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Martin Guitar FAQ

  • What happens if I neglect to mail my warranty paperwork to you within thirty days to register my guitar?
    Martin will not refuse to register your guitar if all proper documentation is received by them after the thirty-day period. They do ask the paperwork be submitted within the thirty-day period because they have found if not handled within that time frame, the paperwork will be set aside and neglected. They are only trying to assist the customer in making sure the guitar is registered in the event it would be stolen, lost or require warranty work. If warranty repair work would be required in the future, having your guitar registered with Martin would alleviate any delays in providing this service. In order to register your guitar, the warranty paperwork, along with a copy of the original bill of sale is required.  back to top

  • How do I proceed if my Martin guitar needs repair?
    Martin requests that you contact an Authorized Warranty repair person in your area to have the guitar evaluated for repair. You will find a link to Martin's Authorized Repair Centers below. The repair centers will be able to assist you in having your guitar evaluated and repaired.  back to top

  • I would like to have a strap button installed on my guitar. Will this void the warranty?
    It will void the warranty on the neck if the strap button is not installed in the correct location of the neck or if the neck is damaged while the strap button is installed by an unauthorized repair technician. We highly recommend the strap button be installed by an authorized warranty repair person in the location recommended by the C. F. Martin Company.  back to top

  • Why do I need to contact an Authorized Warranty Repair Center?
    Martin no longer performs warranty and non-warranty repairs at the manufacturing facility in Nazareth, PA. However in the event the authorized repair center is not able to perform the repair satisfactorily, the repair person will contact the customer service department to request authorization to return the guitar to their facility in Nazareth, PA. Please be aware that turn around time for repairs being performed at the manufacturing facility could be as long as four to six months.  back to top

  • So what happens if I just decide to send my Martin into the manufacturing facility anyway?
    A Return Authorization number is needed in order to return an instrument to Martin's manufacturing facility. Any instrument received at the Martin facility without an appropriate Return Authorization number will be refused by their shipping and receiving department.  back to top

  • Could I speak to the repair person at Martin working on my guitar?
    In the event the authorized repair center is unable to make necessary repairs and your instrument is returned to their facility in Nazareth, PA, it would not be feasible to speak to the repair technician. In most instances, your guitar will be handled by a number of qualified and talented repair technicians. Your inquiry should be directed to the Consumer Customer Service Department at Martin.  back to top

  • I understand that all Martin guitars used to be made with Brazilian Rosewood. Is that true?
    Yes, at one time all of Martin's regular styles were made of Brazilian rosewood. The Style 17 was the first to use mahogany for the sides and back. This change occurred about 1909 and was documented in the catalog of that year. Style 18 followed suit in 1917 according to a dealer notice dated January 1 of that year. Brazilian rosewood continued to be used for all instruments in Style 21 and was the next style up from the 18 at that particular period of time.  back to top

  • When did East Indian Rosewood enter the picture?
    In the 1960's Brazil placed an embargo on Brazilian rosewood logs that Martin required. Their purpose was to attract industry to Brazil by demanding that the logs be sawn in Brazilian mills. This was unsatisfactory, and Martin changed to similar product, East Indian rosewood from India. In addition to the embargo, there was another basic problem in acquiring Brazilian rosewood. The available supply of large rosewood trees, in which the processed wood is wide enough for two-piece Dreadnought backs, was depleted. The shortage of wide pieces led to the introduction of the D-35 with a 3-piece back, in 1965. Martin ceased using Brazilian rosewood in standard production for complete sets of back and sides in 1969. Then in June of 1992, CITES (Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species) which is an international treaty signed by 115 countries, adopted a new amendment that went into effect which affects international shipments of Brazilian rosewood no matter how large or small. In order to export a guitar made with Brazilian rosewood, the C. F. Martin & Co. must first have a ?General Permit' from the U. S. Department of Agriculture, and secondly they must have a ?Pre-Convention Certificate' documenting that the Brazilian rosewood was harvested before June 11, 1992.  back to top

  • Why are Martin guitars manufactured with Brazilian rosewood so sought after?
    Mostly, because the wood is so rare and difficult to obtain. Since it is considered nearly extinct, it is extremely expensive if available at all. Martin rosewood models before mid-1969 were made with Brazilian rosewood. As a result, Martin's long standing reputation for tone was closely connected to the historical use of this wood. Brazilian rosewood is available in very limited quantities for special limited edition orders only. Brazilian rosewood is sometimes referred to as "Jacaranda". This species of genuine rosewood ranges in color from dark brown to violet, with spidery black streaks. The smell is like roses when freshly cut.  back to top

  • What type of polish does Martin recommend using on a satin finish guitar?
    Martin does not recommend using guitar polish on a satin finish instrument, however, it will not harm the guitar. You may notice after time the finish will begin to shine unevenly. To clean the guitar, Martin suggests using a warm, damp cotton cloth to wipe it down and then a dry cotton cloth to finish drying it off. This will remove harmful chemicals.  back to top

  • On Martin instruments such as the D35P and D28P, what does the "P" designation stand for?
    The "P" was designated to distinguish guitars manufactured with low profile necks. This was done while Martin was manufacturing both full thickness neck guitars and low profile neck guitars on the identical models. The low profile (thinner) neck was introduced on the J40M in 1985 and was extended to some other models. The "P" designation was dropped when the low profile neck became the standard neck shape in 1991.  back to top

  • Can I use lemon oil on the fingerboard of my Martin guitar?
    Martin does not recommend using lemon oil on their fingerboards. The acids in lemon oil break down the finish of Martin guitars. It may also aid the corrosion of the frets and lessen the life of the strings.  back to top

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