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Author Topic: Old Yamahas  (Read 34402 times)
sneaky
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« Reply #20 on: November 06, 2006, 10:07:37 AM »

and let`s add the "THE FG" re-issued line from a few years ago. They brought back the old design but with 30 odd years of technical knowhow added...and priced to reflect that...over $1200.oo for em. Also had the FS re-issues...real nice but overpriced in my opinion...even used guys are asking way too much for em...or should I say...way too much more than I wanna pay for one. I could get a whole fleet of Dynamics for half that price...almost there anyways.
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flathead
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« Reply #21 on: November 06, 2006, 07:00:28 PM »

I had a  FG-160 in the 70's and last year i sold a red label FG-180 I have bought about 2 years ago ( made $100.00 on that one ) they were both pretty good guitars the 180 was a little weak in the midrange but had that martin type of bass. I also bought, a little over a year ago a yamaha ll-25 it's a 1984 model. It had been played a lot and had major wear around both sides of the sound hole ( Much mucho mojo ) It is solid rosewood back and sides, ploy finish on back and sides with lacquer on the spruce top. And it is my main go to guitar. it is pretty, with herring bone inlays all around,  bound neck and head stock and would list @ a little over $2,000.00 in 2006 dollars. and I got it for $ 320.00. It is loud, clear, balanced, plays like a Les Paul. One friend who has a Goodall om that cost around $ 5,000.00 can't believe it every time he plays it. i have not played a better all around guitar it does everything so well. I have a  65 Gibson-25 ( sweet ) a 64 guild f-35 NT ( great finger picker) My Larry D-05. ( love it for solo flat picking) and sold my 44 D-28 and bought a older martin D1-R ( missed that martin bass) but the yamaha is the best of the bunch.

I have also bought and sold a couple Penco and Lyle guitars from the 70's and they are as good ( and in my opinion better ) than the same vintage yamahas
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JohnM2001
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« Reply #22 on: November 09, 2006, 07:11:48 PM »

hey, check this out, a guy wrote a guide to buying Yamaha guitars on ebay:

See the Guide Here




*
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sneaky
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« Reply #23 on: November 10, 2006, 02:51:55 PM »

 some of what he wrote is inaccurate.
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ducktrapper
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« Reply #24 on: November 10, 2006, 03:52:32 PM »

Yes he seems to think a neck reset will ruin your FG. Mine had one and it's one of the reasons my FG180 is so nice. that and the new Grovers, bone nut and saddle. Also he seems to think Nippon Gakki was a Japanese assembly plant. Correct me if I'm wrong but I believe it simply means Made in Japan. Differentiating from the later Taiwan made ones. It was of some help though. 
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JohnM2001
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« Reply #25 on: November 10, 2006, 07:10:59 PM »

Also he seems to think Nippon Gakki was a Japanese assembly plant. Correct me if I'm wrong but I believe it simply means Made in Japan.

Some have also said that Nippon Gakki simply means Japan Instrument, maybe thats the literal translation.  I Googled it, and it appears that Nippon Gakki was a Japanese corporation founded in 1897, making musical instruments.  Nippon Gakki Co., Ltd. later became Yamaha Corp.  So I suppose that saying that Nippon Gakki was a plant manufacturing guitars could be correct, since they were made at the factory owned by Nippon Gakki Co., Ltd.   


http://www.yamaha.ca/about.jsp

http://www.yamaha-europe.com/yamaha_europe/english_master/service/020_company/index.html
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JohnM2001
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« Reply #26 on: November 10, 2006, 07:15:58 PM »

I played an older red label Yamaha the other day, granted, it was a little FG-75, but the string spacing was very tight.  The nut actually measured 1 3/4, or just a hair less, but the outer E nut string slots were cut so far in from the edge, that the rest of the strings were way too close together.  Couple that with a 2" string spacing at the saddle, and you have a very tight spacing, difficult to play.  I've heard that some guys will have a new nut cut, spreading the strings out more, and closer to the edge, but that won't help the spacing at the bridge.  Anyone have a red label FG-180, just curious what the string spacing on that is at the saddle.
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ducktrapper
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« Reply #27 on: November 10, 2006, 07:23:32 PM »

I'd have to measure but mine has had both nut and saddle "boned". It is way more comfortable to play than the original one I had in the '70s. Doesn't feel as cramped at all. 
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sneaky
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« Reply #28 on: November 10, 2006, 11:53:56 PM »

my wife, who is Japanese, told me gakki means instrument so I did say that here. What I probably should have said was...they didn`t only use the term nippon gakki on the red lables、it was used by Yamaha long before that. And, it is used by many companies over here. On the Yamahas I own Nippon Gakki with upper case letters so I figured it was a proper noun like a company name for instance. Then again...they do some odd things to the language here so...
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ducktrapper
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« Reply #29 on: November 11, 2006, 03:33:32 PM »

Nippon Gakki = Japan Instrument then. Anyway the main point is that the earlier red labels are Japanese made as opposed to the Taiwanese models that followed. They are generally considered superior. YMMV. 
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dermot
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« Reply #30 on: November 11, 2006, 08:25:16 PM »

Here's a piccie with my 66 CG150 (classical guitar, solid sitika over braz) that i have owned since new- my folks bought this for me at the Yamaha music center in Winnipeg when i was 11;


seen here sharing space with my double awesome 61' Guild f20, and a pair of Gibbie 12's...... my daughter has it now ( along with an old SGjr, and a 60's Strat)  lucky thing she is to have such a nice dad to loan her these toys eh?

Only the D12-45 is still at home, although i own them all still........

Ta,

d.

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sneaky
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« Reply #31 on: November 12, 2006, 02:48:38 AM »

nice classical. I`ve been buying the early ones...before they used CG they just had the No. with YAMAHA and Nippon Gakki. Kinda of whiteish labels...though the color has changed ...  some had a thin black line around the border others had a more elaborate greenish leafy looking border. So far I have a NO. 80, two NO.100s and a NO. 120. The 120 is all solid mahogany with solid spruce top while the others are all solid flame maple and solid spruce tops. Got a bid on a NO. 60...we`ll see. In my books the earliest they have pictured is a NO.45...and a real beauty in natural flame maple.
So yours is from 1966 eh...they were making some outstanding guitars even back then. If you ever see a Dynamic you should give it a spin because they are excellent too. I`m have quite a few of them now.
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sneaky
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« Reply #32 on: November 12, 2006, 03:11:47 AM »

Nippon Gakki = Japan Instrument then. Anyway the main point is that the earlier red labels are Japanese made as opposed to the Taiwanese models that followed. They are generally considered superior. YMMV. 

right...the red labels are popular in Japan too...but here are some other lables that could be of interest, you know in case some distinguished members come across them at garage sales `n stuff...

heres the sellers pic of my NO. 80...I`m happy to say the guitar cleaned up very well. If only sellers would spend a little time cleaning them they`d get much more for em...but hey, who`se complaining eh.
http://i72.photobucket.com/albums/i198/shot-glass/plus_east-img600x561-1150091823gita.jpg

another...
http://i72.photobucket.com/albums/i198/shot-glass/shbyx585-img600x399-116288819081c.jpg

pic of the Dynamics label...
http://i72.photobucket.com/albums/i198/shot-glass/shbyx585-img600x397-1162964556102c.jpg

this seller claims this is a proto type from the 50s...and he wants $2500.oo for it. Good luck to him...
http://i72.photobucket.com/albums/i198/shot-glass/junichi634jp-img600x480-1136088966i.jpg

black label...
http://i72.photobucket.com/albums/i198/shot-glass/2814.jpg

early Dynamic 5 digit serial number...
http://i72.photobucket.com/albums/i198/shot-glass/shbyx585-img600x400-1159769901898b.jpg

pic of the S series Dynamics that predated the FGs and came after the all solid Dynamics. They made 3 models...the S30, S50 and S70. I have the S50...not nearly as nice as the Dynamics nor the FGs for that matter. Mine sounds kinda dead or muffled compared to the others.
http://i72.photobucket.com/albums/i198/shot-glass/shop_m0_0-img600x450-1156402975220.jpg


as stated before, the Yamahas that are not made in Japan say so and that makes them easy to I.D.
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sneaky
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« Reply #33 on: November 12, 2006, 03:45:39 AM »

guess I should add... the info I glean is based on domestic models and I have very little info on what yamaha was doing with exports. the books I own are written for the japanese market as well and they include e-mail adresses in case folks want to add stuff about export models because yamaha doesn`t have a lot of data archived on the early guitars. i got a mail from them with production dates for when the Dynamic models were introduced but told me they have nothing on when production ended. but deduction can certainly place ballpark dates...for example when the FGs came into being the Dynamics were no longer. Earliest production dates for the Dynamics was Dec. 1961 according to the info Yamaha sent me in the e-mail.

http://i72.photobucket.com/albums/i198/shot-glass/plus_east-img600x561-1150091823g-1.jpg

in this pic we can see the JIS symbol.....Japan Industrial Standard...on the upper right side of the label. My books say that was introduced in 1963, so any Dynamics without the JIS fall between 1961 and 1963...close enough for me. Not really sure why they stopped using the JIS symbol on later guiars, like the red lables.
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sneaky
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« Reply #34 on: November 19, 2006, 03:18:40 PM »

well dermot, I just placed the winnig bid...about $100.oo... on this one. My NO. 80 is flame maple, the 120 is mahogany and looking at the pic of this one it sure looks to have a rosewood back... and I assume sides. I`m hoping it`s gonna be Brazilian and look as good as yours does.
Looking at the data I have the NO.150s were introduced in 1963 when Brazilian was readily available and it sold for 15,000 yen at the time... by far their top of the line production classicals in 1963. Gonna be sweet dreams tonight.

http://i72.photobucket.com/albums/i198/shot-glass/shibata5241-img600x450-1163504377gu.jpg
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JohnM2001
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« Reply #35 on: November 23, 2006, 03:50:22 AM »

...before they used CG they just had the No. with YAMAHA and Nippon Gakki...

Sneaky, if the first Yamaha classicals were No. 60, No. 80 series, like you have, what came next, the Dynamics, and then the CG guitars?   Where do the G series fall in date-wise, and which of all these had solid tops or solid B&S? 

I was in a shop today that had a Nippon Gakki No. G-60 with whitish label, YAMAHA on headstock & JIS symbol looked like a solid top, also a Nippon Gakki G-60A with tuning fork logo, no JIS symbol.  The 3rd one was a Nippon Gakki G-130A, rosewood, with beige label with JIS symbol, tuning fork logo on headstock.   Any ideas on these ones as far as dates and where they fall in the pecking order?  Kinda high priced at $199 each, all sounded good, good-VG cond.
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sneaky
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« Reply #36 on: November 23, 2006, 05:07:33 AM »

my books and the e-mail I got from Yamaha say that several Dynamic models were first introduced in Dec. 1961. My NO.120 classical is listed as March 1963 the same year the JIS symbol first appeared. I own 2 books called Japan Vintage...actually own several more but these two are on acoustics...and there is zero info on the C and CG series classicals...could be books were written on the subject in the past or the publishers are planning more...I will get my wife to mail them and ask.
Seems the classicals like the ones I have and the Dynamics overlapped, and at one point the FGs did too...it`s like they were experimenting trying to find the correct formula...info points to the fact that the laminated S series Dynamics...between the all solid Dynamics and the FGs...were in response to tops of some Dynamics cracking, and also the Dynamics and laminate S Dynamics don`t have truss rods and perhaps the final solution was the FGs...laminates with truss rods, in terms of production guitars because Yamaha has had a custom shop for some time but I`m not sure when that started and as we all know Yamaha has continued to make all solid wood acoustics and as far as I can tell the Dynamics were the first of these and their heritage is seen in the current all solid wood Yamahas sold today.
It`s unfortunate Yamaha didn`t keep better records. Maybe dermot can offer more info on his classical...serial number, label pic and tell us if his has the JIS symbol...seems they stopped using it at some point and I`m not sure why...even the earliest FG labels pictured in my books don`t show the JIS mark. My NO.150 has the JIS symbol on the headstock and going by the author of the books he says he believes his method for dating these is correct and he can prove it...which leads me to believe there are more theories on dating by serial number and perhaps he encountered them during his research for the book...so by his standard my NO.150 is from 1965...the FGs pictured from 1966 do not seem to have the JIS symbol...so somewhere in there the JIS disappeared...we know it appeared in 1963...so two of the guitars you saw seem to fit in that time period somewhere.
Mysterious ain`t it?   
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sneaky
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« Reply #37 on: November 23, 2006, 05:10:23 AM »

I`d really like to get more info on the C and CG sries `cause they`re all over the place here but I have`t bought any because I don`t know anything about em...not sure if my recent catalogs apply to the early years in terms of whether the woods were solid or laminates.
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Calvin
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« Reply #38 on: November 23, 2006, 05:53:19 AM »

GC are the higher end ones, CG are lower end ones

CG40 are all laminates (junk)
CG(X)111sc are solid top
CG(X)171sc are solid top also but has rose wood veneer back instead.

With the CGX models, The new ones are better (old ones had better B-band pickups though), but to me they lacked definition.  Although they are good performance guitars.
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sneaky
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« Reply #39 on: November 23, 2006, 09:27:36 AM »

thanks for that but...
what I`m after are production years and types of wood...your info is more than likely based on the new ones?...I can just look in my catalogs or go to the local shops and get the same data. I am not sure if the models they made in the 60s are exactly the  same as current models...but if you know please share that.  The info you provide comes from books? if so which ones? Is it something you`ve read on the web...any links? You have anything as to when the CGs or Cs began production?
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