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SGraham
Aug-31-2013, 12:08pm
I have a friend who repairs guitars in Southern Cal. The other day at his shop I noticed this old tenor guitar hanging from his rafters. He acquired it with a load of other instruments from the estate of the luthier who taught him.

It's an archtop and appears to be made of solid birch as opposed to plywood. The top and back have some large cracks, and the braces are either loose or completely unattached and floating around inside the body. Still, the body has retained its shape. The mahogany banjo-style neck is straight, and the frets seem fine. And the elegant sheet plastic "pickguard" screwed into the top gives it an air of sophistication. It's clearly not a high quality instrument, but it's odd enough to capture my imagination. I'm thinking of restoring it and adding it to my quiver.


Does anyone have any idea who made this and when? The 3-soundhole configuration is odd. The segmented F-holes are reminiscent of a Stradolin. Any thoughts/suggestions/guesses would be appreciated.

Thanks!
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Jake Wildwood
Aug-31-2013, 2:36pm
The f-hole shape looks a lot like a Regal template:

http://antebelluminstruments.blogspot.com/2013/08/c1935-regal-made-kleartone-archtop.html

mrmando
Aug-31-2013, 3:03pm
With 17 frets clear of the body, are we sure this is a tenor and not a plectrum? What's the distance from nut to 12th fret?

Is it possible that the center hole was added later? Maybe some Balkan musician got hold of this and turned it into a brac?

SGraham
Aug-31-2013, 3:22pm
Thanks for the replies.

Jake. The soundholes do indeed look very similar to the Regal on your blog.

Martin, I'm not sure at all if the extra soundhole was added or not. I do, however, agree that it may be a plectrum rather than a tenor. I don't have it at hand to measure, but will when I get a chance.

Has anyone seen another tenor or plectrum guitar with a combination of soundholes like this? I think Lark made some with an extra smaller F hole placed between and north of the 2 normal ones, but I've never seen a round one.