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Up for sale is a very good-sounding Puerto Rican Tres, built in 2008 by Miguel Rivera.
The 9-string Puerto Rican Tres is a variant of the 6-string Cuban Tres. The construction and stringing, though, are peculiar to this version.
I have owned and played this instrument for 9 years, and it has served me well.
The tuning, from lowest pitch course to highest pitch course, is G C E. Traditionally, the top and bottom courses are in octaves, while the middle course is in unison. I think of it as the D G and B strings of a guitar, tuned up a 4th, but that’s just my mental crutch.
The sound of this Tres is sweet and clear. The triple-strung courses give it a sound distinctly different from a Cuban Tres. It is more complex and, at the same time, more even-sounding than the Cuban Tres’ I’ve owned. It is very light-weight and resonant, and surprisingly satisfying and fun to play.
As nearly as I can tell, the entire instrument, other than the fingerboard, bridge, and headstock overlay, is made from “Guarea guara”, an evergreen Caribbean cousin of Mahogany. It is widely used for making stringed instruments in Puerto Rico. It is light-weight and resonant, and reminds me a bit of Spanish Cedar in its weight and grain.
The fingerboard and bridge are some other kind of wood, but the paint on them is too opaque for me to have any idea what they are made of. The “binding” on the body is just a dark line painted to resemble real binding. That said, the rosette is real marquetry.
As you can tell from the photographs, the instrument is a bit “primitive” in its design and construction. Still, it has proven quite stable over the years I have had it.
As for condition, there is one broken tuning machine, but it came to me that way new, and was an extra, anyway. Perhaps the builder intentionally saves broken machine head sets from Puerto Rican Cuatros (a 10-string instrument) to use on his Tres’. Also, the builder gouged the top a little bit when planning it, and the marks do still show, but do not have any negative effect on the sound, playability or stability of the instrument.
The overall length is 36”. The scale length is 21 1/2”. The body is 13 3/8" at the widest part and 3 1/8” deep at the deepest part of the bowl back. The nut is 1 13/16” wide. The instrument is in great playing condition with no functional issues or problems.
To hear a sound clip I recorded of this instrument, please click http://www.thdelectronics.com/ebay/TresDemo.mp3. (If you listen closely, you will hear my dachshund flailing around, trying to get comfortable, while I was recording.) I used two microphones set about 18” apart, in front of the instrument. There are no effects. To get the best possible idea of the instrument’s sound and “presence”, I recommend listening with headphones or very good speakers. The recording was done at my desk, and does not do justice to the instrument, but it gives you an idea of the ballpark we are talking about.
It does not have a case. It will be packed with the greatest of care, with bubble wrap, and protective material, in a strong, oversized box. I have a lot of experience packing stringed instruments, having shipped roughly 1000 instruments over the past 30+ years, to dozens of countries around the world.
I am offering this delightful instrument for sale for $300, plus shipping and insurance, as well as PayPal fees, if applicable.
The instrument comes with a 48-hour approval period. If, within the 48-hour period, you decide that the instrument is not for you, simply return it to me in the same condition as I sent it out, with full insurance, and I will refund your purchase price, minus shipping to you. Buyer pays return shipping.
Payment can be made via wire transfer, PayPal or bank check. Personal checks are accepted for purchases within the USA, but require a period of up to 7 days to clear my bank.
I ship worldwide. Buyer is responsible for paying for the instrument, shipping and insurance, plus any PayPal fees. If this is sent internationally, the buyer is responsible for all duties, taxes, VAT, brokerage and storage fees on their end.
If you require more photos, please feel free to contact me by email, but don’t forget to first click the “Link for more information” line on the right side of the ad, below my name. There are many detailed photos of the instrument there.
Ad Number 111178
Posted: May 19, 2017 09:08 PM CDT
Snohomish WA 98290
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