7/21/2014

c.1990 Froggy Bottom F-14 Flattop Guitar




Solid spruce over solid flamed koa... and quality all the way. Who can argue? This is a wonderful rig. For the player wanting pure, clean resonance and projection for flatpicking or fingerpicking, this will suit. The neck is also super-slick and fast and the build is superb throughout. The bracing is reminiscent of 30s-style Martin weight and cut and as you'd expect it has a similar palette to boot. Anyone who knows of Froggy Bottom's boutique reputation knows that something new built like this by the shop would run in the $6500-7000 range. Eek!

This is up for grabs as consignment for a customer and I've given it a quick fret level/dress (light) and setup. It plays spot-on with 3/32" bass and 1/16" treble at the 12th fret. The neck cut is similar to a modern Taylor in depth/bulk but has a sort of 30s-Martin rear profile so if you wanted to jack the action up for bluegrass lead playing you'd still have a very fast feel. The body is almost identical to a 000-size instrument and more info can be found at the FB site.



There's certainly some playwear and lacquer cracking on the body but overall it still looks grand. There are, thankfully, zero cracks. Not bad for a 24-year-old instrument.


The long, frog-inlaid, flamed-koa-veneered headstock looks great. Original bone nut, too.


Ebony, radiused board with 1 11/16" nut width. The dots look like abalone to me.


Pearl-trimmed rosette... small OM-style pickguard... and fancy maple-bound top and back edges give this an upscale/understated look.


Ebony bridge, pearl-dot bridge pins, and a bone saddle. I intonated the B string during setup.


I mean... isn't that glorious stuff?



The flamed koa used on the back and sides is painfully pretty. It glows!


Schaller mini sealed tuners were used and work nicely.


There's that typical Froggy heel. The neck is slim all the way right up to the heel so fret access and feel is top-notch all the way up the board.



Do you see the small lacquer crescent shape just below the volute? There was just the tiniest hairline crack (not deep at all) that I shot glue in and clamped up. It would've been stable without repair but I made sure in any case.









The original (TKL?) hard case comes with it, too.

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