Options

I have a wide array of figured and exotic tonewoods chosen for their superior tonal properties, as well as spectacular visual beauty. The prices listed are approximate, as the acquisition of these special woods is dependent on supply and demand and varies constantly.  Price will be finalized upon placing the order, based on current market price.

 Top Woods

 I maintain a full selection of Adirondack Red Spruce (Picea rubens), and Carpathian, Italian, German, and Swiss Spruce (Picea abies) that has been chosen for its superior tonal characteristics as well as visual beauty. The reason I make distinctions in where the Picea Abies comes from, is because the climactic conditions under which they are grown has a significant effect on the tonal aspects of the species. Sitka spruce (Picea sitchensis) is also a wonderful tonewood, and for certain custom sounds, I may recommend either Sitka tops or Sitka bracing.  However, in general, Sitka is a fast-growing tree and is widely used by the larger guitar companies. I only buy special Sitka; particularly old or specially harvested Sitka.  If you have a particular interest in Sitka, please ask; if Sitka is an appropriate choice for your instrument, I will recommend it.  Prices are dependant upon specific costs of that specialty wood. 

 Fine furniture artisans and customers have put a high value on visually interesting and unusual grain patterns etc. for years and attach a high premium to it in monetary value. 

In guitarmaking, on the other hand, a high premium has been attached to wood that has specific characteristics such as tight, even grain, completely clear homogenous color in the early wood etc. Most luthiers will admit that much of the wood that exhibits these specific visual characteristics may not have the same stiffness properties that make tonally superior tops.

Generally when wood is graded by wood dealers it is graded entirely based on visual characteristics. If I were to order 10 master grade tops, visually I could expect a very specific look, however the longitudinal and lateral stiffness and the ratio between the two present in these woods will most likely vary greatly. It is these and other characteristics that determine how good a piece will be tonally and for what size and style of guitar a piece of spruce may be best.  I retain the right to refuse wood from my dealers or I go and choose it myself.   The tops that conform to the aesthetics of a previously-graded "master-grade" top is not usually the best sounding top.  Tops graded by wood brokers as master-grade tops are always graded for visual properties, and seldom yield the best sounding guitars.  They've not been evaluated for tonal properties.

 Luthier Select grade is wood that I have chosen first for the superior tonal characteristics explained above and secondly for its visual interest and artistic suitability to the guitar’s aesthetics. 

Master Select grade refers to wood I have chosen for its tonal characteristics, out of a much smaller sampling of wood that was first graded for it’s visual characteristics by wood dealers and priced at a premium. This grade, though tonally equal to Luthier Select grade wood, represents less than 1% of the yield of the great tonewood logs available. 

When we finalize your instruments specifications, we can decide which grade best meets your needs.

 I offer my guitars with Luthier Select Sitka (Picea sitchensis), Red (Picea rubens), or European (Picea abies) spruce included in the price.  

 If a model specifies Red Spruce, such as the Minstrel or Troubadour, there is no additional cost for Luthier Select grade. If you want to upgrade to Master Select there will be an additional upgrade charge.

 I have great relationships with the best suppliers in the business and have or can get any type and grade of tonewood you might prefer. Prices will be fair and determined based on my costs in procuring and processing them. Approximate prices follow.

Picea rubens
Red Spruce

Luthier Select grade


Included
Master Select grade $750.00 - $1000.00
   
Picea abies
German Spruce

Luthier Select grade
 

Included

Master Select grade $250.00 - $500.00
   
Carpathian Spruce
Luthier Select grade

Included
Master Select grade $250.00 - $500.00
   
Italian Alpine Spruce
Luthier Select grade

Not currently available
Master Select grade $250.00 - $500.00
   
Picea sitchensis
Sitka Spruce

Luthier Select grade
 

Included

Master Select grade $50.00 - $100.00
   
Red Spruce (Picea rubens) Included
Sitka Spruce (Picea sitchensis) No charge
   
Back and Sides Tonewoods  
Genuine Honduras Mahogany Included
Un-flamed Red Maple No charge
Highly flamed Eastern Red Maple $500.00
Highly flamed Mahogany $600.00
Highly Figured Quilted Mahogany $750.00 - $1000.00
Cocobolo $500.00 - $750.00
East Indian Rosewood $50.00 - $150.00
Brazilian Rosewood (Dalbergia nigra) $3000.00 - $5000.00
Other Dalbergias (rosewood species) Inquire
   
Neck Woods  
Mahogany Included
Maple - unflamed $100.00
Maple - highly flamed $250.00
Other Inquire
   
Fingerboard and Bridge Material  
Ebony Included
Brazilian rosewood $200.00 - $600.00
   
Special Hardware (tuners)  
Waverly 4060N $200.00
Waverly 4060G $250.00
Waverly 3-on-plate $275.00
Waverly Mandolin 4-on-plate $600.00
Relic 3-on-plate Waverly style tuner $50.00
Others Inquire
   
Special Design Configurations  
12-String $750.00
12 or 13 fret neck joint Inquire
Advanced X bracing Inquire
Scalloped bracing Inquire
Deeper body Inquire
Custom neck carve Inquire
Custom body shape Inquire
Extended Range instruments Inquire
Custom scale length Inquire
   
Finish Options  
Sunburst top $150.00
Full Sunburst, top, back, sides, and neck $400.00
Tinted top $100.00
Tinted top, back, sides, and neck as in natural maple $250.00
Oxidized mahogany back, sides, and neck treatment     No charge
   

Custom Neck Specifications

 
Custom nut width $100.00
Custom 12th or 14th fret width $100.00
Round neck profile $100.00
Complete custom neck carve $350.00

Modern and Vintage Options

The Modern option, designated by a –M designation after the model, designates a drop-in saddle, 2 3/16” string spacing at bridge, and a thinner modified-V neck profile. The modern neck is approximately .835” at the first fret and approximately .920” at the 8th fret.

The Vintage option, designated by a –V designation after the model name, designates vintage “through” style saddle, wider 2 5/16” string spacing, a thicker modified-V neck measuring about .890” to .900” at the 1st fret and about .950” at the 8th fret.

Both necks come standard with 1 ¾” nut width.  Contact me for custom nut widths.

 

Please note:
The cost of many of the above will be determined by the amount of additional work and time that is involved. I may add models or options to my line that already makes a deeper body, different scale length and/or 12-fret configuration included in the price.

All prices in US dollars.