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  #16  
Old 03-03-2021, 10:08 AM
vanceen vanceen is offline
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My first custom built guitar was a Campellone archtop. Then a S Kinnaird OM (Lucky Strike redwood on ziricote).

Along the line I picked up two other guitars from the Steve and Ryan's workshop. Not custom guitars (at least not made for me), but very fine small shop handmade instruments.

Now I don't play my factory built guitars at all, apart from my Les Pauls, Strats, Tele, etc.

My beloved Martin D35, my partner for 50 years, lives in its case for the next generation. It's a fantastic guitar, but it just doesn't hold up to the others.

I find it hard to imagine buying another factory made guitar. That doesn't mean it won't happen, I just can't picture the situation where I would want or need it.
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  #17  
Old 03-03-2021, 10:47 AM
reeve21 reeve21 is offline
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Originally Posted by Richard Mott View Post
I have always played one guitar 100% of the time. If I got a new one, it invariably replaced the previous one, factory or custom, irrespective. But I have been pretty careful that each incoming guitar (very few, 4 in 30 years) was both better and better suited than the one before. No impulse purchases (I was on a seven-year waitlist) and no regrets or short honeymoons.
Now you don't see a post like this everyday on the AGF! Well done, Richard. I find myself playing one cheap import 90 per cent of the time, and don't miss the others. So maybe I'm a good candidate for a custom
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  #18  
Old 03-04-2021, 03:11 AM
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SprintBob SprintBob is offline
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Originally Posted by reeve21 View Post
Now you don't see a post like this everyday on the AGF! Well done, Richard. I find myself playing one cheap import 90 per cent of the time, and don't miss the others. So maybe I'm a good candidate for a custom
Bob,

I’ve had some very nice Taylors (814, 812, 714, 522, and K-22) but once I got my first Collings (an OM1A), I knew there was something extra there in terms of sustain and resonance (what I mean by the tone vibrates and sustains through your upper body). There was also something there in terms of a just a bit more clarity. That led to selling all the Taylors and acquiring a couple of Santa Cruz’s and a Froggy Bottom. The Santa Cruz’s I would have kept if I had not needed a cutaway so they were sold for and replaced by a Steve Sheriff built Edwinson Zephyr 00. The same for a Collings 0001A I replaced with a Tom Doerr Trinity 00. My Froggy was also sold but I have a new one in build right now the only difference being the cutaway addition and the some tweaks to nut width and string spacing. And finally, the sale of my Taylors a couple of years ago funded a Kostal OMC that is nearing completion that has been a 2 year wait (he’s now around a 4-5 year wait). I feel pretty confident that with these four guitars, my GAS could be permanently cured. Each will have its own tonal personality which for fingerstyle playing will be simply wonderful. I feel very fortunate to be in a position to afford these amazing guitars.

Last but not least is that I can pick up the phone any time and call Tom Doerr, Steve Sheriff, Michael Millard, or Jason Kostal and they will gladly stop what they are doing and talk about guitars. You really do get to enjoy a direct connection to the builder. You’ll find you have that connection to just about any of the custom builders here.

Bottom line is that the value added to a custom guitar is there for me. Hope you can take that journey some day.

Cheers mate,

Bob
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Doerr Trinity 00 (Lutz/Maple)
Edwinson Zephyr 13 Fret 00 (Adi/Coco)
Emerald X-20 (all carbon fiber)
Eastman 810CE (Spruce/Maple archtop)
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  #19  
Old 03-04-2021, 08:02 AM
reeve21 reeve21 is offline
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Originally Posted by SprintBob View Post
Bob,

I’ve had some very nice Taylors (814, 812, 714, 522, and K-22) but once I got my first Collings (an OM1A), I knew there was something extra there in terms of sustain and resonance (what I mean by the tone vibrates and sustains through your upper body). There was also something there in terms of a just a bit more clarity. That led to selling all the Taylors and acquiring a couple of Santa Cruz’s and a Froggy Bottom. The Santa Cruz’s I would have kept if I had not needed a cutaway so they were sold for and replaced by a Steve Sheriff built Edwinson Zephyr 00. The same for a Collings 0001A I replaced with a Tom Doerr Trinity 00. My Froggy was also sold but I have a new one in build right now the only difference being the cutaway addition and the some tweaks to nut width and string spacing. And finally, the sale of my Taylors a couple of years ago funded a Kostal OMC that is nearing completion that has been a 2 year wait (he’s now around a 4-5 year wait). I feel pretty confident that with these four guitars, my GAS could be permanently cured. Each will have its own tonal personality which for fingerstyle playing will be simply wonderful. I feel very fortunate to be in a position to afford these amazing guitars.

Last but not least is that I can pick up the phone any time and call Tom Doerr, Steve Sheriff, Michael Millard, or Jason Kostal and they will gladly stop what they are doing and talk about guitars. You really do get to enjoy a direct connection to the builder. You’ll find you have that connection to just about any of the custom builders here.

Bottom line is that the value added to a custom guitar is there for me. Hope you can take that journey some day.

Cheers mate,

Bob
Hi Bob,

I have followed your journey, so it's nice to hear you tie it all together and your thought process behind each move.

I'll need to up my playing game in order to justify the cost to myself, so that's a good motivation to buckle down

Thanks for your response.
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  #20  
Old 03-04-2021, 10:23 AM
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Deft Tungsman Deft Tungsman is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Richard Mott View Post
I have always played one guitar 100% of the time. If I got a new one, it invariably replaced the previous one, factory or custom, irrespective. But I have been pretty careful that each incoming guitar (very few, 4 in 30 years) was both better and better suited than the one before. No impulse purchases (I was on a seven-year waitlist) and no regrets or short honeymoons.
Richard Mott, the man I think I'd like to be.

Trouble is, I'm just not a very deep thinker.
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  #21  
Old 03-04-2021, 12:07 PM
Richard Mott Richard Mott is offline
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Originally Posted by Deft Tungsman View Post
Richard Mott, the man I think I'd like to be.

Trouble is, I'm just not a very deep thinker.
Caveat poster! There’s less than a stone’s throw between deep thinking and overthinking! I think this general approach to guitars, though, has been referred to as “serial monogamy”—I’d read advice somewhere early on, maybe from Pat Metheny, to “Play *one* guitar!” The idea being to go deep rather than broad. Mileage may vary of course. In full disclosure, I do have a new guitar on order this year, so it’ll total something like 5 instruments in slightly over 30 years. And this latest is hard to defend, beyond the fact that I came across some historic topwood and a legendary builder willing to try something different. More as it happens.

Last edited by Richard Mott; 03-04-2021 at 12:38 PM.
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  #22  
Old 03-04-2021, 01:11 PM
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islandguitar islandguitar is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by reeve21 View Post
Hi Bob,

I have followed your journey, so it's nice to hear you tie it all together and your thought process behind each move.

I'll need to up my playing game in order to justify the cost to myself, so that's a good motivation to buckle down

Thanks for your response.
Hi Bob!! Just my thought....if you can swing it, don't hold off! My Doerr Commission was a super experience which led to three other luthier guitars: Bamburg, Vines and Flammang. All of these folks (like Bob indicated) have responded to my inquiries generously, even though the instruments were built years ago for dealers or individuals. These luthier built guitars are thoroughbreds and can take your playing to new heights of enjoyment.
Best,
Fred
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2007 Vines Artisan
2014 Doerr Legacy
2013 Bamburg FSC-
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  #23  
Old 03-04-2021, 01:29 PM
reeve21 reeve21 is offline
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Originally Posted by islandguitar View Post
Hi Bob!! Just my thought....if you can swing it, don't hold off! My Doerr Commission was a super experience which led to three other luthier guitars: Bamburg, Vines and Flammang. All of these folks (like Bob indicated) have responded to my inquiries generously, even though the instruments were built years ago for dealers or individuals. These luthier built guitars are thoroughbreds and can take your playing to new heights of enjoyment.
Best,
Fred
Thanks Fred! I don't know what the cost of entry is, at least 10k is my guess.
I could swing it, my wife will think I'm nuts-- but she has grown to accept my craziness.

Thing is, while I'm pumping out alternating bass Peidmont blues and rags, you guys are creating/playing lovely arrangements with lush overtones, harmonics, etc. that really blossom on a better instrument. My dream guitar right now is an old Gibson 00, the drier the better

I'm still pretty new at finger style, not sure a better guitfiddle is going to make much difference! I really happy with my $400 Farida, and probably will continue to be unless I get to play one these beauties some day.

I really appreciate your thoughts and encouragement and taking the time, as always.

Hope you are well on the island. Hoping to be there again this summer, never got past Montauk last year....
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  #24  
Old 03-04-2021, 02:07 PM
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fazool fazool is offline
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I just got a Custom Shop guitar last week.

I am so incredibly madly fanatically crazily obsessively in love with this guitar.

Now.......my "main" non-CS guitar is still my favorite but I have quickly decided I have two favorites.

Seriously, this is so far above and beyond.

There truly and really is something legitimately much better about a Custom Shop guitar. So, let me put it in perspective. I've owned all of these and will grade them for my personal feelings about them:

Martin D-15M (C)
Martin 000-15 (A)
Martin 000-15 (B-)
Martin OMC15-ME (C)
Martin J-15 (C)
Martin OM-15 (B+)
Martin OM-15 Custom Shop (A+)
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  #25  
Old 03-04-2021, 03:01 PM
Gordon Currie Gordon Currie is offline
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Curious to all who got their first custom built guitar, what was your reaction compared to your previous guitar(s)?
I was and still am over the moon with my 2020 Irvin custom. I keep telling the luthier (Wayne Johnson) that I feel like doors open every time I play it.
Quote:
Originally Posted by no1i View Post
Did you stop giving less attention to your factory-built ones?
A little bit. I already own a NOS Irvin that had been my main guitar up until then. And I own a 78 Larrivee that is pretty special.

Other than that, I can see myself selling off my other Larrivees soon. I don't plan on ever buying another factory guitar again.

Quote:
Originally Posted by no1i View Post
Did it permanently stop your GAS or at least temporary for a long period of time?
I don't really suffer from GAS, not like so many on this forum. But getting a custom has shut the door on anything other than customs for me. So I guess it has actually reduced GAS, or at least some of the causes of it.
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1978 Larrivee L-26 cutaway
1988 Larrivee L-28 cutaway
2006 Larrivee L03-R
2009 Larrivee LV03-R
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  #26  
Old 03-06-2021, 12:38 PM
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My first reaction to my first custom build:

"Wow, what a bummer that the Brazilian rosewood on my brand new guitar is cracked . . ."
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  #27  
Old 03-06-2021, 07:46 PM
Aspiring Aspiring is offline
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I'm curious are you talking specifically about custom guitars built for you to your exact specifications or smaller focused guitars from custom builders?

I have three guitars from single luther shops that I purchased that were not custom built for me.

They are my favorite acoustics even though I have a couple very nice high end Breedloves. The Breedloves come close but all three of the single luthier builds (two of would have cost less than the Breedloves straight from the builder) on any given day have an edge in tone and playability. I still play the others occasionally though and enjoy them.
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  #28  
Old 03-06-2021, 08:48 PM
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My first custom build was a Charis SJ - African Blackwood/carpathian spruce top with Brazilian rosewood neck...it gets a lot of playing time with its rich tone.
It did not diminish my GAS, actually made it worse, along with my passion for African Blackwood which led to my second build by Simon Fay, a ‘pre-Model One’ with a Sinker Redwood top that is phenomenal, followed by a Stephen Kinnaird Black and White Ebony/spruce OO that is also phenomenal for tone and beauty, which currently gets the most playing time...all 3 built with such superb craftsmanship that it just juices your GAS even more!!
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S.Kinnaird 00 B&W Ebony/Engelmann Spruce
Charis SJ African Blackwood/Carpathian Spruce
Simon Fay African Blackwood/Sinker Redwood
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Morgan 12 String EIR/Spruce
Bozo B100 EIR/Spruce
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  #29  
Old 03-07-2021, 08:12 AM
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iim7V7IM7 iim7V7IM7 is offline
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This is primarily a steel string acoustic flattop but I had commissioned two archtop guitars (1999 with a factory and 2012 with a luthier) prior to commissioning my first flattop.

My first flattop from a solo luthier was a 2013-2014 build from Bellingham, WA luthier Kent Chasson. It is a WONDERFUL guitar!

It is Kent’s Concert model which is a 15”, 24.9” scale, 1-3/4” nut, 2-1/4” string spacing, 3/8” Manzer wedge, Engelmann Spruce top, Brazilian Rosewood back and sides. This commission happened to be Kent’s 100th guitar so he was kind and indulged our common love of some of Frank Lloyd Wright decorative themes which he deftly incorporated. I was delighted with it 7-years ago when it arrived and I still am today. Kent was fantastic to work with as well.

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  #30  
Old 03-07-2021, 08:20 AM
Kerbie Kerbie is offline
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Quote:
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My first flattop from a solo luthier was a 2013-2014 build from Bellingham, WA luthier Kent Chasson. It is a WONDERFUL guitar!
A great guy who builds great guitars. That's a good combination.

And an AGF sponsor!
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