6/29/2017

1992 Alvarez-Yairi DY62C Cutaway Dreadnought Guitar





This guitar has obviously been a workhorse for a long time. Its serial and neck-block numbers seem to point to 1992 manufacture, though it could also be a 2004 make, if not that. I think the wear and tear and the fact that the bridge was a Martin-style belly bridge rather than the more modern 2-piece design suggests that it's from the '90s, though.

It's a good-sounding, easy-playing guitar and, personally, I love the sound of a cedar-topped dreadnought -- they're just so "open!" I worked on this for a customer and that included re-bridging it (the original was split and falling apart), a fret level/dress, and a good setup. Reworking the original undersaddle pickup into the new bridge was a little time-consuming (as usual), but the results are a guitar that plays great and functions as-new.


Aside from the soft cutaway, the guitar is dreadnought-sized and long scale. The back and sides appear to be laminate, curly wood from the mahogany family



The board looks like ebony, but is rosewood and radiused a hair tighter than 14" or so. The frets are medium stock and the neck has a modern, oval/C-shaped, slim profile.


See the pinching of the sides at the neck joint? This guitar is probably due a neck reset due to moving of this joint. The usual associated with-grain crack along the fretboard at the soundhole is extent, too.



I'm not a fan of clear pickguards because this is what wear looks like on them, but it's done its job! That cedar top would've probably been worn through, otherwise.


My replacement bridge doesn't have the rounded-off wings of the original, but it is a good slab of rosewood. I had to shave it a bunch, widen and deepen the saddle slot, and re-install the original undersaddle piezo pickup. The original "saddle" on this guitar was a molded bit of plastic with 6 individual saddle pieces, but this simple one-piece, compensated, plastic saddle works a lot more efficiently. The trick to making sure the average undersaddle piezo works properly is a flat bottom to the saddle slot and a slightly loose-fitting saddle. Good back-angle on the saddle also helps tremendously (note my string-ramps behind the saddle).

Because the failing old bridge hadn't been removed quickly enough as it aged, bits of the top had splintering under it that I had to make sure I wicked glue into and clamped-up along with the foot of the new bridge.


There's only about 1/16" of adjustment room left, but it should be enough to make the guitar functional for some time. Action is on-the-dot at 3/32" EA and 1/16" DGBE at the 12th fret.



The finish on the back has ghosting -- suggesting a lot of time spent at outdoor shows!


The "volute" at the back of the headstock is nice.





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