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Author Topic: Another old beat up Larrivee!!!  (Read 3368 times)
headsup
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« on: March 09, 2016, 01:37:38 PM »

I was called by a friend to come and pick up a Martin that had fallen down the stairs. It's cracked, the back is coming off, the braces are off, it's gonna be a challenge to put it back together.

While visiting him, in his studio, he pulled out his old Larrivee D.
Bought new, he thinks in late eighties, I fell over upon close inspection.
 At lease 8 unattended top cracks.
Frets wore down to pretty much nothing, and the gouges in the figerboard are deeper than I have ever seen on a guitar.
 Torch inlays all up the neck, which are still flat, but the ebony is pitted so deeply a new fingerboard would be the only answer.
 He has a thin piece of cardboard under the E string at the nut, and a piece of foil under the other E string at the saddle.


It's tuned a full tone low, strung with nickel strings and he uses a clip in Dimarzio electric pick up.

Here's the rub, when I point out (and show him) how the pitting affects his intonation,(press string harder, goes sharp) he says that doesn't matter to him.
 When I indicate to him the top cracks might affect the over all sound, his reply was, it doesn't matter to him, the sound he likes comes from the pick up.

As he is a veteran of my local scene, with a ton of writing acolades and recordings, out of due and honest respect, I simply put the guitar back in it's case, and had to respect his feelings on his guitar and what his personal needs are, and remove my judgement.

He DID say he'd like me to gett= rid of some of the fret buzz, and will probably get the guitar to me next week or so.
 If/when that happens, I'll post some pictures.
 pretty bizarre to say the least...
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ducktrapper
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« Reply #1 on: March 09, 2016, 03:14:39 PM »

Who's he think he is? Willie Nelson? Sure my guitar looks and sounds like **** but that's my sound and look at how successful I am?  
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Danny
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« Reply #2 on: March 09, 2016, 04:05:29 PM »

   It's a shame he won't at least glue up the braces and back. A little titebond and a few clamps is all that would take. I certainly would like to see a picture of this one.
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« Reply #3 on: March 09, 2016, 04:07:56 PM »

Who's he think he is? Willie Nelson? Sure my guitar looks and sounds like **** but that's my sound and look at how successful I am?  

Sounds like he thinks he's himself.  It's his guitar, he should be able to keep it any way he wants.

Ed
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headsup
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« Reply #4 on: March 09, 2016, 04:34:06 PM »

   It's a shame he won't at least glue up the braces and back. A little titebond and a few clamps is all that would take. I certainly would like to see a picture of this one.



 the braces and back issue are on the Martin I'm fixing......
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Danny
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« Reply #5 on: March 09, 2016, 04:37:17 PM »


 the braces and back issue are on the Martin I'm fixing......
I definitely need another cup of coffee
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« Reply #6 on: March 09, 2016, 06:26:46 PM »

Sounds like he thinks he's himself.  It's his guitar, he should be able to keep it any way he wants.

Ed

Sheesh. Is this suddenly a no joking zone? 
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L07 Shooting Star
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« Reply #7 on: March 10, 2016, 08:14:50 AM »



 the braces and back issue are on the Martin I'm fixing......



I'm just completely confused.
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headsup
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« Reply #8 on: March 10, 2016, 01:16:58 PM »



I'm just completely confused.
, the rest of the





The FIRST TWO  likes of the OP, are about a Martin Guiatr with issues, the rest of the post is about the old larrivee.

maybe that will help the confused folks?

I guess I could sign up for Forum Post writing 101   
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headsup
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« Reply #9 on: April 03, 2016, 06:26:06 AM »

Later that post....

back to the Martin in question.....
i got it, with back mostly off, braces mostly off, and a big long crack up te back.

OK, so, the braces are actually made of this weird organic material, that looks like wood!.
 I got them glued back on,
 the back and sides of this guiatr are made from a material that seems to be what my kitchen counter top is made from (but I don't know the mame), suffice to say, I think it's safe to play this guitar at festivals without a covered stage in the rain.
It has this sprayed on finish, made to look like Koa.
 It's pathetic. and glueing it back to the sides, with the wood braces has been a real challenge, but I managed OK.

SO, this is a "martin" guitar, made of something other than wood, with a neck that appears to have a mere 20-30 laminates, (remember the old Framus necks?)

Anyways, it has a pick up in it. and it appears the guitar did sell for close to $1,000.00.
that's a lot of money for a badly built plastic guitar when a solid wood larrivee is better sounding, better playing, same price, maybe cheaper.
 but there you go.

You can always tell a Martin owner....
 Not much, but you can always tell one....
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« Reply #10 on: April 03, 2016, 04:23:33 PM »

The material in question is High Pressure Laminate (HPL). The original trade name was Formica (DuPont if I recall correctly). Still available as a back and side material on some of the low-end Martins. Up side is that it is unaffected  by humidity.
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« Reply #11 on: April 03, 2016, 10:37:41 PM »

I find it amazing that first, they make guitars out of that stuff and second, they charge a $1000 for them just because they say Martin on the headstock.

Every guitar I ever owned was made with wood. Maybe 3 ply but still wood.

Wouldn't surprise me if the $50 and $100 guitars were made of plastic but come on, who buys this stuff for a grand?
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« Reply #12 on: April 03, 2016, 11:22:03 PM »

Fact checking MSLP is $999.00
street prices vary, either way it's junk IMO.
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« Reply #13 on: April 03, 2016, 11:41:12 PM »

The material in question is High Pressure Laminate (HPL). The original trade name was Formica (DuPont if I recall correctly). Still available as a back and side material on some of the low-end Martins. Up side is that it is unaffected  by humidity.
Not nitpicking here, but high pressure laminate IS affected by humidity, though to a lesser degree than wood. It's essentially decorative paper that is fused to a phenolic paper backing. It's saturated with melamine as part of the fusing process, and also to give it some durability. But it'll shrink and expand all right. More stable than wood, but it still moves. Oh yeah, and it sounds like crap on guitars compared to the real deal IMHO. The product known as Richlite that that "M" company uses on a lot of fretboards is very similar to the phenolic paper used as a backer for HPL, but it's several layers epoxied together. When I went guitar shopping a couple years ago, and thusly learned about Larrivee's for the first time, finding out about those non-wood ingredients turned me completely off from even considering a new Martin, something for which I am eternally grateful (as I sit here looking at my beautiful Larrivee).         
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« Reply #14 on: April 04, 2016, 01:20:26 AM »

The material in question is High Pressure Laminate (HPL). The original trade name was Formica (DuPont if I recall correctly). Still available as a back and side material on some of the low-end Martins. Up side is that it is unaffected  by humidity.

Yes and no.  The HPL is not generally affected by Humidity but the top (which is usually solid Sitka) is.  I think I have seen more top cracks on these guitars than anything else because the back/sides have zero response to humidity while the top is still susceptible.  So on a wood guitar when the top shrinks because it is dry the back sides shrink as well, just not as much since they are generally hardwood, the HPL tends not to move, so you get even more stress on the top.

I actually like how they sound.  About 5 and a half bills at GC and you have a nice enough stage guitar.   I'd rather subject one of those to the tender ministries of an airline than one of my Larrivees.  
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« Reply #15 on: April 04, 2016, 08:03:05 PM »

Ha!  I love it. I have heard just the opposite. People will buy a Larrivee, so they don't get road wear on their "expensive Martins"

I cannot imagine liking a guitar more than my Larrivee. Last week I played a $8,300, used, Goodall TBROOO. It is a very nice guitar with Brazilian Rosewood B&S, awesome fit an finish, well appointed but not "blingy" by any means, nice balanced sound, etc.

My L-03 sounds better to my ears and also wins in the "play-ability" department.  It will be treated as the gem that it is. If I ever decide to "gig" it will be there with me, but I will always be as careful as I can be with it.

Last night was fun. My good friend and very good guitarist stopped by with a Seagull S6 Cedar top and I cleaned it up and put a new set of strings on it for him. It sounds nice and at first I thought, louder than my L-03? Well, I got the L-03 out and it smothered it, sound and projection-wise. The Seagull's 6th string, does not "pronounce" or "sustain" like my L-03. And not by a small margin either.

That being said, the Seagull does have a nice sound and it also needs a setup so, once it gets back from the shop we hope the bass improves a little. Regardless, and more importantly, we will be jamming together again...

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« Reply #16 on: April 04, 2016, 08:55:02 PM »


and more importantly, we will be jamming together again...



That's great...  enjoy yourselves.... send me a list of your tour dates...  would love to catch a performance here in NC....        
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« Reply #17 on: April 04, 2016, 11:34:12 PM »

About 1998 I almost bought an x series Formica martin. The all Formica model was around $400 at that time. Ended up with my L-03. Thank goodness.
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« Reply #18 on: April 05, 2016, 03:08:36 AM »

About 1998 I almost bought an x series Formica martin. The all Formica model was around $400 at that time. Ended up with my L-03. Thank goodness.

Plus, the L-03 came with a sound port, how cool is that. 
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