12 String Advice

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  • ClashmanClashman Frets: 168
    Had a Yamaha FG-720S but the saddle was down to the bare wood virtually so returned it so once again ,on the
    look out  for another second hand one .
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  • Seconding the recommendation on Vintage - the Giltrap is very good for the money. Might also be worth looking at Recording King - their stuff tends to be pretty decent, and they had a 12-string at one point.

    If you tune your 12-string down and find you have trouble getting a capo to work reliably, G7th have just released a compensated 12-string capo that works really well. I can now capo on 5 (or even 7) to get mandolin-type effects with no retuning.
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  • I have the Taylor - Leo Kottke 12 string - discontinued now I'm afraid, I A/B'd it against a Guild and preferred it . I would also recommend the Kyser 12 capo over the G7 for a firmer grip. 

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  • deanodeano Frets: 610
    I have a couple of suggestions, but having never played a 12-string, they are worth every penny you're paying for them!

    Firstly, if you are only going to use it for recording and not live, then there is a YouTube video of a professional recording engineer/producer creating a 12-string effect using a regular Martin (I think) double-tracked with a cheap guitar strung in Nashville tuning, which uses the lighter strings from a 12 string. He claimed it worked better in the studio. Might be worth giving that a watch before you commit funds. Obviously this goes out of the window if you want to play live, which brings me onto suggestion number 2...

    A  bit off the wall this one, but have a think about a Line6 Tyler Variax. I have a Korean one (a JTV-59), not one of the US-made ones, but the electronics are the same in both. That contains a 12 string model  (Ricky I think) as one of the presets. You can also build up your own models so if you fancy a 12-string Martin acoustic, ten minutes will get you something in that stylee. Of course this has upsides (you can play live with it as well as record it, and the tension is normal 6-string) and downsides (you might not like the idea of modelling), but I love mine. Anyway, just a suggestion.
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  • kt66kt66 Frets: 257
    Massive 12 string fanboy here. had lots over the years, now only my 89 Sigma DM1-12 acoustic and Gretsch G6122-12 electric (for me the best 12 on the planet, yes I have had Ricks) 

    Sigma still make good affordable ones, Guild USA are the best acoustics, but the Chinese Guilds are superb too , the 1512 is great.
    For recording, the smaller bodies sound better, like an F212 Guild shape.  

    My tip to stop the inevitable belly bulge and avoid a neck reset is to use lighter strings. I've always used 9s on my Sigma and after 
    29 years the action is very close to what it was new, never seen a Luthier. 

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