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Vintage guitar of the week #18 - 1979 Martin EM-18

An affordable vintage electric that's actually quite nice from a name you wouldn't expect.

Martin is obviously not the first brand name you think of when it comes to electrics, but yes, they did build them at one point, and the EM-18 from 1979 is one such example.

Being it's a Martin, concentration is placed on the woods. There is a solid layer of birdseye maple on both wings, plain maple center and what looks like walnut stripes. You can tell this is proper woodwork as those stripes do go all the way through the body, so there's definitely not any cheapo style crapola going on. The neck is (or should be) a one-piece Honduran mahogany with German-made Sperzel tuning keys at the headstock. Another staple of '70s design is on this Martin as well, a brass nut.

I believe the way the electronics work is really simple. Think of a Les Paul with two small toggle switches to split the humbuckers into single-coil mode, similar to how push/pull knobs work now.

Very nice looker overall and one of the better builds of the '70s.

As far as I'm aware, only 1,375 of the EM-18 model was ever made. However, it's important to note the serials start with the number 1000.


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