This site is not affiliated with the Yamaha Corporation. I made this site to share my passion for vintage Yamaha guitars.
I created this website to share the information I’ve collected over the past 4 years on vintage (1966-1981) Yamaha FG series acoustic guitars. Over that time I’ve collected 25 Yamaha FG’s. Some are minty. Many were “rescues” from CraigsList, unplayable guitars that someone didn’t want. Some were a little beat up, most needed neck resets. Most cost $150 or less, some costing less than $50. My intention was not only collect them, but also learn how to repair them. And take on the challenge of the “Asian Mystery Glue”!!
Some of these (mostly) affordable vintage guitars sound very similar to some new guitars costing thousands of dollars. The all tone wood laminates and very thin bracing, combined with 40-50 years of drying out, gives many of them the sonic appearance of an all solid wood guitar.
What spurred the creation of this site was Yamaha taking down the very useful Yamaha Guitar Archive in May of 2017. In the INFO section you will find the contents of their Acoustic Guitar Archive, with corrections and additions. I initially started with a forum a week after I found Yamaha’s Archive page had gone down. But some people don’t want to wade thru all of the posts and deal with the possible drama.
I’m a Tool Designer by trade, so I take that home and design & build many of my guitar repair tools. With the wealth of information (and mis-information) on the internet you can learn to do just about anything. I try to take what I’ve found (and advice from other people) and improve on it, or possible find a better way. I’ll be posting drawings of some of these tools soon.
I’m mainly focusing on US models made from 1966 to 1981. All these models have the truss rod adjustment in the headstock. Models introduced in 1981, and all since, have the truss rod adjustment inside the guitar.
Over the years I’ve found many assumed facts about the FG’s: Many of them have solid tops or are all solid wood, they were built with epoxy or “Asian Mystery Glue” and the necks can never be removed, the first digit of the serial numbers are always the year of manufacture, etc. In the many pages of this site I will explain why these assumed facts are incorrect.
My latest interest is decoding the mystery of the 6 & 7 digit serial numbers. It’s widely known that the 8 digit serial numbers start with the year as the first number. But the earliest FG’s (1966 to 1972) have 6 & 7 digit numbers (located on the neck block), which are just sequential numbers used by all the guitars they built, not just the FG’s. I’ve also found there are internal date codes that will reveal when the guitar was made.
If you have any questions feel free to contact me at YamahaVintageFG@gmail.com