Guild's lighter-weight archtops?

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Good Morning Folks,

Thankyou for admitting me to your august company, much appreciated. I am in Australia and own and play (after a fashion) a blonde Guild X-170 (see below). Not sure of the date but I read it's model designation & s/n as 'X-170 EO8, HH100141'. It's heavily flamed front & back with a maple neck and 2 of the Guild p/ups. It's a great guitar but I do find it a tad heavy and I've become interested in perhaps getting a lighter and maybe slightly smaller (narrower & thinner) instrument.

Now I should say that I know very little about Guild archtops and find myself rapidly getting confused when I try to chart the production variations that seem to have occurred through the various changes of ownership and factory locations. Guitars that apparently fit what I'm after seem to be the mahogany-necked X-150 and maybe the A-150 with what I understand was a pressed but 'solid' spruce top, and which I read was actually made in Korea in the early-mid 2000s.

I'm not at all sure that I have either of these instruments correct, but I wonder if anyone can kindly refer me to a reference that might state clearly the various characteristics of each archtop model Guild has made. I am not at all averse to guitars made in the far-east, but for some reason I don't find myself particularly interested in the very latest versions. The 2013-15 A-150 interested me mainly because it seemed to harken back to the acoustic origins - lighter weight with only a floating pickup and control!

Any help would be much appreciated,
thanks, Sam.

Guild X-170 e1.jpeg
 

GAD

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A Guild Starfire II will weight next to nothing especially when compared with a Starfire IV or V, but if you want a deeper-bodied guitar than loo for a jazzbox without a soundblock. That can be a weird hunt because guitars like the X500s have or don't have them based on the year.

Pole around here for details on ones that catch your eye: https://gadsguilds.com
 

GGJaguar

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Welcome to LTG! Your X-170 is beautiful and one of my favorite Guild models (very versatile). GAD is right that a Starfire II or even a T-100 or T-100D might be a good choice. They usually weigh less than 7 lb (3.2 kg) with the '60s version weighing a bit less than later examples. You can find some basic info on Guild archtops at my website: https://ggjaguar.com/guild.htm
 

mushroom

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Lovely guitar.
I have a 62 T-100 D and even with an added Guildsby, I find it incredibly light.
 

krysh

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Am I correct if I say that the body size and depth of the X-170/175/500/700 is with slight variations over the years almost identical at 17", and the thinner Starfire 1/2/3/4/5/6 (T-100/100D) are basically 16 3/8"?
Are the X-150 and 160 the same size as the 170 or are they smaller?
 

GGJaguar

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Those generalizations sound about right, although the X-150/X-160 made in Corona were about an inch smaller than their Westerly counterparts.
 

Default

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There was nothing made in Korea until the Newark Street line came out. Aristocrats and Starfire hollow bodies are pretty light. The semihollows vary from time period to time period. The late Westerly Starfire lVs are pretty heavy.
 

SFIV1967

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Welcome to LTG! Are you sure your X-170 has serial number HH100141 ? Could it be HL100141 maybe? In that case it would be a 1987 made one. The EO8 your read was a factory internal number and was not supposed to be on the label but we have seen many of them with such factory codes.
 

walrus

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FWIW, the '67 T-100D I had was the lightest Guild I ever played, about 1/2 pound lighter than the '97 SFII I had.

walrus
 

dbirchett

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For lighter, you might try a Newark Street X175 which should be a little lighter.

For lighter and smaller, try the NS Starfire III or Aristocrat. Both are featherweights but are highly recommended.
 
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Welcome to LTG! Are you sure your X-170 has serial number HH100141 ? Could it be HL100141 maybe? In that case it would be a 1987 made one. The EO8 your read was a factory internal number and was not supposed to be on the label but we have seen many of them with such factory codes.
It very possibly could be 'HL'. It's rather messily written on the label in red ball point and simply looks like 3 vertical lines and a single horizontal (maybe a hurried 'H' followed by a rather careless & smaller 'L').

For those discussing size variations, my X-170 measures 16-1/2" across at the widest and is 2-1/2" deep.

Thanks everyone for the observations about weights and sizes - I appreciate them. I'm not at all sure what my chances of finding another smaller/lighter Guild might be but who knows...

ps; my old Guild (and its case) smell rather strongly of 'stale nightclub' (old tobacco, beer, greasy carpet etc - I know this because I've 'been there'). Any tips on getting it to smell a little sweeter...? ;-)
 
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Are you sure your X-170 has serial number HH100141 ? Could it be HL100141 maybe? In that case it would be a 1987 made one.
OK - I'm getting dumber and dumber as I get older! I've remembered belatedly that the serial number was also stamped on the back of the headstock! You are correct - the s/no does indeed start with 'HL' making the guitar 1987 as you have suggested. Moreover, just below the s/n is stamped the numbers '9-87' meaning - I assume - September 1987!

Where was Guild based in 1987? ta, Sam.
 

SFIV1967

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You are correct - the s/no does indeed start with 'HL' making the guitar 1987 as you have suggested. Moreover, just below the s/n is stamped the numbers '9-87' meaning - I assume - September 1987!
Where was Guild based in 1987? ta, Sam.
Good we solved the riddle together!
Guild's factory was in Westerly, Rhode Island from 1967 until late summer 2001.

Ralf
 

hearth_man

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I could be wrong but I don't think Guild put sound blocks in the X-175 and X-500 until the early 80s. Hans would know.

At any rate as was said earlier with or without a sound block an X-175 or X-500 is not going to be light. As GAD said a Starfire II or something like a T-100 or X-50 or T-50 would be pretty light.
 

mad dog

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If you're talking non-thinline - full depth archtops or nearly so - the lightest I've found is my '62 X-50. Not feather light, but noticeably lighter than the '61 X-175 next to it.
 

Uke

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Good Morning Folks,

Thankyou for admitting me to your august company, much appreciated. I am in Australia and own and play (after a fashion) a blonde Guild X-170 (see below). Not sure of the date but I read it's model designation & s/n as 'X-170 EO8, HH100141'. It's heavily flamed front & back with a maple neck and 2 of the Guild p/ups. It's a great guitar but I do find it a tad heavy and I've become interested in perhaps getting a lighter and maybe slightly smaller (narrower & thinner) instrument.

Now I should say that I know very little about Guild archtops and find myself rapidly getting confused when I try to chart the production variations that seem to have occurred through the various changes of ownership and factory locations. Guitars that apparently fit what I'm after seem to be the mahogany-necked X-150 and maybe the A-150 with what I understand was a pressed but 'solid' spruce top, and which I read was actually made in Korea in the early-mid 2000s.

I'm not at all sure that I have either of these instruments correct, but I wonder if anyone can kindly refer me to a reference that might state clearly the various characteristics of each archtop model Guild has made. I am not at all averse to guitars made in the far-east, but for some reason I don't find myself particularly interested in the very latest versions. The 2013-15 A-150 interested me mainly because it seemed to harken back to the acoustic origins - lighter weight with only a floating pickup and control!

Any help would be much appreciated,
thanks, Sam.

View attachment 17044
Welcome SP. Here is my own experience. I own a very light Starfire 2 and a very heavy X-175. I never play the Starfire -- I play the X-175 all the time, all 175 pounds of it! I much prefer the bigger, boomier sound of the X-175 to what (to me) sounds quite brittle and sharp in the Starfire. Of course, to each one's own. Just depends on the sound your searching for.
 
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Thanks Uke & others for your advice and comments.

It sounds as though I should look out for a Starfire 2 but I don't like my chances of finding one - few & far between in Australia. This discussion has reminded me that I did in fact briefly own a Korean-made Epiphone Sorrento a few years ago. It was quite a nice 'Starfire-like' guitar - but neither 'hollow' nor particularly light. I recall that it also had a very(!) narrow nut which made things very crowded for my rather large, fat hands!

I suspect that what I should really do is make myself the guitar I want. I actually have a couple of pressed maple plates (top and back) which I bought years ago & have been lugging around ever since. I think that what I'm after is something like a very lightly built GB Ibanez - 15" or less - so probably much smaller than anything Guild has ever built.

BTW, I weighed my X-170 - it comes in at 3.4kg or about 7-1/2 pounds!

Thanks again all, Sam P.

ps; my smelly old Guild feels in good company & says thanks too!

s-l1600-5.jpg
 
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mushroom

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this thread made me wonder exactly what mine (T100-D) weighed so I just stuck it on the bathroom scales.
2.8 kg or 6.17 lb with a Guildsby.
 
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