Ramirez 1A earliest serial number?

Construction and repair of Classical Guitar and related instruments
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SeanWinkler
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Location: Massachusetts

Ramirez 1A earliest serial number?

Post by SeanWinkler » Fri Apr 14, 2017 5:43 pm

This is just a curiosity of mine. Based on the info I've been able to find, Ramirez added the second label with the serial number to their 1A guitars in 1967. The lowest serial number I've come across is 2019. Does anyone know where they started the count? My guess, based on the numbers from subsequent years and the derived approximate yearly output, is that they started numbering at 2000.
Remember Anthony Weller, please help. Contact myself or Aaron Green for details.

bluesnik
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Joined: Thu Nov 13, 2014 11:02 am

Re: Ramirez 1A earliest serial number?

Post by bluesnik » Fri Apr 14, 2017 11:48 pm

According to a very informative article about Jose Ramirez III, written by the very knowledgeable Richard Brune entitled "Guitars with Guts", written
for Vintage Guitar Magazine in April of 2000, he states that 'perhaps as a result of some slack tax accounting, in 1967 Ramirez was required to number his instruments. Rather than trying to estimate their prior output, they began arbitrarily with number 1000 in '67.' He goes on to say that 'by July, they were
already on number 2184, which gives a small clue to their annual production at that time.'
2014 Ramirez 'Conservatorio' CD/IN
1975 Ramirez 1a Classical CD/BR
1976 Ramirez 1a Flamenco CD/CY

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SeanWinkler
Posts: 702
Joined: Mon Sep 29, 2008 5:30 pm
Location: Massachusetts

Re: Ramirez 1A earliest serial number?

Post by SeanWinkler » Sat Apr 15, 2017 6:48 pm

Thanks for the info. Now I'm wondering (1) are serial numbers assigned sequentially, or might they skip at the start of new month/year (2) which guitar models received the numbers? It seems unlikely to me that over 1000 Ramirez 1A's were built in a year, but then again I wasn't around at the time. Maybe they really were selling that many? It would make more sense to me if the serial numbers were applied to all models, but that also seems like a bookkeeping headache if student models built in other shops drew from the same pool of numbers.
Remember Anthony Weller, please help. Contact myself or Aaron Green for details.

bluesnik
Posts: 65
Joined: Thu Nov 13, 2014 11:02 am

Re: Ramirez 1A earliest serial number?

Post by bluesnik » Sun Apr 16, 2017 3:13 pm

The serial numbers were used for the 1a’s (Classical and Flamenco) and never for student guitars which were outsourced to other workshops. Even the so-called ‘2a’s' were given a separate serial number beginning with an “R” and followed by four digits.
Brune estimates in the aforementioned article that by 1980 over 15,000 Ramirez guitars had been produced since ’67. Doing the math that averages out to over 1,150 guitars a years, so the workshop seemingly could have produced over 1,000 guitars per year.
In my opinion, it is a testament to the genius of Jose Ramirez III that guitars produced in this volume over the decades would hold their value and display such an enviable tone.
In a recent conversation I had with Jose III’s daughter Amalia who now runs the business, the workshop has been scaled down considerably and produces somewhere in the neighborhood of 100 guitars annually.
2014 Ramirez 'Conservatorio' CD/IN
1975 Ramirez 1a Classical CD/BR
1976 Ramirez 1a Flamenco CD/CY

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