According to The Blue Book of Acoustic Guitars, the Guild Mark IV classical guitar was manufactured from 1961 to 1986. Gruhn’s Guide and Vintage Guitar Price Guide basically agree, although there is some disagreement as to specific features, perhaps because Guild used maple, pearwood, rosewood, and padauk for the backs and sides at various times in this 25-year period. Like most classical guitars, it’s smaller than the dreadnought or jumbo series, measuring 14 ½” at the lower bout, with a scale of 25 ½.” Like its rivals, the Gibson C-100 and higher, it may have been designed more for the coffee house of the 1960s folk music scene or classical performance than for the blue grass stage. However, it still has enough carrying power for anybody and is a beautiful example of Guild craftsmanship.
Regarding the Mark IV series in general, a Mark IV is part of the Guild “professional series.” All IVs have ebony fretboards-- that is the only feature consistent to all years. Depending on the year, a IV may have maple, rosewood, pearwood, or padouk backs and sides. I have even heard of some in ash, but to my knowledge, no IVs were ever made in mahogany.
Those with the P are padouk, and are relatively rare, as padouk is a rather stiff wood and more difficult to bend than most other tonewoods. Pear is a light colored wood that is reminiscent of maple; Padouk looks something like a rosewood, often with a wild grain. A/B it against mahogany or rosewood and you can tell it isn't either of them. The sound is excellent, however: as one reviewer on-line says, “Full rich tone with surprising volume. After playing many guitars for almost 40 years, I find the Guild Mark IVP very comparable to today's classical guitars costing much more...in the $1,500 to $2K range.”
Mark IV tops were generally Sitka Spruce, but some of the later ones had cedar tops. In addition, Guild often used a reddish lacquer that makes spruce look sort of like cedar. Early IVs have a dovetail neck joint like the I, II, and III. Later ones have a Spanish neck block integral with the neck.
The Mark IVP features a solid spruce top with African Padauk back and sides, what appears to be a solid mahogany neck and headstock in a polished natural finish, a rosewood wrap-around bridge, and a 12/19-fret ebony finger board. It has an ornate patterned rosette and full three-ply binding on both the top and the back. The slotted classical headstock has no logo, but it is set off beautifully by the pearloid buttons on the open gold-plated tuners.
The serial number of this particular Mark IVP (121386) dates it as 1975, and is displayed both on the back of the headstock and on the label. After 43 years of making music, there are a few cosmetic concerns: there is slight crazing or cracking in the finish, and a bit of wear at the frets. In addition, there are some bruises/finish cracks at the waist edge of the top, some finish bubbles in the treble side, some finish discoloration on the back of the neck, and a few small dings in the top. Most conspicuously, there is some fingernail “tap” wear below the sound hole, visible in the pictures.
The action is fine, the neck is straight, the top is flat, and of course playing music for 43 years has made that Guild sound even better, more resonant, and more powerful. Despite its very good structural condition, this guitar is not for a collector to put in a museum; this is a player’s guitar, and I sincerely hope that its next owner is someone who will play it well and often.
The case is definitely the original deluxe hard shell case, which naturally fits this guitar’s dimensions perfectly. It is in excellent shape, inside and out, with a nice plush interior, slightly tarnished brass hardware which functions perfectly, and the Guild displayed inside the pocket. The handle is solid, and it affords outstanding vintage protection for this fine vintage guitar.
Buyer pays a flat rate of $55 for insurance and shipping to the lower forty-eight states; shipping costs elsewhere will be negotiated as necessary. Payment by Paypal is preferred; cashier’s 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 vintage 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 purchase it.
Thank you for your interest in this fine vintage Guild guitar.
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.