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Advice on Contreras guitar required   You are logged in as Guest
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gav777

 

Posts: 10
Joined: Apr. 8 2016
From: Sunny but freezing Scotland

Advice on Contreras guitar required 

Hello,

I have the opportunity to purchase a 1990 Contreras F5 Flamenco Guitar Solid Spruce Top/ Cedar back and sides. The label inside isn't signed but doesn't give any further indication who it was built by i.e from the workshop or elsewhere.

Reads: M.G CONTRERAS. CALLE MAYOR 80. MADRID - 1990 - with F5 in pen on the label. Nothing else


From your experience, what would the value for this item be and what should I check for - it's selling at £1500 and from what I can see (and my limited knowledge) is in v.good condition. A 'dint' at the end in the base which I'm ensured is only in the lacquer from the owner, who has had it for 20years.

Plays fast and responsive although treble's I felt were quite light and not as expressive as I would like (a string change may help?).

However I'm used to a v.high action Yamaha Classical guitar from the 80's and my style of playing must be adapted to that, as it's my only guitar owned since childhood.

Any advice much appreciated.

Thanks
G
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Oct. 31 2018 12:54:33
 
RobJe

 

Posts: 667
Joined: Dec. 16 2006
From: UK

RE: Advice on Contreras guitar required (in reply to gav777

No answers means it’s a difficult question to answer!

In 1990 the old man was still just active – he died in 1994 when his son took over the workshop until 2011 when he also died.

At the time your guitar was made it was common to label the guitars made in a small workshop as 1a or 2a and sign them. Anything else was either bought in from a factory, made by other luthiers who were not well enough established to sell guitars easily, made by apprentices or was a sign that the maker had employed more staff and was trying to branch out into some kind of small factory production. There is no way of telling who made the F5 but it certainly wouldn’t have been Manuel Contreras.

You don’t say anything about the woods. I know that some later F7 models had laminated sycamore back and sides – stable perhaps, but solid timbers might give a better chance of a good guitar. Do check out the timber and whether it is laminated as it does affect the value.

If you can get a competent flamenco guitarist to try it, you could get some useful additional information as to its quality.

So if it’s a good guitar made out of solid cypress or some kind of rosewood it could be anywhere in the range £300-£800.

Rob
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Nov. 1 2018 12:40:21
 
Echi

 

Posts: 575
Joined: Jan. 11 2013
 

RE: Advice on Contreras guitar required (in reply to gav777

In the case of Manuel Contreras the label of the guitars made in his shop of Madrid is just one. The label says: Constructor Manuel Contreras, Calle Major 80.
Manuel used to sign just the label of the 1st class guitars (not necessarily made by him but also by other oficiales working in the shop in the Ramirez way; some of them came from Ramirez like Ignacio Rozas) while the 2nd class guitars were identical but the label wasn’t signed.
All the other labels used by the shop (guitarreria Manuel Contreras, Costructor MG Contreras etc.) are find in studio guitars bought by other companies/luthiers.
I saw once a yellow Contreras label on a premium guitar: it was clearly a well made and expensive instrument but it wasn’t made or signed by mr. Contreras. Nobody could tell me more about it and later on the importer of the Contreras brand in Italy told me that certain lines were outsourced and sold just for certain countries..
Pablo Contreras introduced also a studio line of guitars made in the Madrid shop.
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Nov. 1 2018 14:17:42
 
gav777

 

Posts: 10
Joined: Apr. 8 2016
From: Sunny but freezing Scotland

RE: Advice on Contreras guitar required (in reply to RobJe

Hi Rob/Echi,

thanks for the informative answer.

It's Solid Spruce Top/ Cedar back and sides - I don't know if it is laminated.

I'll upload a couple of photo's I've got of it - although they probably don't do it justice. The colour of the body is like the 1st picture not the 2nd, very light.







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  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Nov. 1 2018 14:18:21
 
Echi

 

Posts: 575
Joined: Jan. 11 2013
 

RE: Advice on Contreras guitar required (in reply to gav777

Back and sides are made in laminated flamed maple, probably it’s a factory made guitar.
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Nov. 1 2018 14:28:04
 
gav777

 

Posts: 10
Joined: Apr. 8 2016
From: Sunny but freezing Scotland

RE: Advice on Contreras guitar required (in reply to gav777

So not even worth £1000 ?
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Nov. 1 2018 14:47:42
 
Echi

 

Posts: 575
Joined: Jan. 11 2013
 

RE: Advice on Contreras guitar required (in reply to gav777

Hi, if back and sides are definitely laminated (as it looks like but has to be checked by looking inside the sound hole) the guitar is worth less.
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Nov. 1 2018 15:58:27
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