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This song was covered by a famous rock and roll musician who became a folk singer because he can afford to - Roy Book Binder, introducing Delia, a Gary Davis song

Author Topic: Opinions on 50's/60's Harmony Stellas  (Read 1839 times)

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Offline Big River

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Re: Opinions on 50's/60's Harmony Stellas
« Reply #15 on: November 12, 2014, 09:44:35 AM »
Sorry, but I have to give a dissenting opinion on these Harmony guitars. I grew up in the sixties and many of us were on a budget and we had to play on these instruments because we could not afford the Gibson's or Martin's we really wanted. I have bad memories of many Harmony guitars with their high action and dead tone. I think the Stella name is part of the reason for whatever  amount of interest in this model although the original Stella's back in the thirties were a much higher quality guitar (particularly the 12 strings) and have nothing in common with Harmony guitars of the sixties other than their name.
In the same price range today for a Harmony you could buy a used (or sometimes new) parlor sized Godin (Simon & Patrick, Seagull, etc) or a Recording King that, to me, are much better sounding and playing guitars.
I guess this falls into the "whatever turns you on" category, but just because something is "vintage" does not mean it is worth seeking out.
« Last Edit: November 13, 2014, 07:01:59 AM by Big River »

Offline frailer24

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Re: Opinions on 50's/60's Harmony Stellas
« Reply #16 on: November 13, 2014, 02:21:51 AM »
Happy to have all opinions. I too suffered with it before the rebuild. It is a family heirloom, so I had to try. :)
That's all she wrote Mabel!

Offline Norfolk Slim

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Re: Opinions on 50's/60's Harmony Stellas
« Reply #17 on: November 13, 2014, 03:56:15 AM »
It seems to me that the later they get, the less interesting they are on the whole.  I have a 46 Harmony Stella which I love, is a joy to play (never had a neck reset). 

Once you get into the 60s though, they are different and perhaps generally, more suited to nice raspy slide stuff.

Offline Prof Scratchy

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Re: Opinions on 50's/60's Harmony Stellas
« Reply #18 on: November 13, 2014, 07:30:07 AM »
SloBlo of this parish has a very nice later example....

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Offline Norfolk Slim

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Re: Opinions on 50's/60's Harmony Stellas
« Reply #19 on: November 13, 2014, 07:33:00 AM »
Agreed- It makes a fine, sharp, crisp slidey noise. 

Offline Prof Scratchy

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Re: Opinions on 50's/60's Harmony Stellas
« Reply #20 on: November 13, 2014, 07:43:30 AM »
NS - if you're ever defrocked,  a career in advertising awaits !

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Offline sabocat

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Re: Opinions on 50's/60's Harmony Stellas
« Reply #21 on: November 23, 2014, 03:17:35 PM »
Personally I think they stink.  I will go further and say the pre-War Supertone versions also stink.  They lack volume and are plain thin and almost hollow sounding.  Throw into the mix that inky necks abound.

Now a confession.  I do own a late 1930s all-birch Supertone.  Lousy sounding guitar but it is still blast to play.  Hard to find anything else out there you can have more fun with for $30.  And with its art deco "panels" it is pretty cool looking.


Offline Mr.OMuck

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Re: Opinions on 50's/60's Harmony Stellas
« Reply #22 on: November 24, 2014, 05:37:48 PM »
60's Harmonys were mostly crap except or a couple of notable exceptions. If you could find a good Sovereign (Anjou shaped or with waist) they could be pretty solid, but Harmony had real neck build issues and you had to search for ones where they accidentally got it right.. Their real surprise though was an all Mahogany guitar that if the neck were on right was a pretty fine guitar. I always regretted not getting the $40. one Izzy Young had at the Folklore center back in the day.
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Offline Bed Bug Bill

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Re: Opinions on 50's/60's Harmony Stellas
« Reply #23 on: April 02, 2015, 03:14:37 PM »
I think you've all been hanging around the with the wrong type of Supertones.
I have a mahogany /spruce which is a very good guitar and an all  Koa ,which is a great guitar.Both from the 20's.
Both made by Harmony and sold through Sears,as Supertones.
The only thing 1920's Harmonys and Stellas have in common with 1960's guitars of the same name, are their burning properties.

Offline iwbiek

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Re: Opinions on 50's/60's Harmony Stellas
« Reply #24 on: April 02, 2015, 04:34:38 PM »
I loooove my Harmony Patrician blond archtop, but I know they were top of the line.

Offline frailer24

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Re: Opinions on 50's/60's Harmony Stellas
« Reply #25 on: December 13, 2016, 12:33:59 AM »
Welp, I ended up going to a pawnshop the other day, and walked out with 3 more of these little Stellas. A few diy repairs later, I have 3 more camping guitars!
That's all she wrote Mabel!

Offline RobBob

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Re: Opinions on 50's/60's Harmony Stellas
« Reply #26 on: December 18, 2016, 12:27:53 PM »
I know where there is a Patrician Harmony Mandolin that is in pretty good shape and can be had for $150 or less.  Recording King has a new guitar that may fill the niche:
https://bernunzio.com/product/recording-king-rps-7-ts-22325/][url]https://bernunzio.com/product/recording-king-rps-7-ts-22325/[/url]

Offline frailer24

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Re: Opinions on 50's/60's Harmony Stellas
« Reply #27 on: December 20, 2016, 06:58:33 PM »
Have yet to play an RK but I hear good things
That's all she wrote Mabel!

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