I feel your pain Shawn… I am much the same way… I just don’t want that kind of money in a guitar. I’d be afraid to treat it like I owned it.
On the way back into town I went to the Martin Custom Shop show yesterday and the only A they had was a D-18 1939. That thing had huge clear midrange. Wonderful. I’d want one of the 1937s for the 1 3/4" if I was going to get a D-18A, but it was GREAT flatpicking guitar. The guitar that got the most attention from me was a CS D-12. It was a twelve fret, paddle head, adi on madagascar made with hide glue. Huge bottom end. It was about $6k. For that kind of money, I think I’d rather go with a d-28 A 1931, but with that kind of money in a guitar, I am afraid it would be a closet queen.
If you get more interested in buying an Authentic, there are quite a few shops that give at least 35% off list (Gruhn’s, Maury’s, My Favorite Guitar and others). I’ve occasionally gotten closer to 40% off, but unless it’s a very rare model, I can assume 65% of list price. It’s kind of handy to know when shopping.
BTW GC in Fort Worth had a June special on PB Lifespans at 4 sets for $25 (that’s $6.25 for those that don’t want to do math). I stocked up.