This is one of the great Guild 12-strings of all time (as far as I'm concerned): not quite as big and cumbersome as the more jumbo-size F series, but with an arched back which projects its rich sound much more effectively than its braced flat-back cousins. Some folks may be aware of them because Tom Petty plays one extensively in the "Concert for George" and elsewhere, but the D-212SB is sufficiently unusual not to be listed in the Blue Book of Acoustic Guitars, and even George Gruhn barely mentions it. According to the Guild website, fewer than 3,000 total D-212s were produced from 1981 to 1986, and very few of them had this dramatic Sunburst finish. Judging from this one's serial number (AA101686) it was one of the first ones made.

Basically, the D-212SB is the twelve-string version of the tremendously popular D-25, with a few obvious upgrades. It has a solid spruce top with a Sunburst finish and solid mahogany sides, but the back is laminated mahogany to allow for the arched shape with minimal bracing (less weight, more projection). The 14/20-fret rosewood fingerboard on the mahogany neck has pearl dot position markers and ends at a 1 13/16" nut. At the other end of the 25 ½" scale is the rosewood bridge with its plain black bridge pins, set off nicely by the large black pickguard and the w-b-w purfling and full body binding (top and back). The black-face headstock features the inlaid pearl Guild logo and Chesterfield, and six-per-side enclosed chrome tuners. Although there's not a lot of abalone and stuff tricking it up, the quality of the wood and the dramatic finish make this one good-looking guitar!

Considering this guitar has been making music for 34 years, it not surprising that it is in “experienced” condition, with a number of repaired cracks in the top and some dark overspray on the treble side lower bout suggesting a major repair (very professionally done). The cracks have all been glued and cleated, they are completely stable, and they have no effect on the huge sound or playability of the guitar. One of the Guild chrome tuners has been replaced with a similar Grover tuner, and another of the tuners has lost its cap, but all work perfectly. Finally, there has been a solid but amateurish re-set of the bridge, with considerable chipping of the finish.

On the whole, however, the binding is tight, the bridge is secure, and the neck is straight. The action is nice and low for my old fingers for a twelve-string—just under 3/32” at the 12th fret low E—but the Guild dual truss rod design makes adjustment easy, and the high saddle is also an easy fix. There's relatively light fret wear—it will be ready to play as soon as you open the box. As far as I know, there are no other cosmetic or structural concerns.

And of course the sound is extraordinary. Guild has always been kind of the "gold standard" for twelve-strings, but the arched back and aged tonewoods of this guitar make it more like an orchestra than a guitar. The sustain is outstanding, the bass is strong but not muddy, the doubled trebles ring like bells, and even the mid-range is balanced throughout strummed chords—not the "thud" on the bottom and jingle-jangle on the top of so many twelves. And if you have a gig in Yankee Stadium or some such, a Fender/Fishman Classic 4 pickup and pre-amp have been installed with an end pin jack for your convenience.

The included arched-top hard shell case is probably not original, but it is in very good shape. It is structurally sound and a perfect fit, the hardware is only slightly tarnished, all five latches work, and there are only a few expected dings around the edges. The interior plush is soft and clean, and it really offers excellent protection and integrity to this outstanding instrument.

Buyer pays a flat rate of $55 for insurance and shipping to the lower 48 states; shipping costs elsewhere will be negotiated as necessary. Payment by Paypal is preferred; cashiers and personal checks are acceptable, but checks must clear before the guitar will be shipped.

I have tried to be perfectly clear and accurate in describing this instrument, so its return will not be accepted unless it can be shown that it was egregiously misrepresented in this listing. Please check out the pictures and ask any questions you might have before offering to buy.

Good luck!



Dark Sunburst
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24/7 by e-mail: I'm old; I don't sleep much.

Payments by Paypal, cashier’s checks, money orders, or personal checks are acceptable, but all payments must clear my bank before the guitar will be shipped. I will CONSIDER reasonable offers, even including installment payments and trade-ins, but generally since I already attempt to price my guitars very competitively, unusual deals must be unusually sweet.

From henceforth [that's how retired English teachers talk], insurance and shipping to the lower 48 states is $55 due to constantly rising shipping costs unless a specific listing says otherwise; shipping costs elsewhere will be negotiated as necessary. I have sold guitars to Russia, Japan, Australia, and over 50 other countries, as well as almost every state in the USA. Since some of my guitars travel thousands of miles, I take care to use lots of packing materials, protect the neck inside the case, and of course de-tune the strings.

I make every effort to describe and illustrate each guitar and case with scrupulous accuracy. However, many of my instruments are well-played vintage items which are many years old, and I am not a luthier. One should assume that any guitar will require some set-up to satisfy your personal requirements, and that not every flaw or ding will be seen/recognized/described in the listing. Thus the return of an instrument will not be accepted unless it can be shown that it was egregiously misrepresented in this listing. Please read the listing carefully, check out the pictures, and ask any questions you might have before offering to buy.