Before the outbreak of the first world war , gibson dominated the market with their mandolins . Their guitars such as the L-1 and L-3 were well established , but as the big orchestral jazz bands were gaining popularity ,
gibson introduced a finer grand concert size guitar model with the same timbers and old style design like the L1 and L3 called the gibson l4 .
Unlike the gibson L1 and L3 which had 19 frets, in 1912 the l-4 featured 20 frets, 16" wide body ,oval soundholes , "the gibson" logo on the peghead , fingerboards had an end piece that surpassed the soundhole very similar to their line of mandolins ,
elevated tortoise pickguards, tailpiece with black pins , dot inlays on fingerboards , maple back and sides , mahogany necks ,
and were made in black top finishes ( sunburst finishes available during the late teens and throughout the 20s) . Round soundholes in 1928 . ( 1rst pic 1920s l4 , 2nd pic 1933 l4 )
In 1920 right after orville gibson died in 1918 , a man named Lloyd Loar joined the gibson company and changed the history of archtop guitars by designing the infamous L-5 which featured f-holes like their mandolins (no round or oval soundholes ) .
The gibson l-5 laid the foundation for all archtop acoustic guitars and jazz guitars until today . ( Considered the most significant and historical archtop acoustic guitar in the world )
Because of the l-5s' popularity , in 1935 gibson added f-holes to their gibson L-4s' and natural finishes were available during the early 40s , crown pegheads were added in 1946 and double parallelograms inlays on the fingerboards were added in 1947 . ( see 3rd pic , picture courtesy of ebay )
The gibson l-4 guitars were discontinued in 1956 , they sounded great and were considered less expensive alternative guitars for the l-5 and more prestigious models than the l-1 and l-3.
Originally making it's debut in 1946, the L48 was introduced as a Student/Intro model archtop. This guitar was hand crafted in Kalamazoo, MI alongside the highly sought after, much adorned L5, Super 400, and Les Paul models of the Golden Era of Gibson instruments.
This particular instrument is in very good condition for it's age. Plays and sounds incredible.
Introduced in 1965, the Martin D-35 featured a unique, 3-piece back (wings are Brazilian, center is East Indian Rosewood). Brazilian rosewood was becoming harder to acquire and the three piece backs allowed the use of smaller pieces with no noticeable tone loss. Bob Johnson, who was hired in 1962 as a computer expert, later becoming a vice president of the company, came up with the idea of a three piece back, since Martin had a surplus of 6 inch sections. After a new bracing pattern was worked out, the D-35 was born! A favorite of Elvis, the D-35 was outselling the popular D-28 model within a few years of it's release.
The Martin 1970 D-35 was one of the last Martin's to use Brazilian Rosewood, resulting in a significant price drop in all models featuring Brazilian Rosewood. Brazilian Rosewood was, and is the most highly regarded wood for back and sides and was primarily used on the early pre-war guitars that we all love. Known for rich basses and crystal clear highs, as well as it's gorgeous figuring. This particular guitar has a wonderful crisp, dry tone. Very reminiscent of a 50's D28. Lots of definition and clarity with this one! With a sitka spruce top, it still remains highly responsive, perfect for fingerstyle players, or flatpicking lead lines.
This D-35 is a vintage instrument thus having very minor dings and scratches you would expect from a 46 year old instrument along with finish checking on the front of the body and some buckle rash on the back of the body. This is a very clean VINTAGE instrument. Brand new molded Martin hardshell case included.
Here we have a ca. 1934 Vivi-Tone Company hollow body Acoustic-Letctric guitar built in Kalamazoo, Michigan. This guitar needs a little love and a few parts to make it complete. This piece is being sold 'as is'.
In 1936, Lloyd Loar ceased to work for the Vivi-Tone Company and began a consulting relationship with Holton, for whom he began development of the Electronic Harpsichord in that year. Vivi-Tone continued operations, but moved from Kalamazoo to Detroit. During that same year, they advertised a new Acousti-Lectric bridge, much simpler in design and construction than the company's previous, built-in pickups. The unit could also be purchased separately to electrify a customer's existing acoustic instrument. While the company implied in its advertising that the bridge was patented, the claim was false, and presumably the patent application was abandoned or never submitted. This Vivi-Tone guitar is one of the latest numbered instruments currently known, a "Hi Fret Guitar" of the type developed during Loar's tenure at the company.
Inscriptions: Printed on paper label, the instrument and serial number written in pencil: VIVI-TONE Guitar / No. 663 / Manufactured under one or more of / the following patents: / 1,992,317 2,025,875 / 1,995,316 2,046,331 / 1,995,317 2,046,332 / 2,020,842 2,046,333 / 2,020,557 / Manufactured By / THE VIVI TONE COMPANY / 6321 Gratiot Detroit, Mich.
Spray painted in black ink on head, the word "Tone" vertically aligned: VIVI- / TONE
Stamp on tuner plates: GROVER
Stamp on end of tailpiece: GROVER / PAT.APPL’D FOR
Soundboard: two-piece spruce: medium grain.
Back: two-piece spruce: medium grain broadening toward the flanks; slightly arched; two f-holes; recessed 11 mm from edge of ribs.
Ribs: 6-ply maple plywood with fibrous veneer on inside and outside.
Endpin: white plastic; extends through tailpiece.
Soundholes: two holes on top; two f-holes on back.
Lacquer: dark orange-brown sunburst.
Head: mahogany with mahogany center stripe, veneered with white celluloid on front face; integral with neck.
Pegs: six nickel-plated steel, worm-gear machine tuners by Grover with convex head surfaces and decoratively cut plate outline.
Neck: mahogany with mahogany center stripe; integral with head.
Fingerboard: suspended over top; ebony bound in white celluloid; 20 nickel-silver high frets; single abalone dots behind 5th, 7th, 9th, and 15th frets; double mother-of-pearl dots behind 12th fret.
Heel cap: white celluloid.
Binding: white celluloid.
*Signed by David Wren
*Made in Canada