This guitar has a big soundbox (17 inches). However, being a thinline (54 mm), it’s quite easy to play. Its color is unusual for guitars like this, a truly spectacular nitrocellulose Candy Apple Red. However, the design of the pickups and the pickguard is even more uncommon, and I feel very proud of it.
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!
Carved back in three pieces, maple. Maple sides. Due to the opaque finish, this wood is not visible. The top inside is dyed black.
Maple neck with a merbau core. 25 1/2″ (648 mm) scale. The bone nut has a width of 1 11/16″ (43 mm). The fretboard is made of ebony, with mother-of-pearl block inlays and stainless steel frets (Jescar FW47104SS).
Plastic bindings and purflings.
Ebony oversized peghead overlay.
The jack is here, at the side.
The volume and tone controls are below the pickup tabs. This is a very interesting and convenient location, and it reinforces my belief that we guitarmakers must make our own pickups.
Instead of a pickup switch there is a blend pot with a chickenhead knob:
I wanted some special pickups for this guitar. I thought of humbuckers with the shape of P90s, but early in the design I thought of placing the volume and tone knobs below their tabs. Yes, these are humbuckers, but their coils are horizontal instead of the most usual arrangement, vertical. This has some desirable characteristics, but also a drawback: the total inductance is low even if the coils have a lot of turns. There are several ways to lessen this effect, and one of them is to separate the coils as much as possible. And that's the reason why the polepieces are zigzagged. Sorry for the long explanation!
Grover Rotomatics machines.
Candy Apple Red nitrocellulose finish. The base is golden (Iriodin 307); above them, some transparent red-dyed coats and then some transparent coats. The result is spectacular; the photos don't make justice to the depth and shine of this finish.
The design of the pickguard started with a double requirement that was hard to meet. I wanted to use floating pickups, and also a beautiful plastic pickguard. However, the room available below the strings was limited, and the pickguard would add its own thickness to the pickup. So I designed pickups that extended inside the pickguard, but this implied big holes in the pickguard that weakened it seriously. I had to use some internal reinforcement, and went through several solutions, some of them complex. I presented this guitar in Germany (Kandel Archtop Forum) in November 2017... and the pickguard broke during the shipping! So I decided to find a definitive solution. And here it is:
The visible part of the pickguard is nothing more than a thin skin. This preserves the figured mother-of-pearl imitation surface and also the black and white border. The inside has been routed and replaced with an amazingly tough fiberglass PCB board (FR4), which can stand stresses very much higher than you could find in use. I even used the copper foil as a very effective grounding shield: