Wednesday, December 03, 2008

New Country, new project.

Fresh from ebay, a vintage parlor guitar. This is an old, ladder-braced guitar sold by Buegeleisen & Jacobson as a Victoria B & J "Perfect Scale." It's an all-solid guitar (as was the custom back then) with a v-shaped neck and slotted headstock (obviously); the top appears to be spruce or cedar, and the back & sides are oak.

B & J sold guitars from Oscar Schmidt (of Stella fame) as well as Regal and others under their Victoria brand. I bought this instrument hoping it was a Schmidt Stella, and it may well be, though it's top kerfing isn't the square, as in many Stellas. Whatever the case, it's a guitar of similar quality & construction.

It's a bit hard to tell from the picture, but this instrument is in surprisingly solid shape. There is only one discernable crack, a very small one a bit below the bridge's treble side, which appears to have been filled with glue at some point (a bit messily). The bridge needs to be re-glued, though I wouldn't be surprised if it would hold strings in its current state. There's one cracked back brace, and another that shows evidence of having been re-glued. It's also missing tuners, obviously, but that should be a fairly easy repair with vintage reproductions.

The big question is how badly it needs a neck reset. There is a fairly graceful warp across the bridge, without too much obvious bellying and sink; the neck points a bit low, of course. After I've reglued the bridge (probably with liquid hide glue) and the back brace, I'll string it up with some low-tension strings and see how the action is. My guess is that it probably needs it.

Since I'm poor this is probably going to culminate in an auction. Oh well.