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  #16  
Old 09-30-2023, 06:20 PM
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rule18 rule18 is offline
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@eyesore, any one of our excellent AGF Sponsor luthiers can do this for you, it is truly about what you want. I'm a a few weeks away from taking possession of my Hatcher guitar which, except for the body shape, was completely customized, stem to stern. I went in knowing what I wanted (some in broad strokes), and we narrowed down the rest to my liking. Almost everyone I know (and almost everyone here) that has commissioned a custom build has been absolutely thrilled with the result.

Good luck on your journey if you decide to take it!
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  #17  
Old 09-30-2023, 06:34 PM
jaymarsch jaymarsch is offline
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I have had three custom guitars built. 2 from California-based single luthier shops and one through a major brand (Gibson, not Martin). The major brand order didnít work out but the other two experiences were stellar.
As Howard stated, make sure that you know what you want for your ears, hands, body and eyes. One of the reasons that I picked reputable builders within driving distance is that we both learned a lot from them each seeing/hearing me play and I learned important things from playing more of their guitars.
It can be a wonderful adventure so enjoy the process.
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  #18  
Old 09-30-2023, 07:30 PM
eyesore eyesore is offline
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Thank you guys for all this great advice ! I didn't think to google and I probably should contact someone from this forum ;since I abuse it so much!! ha. I can give some specifics off hand ;but I like my Martin OM28 with the slim neck , but I would want a smaller body than this one .I do want the cutaway , and a little bit more shallow body . I do want this for gigs. Only pick up I know or use the k&k. If there is something else out there thats better .. I'm open. 1 3/4 nut . real low action. Maybe a very little bling on the fretboard... Gonna check all these suggestions..even my wife agrees .kind of.
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  #19  
Old 09-30-2023, 08:34 PM
Wade Hampton Wade Hampton is offline
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It sounds as though youíve got an excellent idea of what it is that you need, which is crucial in this sort of transaction. Now all you need to do is find yourself a guitar builder within a reasonable distance and further refine the instrument together.

If you donít have a builder anywhere near you, any established luthier can work out the details with you over the phone or - in a pinch, email - but itís best if you can meet face to face and get acquainted. It really helps luthiers to see and hear prospective clients play, because that informs the subsequent guitar.

Thatís not vital, but itís a factor that you might want to keep in mind. Even if itís a one time trip across a significant distance and you never meet again in person, itís worth the effort.

Hope this helps.


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  #20  
Old 09-30-2023, 09:02 PM
RussellHawaii RussellHawaii is offline
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Iíve had four custom builds, (five counting an electric) and the experience is rewarding. In one case it resulted in one of my favorite guitars ever.
But hereís a twistÖ twice I had found a phenomenal guitar by a luthier that I bought. I thought Ďthis is so awesome, let me ask Luthier to build me one like this, but even better!í But twice it turned out that my custom build did not measure up to the prebuilt one I had fallen in love with.
Not sure of all of what I learned from this, but I think a great builder can build an awesome guitar from their own preferences that is better than whatever I think. Also, sometimes an existing awesome guitar cannot be surpassed, just appreciate it as is.
In one case I did get an even better guitar ( better suited to me, anyway), through good luck and great luthier choice.
In all cases it was a satisfying experience, but didnít always result in a better guitar.
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  #21  
Old 09-30-2023, 10:42 PM
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Custom and not expensive? Tall order.
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  #22  
Old 09-30-2023, 11:04 PM
mcduffnw mcduffnw is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by eyesore View Post
Thank you guys for all this great advice ! I didn't think to google and I probably should contact someone from this forum ;since I abuse it so much!! ha. I can give some specifics off hand ;but I like my Martin OM28 with the slim neck , but I would want a smaller body than this one .I do want the cutaway , and a little bit more shallow body . I do want this for gigs. Only pick up I know or use the k&k. If there is something else out there thats better .. I'm open. 1 3/4 nut . real low action. Maybe a very little bling on the fretboard... Gonna check all these suggestions..even my wife agrees .kind of.


Hi eyesore

A few questions to help us help you!

What IS your price range...what you ideally want to spend, and the absolute most you would/could go.

What do you feel is lacking for you with your Martin OM, causing you to feel you need a custom made guitar.

Do you prefer the Martin body styles and tone or are you fine with Taylor or Gibson or Guild style guitars.

How much smaller of a body, from your Martin OM are you looking for? Check out Martins body style/size page on their website and let us know if one of those is what you are after, and why do you feel you need a thinner body guitar than your OM for gigging.

What type of cutaway do you want. Sharp pointed florentine style of more rounded.

Do you want the same neck shape and size/thickness as what you have now on your OM, or something else. Do you want a different nut width or string spacing at the bridge, or is what you have now on your OM just great for you.

What type of tone do you want. Same as your current OM, and what is that tone...in your own words...or are you looking for something different, and what is that sound. Are there any recordings we could find on the web to listen to or any Youtube videos of a guitar that has the tone you are after.



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  #23  
Old 10-01-2023, 12:30 AM
Mycroft Mycroft is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by eyesore View Post
Thank you guys for all this great advice ! I didn't think to google and I probably should contact someone from this forum ;since I abuse it so much!! ha. I can give some specifics off hand ;but I like my Martin OM28 with the slim neck , but I would want a smaller body than this one .I do want the cutaway , and a little bit more shallow body . I do want this for gigs. Only pick up I know or use the k&k. If there is something else out there thats better .. I'm open. 1 3/4 nut . real low action. Maybe a very little bling on the fretboard... Gonna check all these suggestions..even my wife agrees .kind of.
Well and good. But what do you want it to sound like? How do you want it to respond.? You know, the actually important stuff.
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  #24  
Old 10-01-2023, 12:47 AM
BluesKing777 BluesKing777 is offline
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My full luthier custom is still superb after playing it for about 7 years now........

A couple of points not mentioned above so far..........once you find what and where.......try and find out....WHEN!

And...warranty......


BluesKing777.
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  #25  
Old 10-01-2023, 01:54 AM
Sadie-f Sadie-f is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by eyesore View Post
Thank you guys for all this great advice ! I didn't think to google and I probably should contact someone from this forum ;since I abuse it so much!! ha. I can give some specifics off hand ;but I like my Martin OM28 with the slim neck , but I would want a smaller body than this one .I do want the cutaway , and a little bit more shallow body . I do want this for gigs. Only pick up I know or use the k&k. If there is something else out there thats better .. I'm open. 1 3/4 nut . real low action. Maybe a very little bling on the fretboard... Gonna check all these suggestions..even my wife agrees .kind of.
Eyesore, I went to Santa Cruz for an OM last year, received it last December, in an 8 month build cycle (they might be running more like a year now). It's spectacular, better than I expected. I did a small set of visual customizations, including a labrys inlay in the headstock to match a feature I've put in my electric builds, and will be adding to my acoustics.

For what you're saying you want, be aware that body dimensions are a limited choice from any builder, so maybe you're looking for an H body, or an R size. If I were you, I'd consider Froggy Bottom.

I'm working on my own first build, a maple body OM, I bent the first side yesterday, hope to get to the second side today. This is my practice build for what I plan to be a series of 3-4 guitars.
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  #26  
Old 10-01-2023, 06:25 AM
The Bard Rocks The Bard Rocks is online now
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Quote:
Originally Posted by s2y View Post
Custom and not expensive? Tall order.
Not so tall. Ordering custom from a "brand name" maker is not cheap either (depends of course on how custom you want). I think if one eliminates the ultra-high tier of the one-at-a-time luthiers, then there is not much difference. The difference with the single makers is that your new guitar can be far more customized and you will enjoy a personal relationship with the builder that you cannot get from a company.

I have really enjoyed the relationships/friendships I have built up with the makers I have worked with - it has turned out to be nearly as rewarding as the final product. And I really enjoy having something that no one else will ever have, something that was made to my every spec, something wonderful that I had a critical influence in creating. That's me, it may not be you.
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  #27  
Old 10-01-2023, 07:00 AM
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Stemming from my own preference, check out arm bevels on guitars. I like larger guitars, Iím not tall, and an arm bevel has made larger guitars more comfortable to play. It adds expense, but comfort, which I find worth it. Good luck with your search!
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  #28  
Old 10-01-2023, 07:13 AM
redir redir is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RussellHawaii View Post
Iíve had four custom builds, (five counting an electric) and the experience is rewarding. In one case it resulted in one of my favorite guitars ever.
But hereís a twistÖ twice I had found a phenomenal guitar by a luthier that I bought. I thought Ďthis is so awesome, let me ask Luthier to build me one like this, but even better!í But twice it turned out that my custom build did not measure up to the prebuilt one I had fallen in love with.
Not sure of all of what I learned from this, but I think a great builder can build an awesome guitar from their own preferences that is better than whatever I think. Also, sometimes an existing awesome guitar cannot be surpassed, just appreciate it as is.
In one case I did get an even better guitar ( better suited to me, anyway), through good luck and great luthier choice.
In all cases it was a satisfying experience, but didnít always result in a better guitar.
Most guitar makers can probably tell you that they remember that one, that one guitar they made that was the very best. Their masterpiece. The sign of a good luthier is consistency but there is always a bit of luck involved too and once in a while you build one that really shines above the other.

The very best guitar I had ever built went out to a guy who played it for a couple years and sold it on eBay. The guy who bought it liked it so much I built 5 guitars for him already, all different except he wanted one just like this little parlor guitar that he bought on eBay except in rosewood. I knew right away it was going to be very difficult, how can I build a better guitar then the best one I ever built? As I suspected it was a disappointment for both of us. It was still a good guitar and he kept it but it simply did not have the magic that the master piece had.

I've built several of these parlor guitars now and none of them are as good.

But as they say any guitar is the right guitar for someone.

Incidentally the guy who bought that little parlor guitar recently contacted me and said he wished he never sold it and wants me to make him another one... Another daunting challenge.

In the end it's always best to play a guitar before you buy it. Next best as some have mentioned is to at least play a guitar that the luthier you have in mind built. If they have consistency then you will at least get close.
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  #29  
Old 10-01-2023, 08:07 AM
eyesore eyesore is offline
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There is a guitar that Martin makes called an 000C-16E ,it is a Nylon string . it 's only a 12 fretter but I think it would be cool as a 14.No slotted headstock. Something similiar to this ,with that cutaway. I don't know why Martin doesn't make a steel string like this one. They are about a 2 hour drive from me .
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  #30  
Old 10-01-2023, 08:20 AM
MrDB MrDB is offline
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I'm going to be a dissenting opinion here. You want something like a 00 body shape, with a cutaway, shallow body? Pickup installed to be used for amplified gigs? Is that correct?

If so a custom build may not be what you'd be happy with, and I'm talking from a cost/benefit standpoint. A beautiful acoustic tone from a custom build is going to be mostly lost once you plug in and amplify.

A thinner body acoustic/electric with a top notch setup and electronics might be what you'd like and save mucho denero in the process.
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