Ryoji Matsuoka 100L (1980) any info?

Construction and repair of Classical Guitar and related instruments
hesson11
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Ryoji Matsuoka 100L (1980) any info?

Post by hesson11 » Sat Jun 10, 2017 3:26 am

I don't know a great deal about Matsuoka guitars, except what I have been able to pick up from a few threads here. This particular guitar is a 630mm scale, currently listed on the big auction site. I'm really looking for any info anyone may have to share, such as:

I've never seen any information about a "100L" model, so I'm wondering whether it would tend toward the higher or lower end of the model range, whether it's solid or laminated, etc.

The general quality of Matsuoka guitars from this time period (1980).

Any guesses about the neck profile: chunky or thin or other.

If you care to check out the listing (you should find it by searching something like "Matsuoka 1980 630"), you'll see that it has a few relatively significant flaws. Those don't bother me too much, considering that I may be able to get it for a commensurate price (opening price of $200). I certainly don't expect a world-class guitar, but perhaps something pleasant that is easy on my injured hands/wrists. (The recent threads on Japanese guitars also have me curious to try one.)

Thanks very much for anything you may be able to tell me.
-Bob

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rinneby
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Re: Ryoji Matsuoka 100L (1980) any info?

Post by rinneby » Sat Jun 10, 2017 6:25 am

I know quite a lot about Matsuoka guitars, and had/have many of them. I'm not quite sure what "L" stands for though, but something like "Limited" comes to mind. The 630 scale is a little unusual, but I can tell for sure this is a midrange model, without any fancy decorations and so on. Matsuoka guitars from the 80s are generally good, I had a M50 from -83, if I remember correctly, that was wonderful to play and had a very nice tone.

This particular guitar seems to be in "so so" condition, with an ugly repaired crack on top, but if that doesn't bother you, go for it. The neck has an ebony reinforcement strip, which is a good thing. I don't think it's all solid, but the "laminated" (also referred to as Double plate) guitars from this period are very good, and also doesn't crack so easy. The top is spruce and solid.

You can safely bid up to at least 300 dollars in my opinion, maybe even 400-500, if you want the guitar real bad. I wouldn't go higher than that, for this particular guitar.

All the best from Sweden

/Jon
1965 - Masaru Kono
1996 - Masaru Kohno Maestro

You are the instrument, not the guitar

Keith
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Re: Ryoji Matsuoka 100L (1980) any info?

Post by Keith » Sat Jun 10, 2017 10:31 am

First of all, it is permissible to put in the selling number (see below) of the item. Just copy and paste at the bay. Last weekend I picked up a Ryoji Matsuoka classical from a person who was selling his--very well made and very nice tone and only a few hundred dollars to boot. The Japanese back in the day really were able to replicate the "Ramirez" sound--much to the dislike of JR3 (see his book). This is my second Japanese guitar over the years and I am impressed. As to this guitar. Currently it is going for $200 and it is likely no one will bid on it--crack, smaller scale size. the shipping is listed at $35 (most likely CONUS) which is less that what it is likely to cost. if someone needs a smaller scale guitar this might be a good deal. the crack can most likely be addressed fairly inexpensively.

rinneby--how is the name pronounced? Rye-O-Gee? Mat-Sue-oh-ka?

as to comfort--the one I bought has a nice comfortable neck.

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be true to the one you love but have many flings with different guitars

hesson11
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Re: Ryoji Matsuoka 100L (1980) any info?

Post by hesson11 » Sat Jun 10, 2017 1:12 pm

Thank you both, Jon and Keith.

As to the "L" designation, I'm wondering whether it might signify that the guitar was originally configured as left-handed. It's now a "righty."

Jon, much of what I do know of Matsuoka I learned from your comments on other threads. Keith, I did not know you could post the auction number. Thanks! Looks like it might be a decent purchase, considering its condition and possible price.

-Bob

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mordent
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Re: Ryoji Matsuoka 100L (1980) any info?

Post by mordent » Sat Jun 10, 2017 3:33 pm

I have owned several Matsuoka guitars over the years. As with all guitars -even the top Makers - the sound can vary from average to splendid although this difference is much less evident in the top Makes and Luthier made guitars. This makes buying unseen without playing the instrument somewhat of a gamble;particularly so if there is damage ,as in this case ,since then it is difficult to sell it again if the sound does not suit or is nothing special.
Another very important point is the action height and the amount of adjustment available at the saddle --bear in mind that you need 3.mm of saddle protrusion above the slot simply to reduce the action by 1.mm at the 12. th.fet. ( allowing just 1. mm for an acceptable min .break angle. ) you may get a good sound but if the action is too high for comfort then that is no good.
In general have found these older Matsuoka guitars to have a relatively high action with not much ajustment available . Build quality generally is very good but the sound is not particularly Spanish due to the Matsuoka strutting which on most models is a version of the early Kohno parallel bracing system..
Matsuoka made many guitars for other Makers such as the Ibanez Andorra series in which the bracing was Ramirez type with the slanting treble bar and fan struts. These are generally exceptionally good guitars . I have one such an Andorra Recital 300 .S. which has the best cedar top I have ever seen and a sound the equal of most Ramirez A1 . This guitar model has a "specially selected top" is personally signed by Ryoji Matsuoka as has been played and enthused by Maestro John Mills
Chopin used to sleep with wooden wedges between his fingers to increase their span--now there's a thought !

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joelmalit
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Re: Ryoji Matsuoka 100L (1980) any info?

Post by joelmalit » Sat Jun 10, 2017 6:13 pm

"L" model is designed for ladies. Other Japanese brands such as Grand Shinano also used "L" for their 630. I have a Matsuoka M80R that has solid top so most likely the model 100 has solid top and is one of the high-end model. Mine's "R" stands for Requinto.
1995 Carl Hellweg-Dieter Hopf CS38, Yusuke Kyo N-12, Ryoji Matsuoka M80R, Kodaira AST-40, Meiko 1967 by Masaru Matano, Yamaha G120A, Yamaha CG131S, Tokai L-50, Fernades GC-15, 1966 Kasuga 80, Terada 700, Craftman C35S, other japanese vintage guitars

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rinneby
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Re: Ryoji Matsuoka 100L (1980) any info?

Post by rinneby » Sat Jun 10, 2017 7:16 pm

joelmalit wrote:
Sat Jun 10, 2017 6:13 pm
"L" model is designed for ladies. Other Japanese brands such as Grand Shinano also used "L" for their 630. I have a Matsuoka M80R that has solid top so most likely the model 100 has solid top and is one of the high-end model. Mine's "R" stands for Requinto.
Yes, but it's not a high end model (to my eyes), since its from the 80s. You can tell by the looks (lack of decorations). A No.80 from the mid 70s or earlier is a high end model for example. Later the 200 and 300 was the top tier, but they where not "better" than a M60/80 from the 70s.

Thanks for the info about "L", I didn't know that!

/Jon
Last edited by rinneby on Sat Jun 10, 2017 8:31 pm, edited 2 times in total.
1965 - Masaru Kono
1996 - Masaru Kohno Maestro

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joelmalit
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Re: Ryoji Matsuoka 100L (1980) any info?

Post by joelmalit » Sat Jun 10, 2017 8:21 pm

probably it belongs to the high end models, I've never seen yet an 80s Matsuoka label with model 200 or 300. I'm not so sure where to separate between low and high end models, but usually it should have gold tuners.
1995 Carl Hellweg-Dieter Hopf CS38, Yusuke Kyo N-12, Ryoji Matsuoka M80R, Kodaira AST-40, Meiko 1967 by Masaru Matano, Yamaha G120A, Yamaha CG131S, Tokai L-50, Fernades GC-15, 1966 Kasuga 80, Terada 700, Craftman C35S, other japanese vintage guitars

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rinneby
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Re: Ryoji Matsuoka 100L (1980) any info?

Post by rinneby » Sat Jun 10, 2017 8:42 pm

joelmalit wrote:
Sat Jun 10, 2017 8:21 pm
probably it belongs to the high end models, I've never seen yet an 80s Matsuoka label with model 200 or 300. I'm not so sure where to separate between low and high end models, but usually it should have gold tuners.
You might be right there, but to my eyes this doesn't look like a high-end model. No bridge decorations for example. And I agree, its hard to draw a definite line here... But the label also tells us something:

Image
Early 70s, the "best" label. That also have the stamp.

Image
Mid 70s, but also present in the 80s.

Image
80s and forward

/Jon
1965 - Masaru Kono
1996 - Masaru Kohno Maestro

You are the instrument, not the guitar

hesson11
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Re: Ryoji Matsuoka 100L (1980) any info?

Post by hesson11 » Sat Jun 10, 2017 8:53 pm

mordent wrote:
Sat Jun 10, 2017 3:33 pm
This makes buying unseen without playing the instrument somewhat of a gamble;particularly so if there is damage ,as in this case ,since then it is difficult to sell it again if the sound does not suit or is nothing special.
Another very important point is the action height and the amount of adjustment available at the saddle
You're absolutely right, mordent, buying something unseen/untouched is always a risk, which I understand (and have done many times before!).

From the photo of the break angle over the saddle, it looks as if there may be some room to adjust the action. I have asked the seller about action height and other questions, but have not heard back yet.

Thanks, everyone, for your thoughts. At the likely price, I'm not overly concerned whether this is high- or low-end, just thought it would be good to know, if possible. It's also interesting about the "L" standing for "Ladies." With my hand/wrist issues, I'm not insulted! :-)

Thank you.
-Bob

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Re: Ryoji Matsuoka 100L (1980) any info?

Post by dandan » Sun Jun 11, 2017 6:54 am

I had a MH100 from 1984 which was all solid woods with internal side braces. It was a good guitar, but had a factory made feel to it, rather than hand made, if you known what I mean. I imagine this would have a similar spec, but different bracing. 100,000¥ at that time would have been towards the top end of the Matsuoka price range, but his guitars of that period were not generally as good as his guitars of the early 70s, as the scale of production was much larger.
1962 Masaru Kono
1969 Rokutaro Nakade A9
1966 Sakazo Nakade model D
1977 Aria AG80

MessyTendon
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Re: Ryoji Matsuoka 100L (1980) any info?

Post by MessyTendon » Sun Jun 11, 2017 2:28 pm

Be careful. I had seen one of those listed on-line, I went to visit the local music store to see it..The darn thing had cracked soundboard, and the fingerboard was cracked. The guitar had been stored improperly, or something...Needless to say the photos made it look fine, but closer inspection it was a dud.

However...man I really liked the neck, it was comfy as a recliner.

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eno
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Re: Ryoji Matsuoka 100L (1980) any info?

Post by eno » Sun Jun 11, 2017 4:02 pm

There is an e - b a y Japanese guitar seller named Viktor and he usually has a good explanation of the value of Japanese guitars in the description of his e - b a y posts, I can paste a quote here (but I don't know if that would be a copyright violation):

_________________
"Real Value of Japanese Vintage Guitars

The key to understand value of vintage Japanese guitars is to acknowledge galloping devaluation of Japanese yen in 1960s & 1970s. This devaluation was somewhat slower in 1980s. The best measure of this devaluation is Starting Yearly Salary of Japanese College Graduate (SYSJCG).

SYSJCG in in 1965 was 19 600 yen, in 1969 – 34 600 yen, in 1970 39 200 yen, in 1972 – 62 300 yen, in 1975 79 200 yen, in 1977 121 200 and in 1980 - 163 000 yen.

During 1960s and most of 1970s model numbers of Japanese guitars were strictly interconnected with their prices in Japanese yen. In late 1970s and during following decades model numbers were no longer strictly associated with their prices. Many Japanese guitar makers introduced model names instead of model numbers. Others were still using model numbers with addition of letter abbreviations or other symbols.

The best and only logical approach while evaluating real value (real grade) of vintage Japanese guitar is to compare its price in Japanese yen with SYSJCG during the year guitar was made.

Any guitar priced 100 000 in 1970 (labelled usually as No10) would be priced 200 000 yen in 1975 (relabeled to No20 or 2000), 300 000 yen in 1977 (labelled as No3, No30 or 3000). Starting in 1977 Masaru Kohno introduced his model No50 priced at 500 000 (skipping theoretical model 40). Soon other famous Japanese luthiers did the same. By 1983 Kohno started using model names instead numbers and was raising their prices as he was pleased. Naturally soon other Master luthiers did the same.

Knowing all of that, you can bet on that Masaru Kohno No50 made in 1982 is practically the same quality as Kohno No15 made in 1972, or Kohno no20 made in 1975 or Kohno No30 made in 1977. I know it for a fact.

The lowest grade models currently made by Matsuoka workshop are M75 and MH75. They are commonly considered as “beginner guitars”. Matsuoka model M30 made in 1973 is simply far, far better instrument. It is naturally better than model M50 made in 1977, model 80 made in 1982 or model M100 made in 1990. At present, the highest grade Matsuoka models are M300 and MH300. They absolutely stand no chance in competition with model M150 made in 1975… or model M200 made in 1977."
Paulino Bernabe 'India' 2001
Rokutaru Nakade No.9 1969, 1967
Masaru Kohno No.6 1967

hesson11
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Re: Ryoji Matsuoka 100L (1980) any info?

Post by hesson11 » Sun Jun 11, 2017 6:56 pm

UPDATE:

A huge thank you to all, again, for the wealth of information. I'm sure it will serve me well.

As for this guitar, I decided to pass on it. Too many uncertainties on whether it would be right for me, when I have other guitar goals in sight. The auction ended a little while ago, and someone got it for $202.50! Probably a pretty good deal.
-Bob

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rinneby
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Re: Ryoji Matsuoka 100L (1980) any info?

Post by rinneby » Sun Jun 11, 2017 8:26 pm

hesson11 wrote:
Sun Jun 11, 2017 6:56 pm
UPDATE:

A huge thank you to all, again, for the wealth of information. I'm sure it will serve me well.

As for this guitar, I decided to pass on it. Too many uncertainties on whether it would be right for me, when I have other guitar goals in sight. The auction ended a little while ago, and someone got it for $202.50! Probably a pretty good deal.
-Bob
A wise choice after all, I guess.

/Jon
1965 - Masaru Kono
1996 - Masaru Kohno Maestro

You are the instrument, not the guitar

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