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Thread: JF-55 LTG Member Review

  1. #1

    JF-55 LTG Member Review

    How long have you owned the JF-55:
    Year & specific model:
    Purchased new or used:
    Price paid:

    Owners rate 1 (least appreciated) to 10 (most appreciated) in following categories with comments as desired:

    Build quality
    Looks
    Projection
    Bass
    Mids
    Highs
    Sustain
    Playability/comfort
    Dependability
    Fingerstyle
    Flatpick
    Strum

    Condition (Mint/Excellent/Good/Fair/Poor):

    Favorite Strings (one selection only):

    Would you buy another if lost/sold:

    Overall Assessment:

    Most Appreciated Characteristic:
    Least Appreciated:
    Favorite JF-55 Story/Moment:

    Other observations/comments:
    Scratch Sends...

    '88 JF30-12
    '66 Gibson B25-12
    '08 Little Martin (Maddie's Guitar)
    '10 Santa Cruz OM/PW
    '13 Collings OM2H
    '14 Yamaha LS16


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  2. #2

    Re: JF-55 LTG Member Review

    Hello...first post on the LTG Forum. Couldn't believe there wasn't any JF-55 reviews!! Guess I'll be the first...

    I'm the original owner since December of 1999.
    1999 model JF-55-N.
    Don't recall what I paid , but I got a GREAT deal; maybe I should've gotten 2!!
    Have to rate this one a 10...it's the finest acoustic I've ever played, bar none!!

    This was originally supposed to have been a JF-65, but somehow, my order went haywire and a JF-55 was shipped to me. I was more than a little concerned when I opened the case and saw this one inside. That was short lived as soon as I took her out and played a little. OMG...what a sound!! And I swear, I NEVER thought rosewood could be so beautiful as the back of this guitar. A dozen years later, and I still catch myself staring :shock: !

    The build quality is impeccable...it may as well be a fine piece of furniture.
    The sound and tone is unbelievable. Deep rich lows and crisp highs, and always the loudest acoustic in the room.
    It has played incredibly well since the day I got it. I replaced the bridge pins about a year ago, and that's all I've done. I have a closet full of Gibson electrics, and it plays as effortlessly as any of them - even my Custom Shop 355.

    Very fine instrument...don't see how I could ever get any better!! :mrgreen:
    '99 Guild JF-55-N

    '98 ES-355
    '06 Les Paul
    '75 Ovation
    '08 Classical

    Mesa Boogie Amplifiers

  3. #3

    Re: JF-55 LTG Member Review

    Hello,

    I too am a happy owner of a JF-55 R. I was looking for a guild F-47 R, but my instructor came upon this and called me immediately. The man knows guitars, and this was one that should be considered. I tried a few Martins and Taylor, which I may own if one strikes me, but nothing has like my Guild. It's a 1994 Westerly, sn# AJ550084, and is in mint condition.
    The sound is amazing, and I really believe it has helped me become a better player. I still may get an F-47 at some point, but right now this JF-55 R has my undivided attention.

  4. #4
    Senior Member CA-35's Avatar
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    Re: JF-55 LTG Member Review

    Sorry guys but I'm a stickler for details:

    Quote Originally Posted by rocksalt7
    Hello...first post on the LTG Forum. Couldn't believe there wasn't any JF-55 reviews!! Guess I'll be the first...I'm the original owner since December of 1999.
    1999 model JF-55-N.
    It's a JF-55-NT :P

    Quote Originally Posted by Tom Szafranski
    Hello,I too am a happy owner of a JF-55 R.
    It's a JF-55, no need for the R, they were only made with rosewood b/s. :P

    And yes I too am a JF-55-NT owner, a 1996. It's a boomer. Deep and a little dark, but it's a classic Guild jumbo. :D :shock: :P
    Busted out in SoFlo waiting on a Guild,
    Scott
    '78 D-50 Dharma
    '66 MKII Marketta

    "Well done is better than well said"-Benjamin Franklin

  5. #5
    How long have you owned the JF-55: 4 years
    Year & specific model: 1992/1993 JF55-NT (serial number dates it 1993, neck block stamped 1992). Westerly, RI of course, pre-Fender.
    Purchased new or used: used
    Price paid: $1600

    Owners rate 1 (least appreciated) to 10 (most appreciated) in following categories with comments as desired:

    Build quality: 7 (IMO, it's not quite up there with what Taylor, Martin, and others were doing at the same time. Top quality woods used, for sure.)
    Looks: 10 (I have always thought this model was one of the best looking guitars ever.)
    Projection: 8 (Despite its enormous size, it may seem a little bit subdued in the volume department - to the player. Get in front of it, though, and you get a different perception. I have accompanied an entire choir (~40 voices) with it, unamplified! It fills a room if you play it with authority.)
    Bass: 8 (It's a dark-sounding guitar.)
    Mids: 6
    Highs: 4
    Sustain: 9 (This guitar has incredible sustain, in keeping with its extreme mass.)
    Playability/comfort: 7 (Playability was greatly improved by a complete setup a couple years ago. Comfort is fine for me, since I'm a big guy. Not everybody can comfortably play a guitar this big.)
    Dependability: 9 (This thing is so massive, what's going to happen to it?)
    Fingerstyle: 6 (Not a "fast" responsive fingerstyle guitar, but more than adequate for fingerpicking vocal accompaniment.)
    Flatpick: 4 (Not really what you want for flatpicking.)
    Strum: 8 (Combination of sustain and deep sound make this an excellent strummer. This is where it excels.)

    Condition (Mint/Excellent/Good/Fair/Poor): VG++. There are some finish issues, a few very minor checks in the top and some finish weirdness on the neck. I had some finish chips on the neck binding filled by a luthier, but there are still a few divots in the neck finish. Considering its age, it's in remarkable condition.

    Favorite Strings (one selection only): Elixir Phosphor Bronze Nanoweb Medium 13-56

    Would you buy another if lost/sold: I never thought it about it much. Upon reflection, I don't think I would buy another one just like this, to be honest. For years, this was my dream guitar, and I finally got one. I have no plans to sell this one. However, if it were destroyed/stolen, I think I would prefer to get a New Hartford F50-R, which I probably couldn't afford. I have never played or even seen one, but my impression is that they have a lighter, more modern build which appeals to me.

    Overall Assessment: A wonderful, beautiful guitar. Very rare, in my circles anyway. Love the art-deco styling.

    Most Appreciated Characteristic: Looks. Every time I take it out of the case, it puts a smile on my face.

    Least Appreciated: Hard to say. I guess the finish. The nitro finish is just too thick, and it was definitely a bad idea to finish the guitar after the neck was attached and to finish over the pickguard, but that's the way Guild did it in those days.

    Favorite JF-55 Story/Moment: Not sure I have a favorite specific moment, but every time I'm around other guitar players with this thing, it draws considerable interest. In my neck of the woods (Arkansas), there have never been that many Guilds around, and you almost never see an upper-end model like this one. The fancy Guilds I have come across are usually 12 strings, F-512s mostly. I have yet to meet another player in person that has a JF55 or F50-R.

    Other observations/comments:
    1992 Taylor 510
    1993 Guild JF55 (gone but not forgotten)
    2001 Taylor 555
    2006 Fender Nashville Telecaster
    2007 Blueridge BR-40AS
    2010 Martin OM-21
    some more electrics of no consequence

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