Kalamazoo KG-14 Flat Top Acoustic Guitar (1937)

Kalamazoo  KG-14 Flat Top Acoustic Guitar  (1937)
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Item # 8741
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Kalamazoo KG-14 Model Flat Top Acoustic Guitar (1937), made in Kalamazoo, Michigan, serial # 1245C (FON), sunburst top, dark back and sides finish, mahogany back, sides and neck; spruce top, rosewood fingerboard, black hard shell case.

This is a relatively clean and fine-playing Kalamazoo guitar from 1937, made just as America into FDR's second term. The KG-14 was Gibson's best "budget" flat-top for the Depression era; a good-sounding and playing solid wood guitar at an affordable price. These Kalamazoos tend to have a bright but well-balanced sound with bit of a "twang" adding a slightly bluesy edge.

The KG-14 was the larger of two Kalamazoo flat-top models; the 14 3/4" wide body is the same as used on Gibson's L-00, but to bring the price down the spruce top is ladder-braced and the neck has no adjustable truss rod. The neck profile on this guitar is a fairly sharp "V" profile typical of 1930s Gibsons, but is slimmer down by the nut and not as chunky-feeling as some older examples. The top is finished in a typical Gibson sunburst with a bound sound hole edge, single layer white celluloid top binding and a small "Firestripe" celluloid pickguard.

Less expensive guitars like the KG-14 were a major factor in Gibson's survival during the worst years of the great Depression. The entire Kalamazoo line was discontinued shortly after the US entered WWII, never to return. This one is a superb player with a bright but sweeter sound than many; a nice gigging pre-war guitar with a cool vibe.
 
Overall length is 40 1/2 in. (102.9 cm.), 14 3/4 in. (37.5 cm.) wide at lower bout, and 4 3/8 in. (11.1 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 guitar is in excellent playing condition with some general light wear. The finish has dings dents and scrapes but no heavy wear; the most notable is some deeper scraping to the back in several places. The top shows some light pickwear but overall remains quite attractive; the color is strong with very little fade.

This Kalamazoo has had the full playability upgrade treatment; the neck has been reset, the fingerboard trued and refretted and the bridge is a very accurate repro of the original. The tuners are modern repros as well, correct in style for the period and there is a strap button added at the heel. This is a depression era guitar playable to a modern standard while staying true to its original character. While this is perhaps not the absolute cleanest KG-14 we have ever had it is one of the best playing and sounding. Excellent - Condition.