NGD: Waterloo WL-K

Discussion in 'Acoustic Heaven' started by TwangerWannabe, Jul 6, 2020.

  1. TwangerWannabe

    TwangerWannabe Tele-Meister

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    Picked up a used Waterloo WL-K earlier today. I recently sold a Martin Custom Shop OM-15 and was just going to go with one acoustic for a while (my D-18), but that only lasted a couple days. This little gem crossed my path for an incredible price (was part of an estate sale where a guy bought an entire lot of guitars from a man who recently passed away and is selling them off individually).

    I've owned a couple WL-14's in the past and this WL-K is definitely a different animal. Because of the light build Waterloo emphasizes to use nothing heavier than 11-52's on it. I swear the strings on the guitar are the originals and they are beyond dead, but the guitar still sounds wonderful. Have some D'Addario EJ26's on the way from Sweetwater.

    It's an insanely light guitar, has a t-bar (no trussed) and set up is just like the two other Waterloos' Iv'e owned in the past, so the playability is wonderful. It's a very lively guitar, but still emphasizes the fundamental and doesn't have a ton of overtones or complexity like a small body Martin does. It has a very old-timey sound. It's a couch picker's dream. I play a lot of cross picking and flat picking on the D-18, but also do a lot of fingerpicking, and the WL-K just seems to be made for that. Love playing and singing stuff from Wilco, Gregory Alan Isakov, John Hartford, etc. and this is the perfect little guitar for singer/songwriter stuff.

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    teletimetx, Old Plank, Alter and 17 others like this.
  2. rangercaster

    rangercaster Poster Extraordinaire

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    Wow !!! A 12 fret small body is the best ...
    Ya done good !!!
    And so pretty, I might add...
     
  3. John Owen

    John Owen Tele-Afflicted Ad Free Member

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    Those are really cool guitars. Congrats!
     
  4. tah1962

    tah1962 Friend of Leo's

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    Very nice! Congratulations.
     
  5. idjster

    idjster VERY grateful member Silver Supporter

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    Beautiful! My first guitars were acoustic (and I still play them!), so I love a nice acoustic. Wonderful guitar. Congratulations!
     
  6. DrPepper

    DrPepper Friend of Leo's Ad Free Member

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    Nice...
     
  7. Dukex

    Dukex Tele-Holic

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    Congrats on a great find! I was drooling over the Waterloos before I bought my Martin 000-15sm, but they were out of my price range. These types of guitars are great Blues boxes.

    And yes, an excellent complement to your D-18.
     
  8. ataylor

    ataylor Tele-Meister

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    I played one of those several years ago. It was incredibly light, extremely responsive, and deceptively loud. Easily my favorite of the Waterloo models.

    Congrats and enjoy!
     
  9. 985plowboy

    985plowboy Friend of Leo's

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    I can dig the Waterloo concept.
    Not seen one in person, but I’d like to.
    Congrats!
     
  10. brookdalebill

    brookdalebill Tele Axpert Ad Free Member

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    Very cool!
     
  11. TwangerWannabe

    TwangerWannabe Tele-Meister

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    I've had the guitar for almost a week now. Changed the strings several days ago. It sounded great with the dead strings that were on it, but once I changed them (D'Addario EJ26) the guitar really came alive. It's ridiculously responsive. I am shocked at the volume, low end response and dynamics of such a little guitar. It's not going to replace your dreadnought, but that's not the point of this guitar either. It really is probably the absolute best small body guitar I've ever owned.

    Even with the 11-52 D'Addario EJ26's (Collings/Waterloo recommends not stringing this model with anything heavier than 11-52) it sounds great and doesn't leave me wishing I could put heavier strings on it. I'm also going to try some Martin Retros in 11-52 on it and see how they sound. The Retros sounded great on a Waterloo WL-14 and Martin Custom OM-15 I used to own, but sounded like garbage on every other guitar I tried them on (larger body acoustics like J45's, AJ, Martin dreads). Would be nice if the Retros sounded good since they're a little bit less tension than the EJ26's, and this guitar doesn't have a truss rod, only a carbon t-bar. They're making these now with an adjustable truss rod. I spoke to the folks at Collings and they said they have not received any WL-K's with t-bars back with and warranty issues, but switched to the truss rods because that's what customers apparently wanted. This particular WL-K is from 2016 and has zero issues. I've probably put more wear on it in the last week that it's previous owner did. I haven't been able to put it down.
     
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  12. EsquireBoy

    EsquireBoy Tele-Afflicted

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    Very VERY cool guitar. I was looking to their website a few weeks ago thinking it’s exactly the kind of flattops I like.
     
  13. stephent2

    stephent2 Poster Extraordinaire

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    Congrats, Waterloos are great guitars. I've owned a WL-14 and a WL-12. The WL-12 is still with me and a keeper. It shines w/ Martin Retros.
     
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