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  • Dating This Yamaha FG 75 (HELP)


    I just picked up a vintage FG 75, and i am having a tough time figuring out when it was made. I've read where they were manufactured from 1968 thru 1974. I've read about red labels, tan labels, and how production was shifted to Taiwan in 1972 and red labels were changed to tan. I've also read where some red labels weren't made in Japan, but in Taiwan. Okay, here is something I haven't been able to find info about. My guitar has a tan label, and it says "Nippon Gakki", and it also says "made in Japan". Also, as far as the serial number inside the sound hole, the number is only 5 digits. The guitar looks like all the other FG 75's i've seen (online photos), and when I got it it was covered in a layer of dust. I cleaned it up, and amazingly it looks like it has hardly ever been played, darn near perfect shape, action is low, even the pickguard looks nearly new. The guitar itself sounds great, just like in the reviews. Anyhow, I really do love this little guitar, and am curious to find out more about it. Thanks

  • #2
    Input the serial number here.

    The model archive is hear.
    Still Kickin' cancer's ass....Blue Water Sailors of the Vietnam WarHCGB Trooper #246Psalm 19 SocietyI can't really imagine experiencing the desire for multiple women; one has proven to be taxing enough as it is.Thanks Offy

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    • #3
      Yamaha had a whole bunch of labels, the very first laminates to follow the S series Dynamics had light green labels, which may appear to be tan these days... as well as lebels that were tan...but there were only two FG models at first. I have an early 70s FG-175 thats pretty nice. It`s not easy getting precise dates for early Yamahas, and my earliest Dynamic goes back to the mid 50s from what I`ve been told on line here, we may have to be satisfied with ballpark dates for em and once the laminate floodgates were opened, there were so many models that it`s hard to keep track of all of them. Don`t let the 5 digit serial fool you, by the 70s Yamaha had been building acoustics for a couple of decades...maybe more nobody really knows for sure. I have a couple of books with extensive articles on Yamaha and even the Japanese authors have difficulty getting data or finding people who are still around that were involved with those 50s and 60s models. I have some older MIJ electrics too and record keeping does not seem to have been a priority even in the 80s. Best we can do is exchange the data we have from our guitars and try to build some kind of base from there.
      it wasn`t me

      Comment


      • #4
        Well, the serial # doesn't work at the Yamaha site, the model was made from 1968 thru 1974. I reckon mine falls somewhere in that period. Maybe the label was greenish before, maybe not, I can't really tell. Maybe it was an early one right before they started using red labels.(maybe that would explain the 5 digit serial #) Maybe after they started manufacturing in Taiwan they still made a few in Japan at the old factory. I suppose it really doesn't matter much. I do know this guitar was barely played before I got it, so whenever it was made it spent a lot of time in a case. It almost looks like new. Too bad too because it really is a terrific instrument. My other guitars hate it because it seems to be all I play since I got it . I think I can understand the fanfare over the Yamaha Nippon Gakki FG series. Great sounding instruments, great value. One of these days I wanna try one of those Fg 180's and pretend i'm Elliot Smith

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        • #5
          I'm not positive about the 6 strings but all I've seen have been 8 digit serial numbers. I also know that I can no longer see all the numbers on my FG150 that I purchased new, I think in '71, ight have been '70 but was definitely purchased over there, so your guitar may be the same way.
          Still Kickin' cancer's ass....Blue Water Sailors of the Vietnam WarHCGB Trooper #246Psalm 19 SocietyI can't really imagine experiencing the desire for multiple women; one has proven to be taxing enough as it is.Thanks Offy

          Comment


          • #6
            I used to date an old Martin D-35 a while ago, but it just didn't work out. We're still friends, though.

            Comment


            • #7
              was waiting for that to come up!!!!

              Black Alvarez RD20SBlue SnarkWampler Ego Compressor"He That Hath The Son Hath Life, He that hath not the son, Hath not Life" I John 5:12Alvarez Alliance Sr member"He that hath the Son hath Life, He that hath not the Son, hath not Life"1 John 5:12

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              • #8
                I can't believe there isn't a comprehensive, and organized, record of guitar production from Yamaha and its subs. I'd bet that company's bean-counters sure kept a journal.

                Comment


                • #9
                  I can't believe there isn't a comprehensive, and organized, record of guitar production from Yamaha and its subs. I'd bet that company's bean-counters sure kept a journal.
                  ......

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    there was more than likely some overlap of label colors, as for serials my oldest Dynamic has a 4 digit number. They did not shift all manufacturing to Taiwan and they still make acoustics in Japan today. Every Yamaha acoustic I have says where it was made on the label...can`t say they all do `cause I haven`t seen em all yet...they don`t all say the country but if it says Hamamatsu I know it`s in Japan...its usually not difficult finding out where they were made unless the label is missing. My books have a very good list of years when certain models were introduced but they don`t mention when they ended.
                    With the Dynamics the labels went through many changes and finding a ballpark year depends on the label . Like I said once they perfected the laminating process, tons of models came out over the years.
                    There s a pic of an FG-75 taken from an English catalog in one of my books, they say it has a maple body and spruce top, nato neck with rosewood f/board, and rosewood bridge. Listed at $65.oo new at the time and featured the exclusive Yamaha dynamic bracing system...theres that word dynamic again...I have read the Dynamic guitar bracing system was patented by Mr. Kintoki...but that probably goes back to their beginning which ecidently is early 50s, but Yamaha must have really liked the term dynamic...not sure if the FG-75s had the Dynamic bracing system or the dynamic bracing. Since the pic in the book has English info I`m guessing maybe the 75 was an export model.
                    Anyhow...since you have the years they were made, and now know what they are made of and how much they cost, you may have to settle for that. I`m not sure how many books were ever written on Yamaha, I only have the 8 volume series called Japan Vintage and they cover some electrics as well as acoustics... a lot more electrics actually... and there may be books that are out of print as well...I look around the used book stores but don`t find much on guitars. Have found 80s magazines with ads for certain MIJ electrics I collect but not much info on em. Man there was some bad hair in the 80s eh?
                    it wasn`t me

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      I have the same guitar, same lable . Bought mine new 1971
                      mine has a serial # 40924 Yamaha service could not look up serial number.
                      M.S.R.P. 109.50 / Top laminated spruce / Back & sides Agithis / Neck Nato / Fingerboard Indian rosewood / made fron 1968-1974 the lable reads :

                      Yamaha
                      FG-75
                      Nippon Gakki , LTD
                      10.1 Nakazawacho Hamamatsu Japan
                      Made in Japan

                      Hamamatsu is a city in Japan / its where the Yamaha custom shop is located.
                      Nippon Gakki is the company
                      The sought after lables are the onesthat clearly state the guitar was built in Japan . The color is not the important factor! Some red lables were not built in Japan.

                      Comment


                      • #12

                        I just picked up a vintage FG 75, and i am having a tough time figuring out when it was made. I've read where they were manufactured from 1968 thru 1974. I've read about red labels, tan labels, and how production was shifted to Taiwan in 1972 and red labels were changed to tan. I've also read where some red labels weren't made in Japan, but in Taiwan. Okay, here is something I haven't been able to find info about. My guitar has a tan label, and it says "Nippon Gakki", and it also says "made in Japan". Also, as far as the serial number inside the sound hole, the number is only 5 digits. The guitar looks like all the other FG 75's i've seen (online photos), and when I got it it was covered in a layer of dust. I cleaned it up, and amazingly it looks like it has hardly ever been played, darn near perfect shape, action is low, even the pickguard looks nearly new. The guitar itself sounds great, just like in the reviews. Anyhow, I really do love this little guitar, and am curious to find out more about it. Thanks


                        Where exactly in the soundhole did you get the serial number? My 1974 has two numbers in there. One stamped on the top brace that is right under the end of the bottom of the fingerboard adjacent to the sound hole. But there is another serial-looking number stamped onto the neck block which is the square chunk of wood with chamfered edges that is further down (2") under the neck area. That second number is very visable and I have seen it mistaken for the serial number. It is only 7 digits in my guitar whereas the actual serial number up on the top brace is the usual 8 digit.
                        ...


                        "I'll loan you my J200, but ya gotta promise to wipe it off, afterwards." - TAH

                        "Just remember, m'dear.....
                        There's a lot to be said for soft, squishy places on a woman" - Samilyn

                        Mark
                        =====================
                        74 Yamaha FG-200
                        79 Yamaha FG-750S
                        Epiphone PR 150 NA
                        87 Fender Stratocaster Plus
                        88 Hohner B2A headless
                        97 neck/08 body Frankentele
                        03 Ibanez AF75 archtop

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Where exactly in the soundhole did you get the serial number? My 1974 has two numbers in there. One stamped on the top brace that is right under the end of the bottom of the fingerboard adjacent to the sound hole. But there is another serial-looking number stamped onto the neck block which is the square chunk of wood with chamfered edges that is further down (2") under the neck area. That second number is very visable and I have seen it mistaken for the serial number. It is only 7 digits in my guitar whereas the actual serial number up on the top brace is the usual 8 digit.


                          A common mistake.
                          Originally Posted by Samilyn


                          Can't put a price on the love one has for an instrument, the mojo it gains from being played by you or good friends, or the good feelings it produces when you pick it up and it feels like an old friend, no matter what the the numbers on the price tag.



                          Listen to my CD on iTunes: The Girl With A Pearl Earring by Steve Z

                          One of my songs done by a friend: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TJQQGTtRqy0

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                          • #14
                            The serial number was on the top brace by the sound hole. Seen by looking through the sound hole towards the neck of the guitar . No other numbers .

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                            • #15
                              I have the same guitar, same lable . Bought mine new 1971
                              mine has a serial # 40924 Yamaha service could not look up serial number.
                              M.S.R.P. 109.50 / Top laminated spruce / Back & sides Agithis / Neck Nato / Fingerboard Indian rosewood / made fron 1968-1974 the lable reads :

                              Yamaha
                              FG-75
                              Nippon Gakki , LTD
                              10.1 Nakazawacho Hamamatsu Japan
                              Made in Japan

                              Hamamatsu is a city in Japan / its where the Yamaha custom shop is located.
                              Nippon Gakki is the company
                              The sought after lables are the onesthat clearly state the guitar was built in Japan . The color is not the important factor! Some red lables were not built in Japan.


                              Thanks for the information.

                              I got one of these in a trade 2 days ago. It has a tan label with the same Nippon Gakki - made in Japan info as yours. Serial number: 41008.

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