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  #46  
Old 05-13-2021, 12:22 AM
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Yrksman Yrksman is offline
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Originally Posted by Jwills57 View Post
I have a pair of beautiful steel-string guitars--sort of like classical guitars but with 14-fret joins--made by the German luthier Alexander Voss, another up-and-coming European maker.

Ralph Bown has been building guitars for 40 years. John Renbourn, Martin Simpson, Peter Rowan, Catfish Keith and Clive Carroll are just a few of the artists who play his guitars. (Sadly played in Johnís case, from 1985 until his death a few years ago)
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Guitars by:

Bown Wingert Kinscherff Sobell Circa Olson Ryan Fay Froggy Bottom Santa Cruz Beneteau Fairbanks Franklin Collings Tippin Martin Northworthy Pre-War GC Taylor PRS HŲfner

44 in total (no wife)

20 other instruments

Anyone know a good psychiatrist?

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  #47  
Old 05-14-2021, 01:09 PM
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Here's Ralph in the book 'Hand Made, Hand Played. The Art and Craft of Contemporary Guitar' by Robert Shaw (2008) - if you frequent the Custom sub-forum and don't own the book, you should check it out. Mostly US builders, plus Ralph.

Jonny

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  #48  
Old 05-16-2021, 09:58 AM
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Binding, perfling, backstrip and end graft done. Fingerboard looked a bit naked without position markers and they sort of link up with the headstock.

Off to be lacquered this week... very close now.

Jonny


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Last edited by jonnymosco; 05-16-2021 at 10:58 AM.
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  #49  
Old 05-16-2021, 08:19 PM
Tim Porter Tim Porter is offline
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Wow, Jonny; so beautiful!
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Old 05-16-2021, 10:01 PM
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Jonny,

it looks amazing! I can't wait to see and hear it during my lesson! And of course I am looking forward to eventually getting my OM that is in queue.

Mark.
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  #51  
Old 05-16-2021, 11:53 PM
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Simple and elegant. Very classy looking guitar.
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  #52  
Old 05-17-2021, 12:08 AM
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Simple and elegant. Very classy looking guitar.
Ralph thought it a good idea to echo a classical guitar in appearance due to it being roughly the same proportions and given my background, I'm really pleased how it looks so far.

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  #53  
Old 05-17-2021, 12:16 AM
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Jonny,

it looks amazing! I can't wait to see and hear it during my lesson! And of course I am looking forward to eventually getting my OM that is in queue.

Mark.
Good to see you on here Mark - exciting times... and not that long a wait.

Jonny
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  #54  
Old 05-17-2021, 12:18 AM
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Wow, Jonny; so beautiful!
I'll post more photos later in the week before it goes off to be lacquered.

Jonny
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  #55  
Old 05-17-2021, 09:01 PM
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Originally Posted by ZeroFretWear View Post
Such a heavily braced guitar would have me running to get my deposit back, but I've never heard of Ralph Brown, so maybe his tops and backs are super thin? Do you know the measurements?
Also, re: Collings's neck system, I don't think you'd find any reputable builder or dealer who would say anything other than that every decision Bill made in the building process was aimed towards perfection.
Several posts have noted the apparently heavy bracing. I have to admit that 5 seconds after seeing the pictures, thatís what I thought. Now thereís absolutely no way Iíd be running to get my deposit back, because I have heard of Ralph Bown. Iím certain that he is way beyond Bill Collings factory guitars (no offense, Collings are probably the top of the small company builds). Iím a big fan of Clive Carrol. Iíve played a Bown OM and it was mind-blowingly great, a world class luthier. I didnít buy it then but called a few days later and it was sold. Another appeared at Guitar Gal a few years back and I watched it for a long time as it was priced a bit high and finally decided to commit and yes, it sold that morning to another AGFer. I wish more Bown guitars would come on this side of the Atlantic. I was surprised to see the Spanish neck as well, clearly, Mr Bown has a unique way of building, but has mastered his craft. Congratulations on getting a world class 00. Iím jealous and your lucky! Good for you. Play it in good health.
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  #56  
Old 05-18-2021, 05:20 AM
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I once got a lovely luthier made nylon guitar (indeed I still have it - it's my favourite instrument ever) and the first time I let a mate of mine play it, he stuck a ding in the top with his super hard acrylic nails.

Looks like I can repay the compliment very soon?

I'll have to try harder though: lacquer vs. french polish.

Cheers,
Steve
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  #57  
Old 05-18-2021, 05:27 AM
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Iím a big fan of Clive Carrol. Iíve played a Bown OM and it was mind-blowingly great, a world class luthier.
Aren't we all?!

When I was thinking of a Bown a good few years ago, Clive was gracious enough to let me play his OM...AND he didn't stand over me like a hawk while I do so; great bloke.

It's a fabulous instrument that sounds the way it does largely, I suspect, because it's been played to within an inch of it's life, indeed beyond.
It's fair to say that Clive is not at all precious when it comes to his instruments, something that Ralph bemoans as they come back for "repair" on a regular basis.

I once heard Clive tell a story of how he played somewhere pretty hot, hopped on a plane, and then opened this guitar case when he touched down somewhere freezing (Canada IIRC?). He said he could "post a letter" though the cracks in the back. That POOR GUITAR! Evidence, if any were needed, that cracks etc. have no bearing on sonics.

Cheers,
Steve
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  #58  
Old 05-19-2021, 01:48 PM
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One last photo before it goes off to be lacquered by Dave Wilson.

I asked for super high frets, suiting my technique and style of playing.

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Last edited by jonnymosco; 05-19-2021 at 03:40 PM.
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  #59  
Old 05-19-2021, 03:23 PM
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Exciting times! Jonny, do you mind expanding on how the fret height suits your style and technique? Genuinely curious.
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  #60  
Old 05-19-2021, 03:39 PM
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Exciting times! Jonny, do you mind expanding on how the fret height suits your style and technique? Genuinely curious.
Generally less pressure is needed to fret notes (impacting legato, speed, fatigue), however, there would be a risk of changing the pitch if excess force is the norm, pushing the string down to the fingerboard, thankfully I've developed a light touch.

Clive Carroll requested his new Bown to have high frets too and my classicals have them.

Jonny
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Last edited by jonnymosco; 05-20-2021 at 12:06 AM.
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