Museum: Martin Guitars

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1956 Martin 00-18

An excellent sounding 1950’s Martin 00-18 that’s in remarkably fine condition. The 1950s was a period of great consistency at Martin, and the instruments built in that era are reliably excellent guitars. This example features an attractive striped Sitka top and lightly coloured tortoiseshell celluloid details that add to its classic ‘50s appearance. It’s in wonderful condition, nearly crack free, and plays perfectly thanks to a recent neck reset and fret dressing.

A strong and balanced 00-18, this guitar takes a medium to heavy attack very well, responding with rounded meaty trebles and clear bass. Played fingerstyle it can go between ragtime and modern instrumental styles with ease, softening up nicely when played lightly. The current setup is on the low side, with an action of just over 4/64 on the treble side to just over 5/64 on the bass.

Completely original but for a full height saddle and a few tiny drop-filled dents on the top. A few very small old repaired side cracks, no top or back cracks apart from the start of a separation at the pickguard’s inside edge. No internal repairs, bridge plate is perfect, and the bridge is full-height. Original nut has not ever been removed, original frets are level and largely unworn, original tuners are in excellent working order.

Compact neck feel with a nut width that’s a shade narrower than 1-11/16”. Soft V carve neck with 24.9” scale.

With original hardshell case

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