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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
I have been looking for another 12 string as it's been awhile since I have had one and on a recent trip picked up this beauty. It is a George Lowden design built in the Yairi plant in Japan in 1983. Here is a description of it. Has anyone seen another one the same or similar?

Cedar top, walnut back and sides and all wood binding (4 layers). Bridge is 2 piece, and the pins look to be ebony with mother of pearl inlays. The rosette is all inlaid wood.

George Lowden explained that he was asked to design some guitars for a small factory in Kasuga, Japan and did so around 1983. Back then many factories were closing down in Japan and Kasuga was one of the few left. Artisan is the brand designed by George and made in Japan.



 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
12 string guitars are, by far, my favorites. I'd love to try this one out. I bet she sounds awesome. You got a keeper there, me thinks.
Well Daniel, if I ever get up around Ottawa, I'll bring it with me and let you give her a good run.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Does it play well? Yairi guitars are known to be super easy players.
Yes, it plays very well. It had been awhile since I played a 12 string so it took me a couple hours before it felt comfortable but whoever had it before me had it set up very well.
 

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those japanese made lowdens are all top guitars for a third the irish price. i had an s 22 that was cedar top and mahagony back and sides that was fantastic, better than the irish made similar woods O 10 i also had, but my japanese one was damaged in a house fire. but i had the good luck to find another recently, s yairi, with ovengkol back and sides with spruce top which is actually better. the s yairi made lowdens are top guitars
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
those japanese made lowdens are all top guitars for a third the irish price. i had an s 22 that was cedar top and mahagony back and sides that was fantastic, better than the irish made similar woods O 10 i also had, but my japanese one was damaged in a house fire. but i had the good luck to find another recently, s yairi, with ovengkol back and sides with spruce top which is actually better. the s yairi made lowdens are top guitars
That seems like a very exceptional find that you have. These guitars also seem pretty rare on this side of the ocean.
 

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That seems like a very exceptional find that you have. These guitars also seem pretty rare on this side of the ocean.
and i just bought an irish lowden that came up locally--call me mr lucky--or mr poor!!! the irish made with indian rosewood back and sides and cedar top is excellent, a little better than the s yairi ovankgol one. this is a lot better tone than my old O 10 that i sold. irish lowdens can be all over the place for tone. the jaoanese ones seemm all very much similar. that artisan 12 that started this is probably an absolutely top 12 string. i rarely play 12 anymore and i have two so not looking.
 
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