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My next "project"...
Author
Post
Dennis Weatherly

Total Topics: 73
Total Posts: 654
I've always disliked the look of the typical 12-fret 000 guitars. The long body with narrow upper bouts and wide lower bouts just does not look very "balanced" to me. Just a personal preference thing. On the other hand, I really want to build a 12-fret 000 because I'd like to have a short scale instrument to complement the 14-fret 000 I'm building now.

It looks like Huss & Dalton have solved the visual problem for me, by taking upper bout/lower bout symmetry out of the equation. Check out their 10 Anniversary model 12-fret 000:

http://www.hussanddalton.com/10_Anniversary.htm

Now THAT one I could build and enjoy! Maybe I'll look into a "modified" Stew-Mac kit for my next project :-)

Mar 10, 08 | 12:49 pm
Bill Cory

Total Topics: 158
Total Posts: 3584
Hey Dennis -- That is a great looking guitar, but the one shown at the link above had 14 frets to the body, unless I'm crazy. Was that the right link?

Bill

Mar 10, 08 | 1:53 pm
Dennis Weatherly

Total Topics: 73
Total Posts: 651
I didn't even notice that! It's the right link, but the source I got it from said it was a 12-fret and I didn't bother to count them. Oh well!

Mar 10, 08 | 3:39 pm
Freeman

Total Topics: 27
Total Posts: 668
And don't forget that a 000 can be either long or short scale - my six string 000 is long scale 12 fret, while my OM 12 string is short scale 14 fret.. The upper bout changes and the location of the bridge moves.

Mar 11, 08 | 10:41 am
Dennis Weatherly

Total Topics: 73
Total Posts: 651
Yes, it can get pretty confusing trying to sort out long scale vs short scale and 000 vs OM and body shapes. I definitely don't know all of the combinations! I do know that I really like the 000/OM body shape (like the Martin 000 kit)much better than the longer, narrow upper bout body shape (like the Stew-Mac 000 kit).

But first I gotta finish my long-scale 14-fret 000!

Mar 11, 08 | 9:05 pm
Freeman

Total Topics: 27
Total Posts: 668
Dennis, there is a good article on physical and sound differences between various OM and 000 permuations in the UMGF FAQ. Bob Brozman also has an interesting comparison between 12 and 14 fret Nationals - he feels that the longer upper bout make a big difference in midrange punch that should apply to a normal acoustic. And, as you know, long scale on a small body tend to move the bridge to the center of the lower bout, which people liken to hitting a drum head in the middle rather than close to the rim.

The little short scale parlor that is nearing completion is going to be very interesting when it gets strung up (maybe this weekend)

Mar 12, 08 | 7:59 am
Freeman

Total Topics: 27
Total Posts: 668
Dennis, for what it is worth here is my long scale 12 fret 000 and short scale 14 fret OM. Significant differences are length of upper bout, location of bridge, and scale length (as well as the number of strings LOL). Lower bouts are pretty much the same size. The 12 is a deep body, but that is a whole 'nother subject...




Mar 12, 08 | 7:32 pm
Dennis Weatherly

Total Topics: 73
Total Posts: 651
Freeman, that shot shows exactly what I like about the 14 fret body style. I prefer the body shape on your 12 string. What I've always been curious about is how that body shape would sound with a 12-fret neck. I know it would move the bridge more into the "center" of the area surrounded by the lower bouts. That would either require shifting the X-brace away from the sound hole (which I think is opposite of what a "forward shifted X-brace" would be) or using a much wider bridge plate.

Mar 12, 08 | 8:41 pm
RaymundH

Total Topics: 0
Total Posts: 8
Dennis,

I built a 14 fret 000 24.9" scale kit from John Hall last year and it is bar none one of the easiest playing most comfortable guitars I've ever played. (including my Taylor)
I put the Martin light strings on it when it was first strung up and it is a very balanced instrument that I now play exclusively every day.

Ray

Mar 13, 08 | 10:36 am
Dennis Weatherly

Total Topics: 73
Total Posts: 651
Ray, do you have any pictures that you could post? I am curious to see where the bridge ended up. I suspect it isn't much different than a 25.4" scale 14-fret 000. That's what I am building right now (and it's also a John Hall kit).

What I envision is something with a body like Freeman's 12 string but with the neck joining at the 12th fret. I'm not even sure why I want to try it. But it intrigues me to the point that I'll probably have to build one :-)

Mar 13, 08 | 11:04 am
Freeman

Total Topics: 27
Total Posts: 668
Dennis, fwiw remember that MOST 12 fret necks will be slot heads (and will come to you at 1-3/4 width). You should be able to order either 24.9 or 25.4 from LMI or other sources, and of course you can make anything you want.

I would have built my 12 string as a 12 fret slot head but was stymied trying to find tuners. I now know how to make that work and the next 12 I build will definitely be a slot (but might be a 12 fret very long - 26" - scale for down tuning). Small body ladder braced Stella/Fraulini clone, floating bridge.....

It is also interesting to see how far the bridge was pushed into the lower bout on the short scale 12 fret parlor that I'm currently building. Glued the bridge on last night and needed pretty long clamps to reach. Will post a pic soon.

Mar 13, 08 | 11:56 am
Dennis Weatherly

Total Topics: 73
Total Posts: 651
Yup, the "12-fret must be a slot head" standard is another reason I didn't go with a Stew-Mac 000 as my first kit. My Martin 000-18 kit was customized by John Hall with a 25.4" scale 14-fret dreadnaught ( 1-11/16" width) neck. I did some research and decided that the longer scale 14-fret version would be my best shot for an "all around" strumming guitar. Once that one is finished I can start to experiment :-)

Mar 13, 08 | 3:26 pm
RaymundH

Total Topics: 0
Total Posts: 8
Dennis,

I'll try and post some pics soon.

Mar 14, 08 | 11:13 am
Dennis Weatherly

Total Topics: 73
Total Posts: 651
Well it turns out that my "idea" isn't so far fetched after all. I did a little poking around on the Elderly website and found this:

http://www.elderly.com/new_instruments/items/00018NB.htm

The 000-18 Norman Blake Special Edition uses the 000 body of a 14-fret guitar with a 24.9" scale 12-fret neck and a solid headstock. List price is only $4599! I bet I can come in a little under that number :-)

And the comments on the web site seem to back up what I suspected about the tone. It's basically a 000-18 with more bass response.

Mar 14, 08 | 2:32 pm
blues creek guitars Authorized Martin Repair Ctr

Total Topics: 52
Total Posts: 1011
the norm blake Martin is a 12 fret on a 14 fret body. I am set up to make this kit available if you are interested
john

Mar 15, 08 | 1:16 am
Dennis Weatherly

Total Topics: 73
Total Posts: 651
Somehow I giured you would be able to make one of these available in a kit :-) I need to finish my first John Hall - Martin kit before I buy the next one, but I'll definitely give you a call when the time comes.

I'm curious about the X-bracing and the bridge plate. Do they move the X-brace to get the bridge plate in the proper position, or do they use a wider bridge plate and simply move the plate itself?

Mar 15, 08 | 6:36 am
Dennis Weatherly

Total Topics: 73
Total Posts: 651
Sheesh! My typing is awful this early in the morning! That should have started "Somehow I figured..."

Mar 15, 08 | 6:37 am
KTHOM

Total Topics: 19
Total Posts: 244
Dennis,
That Norman Blake sig model has been a guitar I've desired. It's frutrating the in order to get a nice, wide nut you gottat spend over 3-4 grand! IF my memory serves me correctly, that NBSM is 1 13/16ths at the nut. I like that dimension...or perhaps a little wider, like 1 7/8ths. I grafted a 1.9" nut onto my Seagull Folk and I love it. I have very large, unruly digits and the more space the better (short of a nylon string spacing). Some builders do a laminated neck, like Charles Hoffman...that might allow one to make a too narrow neck wider.

P.S. John didn't indicate he could come in under the NB pricing...maybe it was just an ommission?

Mar 16, 08 | 6:51 pm



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