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1972 Yamaha FG-450 info?


Joe-TN
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I purchased this guitar in Japan in 1972, picked it because it was prettier than my 1967 FG-180 (still have that one, too). I recently pulled them both out of the closet, and started to play again.

 

Apparently there aren't many of this model around. With a bunch of internet searching I haven't been able to find another FG-450 that looks just like this one, particularly the peghead. In fact, I've only found one or two references to the FG-450 at all.

 

I e-mailed Yamaha to see if they can provide any info, but nothing heard yet.

 

Is there anyone here who has seen one just like this or knows any details about it?

 

53638928.jpg

53638929.jpg

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FWIW, I did get a response from Yamaha on the 450:

 

"The FG450 would have been made in the early 70's and not available in the United States. The serial # indicates that it was made 05/10/1972 and was the 198th one made that day. It has a solid Spruce top, Ovangkol back and sides, a Nato neck, and a Rosewood fingerboard."

 

Going on 34 years old and nearly spotless, it's definitely a keeper.

 

The 180 is definitely a 67, as I bought it new in Nashville in 1967, and the serial nr is 700xxx - the last three digits are handwritten in either pencil or black ink.

 

For anyone who's never seen the 180, here are links to pix of a good (but not spotless -- two years of college and several deployments on this one) example

 

http://www.pbase.com/joe_tn/image/53686049

http://www.pbase.com/joe_tn/image/53686050

 

Yamaha says (as does everything else I've read) that the 180 spruce top is not solid -- but I'm darned if I can see laminations around the sound hole. Wonder how many plies in a guitar top?

 

I'm enjoying this board...learning a lot. Now if I can just get the fingers back in shape :)

 

Merry Christmas to all,

Joe

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Originally posted by Joe-TN


Yamaha says (as does everything else I've read) that the 180 spruce top is not solid -- but I'm darned if I can see laminations around the sound hole. Wonder how many plies in a guitar top?


I'm enjoying this board...learning a lot. Now if I can just get the fingers back in shape
:)

Merry Christmas to all,

Joe

 

First off, glad you like the board. There is lots of information here.

 

As to the top, don't be surprised if that's not a solid top. Don't just look around the sound hole but check the grain on the underside too. I'm betting you'll find it's consistent with the grain on the top. I have an early fg150 I bought new in Japan and it not only has no laminate type grain around the sound hole but the grain on the underside looks to be in line with the grain on the top side of the soundboard.

 

As to the year, the Yamaha info tool shows the fg180 being built in 1968 only and that's what I was going by. Pull the serial number off that and see what the serial number tool shows.

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For Daklander,

 

Thanks for all your help.

 

The serial number comes back invalid on the Yamaha serial number tool; Maybe it's one of those they lost track of.

 

In any case, the results with the tool and the response from Yamaha support don't perfectly match. Their e-mail says

 

"The FG180 guitars were made from 1966-1973. They have a Spruce top (not solid), Agathis back and sides, a Nato neck, and a Rosewood fingerboard."

 

I'm curious about your comments on the FG180 top. I would have thought that matching grain on top and bottom of the wood would seem to indicate a solid piece rather than plywood. From the outside, the top has a definite center seam, and appears to be bookmatched.

 

I've got a lot to learn!

 

Joe

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