Gallery

Here are descriptions of all Garnut Guitars. Testimonial remarks are reproduced with guitars that have moved onto happy homes. At right Pete Wernick (Hot Rize) plays a Garnut mahogany dreadnought at one of his Bluegrass Jam Workshops — thanks, Pete!

Click on the thumbnail image or the header to see a gallery of images for that guitar.


12-fret Slot Head Dreadnought


Honduran rosewood/Adirondack spruce

This big 12-fret guitar has a Honduran rosewood back and side set with an Adirondack spruce top. It has the big sound of a 12-fret dread and is a spectacular fingerstyle guitar. It looks great with herringbone purfling and rosette and maple trim.

(2/26/16) I received the guitar yesterday and set it up. It sounds wonderful. (3/3/16) [The neck was a little to thick, so the owner reshaped it to the exact shape he wanted] Took about 2mm off from frets 1 to 12. Filed down the shoulder into more of a c or modified v than d shape. I finished it with a tonge oil and sealed it. Feels good. The sound is great by the way...it's actually way more pronounced than my J200s. Thanks.




Brazilian rosewood/Adirondack spruce

This Braz/Adi guitar is built with one of my better Brazilian rosewood and Adirondack spruce sets. It is trimmed with maple binding, herringbone purfling, and a prewar Style 21 herringbone rosette.

This guitar is part of the luthier's collection.








Koa/Adirondack spruce

This big 12-fret guitar has a koa back and side set with an Adirondack spruce top. It has the big sound of a 12-fret dread and is a spectacular fingerstyle guitar. It looks great with ebony bindings, fretboard, and bridge.

This guitar is part of the luthier's collection.








Honduran rosewood/Adirondack spruce

This 12-fret dreadnought has a Honduran rosewood back and side with a striking sapwood highlight and an Adirondack spruce top. Big sound when played with a pick, yet a delicate fingerstyle instrument.

(10/15/15) This guitar was donated to a worthy nonprofit organization in the memory of a good friend.








Brazilian rosewood/Adirondack spruce

This dreadnought is trimmed similar to a prewar Style 21 (herringbone rosette and backstrip). The back is 2 bookmatched pieces and a center piece. The tone and is identifiable with Brazilian rosewood and Adirondack spruce.

(11/18/13) This guitar was purchased by a person who owns a collection of more than 100 guitars, including dreadnought and slope shoulder dreadnought Garnut Guitars.

Indian rosewood/Carpathian

The rosewood on this guitar has an unusual appearance for Indian rosewood, but it has excellent tap tone; in conjunction with the Carpathian spruce top, this guitar has exceptional sound and projection. Low enough action for easy finger style, but high enough to play with a pick.

(2/28/10) This guitar was purchased by a person who owns three other Garnut Guitars.

(2/6/16 update) Six years later, this 12-fret dread showed up for sale in a store in Vermont with some interesting comments by the shop owner: This is the guitar that sits on the stand in the shop so I can play it in between gluings. It's an anonymous handbuilt guitar that came out perfect ... in tone. Craftsmanship is not 100% but it's solid and playability is perfect. [GJN: As I recall, this guitar was sold as a second guitar, hence with no Garnut label]
... SOUND: Spruce/Rosewood body + 12-fret neck + deep body +medium strings + great setup = HUGE TONE/GREAT SUSTAIN. I play bare fingerstyle and this is
[a] fine fingerstyle guitar."



Madagascar rosewood/Carpathian spruce

This Madagascar rosewood dreadnought is trimmed similar to a prewar Style 21 (herringbone).

(1/12/09) "Thanks again for the cool new slope. Sounds like a million bucks. ... Very open, round, loud. ...a nicer tone than a lot of the guitars I have owned. Get the fit and finish [perfected], and these are winners" The purchaser eventually sold this guitar to a local, professional musician who reports that he is quite happy with it.


Brazilian rosewood/Adirondack

Martin did not produce a 12-fret pre war D-21. This is my impression of a pre war style 21 herringbone (using the trim pattern from other pre war Style 21 guitars.

(5/5/08) "[The] finish work is a ways from being professional level, but he did manage to really get the sound right. The guitar is definitely loud. Pat thinks it sounds as good as any of my other guitars, which is pretty impressive, considering that I have some very good guitars."
In another note the owner remarks "... the guitar sounds good and the neck is pretty close to my ideal."

Palo escrito rosewood/Adirondack

Palo Escrito rosewood is a less famous Mexican rosewood than cocobolo. This is an early guitar that is finished with nitro cellulose lacquer finish.

(9/2/07) A few months after buying the guitar, the owner wrote back to ask about another guitar. Regarding this guitar he wrote:"I love the D-21S" Ultimately he bought two more guitars.


14-fret Dreadnought


Claro Walnut/Adirondack spruce

This guitar is patterned after a classic pre war D-18 with a nicely figured claro walnut back and sides and an Adirondack spruce top. It has an ebony rosewood fingerboard, bridge, and binding.

This guitar is currently offered for sale, see current inventory.








Brazilian Rosewood/Adirondack Spruce

This Braz/Adi guitar is built with one of my better Brazilian rosewood and Adirondack spruce sets. It is trimmed with maple binding, herringbone purfling, and a prewar Style 21 herringbone rosette.

(4/11/14) This guitar is part of the luthier's collection, built to closely match a prewar Style 28 dreadnought, using old growth Brazilian rosewood and Adirondack spruce top. It has a wonderful, classic dreadnought tone with great punch and resonance. The dark color with shades of brown highlights give a unique appearance to this guitar.


East Indian Rosewood/Adirondack Spruce

This guitar is made with an Indian rosewood body and Adirondack spruce top. It has an ebony rosewood fingerboard and bridge, curly koa binding, and herringbone rosette.

(4/15/14) This guitar was purchased by a person who owns other Garnut Guitars (including a slope shoulder dreadnought and 12-fret slothead dreadnought).
(6/1/14) Even though it is part of his collection of over 100 guitars, he tells me that he really likes the sound of the guitar, particularly when he adds a pickup. He regularly uses it (and his Garnut slope shoulder dread) to compare the performance of different pickups.







Mahogany/Adirondack spruce

This guitar is patterned after a classic pre war D-18 with mahogany back and sides and an Adirondack spruce top. It has an ebony rosewood fingerboard and bridge, rosewood binding, and herringbone rosette.

This guitar is part of the luthier's collection.








East Indian Rosewood

This guitar is made with an Indian rosewood body and Engelmann spruce top. It has a Cocobolo rosewood fingerboard (with no inlay) and bridge, and conventional Martin style 28 ivoroid purfling and binding.

(6/3/09) "Thanks, got the guitar and I love its voice. Loud and clear. It plays just like some old Martins I have played."




Palo Escrito Herringbone

This classic 14-fret dreadnought is patterned after Martin's pre war style 21 guitar. It has a Palo Escrito rosewood back and sides with a Sitka spruce top.

(4/25/09) "Been wanting to drop you a line to let you know how much I am enjoying #8 ... played around with a few different strings, put on a different pickguard and whamo, we got a match!"




12-fret Slot Head 000


Amazon Rosewood/Adirondack

This guitar has beautiful dark shage of partially quarter sawn Amazon rosewood with an artist grade Adirondack spruce top. The trim package is inspired by pre war Style 21 Martins.

This guitar is part of the luthier's collection.






Cocobolo Rosewood/Engelmann

This guitar has beautiful cocobolo back and sides and a nice Engelmann spruce top. It can be played with a pick, but it is an outstanding fingerpicking guitar.

This guitar is part of the luthier's collection.









Panama Rosewood/Carpathian

Panama rosewood is a lesser-known rosewood; it is light in color and not as dense as Brazilian rosewood. The Carpathian spruce top is similar to German spruce, more delicate than, for example, Sitka spruce. The guitar has excellent tone and volume with plenty of head room; set up for finger style playing (with light strings), but easily responds to a pick.

(3/11/12) "I really like the sound. There's a nice softness to it and the balance is pretty good. The bass is loud but not too loud. The mids are maybe more than usual and the treble has some crispness without being way too bright. The overtones at the 7th and 5th frets are very nice. And it doesn't quack when strummed pretty hard with a pick! I'd call it a warm tone with some brittleness to it and I think that brittleness might settle down with age and use."
The owner then lowered the action: "Not only is the playability better but the sound is cleaner I think - not quite so muddy in the midrange - really sounds wonderful now."
(9/1/14) "I'm just home from my week at the Rocky Mountain Song School in Lyons and wanted to share some stuff with you. Basically, the guitar I got from you was a big hit! Everyone was impressed with it and loved the tone. In fact, one of the instructors, Peter Himmelman, was taken by it so much he asked to play it! Sounded real good in his hands too. :-)"

Cocobolo/Adirondack

This is a pre war style 000 guitar, with a little bigger body than an OM, but with 12-frets to the body and a slot head. The neck width is 1 3/4" width. It has an ebony fretboard and bridge, bone nut and saddle, koa wood binding and purfling, and a herringbone rosette. The tuners are Grover vintage open style tuners.

(8/7/09) The owner liked the extraordinary figure on the back from the time he saw it on the web site. After receiving the finished guitar he was still very pleased with the wood color and pattern. Better yet, he related: "The guitar has great projection, volume and tone."

Madagascar rosewood/Adirondack

Madagascar rosewood, Adirondack spruce top, one-piece mahogany bolt-on (25.4" scale) neck, 1 3/4" nut width, ebony fingerboard and pyramid bridge, bone nut and saddle. Setup with low action for fingerstyle, but also can also be played with a pick. The Adirondack top and Madagascar rosewood really influence the sound — in my opinion, this is a great sounding guitar.

"(12/8/08) [The guitar is] So fine, in fact, that I'm thinking about commissioning a 000 with the same neck profile but with a 1 7/8 nut width."

Mahogany/Sitka

Stewart MacDonald 000-18 kit guitar. Mahogany back and sides, Sitka spruce top (with some bear claw), one-piece mahogany dove tail (25.4" scale) neck, 1 3/4" nut width, ebony fingerboard and pyramid bridge, bone nut and saddle.

(1/31/04) This was my first guitar, built in 2003. From the beginning it sounded great, and it also has very nice, low action. However the original finish was poor, so it sat around my shop.
(1/12/12) I refinished the guitar in December 2011 and then sold it in January 2012. I was sad to see it go, but the new owner was very pleased with the price, the sound, and the appearance of the guitar.




14-fret Orchestra Model (OM)


Honduran Rosewood/Carpathian Spruce

A classic style rosewood OM guitar. Honduran rosewood has about the same density as Brazilian rosewood, coupled with a Carpathian spruce that is similar to European or German spruce.

(9/2/15) This guitar went to a guitar player in the Northwest. He was very pleased with the guitar.








Malaysian blackwood/Carpathian Spruce

Malaysian blackwood is a striped ebony wood that is dense and heavy. The Carpathian spruce top is similar to European or German spruce. Unique (in a good way) sound.

(March 31, 2011) This is a beautiful guitar with the striped blackwood back and sides. The action is low, since the guitar is usually played fingerstyle; even so, it still has plenty of volume when played with a pick. The tone is unique, although it would probably be characterized as being closer to rosewood than to mahogany. The Engelmann spruce top works well with the blackwood. It is part of the luthier's collection










Honduran Rosewood/Engelmann Spruce

This guitar has a 24.9" scale, cocobolo fingerboard and bridge, bone nut and saddle, Grover vintage tuners, Water-borne lacquer finish. This is a great sounding guitar that is very easy to play.

"(3/1/08) The guitar just arrived. It is wonderful: extremely playable and the sound is fantastic. Nice work."


Indian Rosewood/Sitka Spruce

One-piece mahogany bolt-on (25.4" scale) neck, rosewood fingerboard andbridge.

(5/22/08) The buyer ordered this guitar without finish (as it is shown in the images on its web page) so he could apply it himself.



12-fret Slot Head 00


Brazilian Rosewood/Adirondack Spruce

This lovely little guitar has a 1 13/16" fingerboard, 24.9" scale, and it is set up for fingerstyle playing. The back and sides are medium grade Brazilian rosewood. The top wood is Adirondack spruce that is pretty stiff, meaning that it will take a while for this guitar to finish opening up (although it sounds quite nice as a new guitar). The fretboard & pyramid bridge are ebony, with pre war style 28 snowflake fretboard inlay.

(1/23/2016) This guitar is part of the luthier's collection of style 28 Brazilian/Adirondack guitars. It has outstanding tone, volume, and balance for a 00, and is very easy to play with its low tension strings (24.9" scale) and low action.






Madagascar Rosewood/Carpathian Spruce

Inspired by the classic Martin 00-21 guitar: 1 3/4" fingerboard, 24.9" scale, set up for fingerstyle playing. Madagascar rosewood, generally regarded as the second-best rosewood (second to Brazilian rosewood). The top wood is Carpathian spruce (similar to European or German spruce), and the fretboard & pyramid bridge are ebony.

(12/5/2014) Early in the construction of this guitar, the sides cracked while being bent. Rather than waste the valuable Madagascar rosewood set, we decided to repair the cracks and to complete the guitar as a "second" that could be used as a demonstrator (and be the luthier's personal small guitar). The guitar has outstanding tone, volume, and balance for a 00.






Honduran Rosewood/Adirondack Spruce

Wide fingerboard, short scale, set up for finger style playing. Unlike Honduran mahogany, Honduran rosewood is noted for its density and bright musical properties; it is often used as marimba note bars. The top woods is Adirondack spruce, and the fretboard & pyramid bridge are ebony.

(5/16/13) Dan Smith is lead guitarist and vocalist for various bands in the southeast (he is also a practicing classical lute player). When he received the guitar he "was impressed with the sustain of the guitar," and he was pleased with its volume and tone. Several weeks later he added "Just wanted to drop you a line and thank you again for making and selling to me such a beautiful looking and sounding guitar. I believe that it is the favorite of all the guitars I have ever owned. I have it strung with John Pearse "Gypsy Jazz" nickel strings .011-.046 and it sounds deep and the strings are actually "bendable" without sound thin. The sustain is the most astonishing aspect of the tone - deep and ringing and bright all at the same time.
I look forward to having a chance to buy another of your instruments in the future.
"




Madagascar Rosewood/Adirondack Spruce

This is an excellent example of a Garnut 12-fret 00 guitar. It is a custom/commissioned guitar with the owner's choice of quartered Madagascar rosewood, Adirondack top, curly maple binding, and so on. It has great tone and projection — a guitar to please those who like small 12-fretters.

(2/4/10) The owner writes that "the guitar sounds great, full and bright, deep bass for a 00 body."



Indian Rosewood/Sitka Spruce

Water-borne lacquer finish. This is a nice looking guitar — check out the pattern on the back. It has a bluesy tone and is is very easy to play.

(7/18/08) I really like the sound and it is ... very playable. I also love the headstock inlay." A year or two later (after we made some minor adjustments to the guitar) the owner reiterated: "it plays great, and I was reminded of why I have been playing it so much — it is very comfortable to play and sounds wonderful."

Palo Escrito/Engelmann

Water-borne lacquer finish. In the style of the prewar 00-21, the neck width at the nut is just under 1 7/8". This is a sweet little 12-fret slot head guitar.

(12/8/08) This guitar was for sale for a year or so before I sold it to a person who had already purchased other guitars from me. I had grown very fond of the guitar, and had a hard time resisting noodling on it — so it was shop worn (and sounded even better) by the time I shipped it to Steve. Several months later a professional musician contacted me after playing this guitar — glitches and all — to say he "... loved the sound and tone and projection ..." and to discuss a custom (non misfit) version of the same guitar for himself.


Pre War Gibson Style



Panama Rosewood/Adirondack Slope D

Modern slope D guitars are inspired by Gibson's famous prewar slope shouldered Advanced Jumbo (AJ) and its mahogany J-35 sibling. This slope D is made with Panama rosewood back and sides with an Adirondack spruce top and CrystaLac water-borne finish. Panama rosewood is another substitute for Brazilian rosewood; it is relatively scarce, and a little less dense than Brazilian. The top is a very stiff Adirondack set.

(6/12/16) The guitar is well-made, and has a pretty good finish. The action is set low, but there is still substantial volume and great tone from the huge sound box and Adi top. It is a pleasure to play with a pick or fingerstyle. It will be interesting to see how it opens up after it has been played for a while. It is part of the luthier's collection.





Bloodwood/Adirondack Slope D

This slope D is inspired by Gibson's famous prewar slope shouldered Jumbo (and the Rockbridge Slope D) made using bloodwood back and sides with an Adirondack spruce top and water-borne finish. This was the first bloodwood Garnut guitar. The wood is dense and a perfect back & side wood.

(7/1/13) I took it to a festival where half a dozen experienced players (none of whom had played a bloodwood guitar before) were universally enthusiastic about the sound of this guitar.
(11/18/14) It sat in my Boulder shop for 6 months with no problem, until it was purchased another 6 months in a climate that proved to betoo dry; the back developed a crack. I gave the buyer another guitar and took the bloodwood guitar back to repair it. My plan was to retire the guitar as a demo guitar.
(5/12/14) The current owner (who owns another Garnut guitar) had played the guitar when it was new; after it had been repaired, he asked if he could buy it. After he had it for a few weeks he wrote: "I love the sound and it's definitely different from the 000. It can go very loud but it's not too hard to play it soft too. Being 14 fret, it doesn't have as much tone variation as the 12 fret does but, boy, when you hit a chord, it's loud! Plus, the bass strings are nice and resonant without being too loud. I like it. :)"



Cobobolo/Adirondack Slope D (AJ)

This slope D is inspired by Gibson's famous prewar slope shouldered Jumbo (and the Rockbridge Slope D) made using cocobolo rosewood back and sides with an Adirondack spruce top and water-borne finish. The cocobolo is beautiful. The combination of cocobolo rosewood, Adirondack top and the shape and bracing, and a mixture of Gibson and Martin style construction give this guitar the slope D sound.

(3/15/11) The owner has been playing guitars for about 30 years. He likes the cocobolo, the sound and feel of the guitar, and he keeps it next to his work desk so that he can pick it up and play it while he is working.


Pre War Honduran rosewood/Engelmann Advanced Jumbo

My impression of Gibson's famous prewar slope shouldered Jumbo made using Honduran rosewood back and sides with an Engelmann spruce top and water-borne finish. The AJ (Advanced Jumbo) is the third round-shoulder jumbo that Gibson made in the 1930s (for more information see Chapter 3 of Whitford, Winopal & Erlewine's book on Gibson Flat-tops). The first Gibson Jumbo was made in 1934-35, but it was replaced by the mahogany J-35 and by the higher-end rosewood AJ in 1936. In late 1937 the first Super Jumbo (SJ-200) was delivered to Ray Whitley. Today many well-known makers offer a slope shoulder dread style guitar. Technically, the mahogany guitars are recreations of the J-35, and the rosewood guitars are recreations of the AJ. The combination of Honduran rosewood, Engelmann top and the shape and bracing, and a mixture of Gibson and Martin style construction give this AJ a unique (in a good way) sound.

A few years after he bought this guitar, he bought two more Garnut Guitars (a dreadnought and 12-fret slothead dreadnought).
(4/28/09) "Your nice sounding and well intonated guitar, [it] is definitely acoustically comparable to my best Martins and Gibsons. ... I have a d35 bluegrass 1973 Guild, formerly preferred and used by an expert performer, I really like it but it is no better than [this slope shoulder dreadnought]."
(6/1/14) Even though the guitar is part of his collection of over 100 guitars, the owner tells me that he regularly uses this guitar (and his Garnut dreadnought) to compare different pickups because it enables him to differentiate among different pickups.



Style 100 Jumbo

Maple/Engelmann Gibson style Jumbo. Curly maple back and sides, Engelmann spruce top.Rosewood trim. Lacquer finish. This is my first handmade guitar. It is not pretty, but it is a great sounding guitar.

(12/31/04) Not only was this my first guitar from scratch, it was also the first guitar I sold (to my friend Tom). Tom always professed to like it, but the acid test is that he gave me a tee shirt with images of many guitars and the phrase "He who dies with the most toys wins!"




303-818-4344
GarnutGuitars@gmail.com
Boulder, Colorado

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