1970s Kasuga KF840 Dreadnought Guitar

Sometimes I buy random gear that walks in the door because... why? I'm not sure. I have a fondness for oddball '70s Japanese acoustics that I can't help. Like this one, the internal design is actually very well-executed -- they're braced fairly-light for the time and that makes use of the thin, decent-quality plywood that was used to build the bodies. As a result, they always sound better than they should.

This one needed a bunch of work, but after I was done with it I was pretty happy. It was decently-cool as a "straight acoustic" with a set of 11s on it, but a friend of mine handed me an old Lawrence soundhole pickup to re-home so I stuck it on this guy and wired it up to a jack that I put in a jack-hole in the side that was (conveniently) already there. I even went so far as to put a ground wire at the bridgeplate so the string-ends would catch it.

I restrung it with nickel-wound 52w-11 gauges and... voila! It now has that classic, '70s/80s "electrified acoustic" vibe to it when put directly into a mixer or PA... that you can also run into an electric guitar amp and instantly get a sort-of "clean & clear humbucker jazzy" sound out of.

Work included: a neck reset, fret level/dress, bridge reglue, saddle compensation, new tuners at the headstock, a new tortoise-style pickguard, and general cleaning and setup. It plays bang-on with 3/32" EA and 1/16" DGBE action at the 12th fret, the truss-rod works, the neck is straight, and the saddle is height-adjustable to taste via thumbwheels/screws at the saddle's edges.

Scale length: 25 7/16"
Nut width: 1 11/16"
String spacing at nut: 1 7/16"
String spacing at bridge: 2 1/8"
Body length: 19 3/4"
Lower bout width: 15 3/4"
Waist width: 10 5/8"
Upper bout width: 11 1/2"
Side depth at endpin: 4 5/8"
Top wood: ply spruce
Back/sides wood: ply rosewood
Neck wood: mahogany-family
Bracing type: x-braced
Fretboard: rosewood, synthetic nut
Bridge: rosewood, adjustable saddle w/synthetic insert (compensated)
Neck feel: slim to medium C-shape, ~14" radius board

Condition notes: general wear-and-tear throughout and lots of finish-cracking on the top, especially. Replacement parts as indicated above.

I added a strap button at the heel.


David Glazier said…
I will have a lot of fun with this guitar! Your attention to detail is impeccable. For the amount of time and love you put into this project, I am truly humbled and impressed. There's a new nice hard shell case ordered. Can't wait to get her. Thanks again, Jake!