Framus 50/I Sport, 1971

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Instrument: The so-called Wandergitarren (traveling guitars) of that time were built in large... more
Framus 50/I Sport, 1971

The so-called Wandergitarren (traveling guitars) of that time were built in large numbers as beginner and entry-level guitars. Most were then probably worn out and discarded in children's rooms and around campfires. Many are hybrids that can be played with both steel and nylon strings. Beautiful beginner guitars with nylon strings and great blues machines with steel strings. In the meantime, the blues scene has long since discovered that a German touring guitar sounds practically the same as a US parlor from the thirties and forties, but at a fraction of the price that you have to pay for a Martin, Gibson or Harmony today. This is the sound of Robert Johnson, Son House and Charley Patton - made in Germany. This guitar also shows its potential especially with steel strings. The entries on the soundhole label are almost completely faded. But as so often, we found the production stamp underneath: December 11, 1971, plus the EX stamp, marking the guitar as an export model. See photo.

The guitar has a beautiful spruce top, plus maple sides and back. The neck is also made of a solid piece of flamed maple throughout, including the headstock. It has a truss rod and a rosewood fingerboard with dot inlays in four frets. The tailpiece, also made of rosewood, is reinforced with a metal bar and can handle all kinds of strings. The open tuners are Framus standard, proven thousands of times.

Instruments history:
Unknown. We took over the guitar as part of a small collection of Framus travel guitars. A previous owner scratched his initials V.F. into the headstock... If he happens to read this - please report so we can bust his chops for this nonsense! Otherwise the guitar was in good original condition when we took it over.

Restoration work:
We cleaned the guitar and blew out the body. All lacquer surfaces were elaborately bale polished, some small scratches and dents carefully retouched. Frets and fingerboard were slightly sanded and oiled or polished. The tuners were disassembled, cleaned and re-oiled. One mismatched tuner grip was replaced with a matching original. Finally, the Framus got a new set of 11 gauge Pyramid bronze strings and a basic setup.

Current condition:
Above all, the small Sport convinces with its steel string sound: loud, full, assertive, lots of bass and warm wood, but in parallel also crisp mids and clear overtones, all harmonically integrated. Perfect for all fingerpicking and slide styles. Simply "just" strumming doesn't bring out the potential. Due to its slim neck and low string action, the Framus plays very easy and uncomplicated. The condition is flawless, everything is stable and resilient, there are no damages. The top shows a few playing marks, plus the initials on the headstock, retouched by us of course, this is rather nice patina than wear. The little one is very versatile: With nylons a stylish beginner's guitar, also for kids, with steel strings a loud blues player for experts. Individual extension of your own portfolio and a fantastic travel guitar. If you simply loosen the four neck screws, the Sport even fits in any suitcase.

Overall length 91 cm/35.8”; body length 43,5 cm/17.1”; lower bout width 30,5 cm/12”; waist width 18 cm/7.1”; upper bout width 23,5 cm/9.3”; body depth 7,3 cm/2.9”; scale length 58 cm/22.8” (zero fret to saddle); fingerboard width 4,2 cm/1.6” at zero fret, 5,2 cm/2.1” at 12th fret; overall weight 1.370 g; string action on 12th fret 2 mm/0.08”.

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