snob" approach has been the rule regarding bracing of guitar tops. A myth has been created concerning the importance of guitars having to be x-braced to be considered good. Slowly, the public is
becoming aware of the fallacies of these misguided beliefs.

Some highly coveted guitars were constructed out of laminated woods. The famous Selmer Macciferri guitars made famous by Django Reinhart were ALL constructed from laminated woods and they had ladder-bracing as well (you can buy one for $75,000 if you can find one for sale).

I LOVE my Tacoma, it is my primary guitar, what with me leaving the 714CE in Spanish tuning, the only other guitar that comes close to the sound I was looking for is my 1920 something Stella mahogany & Adirondick Spruce top guitar. What I guess you must look for in a guitar is TONE!!! :cool:

fretfinder 05-31-2001 09:13 PM

I came dangerously close to buying a Tacoma ER22CE. It's a Grand Concert with a cedar top. I went to the store about five times and kept switching back and forth between it and a 514CE4. The ER22 has rosewood back sides vs. mahogany on the 514. A little different sound, but both really sweet. The Tacoma was about $1100, which seemed like a real bargain to me.

frayne48 06-01-2001 09:21 PM

Played a Tacoma or two today in a local music store. For some reason just didn't feel good or sound as good as my 814. Did play a couple of Alverez dreads that I was impressed with. Actually thought about buying one for a beater guitar, since I don't let my Taylor out of the house. Silly me.

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