2006 Last Song

-Contributed by Barry Beringer-

The last instrument delivered by the master is a nylon string guitar.  Working against a clock that he knew was fast running out of time, dad took on his most challenging project ever.  If you set this guitar beside some earlier examples, it might seem plain or lackluster.  That ticking clock dictates the time spent on non-functional trim.  For example, there is no binding around the headstock face trim.  Position markers are simple mark dots.  There are even some small water marks visible in the wood that would never have been left if there had been even a few extra days.  This being said, I will quote you his words about this guitar:  “I wish I would have thought of this earlier.  This has the most potential of anything I have ever built.”

The top, sides, and back are redwood.  The neck is basswood; the fingerboard is rosewood.  The binding is Mexican bucotte wood and the headstock face is flamed maple.  What makes this guitar so unique is that the back and top are pressed into a spherical arch.  If you extended them in all directions, you would end up with an 8 foot diameter sphere.  If you look, you will notice the sides are not parallel to one another because, as you change the shape of the body, it intersects with the plane of the sphere at a different point.  Now, imagine mounting a neck that has to be exact to align with the bridge which sits at the apex of the top sphere.  This is not a design for a novice, but wow, what a sound!!