Thursday, 31 January 2019

#25, an archtop acoustic guitar

I want to talk about this guitar:

It's an archtop acoustic guitar built in the style of Robert Benedetto.  I followed his design quite closely, with only detail changes such as a cast bronze tailpiece.  Although I did diverge from his style in one area: I used different tonewoods to what Benedetto specifies.  For the soundboard I used Western Red Cedar instead of Spruce and for the back, sides and neck I used Jarrah, Victorian Ash and Queensland Maple.  The neck is also a bit narrower than Benedetto specifications making it good for people with small hands.  I guess I like being different.  The top and back are carved and graduated from 1 inch thick blanks, not pressed or laminated.  This is a very time consuming and exacting job and I realize that I'll never get back in dollars the time it took, but that doesn't really bother me.  I wanted to learn and for that it was great.  Sound-wise it's good.  Quite loud, with a nice percussive voice when playing rhythm passages.  The Western Red Cedar top gives a nice mellow "woody" sound.  It's set up for rhythm playing, with a higher action that what a lead player might prefer.  It has no pickup, though one could easily be fitted for not much cost.  It's for sale for $AU1600.  I'll make a video of this guitar being played tomorrow and post it here to give an idea of what it sounds like.  

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