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Sell my 000-18 for a '52 L-7C w/McCarty pickup?

Stratoben127

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Jun 30, 2013
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301
Hey guys, I'm torn about selling one of my guitars for a guitar I found today.


My only acoustic is a 1951 Martin 000-18. It's beat up, but has never had a neck reset or any cracks. It is one of the better acoustics I've played, though I've really liked ones that were cheaper. It's mostly original with no neck reset.


Today I played a 1952 Gibson L-7C with a single McCarty pickup on it at my local shop and I was absolutely floored by it. It's totally not something I'd normally play, but it felt like an old friend. The neck was surprisingly slim for '52- much smaller and flatter than my '53 Les Paul- and the upper fret access was great for what I would ever need out of such a guitar. It was in great shape with no breaks and the original case. The only thing I would need to do is swap out the weird jack for a 1/4" one.


The L-7 was priced really well to the point that I could sell my Martin and add very little cash for the L-7, if any. The only thing that's stopping me from doing this is that I wouldn't have a traditional acoustic guitar if I did this. I tested the L-7 out against a '45 000 and it was actually just as loud, if not a little louder, so I could easily still partake in the acoustic jams that rarely occur between friends. I almost never play acoustic gigs where I don't bring an amp and play a little electric anyway, so I could easily cover those with the L-7 and a 5 watt amp. Also, I play a lot of slide and the Martin's action is a tad low for that, so the adjustable bridge on the L-7 is a plus. I just am a little hesitant of getting rid of one of the best acoustics I've played, even though I do play it so little.


I need a little nudge one way or the other, because I know I'm gonna be up at night thinking about what to do. I feel like a good 000 is always easier to find down the road than a L-7 with a McCarty pickup that feels this good, but I may just be being impulsive. Also, this video of my favorite guitarist with an L-7 doesn't help...


 

Unbound Dot Neck

Well-known member
Joined
Jun 14, 2004
Messages
1,622
Keep the Martin, and buy the L-7 !
Played a OM 0028 awhile back, @ 1935 , stellar guitar.
Light as a dove feather. Sang like a bird
Never look back on these ~ beauties
Count yourself lucky to have heard and held.

:salude
 
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Stratoben127

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Jun 30, 2013
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301
I wish I could get both, but that is extremely cost prohibitive at this time and any time in the near future.
 

brandtkronholm

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Dec 3, 2006
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2,359
I wish I could get both, but that is extremely cost prohibitive at this time and any time in the near future.

+1 Get both is the best advice - but not so realistic. :dang
Welcome to life as an amateur (unsigned) musician (professional otherwise). I remember being in your shoes finding awesome cheap guitars or amps that I could obtain only through trade + cash. I only went for them when I didn't have to think about it - and it happened more than a few times.

My thoughts: If you have to think about it, even a little bit, then keep moving. If it's obvious and you don't have to think, then you've found something special. In that case, go for it!

I think you've thought about this one. You've certainly rationalised part of it
...I could easily still partake in the acoustic jams that rarely occur...
...the Martin's action is a tad low for that, so the adjustable bridge on the L-7 is a plus.

But your doubt is real:
...I wouldn't have a traditional acoustic guitar if I did this.
...I just am a little hesitant of getting rid of one of the best acoustics I've played, even though I do play it so little.
...I may just be being impulsive...
...I almost never play acoustic gigs where I don't bring an amp ...

Like all of us, you're a hard core vintage geek and you'll find yourself in vintage GAS situations frequently.
I feel that I know your position all too well. My advice to you: skip it for now.
 

jhmp

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Mar 24, 2011
Messages
717
When is the last time you found an acoustic you were equally excited about? The best part is this ones paid for.
Maybe think about selling some of the mid grade amps and pedals, put the L-7 on hold and bank some cash.
Lets see some photos of the Martin.
 

mdubya

Active member
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Mar 31, 2010
Messages
906
I would never let go of a guitar I would regret selling in order to purchase another.

I also couldn't care less about an acoustic. But I don't own a 000-18, either.

FWIW-I am more likely to play my ES330 unplugged than I am to play my acoustics.

Just my $ .02.

Is there a market for the L-7C?

I usually justify my purchases by whether or not I could get my $$$ back out of the guitar or amp, if I needed to. That way I can buy guilt free. I didn't spend any money, I just put it in a back account in the form of a guitar/amp, whatever. That's what I tell myself, anyway. My latest piggy bank is a non-reverse Firebird. :hee
 

rockabilly69

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Jul 29, 2001
Messages
2,716
I wish I could get both, but that is extremely cost prohibitive at this time and any time in the near future.
Then you can't afford it move on. The Martin with a proper setup for slide would be a better approach. Get a new saddle from Bob Colosi* and keep the old one in the case. IMNSHO an L7 is not a good all rounder, even in that video you can hear the thinner tone of the L7, which works for the slide of course, but wouldn't move enough air for when you need the solid low-end of the 000-18, and you'll be missing that Martin which is a good all rounder in short time!

* http://www.guitarsaddles.com/products.asp
 

Cogswell

The Duke of Dumbassery
Joined
Mar 19, 2002
Messages
15,717
Nowadays I don't think I would get rid of a guitar (particularly one I found useful) to get another guitar that is very different from the first. I've done that in the past & regretted it. If you were "upgrading" or the like, then yes. Go for it.
But that's just my opinion. Like a few others I would take drastic measures to try to own both.
 

sonar

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Jan 10, 2003
Messages
3,589
Really tough choice.

I lean toward the 000. You can find cheaper substitutes for almost any archtop nowadays. I've yet to find a substitute for an old Martin flattop, other than another old Martin flattop.

It's still a tough choice, but Martin for me.
 
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