C. F. Martin 00-17 Flat Top Acoustic Guitar (1951)

C. F. Martin  00-17 Flat Top Acoustic Guitar  (1951)
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Item # 8932
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C. F. Martin 00-17 Model Flat Top Acoustic Guitar (1951), made in Nazareth, PA, serial # 118365, natural lacquer finish, Mahogany body and neck, rosewood fingerboard, black tolex hard shell case.

This is a played-in but not overly worn Martin 00-17 from early 1951, a coming up on its 70th birthday! The 00-17 was the largest of the all-mahogany Martins of the 1950s, the company's budget offerings of the period. These Style 17 guitars were sold at a relatively modest price (list on this 00 was $70 in 1951) but built to the same quality standards as other Martins. To achieve this economy, the company deleted the spruce top and used only the most minimal decoration: no binding anywhere and small dot fingerboard inlay. Typical features for this year include openback Kluson tuning pegs with large baseplates and plastic buttons, a 5-ply sound hole ring, the small straight rosewood bridge, and a tortoise celluloid pickguard.

Vintage mahogany-top Martin guitars are known for their distinctive ringing tone, with a somewhat "tighter" detailed response on each note. They are generally considered excellent fingerpickers, especially suited to early blues and ragtime styles. The larger 00 body size gives the sound more depth than the smaller 0 size models and this is also a good general "strummer's" guitar. The 00-17 records and amplifies easily and also makes for an excellent singer-songwriter's instrument as well as a great all-around choice in a vintage Martin that won't break the bank.
 
Overall length is 38 13/16 in. (98.6 cm.), 14 1/4 in. (36.2 cm.) wide at lower bout, and 4 in. (10.2 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 shows some general wear and repair but is in excellent playing condition. The neck has been reset, and the bridge reglued, and had been previously taken down somewhat though still has plenty of height. The bridgeplate is a maple replacement. The finish shows general dings, dents and scrapes overall, and typical wear to the unbound edges.

The top has a small repaired grain split in the typical spot by the top edge of the pickguard, cleated underneath. There are a couple of very short cracks off the back edge of the bridge. The sides have some heavy checking that at first glance looks like grain cracks, but they do not go into the wood. The back of the headstock has a couple of inexplicable old tape marks above the tuners; The machines themselves are original with replaced buttons. The frets have been dressed and the guitar plays very well, with a warmer chunkier sound than many of these. Very Good + Condition.