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Thread: Is it a 1927 Martin 5-21 tenor?

  1. #1

    Default Is it a 1927 Martin 5-21 tenor?

    The serial number is 37153 so that means it was built in 1927. In 1927, Martin had not yet started marking what model a guitar was.

    Dimensions are:

    Scale length 23"
    lower bout is <12" wide
    upper bout is >8 1/4" wide
    Overall length is 34.5"
    Depth of body is 3 3/4"
    Body length is 18"
    The thing is dwarfed by its old chip board case

    I thank this is a size 5

    The top is a spruce with the rings around the sound hole

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  2. #2

    Default Re: Is it a 1927 Martin 5-21 tenor?

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    This appears to be Brazilian Rosewood. Marin didn't make a spruce top / mahogany back size 5 tenor in 1927. Photos I've seen of 5-21 model guitars have a herringbone stripe up the middle of the back. I don't think they were decals. Why would this one not have the stripe?

  3. #3

    Default Re: Is it a 1927 Martin 5-21 tenor?

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    Photos of sides, endpin, tuners, Martin brand and case

  4. #4

    Default Re: Is it a 1927 Martin 5-21 tenor?

    I just talked to Josh at Martin guitar. He looked it up and said I had read the chart wrong. This was actually made in 1928 and is a 2-18T so it is spruce with Mahogany back and sides. Oh well, I love it anyway.

  5. #5

    Default Re: Is it a 1927 Martin 5-21 tenor?

    That's a sweet little guitar Cornfield. When did you acquire it? Where found?

  6. #6

    Default Re: Is it a 1927 Martin 5-21 tenor?

    Quote Originally Posted by dcav View Post
    That's a sweet little guitar Cornfield. When did you acquire it? Where found?
    I bought it several years ago on EBay and it needed work at my Luthiers shop.. I had it tuned in Chicago DGBE but rarely played it. Then I gave it too much humidity and the hide glue was loosening. The luthier put it on his back shelf for 2-3 years and the glue reset itself, thank God.
    It is now strung CGDA and it works great now.

  7. #7

    Default Re: Is it a 1927 Martin 5-21 tenor?

    Nice. I'd like to find one of those old 5-21s.......high dollars I'm sure though.

  8. #8
    My Florida is scooped pheffernan's Avatar
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    Default Re: Is it a 1927 Martin 5-21 tenor?

    Quote Originally Posted by Cornfield View Post
    I just talked to Josh at Martin guitar. He looked it up and said I had read the chart wrong. This was actually made in 1928 and is a 2-18T so it is spruce with Mahogany back and sides. Oh well, I love it anyway.
    A Size 2 tenor is well worth loving!

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    1924 Gibson A Snakehead
    2005 National RM-1
    2007 Hester A5
    2009 Passernig A5
    2015 Black A2-z
    2010 Black GBOM
    2011 Newton 2-28T
    2017 Poe Scout

  9. #9

    Default Re: Is it a 1927 Martin 5-21 tenor?

    Quote Originally Posted by pheffernan View Post
    A Size 2 tenor is well worth loving!

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    Looks real sweet

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  11. #10
    Registered User Pete Martin's Avatar
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    Default Re: Is it a 1927 Martin 5-21 tenor?

    I had a '28 2-18T. An amazing sounding guitar. Wish I still had it!
    -----------
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  12. #11

    Default Re: Is it a 1927 Martin 5-21 tenor?

    I made a bid on a 2-45t but the seller just laughed at me.

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