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Old 05-03-2019, 06:27 AM
El Cheapo El Cheapo is offline
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Default 00 size guitar for travel?

I like my 0015M. It's small and light to carry, and does a good job with fingerpicking or strumming. The sound is good too. I took it along on our most recent Boy Scout campout and playing it by the fire in the evening was nice.

So I got to thinking... I don't have any experience taking a guitar on an airplane. Would the 0015M be too big? I have a Backpacker that I've taken on the Appalachian trail a couple times. It's small enough for backpacking and travel, but doesn't sound anywhere near as good. Any thoughts or opinions appreciated, and thanks in advance!
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Old 05-03-2019, 06:50 AM
Paddy1951 Paddy1951 is online now
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Quote:
Originally Posted by El Cheapo View Post
I like my 0015M. It's small and light to carry, and does a good job with fingerpicking or strumming. The sound is good too. I took it along on our most recent Boy Scout campout and playing it by the fire in the evening was nice.



So I got to thinking... I don't have any experience taking a guitar on an airplane. Would the 0015M be too big? I have a Backpacker that I've taken on the Appalachian trail a couple times. It's small enough for backpacking and travel, but doesn't sound anywhere near as good. Any thoughts or opinions appreciated, and thanks in advance!
I, too, have a 00-15. Excellent guitars. I would not do airline travel with it. It is a bit too long for the overhead. More important, it is too nice of a guitar to risk damage to.

When I traveled back and forth between the States and Ireland, I took a Larrivee parlor guitar. It is a O size and is about 3" shorter than a 0 0-15.

Most important though was that it fit in the overhead nicely AND Aer Lingus routinely understood the importance of musicians protecting their instruments. On any given flight there would likely be 3 or 4 or more musicians on board.
I have even witnessed small music sessions.

Anyway, look for something smaller and not as valuable. There are lots of inexpensive travel guitars to be had.

While not the most expensive Martin, why risk a great little guitar?
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Old 05-03-2019, 08:45 AM
El Cheapo El Cheapo is offline
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Originally Posted by Paddy1951 View Post
I, too, have a 00-15. Excellent guitars. I would not do airline travel with it. It is a bit too long for the overhead. More important, it is too nice of a guitar to risk damage to.

When I traveled back and forth between the States and Ireland, I took a Larrivee parlor guitar. It is a O size and is about 3" shorter than a 0 0-15.

Most important though was that it fit in the overhead nicely AND Aer Lingus routinely understood the importance of musicians protecting their instruments. On any given flight there would likely be 3 or 4 or more musicians on board.
I have even witnessed small music sessions.

Anyway, look for something smaller and not as valuable. There are lots of inexpensive travel guitars to be had.

While not the most expensive Martin, why risk a great little guitar?
So best to stick with the Backpacker I guess, and just deal with it's less than ideal sound.
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Old 05-03-2019, 08:49 AM
Paddy1951 Paddy1951 is online now
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Originally Posted by El Cheapo View Post
So best to stick with the Backpacker I guess, and just deal with it's less than ideal sound.
Or find something that isn't expensive but is small and better sounding.

It would be nice if the airlines would acknowledge musicians and provide safe keeping. They don't, however.
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Old 05-03-2019, 08:51 AM
erhino41 erhino41 is offline
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I've taken dreads on many dozens of flights and they always fit in the overhead. I've never once had to check them or gate check them. Worst case was once an attendant had to put it in a closet inside the aircraft itself but that was only once.
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Old 05-03-2019, 09:01 AM
bufflehead bufflehead is offline
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So best to stick with the Backpacker I guess, and just deal with it's less than ideal sound.
Even if you're a Martin guy, as I am, check out a Taylor BBT. It's a 4/5ths dreadnought, but far more playable than the Backpacker. And a really tough guitar, with a laminated, arched back that doesn't require bracing. I travel with mine in the gig bag without worries. A great guitar for cheapos.
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Old 05-03-2019, 09:15 AM
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Better yet...pick up a Recording King New Recording King RPS-7-MBK Dirty 30's Single 0 Parlor Acoustic Guitar, Black for $160.

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Old 05-03-2019, 09:22 AM
Willie Voltaire Willie Voltaire is offline
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My $150 Gretsch Jim Dandy fits easily into overhead bins, and while it's no 0015 sound-wise, it beats the living heck out of the Martin Backpacker.
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Last edited by Kerbie; 05-03-2019 at 11:41 AM. Reason: Bashing
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Old 05-03-2019, 10:07 AM
Fresh1985 Fresh1985 is offline
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The little martins are small, light and sound very good. LXM or LX1. Good value IMHO.
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Old 05-03-2019, 10:48 AM
Optofonik Optofonik is offline
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I'm still a beginner so I wanted a guitar to take with me everywhere. I read enough reviews about the backpacker to avoid it from the start.

I started with a Fender CC-60S. It sounds crazy good to me for the price, especially, for it's current sale price. Though it's compact enough for car camping, certainly better than a dread, it's still a bit large when compared to parlor guitars.

Of the parlors that I tried the JD won out. It's the smallest of the ones I auditioned, and I auditioned a lot of 'em. The JD is even compact enough to pack on my motorbike and that really put it over the top.

Before deciding on the JD I tried out every small bodied guitar hanging on the wall at the two flagship guitar stores near where I live. I played all the precious ones, too; ones that I would never consider taking camping but am sure could be found in the possession of glampers in luxury "tents".

Something else that was perfect about the JD, for me, was it being a laminate able to handle environmental challenges better than a solid.

All that said, it sounds fine for where I'm at in my learning. I'm still just strummin'; working on scales, modes, and the like. Occasionally I put it all together for something somewhat musical. From what I've read, when I start learning to fingerpick I'll like the JD even more.

Last edited by Optofonik; 05-03-2019 at 12:29 PM. Reason: Removed quote
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Old 05-03-2019, 11:43 AM
Kerbie Kerbie is offline
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Come on, guys... no bashing.
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Old 05-03-2019, 11:44 AM
El Cheapo El Cheapo is offline
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So how does the Jim Dandy compare to the Backpacker size wise?
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Old 05-03-2019, 11:46 AM
vintage40s vintage40s is online now
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Optofonik View Post
... it sounds fine for where I'm at in my learning. I'm still just strummin'... From what I've read, when I start learning to fingerpick I'll like the JD even more.
Yes, individual strings are more important to judge quality than a strum. I don't like the guitar reviews that feature a strummer. All strummed guitars sound too alike.
I want to hear each string, especially the lower ones, played rather slowly with flat or finger picks.
I was not familiar with the JD guitar. After some googling, I see found this one, that can't be right:
https://reverb.com/item/182712-jd-ha...r-2004-natural
Finally I see:
https://www.sweetwater.com/store/det...ntage-sunburst
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Last edited by vintage40s; 05-03-2019 at 11:57 AM.
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Old 05-03-2019, 12:19 PM
Optofonik Optofonik is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by El Cheapo View Post
So how does the Jim Dandy compare to the Backpacker size wise?
My JD is 36" long, 3 3/4" deep, and 13 1/4" at the lower bout.

The dimensions I've found online for the Backpacker per Amazon are, 36.2" long, 9.5" wide, and 4.3" deep.


Quote:
Originally Posted by vintage40s View Post
Yes, individual strings are more important to judge quality than a strum. I don't like the guitar reviews that feature a strummer. All strummed guitars sound too alike.
I want to hear each string, especially the lower ones, played rather slowly with flat or finger picks.
I was not familiar with the JD guitar. After some googling, I see found this one, that can't be right:
https://reverb.com/item/182712-jd-ha...r-2004-natural
Finally I see:
https://www.sweetwater.com/store/det...ntage-sunburst
I'm not a finger picker but when I buy a guitar I do play every string separately at each individual fret with w/ a Peterson Stobo-tuner; I listen to each string ring out, see how the intonation changes.

This is the best demo I've seen so far of the JD, the playing starts at 4:11...


Last edited by Optofonik; 05-04-2019 at 07:53 AM.
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Old 05-03-2019, 12:36 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by El Cheapo View Post
I like my 0015M. It's small and light to carry, and does a good job with fingerpicking or strumming. The sound is good too. I took it along on our most recent Boy Scout campout and playing it by the fire in the evening was nice.

So I got to thinking... I don't have any experience taking a guitar on an airplane. Would the 0015M be too big? I have a Backpacker that I've taken on the Appalachian trail a couple times. It's small enough for backpacking and travel, but doesn't sound anywhere near as good. Any thoughts or opinions appreciated, and thanks in advance!
HI EC…

There are several small options, and the Voyage-Air is the best sounding of the bunch (the solid top laminate sides OM version) that I have played or heard played. I've had mine now for a number of years and it's gone in overhead bins, cars, and RV. The neck folds and fits in a backpack.

The neck profile is shallow-C and the nut is 1¾", scale 25.5" so it is a true full scale OM guitar. I have a K&K dual source rig in it, and have gigged with it in weather where it would have been too dangerous to bring my Olson (blizzard, -20° F (-29°C).

There are many composite designs, but the recordings I've heard are pretty boxy compared to the Voyage-Air, so I'm glad for the tone, but the reality is if I had another full-scale, full-body size and 25.5" scale, I'd be good with that too.

Hope you have fun finding a good one!



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