One of the coolest things in our Repair department this month is this old time guitar with silkscreened art on it. It’s very similar to Harmony/Silvertone guitars of the 40s and 50s, and was likely made in Chicago – probably sold everywhere from department stores to hardware stores. Jim said this one, “Was for the kid who wanted the Gene Autry lunchbox and Roy Rogers gear – it probably sold for around $20 at the time.” Not that unusual, but we thought it sure looked cool with the harmonica player and accordion players kicking in on the scene.
Next up, our luthiers recount a few of the coolest & most challenging repairs this year:
I worked on a guitar that was once owned and played by Elvis in a movie – that was pretty cool!
I gave a 1941 Martin Herringbone its first ever set up this year! This was a beautiful, near mint condition Martin guitar. I did a neck reset and bridge reglue on this but also its first set up in over 70 years. I fit the original endpin and bridge pins on it too, which Martin usually left ‘proud’ or sticking up just a bit. I had the opportunity to make it play again and felt a responsibility in doing so. Quite a guitar. There was also that NBN guitar which had a nasty accident with a hanging lamp – that was a good one!
I did a pretty major repair on a severly mangled turn-of-the-century banjo this year which had sustained a big hit – it was a good challenge. I had to redo the entire headstock on this. I matched half the Ebony overlay and inlay to what remained on the headstock.
A customer wanted me to fit a strat style neck to a tele style body – I had to fully reroute the neck pocket which required two jigs. The first jig was to get the neck shape, I transferred that to a jig to reroute the pocket. Considering the angle and everything, it was a good challenge!
We look forward to seeing unique instruments & challenges 2014 brings our way!