A hollow (well, almost) guitar, this is my smallest archtop to date.
Hiscox cases are my personal preference, and I know many players that agree. However, there are models for which I cannot use them. The most common problem is when a client wants a 15-inch guitar with a neck with 16 frets out of the body. So, when I received an order for a guitar like that and a smaller body I knew the moment to fix it had arrived.
The size of this guitar, 14.5″, is just a little less than a Jamaica (15″). It is less deep also (50 mm at sides) and, even if I could have installed a conventional archtop bridge with saddle and foot, my client wanted a Tune-o-matic saddle anchored to the top. The central areas at the top and back are left uncarved inside, and there is a small block that joins them at the bridge area. All this contributes to increase the sustain and avoid feedback, so this guitar is really comfortable for electric musicians.
As all the guitars here, this one is just an example. If you want something similar but it is not exactly what you see, please take into account that you can change a lot of things, many without additional cost. Email me and we’ll talk!
Back carved from curly maple:
The inside of both the top and back is not fully carved. They have central islands left uncarved, with a lightweight block that joins them right below the bridge:
Note that the neck block is the tenon and mortise kind. This is because the depth of the body is not enough for a dovetail joint.
Carved European spruce top. The inside, just like the back, has an island in the center left uncarved:
The neck has a scale length of 25.5" (648 mm). The nut has a width of 43 mm, made of bone. The fretboard is made of ebony and the frets are stainless steel (Jescar FW47104SS).
The body has curly maple bindings. As the fretboard is glued directly to the top, there is an area where the binding is wider:
The tailpiece is made of ebony, with a reliable connection of the strings to ground:
Schaller saddle anchored to the top:
The jack is here, at the side.
The volume and tone controls are on the top. The knobs are made of ebony, my own design:
This guitar has a humbucker made by Toni Fayos (AFJ Guitars), with a ebony ring that extends below the pickguard. As the fretboard is glued directly to the top, the neck ring must be very thin. Using wood for this piece would make it too fragile. So, in order to strengthen it, the ring+pickguard share an internal structure made from a single fiberglass piece, cut from printed circuit board material. This is a complex system to design and make. Some will say that it is a little crazy but, the way I see it, it more than deserves the effort!
Externally, it looks as any other of my wooden pickup rings/pickguards:
But it looks different from the other side:
If you look carefully you'll see that the fiberglass core is a single piece that extends below the pickguard and the pickup ring:
The pickup ring is made of two pieces, but they are not one above the other; instead, one is inside the other, leaving room between them for the fiberglass core. here you can see the faint glue line between both:
The pickup has a fast connector. Many players like to try different pickups, so they'll enjoy it.
Schaller M6-135 machines, with ebony buttons.
D’Addario EJ21 (11-48) strings
Nitrocellulose finish, natural with a bit of amber dye added.
Ebony pickguard, with a fiberglass core shared with the pickup ring (read more at the Pickup entry).