Project Description

1939 Martin 0-18 Guitar

This guitar has two salient features: it’s not for the squeamish (guitar weenies) because it’s been “rode hard and put up wet” as we say in Texas. The second feature: I defy anyone to show me a better sounding prewar Martin 0-18, at any price and in any condition. This guitar, after careful restoration, and meticulous setup, is unsurpassed by any other prewar 0-18 I’ve played, for volume, tone, and clarity.

This guitar is probably among the first twenty Martins made in 1939 after the change in nut width on 14-fret models from 1 3/4″ to 1 11/16″, so yes it is 1 11/16.

It has all original finish. Original tuners. Original maple bridge plate. It has multiple repaired cracks on top and sides (no cracks on back). Extensive play wear. New, but perfect, historically correct reproduction Ebony bridge. It had two holes in top for tone/volume controls from some previous owner. We patched that area with cigar-sized 100 year old piece of spruce from another guitar (great job from master luthier Tony Nobles). Neck just set, refret, and it plays perfectly. It’s a prewar 0-18 on steroids, despite (or because of) its rough-around-the-edges appearance.

In a recent, custom Premium Martin case.