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  #31  
Old 11-27-2020, 09:30 PM
gmel555 gmel555 is offline
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I purchased my first Bourgeois in Jan 2019; a 13-fret LDBO w/Cherry Body and Torrefied Adi top & Adi braces with Aged Tone Finish as well. It's dimensions, bracing etc. were modeled after an original 1930's Gibson Nick Lucas L-1. The appointments are simple, but the "money" is in the tone with the tone package as already described, and the Cherry body is gorgeous. Before this guitar I would've sworn I'd never buy a Cherry Body guitar, but then I played this one. The trebles are thick/rich, yet clear with some sparkle. The mids are just right, not overbearing or boxy in the least. The bass is clear, articulate, punchy. It's all balanced with just the right amount of natural reverb with some, but not execessive, over/under tones. It's a smaller body so it's not a cannon but that's not my need nor its purpose. It handles a medium hard strum very well and excels with finger or flat picking (and light strumming is just beautifully musical). It's hard to imagine better fit finish (I'll quickly add, I'm sure, Collings, SCGC, H&D, Goodall, Froggy, etc. are just as good on that score.) I love the neck profile which I've never seen or felt on another guitar brand. I can only describe it as a petite shallow/soft V w 1-23/32" nut.

A few months after I purchased the LDBO I was talking to a real old-timer (even older than me) who was a lifetime small band blue grass picker. I was admiring his very vintage (or least it sure looked it) Gibson L-00. When I mentioned how surprised I was at finding a cherry body guitar that sounded so good, he quickly turned his L-00 around, tapped on the back and said, "Cherry, they're not loud as in boomy, but their projection is unreal". He's right.

I'm so impressed that in September I ordered my first custom build ever, a Bourgeois 00-Coupe, 12 fret Cutaway, Panamanian Rosewood with Swiss Alps Torrefied Spruce, plus the full Aged Tone Package. I'm guessing it's still 2-3 months away. The design process was a breeze and fun (as it should be). Well, that's my Bourgeois experience! PS: With all that said, I do agree with Duff.
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  #32  
Old 11-27-2020, 09:41 PM
zmf zmf is offline
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When I think of Bourgeois, I think of fat, rich trebles and not a thin sound anywhere. A guitar that gives you back the sound that matches the strength you put into plucking the string. A solid 1:1 relationship.

A Bourgeois may not be the only guitar you need, but you can count on them having certain signature qualities -- at least I haven't played one that steps outside the curve.
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  #33  
Old 11-27-2020, 09:49 PM
hifivic hifivic is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mcduffnw View Post
Dana and his team build a superb guitar...no better than, nor worse than, any of the other high level builders, be they large factory, small boutique factory, or small group or solo luthier.
Sorry to disagree but to state that a Bourgeois is no better than a "large factory" guitar is simply dead wrong.
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Last edited by hifivic; 11-29-2020 at 01:25 AM.
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  #34  
Old 11-27-2020, 11:01 PM
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A guitar that gives you back the sound that matches the strength you put into plucking the string. A solid 1:1 relationship.
.
This is a great point that I wish I had mentioned in my first post. The JOMT Vintage I sold was definitely more responsive than the D Vintage I have now. The D gives me that linear 1:1 output zmf is talking about, whereas the JOMT gave me more like 1.2:1.

I have a medium light touch overall, so I prefer guitars where I don't need to work as hard at getting a loud and full tone, especially if I'm sitting on the bed at night noodling before packing it in. In this situation, I'm definitely not reaching for the D-Vintage, as it's not as sensitive as say, my Santa Cruzes at a light attack. It's much more musical when I up the volume and the picking force.
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  #35  
Old 11-28-2020, 06:01 AM
Scotso Scotso is offline
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Originally Posted by goodry View Post
All very good pieces of advice.

And, I still have to make it there to play it but, that's exactly it, the more I think about it, the more I'm compelled to go with one of his guitars despite a very good offer from a small shop luthier to build a aged adi over african blackwood.

Something in my gut just tells me, there is something special a large company with make great minds leverages that a single builder might not be able to... Technique, or techniques.. special bracing special composition, something that has made them not only successful but worth multiple thousands of dollars to thousands of people.
Maybe...but I would stack a lot of builders up against Bourgeois who do as good or better...like Edmonds and Merrill and Huss and Dalton and Hooper and Caleb Smith and and. Going by your logic you should be interested in Martin or Gibson customs or other models
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Last edited by Scotso; 11-28-2020 at 08:51 AM.
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  #36  
Old 11-28-2020, 07:33 AM
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In my experience, Bourgeois guitars aren't always the loudest guitar out there. But, to my ear they just seen more musical with a sweet sweet sound....especially capoed. I've owned an OMC, JOMC, Martin Simpson in the past and currently a Country Boy Dread, which is listed in the classifieds now, and they were all well balanced, crisp, clear and responsive. I think Dana's hands on approach definitely leads to more consistent guitars. I love them!
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  #37  
Old 11-28-2020, 09:00 AM
goodry goodry is offline
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I admittedly don't have deep pockets. So, as it goes with a expensive (2k+ is what my budget considers expensive) I am aiming for madagascar or maybe African blackwood and a torrefied adirondack or carpathian top. I'll spend the 6 or 7k I'll have saved to get one that I want then the rest goes to the kids

For me, I only have 1 shot at this, I got 1 going into college and a 13 year old about to need a car then college, yes, I know, small violin playing my heart cries for you.
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goodry - would you consider buying a used Bourgeois? My Country Boy 00 was half the price of a new one ($2700 vs $5400) and had barely been played. Same guitar, half the price, and already on the way to opening up. Interesting, this guitar is still opening up at 9 years.

Rick
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  #38  
Old 11-28-2020, 09:06 AM
keith.rogers keith.rogers is offline
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Originally Posted by goodry View Post
I've read long and hard and in depth about Bourgeois and more specifically Dana.

1) Do you think Dana does things differently, superior, in your opinion, to other boutique builders.

I keep hearing the phrase Dana voices each guitar.. for those that own them and possibly other high end guitars... 2) Do you believe that is an accurate statement or marketing hype.

I found a aged adi over madi for 8k and from what I've been reading, the aging part makes voicing pairing whatever you wanna call it more difficult because you essentially have old wood and new wood... 3) Do you believe even with that hurdle Dana still voices his guitars efficiently?

4) Or again is his voicing even a true thing?
I have only ever played the Bourgeois that I own, but I played a fair number of OMs before I had the chance to try this one, which I bought, so I can only speak from what I've also read/heard and this experience, so weight it however you want.

1) "Suprerior" - no, of course not. There are so many wonderful guitars and great builders, even some "factory" instruments that you cannot say A is better than B, except in how it appeals to you. They're all different because the wood is different, and the builders do build them slightly differently. How much of that factors in to the end product would take a huge sample size and kind of measurement rigor I am 100% certain nobody has ever done.

2) There's probably a continuum between accuracy and marketing hype where this falls. Of course he voices guitars, but [because] it's a shop, like the old Italian masters, some work is done by others. Does he, today, voice 100% of the guitars, and to what degree if he does? Well, you'd have to go there and probably watch production for a few weeks to answer the question. To me, I suspect he certainly lays his hands on them , but, in the end, it doesn't matter to me, because I'm buying a specific guitar that I have had in my hands and played.

3) I don't think what the wood has been through makes a difference if you're experienced enough to understand what kind of result will occur when matching dissimilar woods. The statement, to me, sounds more like something said to dismiss or diminish "voicing" in general, from someone that has not built hundreds of acoustic instruments and used voicing (or tap tones, or whatever). (I'm not saying it's, a priori, a superiority thing - see #1 - but I don't dismiss Collings neck joint or whatever just because of some opinion... Just play the dang thing!)

4) I suspect DB would say it is. Me, I know voicing is a real thing for violin builders, and a friend uses it religiously for his acoustic guitar builds (which sound great). It would be a pretty long con to do this for as long as he has purely for marketing purposes, and I have to think the Eastman folks might have done sufficient due diligence to have walked away from the company [acquisition] if they'd felt it was all hype, but that is pure conjecture.
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  #39  
Old 11-28-2020, 09:10 AM
goodry goodry is offline
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My logic is this...


A large company, with a very talented not corporate minded, culture minded head of operations, with a following that swears by his allegiance to the craft than the dollar, who turns out products that he personally has his hands on, and people attest to his involvement in their actual guitar, that consistently sell for a price lower than scgc, lowden, and a lot of boutique builders... Is something I like. To have a staff of very talented builders, with a head of co that gets his hands dirty making sure qa is upheld.

That appeals to me. Many heads vs one or 2.

I'm not saying I'm right. I'm saying practically, it to me makes sense.
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Originally Posted by Scotso View Post
Maybe...but I would stack a lot of builders up against Bourgeois who do as good or better...like Edmonds and Merrill and Huss and Dalton and Hooper and Caleb Smith and and. Going by your logic you should be interested in Martin or Gibson customs or other models
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  #40  
Old 11-28-2020, 09:17 AM
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Mine sings to me
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  #41  
Old 11-28-2020, 09:45 AM
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Originally Posted by goodry View Post
For me, I only have 1 shot at this, I got 1 going into college and a 13 year old about to need a car then college, yes, I know, small violin playing my heart cries for you.
Hey - been there, done that. Somehow the money almost always works out. Time however, does run out, so go for your dreams! (-you'll be dead a long time )

best,

Rick

PS - guitars are far cheaper than a sports car, a boat, or a second marriage!
PPS - When I fell in love with my Bourgeois, my wife could tell immediately, and she said, "I think you should buy it! Then you'll just sell the Martin (D35)... you can only play one at a time anyway...
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Last edited by srick; 11-28-2020 at 09:51 AM.
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  #42  
Old 11-28-2020, 09:56 AM
paulzoom paulzoom is offline
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Originally Posted by hifivic View Post
Sorry to disagree but to state that a Bourgeois is no better than a "large factory" guitar is simply dead wrong and tells me you've never physically seen or played one.
I never said large factory builders (read my post). I said other boutique luthiers. And yes, I have physically played one, in fact, several.
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Last edited by paulzoom; 11-28-2020 at 09:58 AM. Reason: uw
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  #43  
Old 11-28-2020, 09:56 AM
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BTW - this ad is on AGF right now: https://www.acousticguitarforum.com/...d.php?t=596689
looks nice and a fraction of the price of the guitar you were looking at.
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  #44  
Old 11-28-2020, 10:43 AM
mcduffnw mcduffnw is offline
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Originally Posted by hifivic View Post
Sorry to disagree but to state that a Bourgeois is no better than a "large factory" guitar is simply dead wrong and tells me you've never physically seen or played one.

hifivic...

I have been playing guitar since I was 12, and I am now 60. I am a decent solid intermediate level player, folk fingerpicking and strumming style...John Denver, Gordon Lightfoot, Don McLean...that sort of thing. I own about, 15 guitars, 6 or 7 really nice higher end, and the rest inexpensive but nice...at least I think so. I have owned another 15 or so through the years, most notably a 1996 Martin D-45 that I bought new in 2002 as NOS, and 1998 and 1999 Breedlove Ed Gerhard Signature Model jumbos, and a made for me 2009 Breedlove Custom J-15 Jumbo 12 string.

In my 40 years of work, I spent almost 15 years at a Pawn Shop, as warehouse manager that had a mean running average of 700 guitars in pawn at any given time, and almost 11 years at a Guitar Center Store in Portland in the warehouse seeing...and playing...goodness knows how many thousands upon thousands of guitars of all price and quality levels come and go. Soooo...in my life to present, I have seen and handled a LOT of acoustic guitars from any and all makers and quality levels.

I have played about 7 or 8 Bourgeois guitars through the years, and they were wonderful guitars, great looking, super well made, sounded good to great.

But...as fine as they were, the Bourgeois guitars were NOT better than the best guitars I have played from all the various other makers, larger factory, small boutique factory, and small group/solo luthier. In fact one of the very finest guitars I have ever played/heard was a 2006 Martin D-28 Authentic...Adi/Braz that was a MONSTER of a guitar in power and tone and easily smoked any of the Bourgeois guitars...and most others too...that I have played. I also played a used 2005 Taylor Custom 15 series jumbo in Sitka/Ovankol at my GC store, that was just an incredible looking, playing, and sounding guitar...as great as almost anything I had ever played or head...for me...and I would have bought it in a hot second if I could have afforded it.

Since 2009, I have had the greatest pleasure in becoming very best friends with luthier John Greven and his wife. The information and wisdom about all things guitars and guitar making I have gleaned from John in these last 11 years is invaluable, helped me understand the workings of the guitar on several different levels, and further reinforced my beliefs about how anyone, any company can make a great guitar. I also had the great joy of working with him at his table at the 2013...and last sadly...Healdsburg Guitar Festival...where I got a once in a lifetime chance to play the guitars of that amazing and stellar group of luthiers on display, yet more golden information to have gained.

Point is, over time, I outgrew my "fanboi" pangs and notions, and realized that any of the very many and widely varied, major guitar makers, in any of the catagories of size and style of company/builder, are capable of making a stellar guitar, as good as the very best of anyone elses. Sure, maybe Bourgeois does it more consistently than Martin or Taylor or whomever...maybe not...but who cares. All that matters is that a person finds a guitar that speaks to them and touches their musical heart and makes them happy, and wanting to make music with it.


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  #45  
Old 11-28-2020, 10:59 AM
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srick srick is offline
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Originally Posted by mcduffnw View Post
Point is, over time, I outgrew my "fanboi" pangs and notions, and realized that any of the very many and widely varied, major guitar makers, in any of the catagories of size and style of company/builder, are capable of making a stellar guitar, as good as the very best of anyone elses. Sure, maybe Bourgeois does it more consistently than Martin or Taylor or whomever...maybe not...but who cares. All that matters is that a person finds a guitar that speaks to them and touches their musical heart and makes them happy, and wanting to make music with it.
Well said. And then there’s the magic created as a guitar ages and is played often. That’s pretty hard to duplicate too,
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