Bob and Andy, I can’t overstate how much admiration I’ve had for your products and company philosophy over the years. Your guitars are well-crafted and beautifully finished, and your design innovations have moved the industry forward. Just as important, I think, your heart for leaving the forests better than you found them is hopefully inspiring the industry to be better stewards of our natural resources.
Two things I have meant to comment on for some time, however, are the only issues I have ever had with Taylor guitars. Those are “neck dive” [when the weight of the headstock pulls the neck down in relation to the body] and loose-fitting string pegs. I have owned six Taylor guitars over time and currently have four. I have sold my 2006 612ce and a more recent T5z. The four Taylors I currently have are a 2000 514ce, a 2009 T3/B, a Builder’s Edition 517e, and a 150e 12-string.
The T3/B is balanced and doesn’t suffer from neck dive, and it doesn’t have string pegs, so it is exempt from my constructive criticism. With twice as many tuners and a wider neck, the 150e 12-string would be a difficult guitar to balance, so I can understand how neck dive would be difficult (impossible?) to avoid. The neck dive of the 514ce and the 517e, though, is a distraction compared to the perfect balance of my Martin D-18, which will sit at a level playing angle, no strap or holding up required.
I change my own strings on all of my guitars, and I always have some trouble with the 514ce and 517e string pegs. Those fit so loosely into the bridge holes that it can be frustrating to try to get the connection secure enough to start winding the string up to proper tension. This is most noticeable on the unwrapped (B and E) strings. This was also an issue on the 612ce and T5z guitars I no longer own. I hate to compare you to Martin, but the string pegs on my D-18 fit snugly into the bridge holes and restringing is an easier chore.
These seem like issues that could be improved upon. They are also issues that I’ve heard other guitar players comment on frequently regarding Taylor guitars compared to other brands.
I don’t want to sound like a complainer. These are obviously minor issues for me — I continue to own more Taylor guitars than any other make. So good job and thank you for an incredible contribution to the industry that I love the most! Read Answer