This great sounding spring of 1935 D-18 (59589) is one of only 133 made that year and was made early enough in the year that it received the “C.F. Martin” stamp on the back of the headstock. Adirondack spruce top with medium grain width out to edge of the lower bout. Honduras mahogany back and sides with a nice density and musical tap tone. Honduras mahogany neck with “C.F. Martin” stamp on the rear of the headstock, Original 6:1 Grover G-98 tuners, intact C.F. Martin decal, and brick-red Brazilian rosewood headstock overlay. Replacement bone nut. Ebony fingerboard with snail shell dots, planed to about 2/3 original thickness due to numerous refretting procedures. Original bridge pins and bridge, replacement bridge saddle. The bridge has been reglued at least once. Replacement endpin.
Top: This guitar has moderate pick wear around the pickguard, soundhole, and fingerboard extension, but finish was only brushed into a small part of the “backlash” on the bass side of the low E string below the soundhole. Most of that extra finish has been worn away since then. There are solidly repaired top cracks on either side of the fingerboard extension, and another glued crack about 1″ farther out extending from the top edge to the top of the pickguard. There is a glued 1″ crack at the very edge of the bass-side lower bout. There is a case bite gouge in the bass-side upper bout, about 1 1/2″ from the edge. There are no internal modifications or changes to the internal top bracing or bridgeplate. The bridge pin holes are moderately worn and a simple conservation style bridge pin hole repair is suggested.
Sides: There is a single glued 4-5″ hairline crack on the treble-side waist heading up to the upper bout corner. There are scrape marks on the sides t the top edges from the slipped back neck reset procedure. A 1″ section of binding has been replaced with rosewood in the treble side waist area on the back edge, again likely from the slipped back neck reset.
Back: No cracks or repairs to the back or the bracing. There is scraping at the top edge of the back from the slipped back neck reset. The inside center strip has a 1 1/2″ section missing as part of the slipped back neck reset.
Neck: The finish has been scraped away from the back of the neck, showing the Tony Rice influence on many 1935 Martin Dreadnoughts. Thank goodness, nobody tried to cut out the worn areas of the rosette to enlarge the soundhole Clarence White style!
Recent repair by Alan Perlman: Refret of the entire fingerboard, taking out the previous severe bowing in the area of frets 1-5.
This guitar has a very strong bluegrass voice all over the fingerboard and is now very fun to play with the recent refret. This instrument could be successfully used in a wide variety of settings and playing styles. With contemporary hardshell case.