Friday, August 19, 2011

Luthier Jimmy Caldwell : Caldwell Guitars

About Jimmy Caldwell and Caldwell Guitars from

Jimmy began making guitars in 1979 and has continued to develop his craft ever since. Reproductions of guitars from the “Golden Age” of American lutherie (late 20’s-30’s) have been his focus for the past few years. Being a vintage affectionado, options like hide glue, bar frets, banjo tuners, and "bird's beak" neck are usual affair with his guitars. Of particular notice is Jimmy's 3539 project. Jimmy describes this project as a batch of reproduction guitars based on C. F. Martin’s guitars as they existed in the years 1935-1939. Many feel that the guitars produced in this time period are the best ever made. The vintage voice of these instruments is the “Gold Standard” for those with a passion for these old guitars.

Jimmy elaborates, this (1935-39) represents the later years of what’s been called ‘The Golden Age of Lutherie’. We’re fortunate that many of these guitars have survived and that they can act as a “Living Museum’ of sorts. This series of guitars will be built with this tradition in mind. Meticulous attention to detail will be reflected in these instruments and period correct trim levels and techniques will be strictly adhered to. Adirondack will be the spruce used on all the original instruments. I’m offering both Lutz and Carpathian as alternatives for a couple of reasons. The quality of Adirondack used during this era is simply not available today. It’s been my experience that both the Lutz and Carpathian spruces offer the closest alternative to the original Adirondack that was used in the 30’s. The initial batch will include 00-18, 00-28, 000-18, 000-28, 000-42, 000-45, D-18, D-28 and D-45 models.

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