C. F. Martin 0-15 Flat Top Acoustic Guitar (1955)

C. F. Martin  0-15 Flat Top Acoustic Guitar  (1955)
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$5,500.00 + shipping
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Item # 10839
Prices subject to change without notice.
C. F. Martin 0-15 Model Flat Top Acoustic Guitar (1955), made in Nazareth, PA, serial # 144559, natural lacquer finish, mahogany back and sides and top; mahogany neck with rosewood fingerboard, black tolex hard shell case.

This is a beautifully well preserved original great playing and sounding 1955 Martin 0-15. Martin built decent numbers of these, but not too many have survived 65+ years as well as this one! The unassuming all-mahogany 0-15 was the lowest-ranked guitar model in the company's postwar line. Even as the least expensive guitar Martin offered in 1955 it was priced at $70.00 (without a case) more than many flashier guitars from other builders like Kay or Harmony.

The 0-15 is a study in careful economy but it is still built to the expected Martin factory standard of quality. The all-mahogany construction was a budget feature; the spruce top was omitted to lower the cost. The natural lacquer finish was specified as less polished out than its ancestor the 0-17, but structurally the guitars are the same. Decorative appointments are reduced to the minimum: there is no ornament besides a W/B/W sound hole ring, tortoise celluloid pickguard, and gold Martin logo decal. The tuners are the openback plastic-button Waverlys specific to this period.

This small-bodied all-mahogany guitar has a surprisingly loud and rich voice, and sounds great finger or flat-picked. A total of 925 of these little mahogany marvels were shipped from Nazareth in 1955; this one has seen less use than many and still sings with a rich and surprisingly complex voice.
 
Overall length is 38 1/2 in. (97.8 cm.), 13 1/2 in. (34.3 cm.) wide at lower bout, and 4 1/8 in. (10.5 cm.) in depth at side, taken at the end block. Scale length is 24 3/4 in. (629 mm.). Width of nut is 1 11/16 in. (43 mm.).

This Martin shows some evidence of its over 65 years on the planet but really not too much; it has not been heavily played and apparently very well cared for over the decades. There is some typical light finish checking overall and a smaller than average number of dents and scrapes most notably on the treble side rib. There is only a small amount of pick wear on the face (less than many old Martins) and the only real sign of play on the top is an area on the bass side of the lower bout, where the matte finish has acquired a sheen where a player's arm would rest.

The guitar shows a tightly glued one inch grain crack on the treble side rim near the waist, but there are no other cracks on the guitar. The finish remains all original with no notable touch up or overspray. The interior of the instrument is super clean, with an intact original small maple bridge plate. The back of the neck is clean and the original Waverly tuners still work fine.

The neck has been very neatly reset, the original bridge has been slightly shaved down and a new bone saddle fabricated. The original frets have plenty of life left and playability remains excellent. This is a very nice sounding guitar, built just a bit sturdier than its prewar ancestors with a deeper, mellower tone than some we have had. It includes a nice modern HSC Overall Excellent + Condition.