12 String recommendations

Discussion in 'Acoustic Instruments' started by guitarsenal, Dec 14, 2017.


  1. guitarsenal

    guitarsenal Supporting Member

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    i am looking for a new 12 string. My current 12 is a beater 73 Guild F112: repaired headstock break, a couple of bent tuner posts, a back held together with about 15 cleats, and a saddle so worn down that I have a matchstick shimmed under the low E to keep it from fretting out. And yet, it plays great and sounds like angels. I need a more solid smallish bodied 12 that I can play out without the risk of disintegrating in my hands. I could find another old F112 or F212, but most in the market I have seen need a neck reset. Any thoughts on other things to seriously consider? Can anyone give me their in hand thoughts about Breedlove or Larrivee 12s? I also might go gaudy and find an old Ovation Glenn Campbell and was wondering how those hold up.
     
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  2. Outlaw

    Outlaw Member

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    I’ve owned two Taylor 12’s, an 855 and a 355. Great guitars for sure.

    I’ve also owned two Larrivee 12’s, an L-03MT-12 (mahogany top) and an L-05-12. Superb guitars, I preferred the spruce top L-05-12. The Larrivee L body just works for 12 string guitars IMO.

    Good luck.
     
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  3. Bluedano1

    Bluedano1 Member

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    I don't own a 12 string ( just never wanted one), but I have tried out the budget Taylor ( sorry I don't know the the model, around $600 Street) that came out a few years back.
    It was lightweight, a very comfy- set up player, and sounded great. Well balanced tone. And with a pickup too if I'm not mistaken.
    Seems like a heck of a well made.value

    Edit- it is a Taylor 150E and $799, sorry I was OFF on the $$- I think maybe I quoted the price when it first came out
     
    Last edited: Dec 15, 2017
  4. guitararmy

    guitararmy Member

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    Sounds like the Taylor Grand Auditorium size 12 string would be a good size for you, if you can swing the price...
     
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  5. Outlaw

    Outlaw Member

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    Something to consider, which may or may not affect you, is resale value.

    Breedlove’s are notorious for low resale value (for no good reason either, I might add). I personally love American made (Bend, OR) Breedlove Guitars. As a matter of fact I have a brand new Breedlove USA Series Concert Fire Light being delivered today. If you purchase a new Breedlove, make certain you are getting a hell of a deal, which will limit the bath you might take if you ever decide to sell it. As an example, I bought my new Breedlove for $400.00 below MAP, which equates to $992.00 off of list. If I sell it, I’ll likely get close to what I paid for it.

    With that said, conversely, used American built Breedlove’s are a bargain.

    The Larrivee will likely hold its value well, due largely in part to the reasonable price when new. They also sell better used than Breedlove’s do.

    Taylor’s hold their value well, but their initial sale price is higher than Larrivee.

    Examples of this new are:

    A new Larrivee L-02-12 (spruce over genuine mahogany) can be bought new for $1,200.00. The Larrivee is all solid woods, including ebony fingerboard and bridge.

    A new Taylor 254-12 (spruce over laminated back & sides) can be bought new for $1,300.00. Stepping up to a solid wood Taylor 12 such as the 362-12 will cost around $2,000.00.

    In my own personal experience, having owned both the Taylor and Larrivee 12’s, it’s no contest, really. The Larrivee wins in every aspect, sound, playability, and resale value.

    Obviously YMMV.
     
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  6. RustyAxe

    RustyAxe Member

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    I'd be looking for another Guild ... I'm partial to the 212XL. Small body 12's don't do it for me.
     
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  7. Jeff Scott

    Jeff Scott Member

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    Tony makes great 12 string guitars. Check his stuff out. Highly recommended (I have two of his instruments).

    https://yamamotoguitar.com
     
  8. veinbuster

    veinbuster Member

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    I bought a Taylor 300 series because I found it a bit easier to play than many.
    I bought my daughter an Art & Luthier because it was a better price point and it is a decent guitar for a few hundred dollars, but not quite as rich sounding.

    I really liked the Larrivée I tried a few times (while my daughter was having a lesson).
     
  9. tedm

    tedm Gold Supporting Member

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    I'm thinking of a budget 12 next year. Was considering Taylor, now thinking that $699 Martin with electronics is a good deal, lifetime warranty, and I think, solid top.

    May depend on where you live. But lots of folks haven't heard of Larivee or Lowdens. Breedloves are martin clones I think.
     
  10. guitarsenal

    guitarsenal Supporting Member

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    I understand completely, but I am only 5’7” and big jumbos aren’t the right ergonomics for me playing sitting down.
     
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  11. Outlaw

    Outlaw Member

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    Ted, not even close bro. By a long shot. Perhaps Blueridge, but certainly not Breedlove.
     
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  12. tedm

    tedm Gold Supporting Member

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    Sorry, got confused with Blueridge. In any case, play it safe and stick with a Martin.

    https://www.maurysmusic.com/blueridge_vs__martin

     
  13. guitarsenal

    guitarsenal Supporting Member

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  14. Outlaw

    Outlaw Member

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    The Taylor 362-12 I mentioned above is a Grand Concert. That’s a small body for a 12 string IMO, whereas the 355 is a Jumbo body, and the Taylor 254-12 is a Grand Auditorium...sort of in the middle, but really comfortable.
     
  15. tedm

    tedm Gold Supporting Member

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    What's the advantage of the 254-12 over the budget level Taylor 12-string? Is it just finish? I think the budget one still has a solid top?
     
  16. Bluzeboy

    Bluzeboy Gold Supporting Member

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    My brother has a Larrivee 12 (sorry, I don’t know the model) smaller body. One of the more piano like sounding 12’s I’ve ever played.
     
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  17. RustyAxe

    RustyAxe Member

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    Hell, I'm 6'3" and those big Guilds are a bugger ... you should see the size of my Guild B50 bass!
     
  18. Tony Done

    Tony Done Member

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    I tried a Taylor 150 recently. Good tone, nice neck profile, and very importantly IMO, a bolt-on shim-adjustable neck wherein resets will never be a problem. Taylor would be the first place I would look, and I happen to like the Mexi 100 and 200 series.
     
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  19. Outlaw

    Outlaw Member

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    Ted, the 100 and 200 Series Taylor guitars are solid tops over laminated back and sides. The 300 Series and up are all solid woods.

    By the way, the laminated Taylor’s sound great to me.
     
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  20. tedm

    tedm Gold Supporting Member

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    Thanks Tony and Outlaw, yes, I've heard about the necks being adjustable on the Taylor, and that is an advantage I think as Martin neck resets are costly. Also, while I have a solid wood Martin, I do not mind a laminate side and back guitar to save some $$$ and also like the satin finish over gloss, as I've started beating on my acoustics for some percussion lately.
     
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