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Thread: Martin Baritone

  1. #1
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    Default Martin Baritone

    I inherited a Martin baritone from my Mom, but I can't seem to find much information on the instrument. It obvious that they don't make them anymore, so where can I get some insight on this uke?

    I've search the web and seen some pictures of others, but alas, this one has been modified. At some point the neck had been replaced. I know this because there is no branded headstock and it has geared tuners. If fact, I just had it repaired because the neck was pulling away from the body.

    I figured this might be the correct area for posting this question, since y'all are talking tech!

    Thank you for any leads you can offer!
    HARMONY MAHOGANY CONCERT KALA KOA CONCERT
    KALA PINEAPPLE PRINT SOPRANO FAKE MARTIN BARITONE

    "My people are the people of the dessert", said T.E. Lawrence, picking up his fork.

  2. #2
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    Default Martin Baritone Ukulele

    I looked it up in "Gruhn's Guide to Vintage Guitars" and here is what it says:

    Style 51, Baritone Ukulele, 10" wide, 20-1/8" scale, mahogany body, white-black-white soundhole rings, 2-ply top binding with dark outer layer, single-ply dark back binding, pin bridge, rosewood fingerboard, 14 frets clear of the body - Introduced in 1960, still in production...

    The book was printed in 1991 so I don't know if they still make baritones now or not...

    When I first read your post, I thought initially that maybe you had an old one made before 1935 because Martin only stamped their name on the back of the headstock and on the inside center backstrip until 1935. There was nothing on the front of the headstock up to 1935. But I was wrong because they didn't start making the baritone until 1960...

    It sounds like you have a real nice instrument there assuming the neck repair was done professionally...Want to sell it...???

    How about some photos...???

    There should be a serial number and model number on the neck block inside the body. It should be a Style 51. Give me the serial number and I can date it for you...
    Last edited by WhenDogsSing; 06-29-2009 at 09:08 AM. Reason: Correct spelling...

  3. #3
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    Fullerton, CA
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    Default

    It's difficult to find much info on Martin Baritones. I have read that Martin did not put serial numbers on their baritones. I recently acquired one described as c. 1960s. There is no serial number to be seen anywhere on the instrument. If I remember correctly production was halted in the late 70s.
    Tom

  4. #4
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    Default

    Yeah, I'm not seeing any serial number either. It may be because of the resetting of the neck. Looks like a new piece of wood in there.

    I'm not totally convinced the neck has been replaced. Thinking about it a little more, I remember that originally the tuning posts had no grommets and someone had rigged some washers around them. When I replaced the strings, there was a bit of vibration that cause a buzz. When my guitar tech handed me some grommets they didn't fit, so maybe they were the same holes for the peg tuners. When he did the repair on the neck he added them.

    Anyway, here's some photos...




    HARMONY MAHOGANY CONCERT KALA KOA CONCERT
    KALA PINEAPPLE PRINT SOPRANO FAKE MARTIN BARITONE

    "My people are the people of the dessert", said T.E. Lawrence, picking up his fork.

  5. #5
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    Fullerton, CA
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    Default

    Uhhhhh... This is not a Martin baritone ukulele. Is it a tenor guitar?
    Tom

  6. #6
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    Default Martin Baritone

    It's not a Martin baritone ukulele or tenor guitar... I can not identify...

  7. #7
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    Default

    Looks like maybe some previous owner just put a Martin sticker in the soundhole.

  8. #8
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    Default

    The sticker is more of a metal badge pressed into the wood.

    That said, I've been having doubts myself. Now that I've been looking at it more closely, the binding (is that the panel or the edge?) looks cheap. Where the corners have seen some wear, it looks like the two pieces simply meet without any "strip".

    Also, the images I've seen of the neck and fretboard generally come all the way down to the soundhole, or end on the body with the stereo-typical bracket shape.

    Regardless, it is still the first ukulele (first stringed instrument) I've ever owned, it has sentimental value because it belonged to Mom, and it's the only baritone in my arsenal!

    And, like Mom, I prefer the concert for everyday driving - hers when to my Nephew.

    Mahalo
    HARMONY MAHOGANY CONCERT KALA KOA CONCERT
    KALA PINEAPPLE PRINT SOPRANO FAKE MARTIN BARITONE

    "My people are the people of the dessert", said T.E. Lawrence, picking up his fork.

  9. #9
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    Dec 2007
    Location
    Chicago
    Posts
    11,149

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by DogBisquit View Post
    The sticker is more of a metal badge pressed into the wood.

    That said, I've been having doubts myself. Now that I've been looking at it more closely, the binding (is that the panel or the edge?) looks cheap. Where the corners have seen some wear, it looks like the two pieces simply meet without any "strip".

    Also, the images I've seen of the neck and fretboard generally come all the way down to the soundhole, or end on the body with the stereo-typical bracket shape.

    Regardless, it is still the first ukulele (first stringed instrument) I've ever owned, it has sentimental value because it belonged to Mom, and it's the only baritone in my arsenal!

    And, like Mom, I prefer the concert for everyday driving - hers when to my Nephew.

    Mahalo
    It sounds like you value the instrument much more than any silly rating someone could slap on it. That's awesome. Kudos.

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