UK/European guitars ( you know what I mean..not that geopolitical rabbit hole!)

What's Hot
artiebearartiebear Frets: 448
A couple of the "show us your guitars" threads got me thinking. They have been great, with some lovely stuff on show as much for the personal fondness for these guitars as the rarity or wow factor. 
I love USA guitars for the history, iconic imagery and association, as well as the, sometimes hardwired into our consciousness, tones etc. but I thought it might be good to have a thread to highlight the stunning stuff being produced by wonderfully talented individuals and companies closer to home, who right now are potentially struggling to dance with the current regulations and ability to connect with customers and at a larger scale, with the supply chain at the moment. 
I originally thought about UK makers, but that seems a bit daft having some great builders within mainland Europe to talk about, so I thought it might be nice to have a thread featuring the work of makers and individuals here in Europe.
I wanted to stick this in the electric area, simply because there will be a whole load of wonderful guitars to be shown, but also ( if it's ok to include acoustic builders ( some of whom do great electrics as well ). My European guitars are all acoustic, at present, so if its okay, I will start the ball rolling with the following 

Back left to right , 
Fylde Custom Anniversary ( Euro spruce /braz r/w) light as a feather, rich as can be

Stefan Sobell MS ( Adirondack / Braz r/w ) powerful, unique and still awe inspiring to pick up

H J Williams Esk ( German spruce / Honduras r/w ) like everything Haydn builds, world class. 

2nd Forward

Lowden 032 ( spruce / indian r/w ) 20 years old and getting better and better

Lakewood A32 ( Spruce/ indian r/w ) had it since 1997 Like paying a steel string guitar for a classical player. 

Please post your guitars.  This is not meant to be one of those USA forum threads that basically asks folk to wave the flag but, hopefully a genuine attempt to get exposure for the the wonderful builders closer to home

<a href="https://imgur.com/mrrkmtw"><img src="https://i.imgur.com/mrrkmtw.jpg" title="source: imgur.com" /></a>
0reaction image LOL 2reaction image Wow! 1reaction image Wisdom · Share on Facebook Share on Twitter

Comments

  • EpsilonEpsilon Frets: 321
    Oof - would love to get my hands on that Sobell!


    0reaction image LOL 0reaction image Wow! 0reaction image Wisdom · Share on Facebook Share on Twitter
  • artiebearartiebear Frets: 448
    edited June 4
    Epsilon said:
    Oof - would love to get my hands on that Sobell!


    It's a wonderful guitar. I cannot think of another guitar I have ever played with it's particular tone and feel. It does take a certain approach to get the best out of it, but when you get it, wow
    0reaction image LOL 0reaction image Wow! 0reaction image Wisdom · Share on Facebook Share on Twitter
  • artiebearartiebear Frets: 448
    Just a thought, I know we have a made in the UK area but ( one for the mods ), I have no personal interest here, but would it be good to allow contributors to point to makers websites ? as long as folk contribute their own guitars / experiences ?. Sorry if I am going against forum etiquette rules. I think our homegrown guys could do with a boost right now.
    0reaction image LOL 0reaction image Wow! 0reaction image Wisdom · Share on Facebook Share on Twitter
  • icu81b4icu81b4 Frets: 35
    I have a Fylde Alchemist, it's lovely.  Hmm I think my only other instruments made in Europe(UK) are a Bennet Pedal Steel and a really old Windsor banjo. 

    ... Unless I include a Strat Partscaster I built :) 
    0reaction image LOL 0reaction image Wow! 0reaction image Wisdom · Share on Facebook Share on Twitter
  • timhuliotimhulio Frets: 1042
    tFB Trader
    Aside from a bunch of Swedish Hagstroms, I've this trio from Mitteleuropa - a Jolana Graziella, Framus Hollywood, Musima Elgita.


    0reaction image LOL 3reaction image Wow! 0reaction image Wisdom · Share on Facebook Share on Twitter
  • artiebearartiebear Frets: 448
    icu81b4 said:
    I have a Fylde Alchemist, it's lovely.  Hmm I think my only other instruments made in Europe(UK) are a Bennet Pedal Steel and a really old Windsor banjo. 

    ... Unless I include a Strat Partscaster I built :) 
    What woods etc were the Alchemist ? familiar name but can't remember the spec.

    0reaction image LOL 0reaction image Wow! 0reaction image Wisdom · Share on Facebook Share on Twitter
  • artiebearartiebear Frets: 448
    timhulio said:
    Aside from a bunch of Swedish Hagstroms, I've this trio from Mitteleuropa - a Jolana Graziella, Framus Hollywood, Musima Elgita.


    I don't know much about these but they look great. I did have a Hagstrom Swede  many years ago, brilliant quality and a very cool guitar.
    0reaction image LOL 0reaction image Wow! 0reaction image Wisdom · Share on Facebook Share on Twitter
  • earwighoneyearwighoney Frets: 2571
    timhulio said:
    Aside from a bunch of Swedish Hagstroms, I've this trio from Mitteleuropa - a Jolana Graziella, Framus Hollywood, Musima Elgita.


    Fine collection, I really love the look of some of the lesser known European electric guitars, an odd combination of F&G features and I love Hagstroms.

    I have a Hagstrom HIIN which is in a very sorry state, it'll need a lot of work including a refret, new bridge and so on. Not sure whether to sell the shell of the guitar.
    0reaction image LOL 0reaction image Wow! 0reaction image Wisdom · Share on Facebook Share on Twitter
  • Limehouse_BluesLimehouse_Blues Frets: 1119


    Ignore the 90s Korean superstrat on the left and the Martin on the right and focus on the single cut in the middle. This is my 'Cuillinburst'. Named after the mountains on Skye (the Burst style 'serial number' on the reverse of the headstock is actually the 6 digit OS grid reference for the summit of Sgurr nan Gillean - probably one of the finest place to stand in the whole of the British Isles). Built by a small builder in East London in 2014 and completely refinished in 2015 by Florian Jager in Oberstdorf, including with a wonderfully dark Brazilian board.
    0reaction image LOL 4reaction image Wow! 0reaction image Wisdom · Share on Facebook Share on Twitter
  • timhuliotimhulio Frets: 1042
    tFB Trader
    artiebear said:
    I don't know much about these but they look great. I did have a Hagstrom Swede  many years ago, brilliant quality and a very cool guitar.
    Yep I've got a nicely battered black 1973 Swede with some aftermarket pickups. I'd play it more but sadly never caught the humbucker bug ;-)


    I have a Hagstrom HIIN which is in a very sorry state, it'll need a lot of work including a refret, new bridge and so on. Not sure whether to sell the shell of the guitar.
    These are really cool. I never had one but I like that the neck isn't as thin as the earlier Hagstrom II/IIIs. 
    0reaction image LOL 0reaction image Wow! 0reaction image Wisdom · Share on Facebook Share on Twitter
  • imalrightjackimalrightjack Frets: 1139
    I’ve three of Haydn Williams’ builds and he’s currently making me a new neck for a ‘73 SG. Love his stuff. 
    So far...so good..so what!?

    Trading feedback info here
    0reaction image LOL 0reaction image Wow! 1reaction image Wisdom · Share on Facebook Share on Twitter
  • artiebearartiebear Frets: 448


    Ignore the 90s Korean superstrat on the left and the Martin on the right and focus on the single cut in the middle. This is my 'Cuillinburst'. Named after the mountains on Skye (the Burst style 'serial number' on the reverse of the headstock is actually the 6 digit OS grid reference for the summit of Sgurr nan Gillean - probably one of the finest place to stand in the whole of the British Isles). Built by a small builder in East London in 2014 and completely refinished in 2015 by Florian Jager in Oberstdorf, including with a wonderfully dark Brazilian board.
    Absolutely lovely. The guitar looks amazing, plus, I'm getting all teary eyed at the mention of The Cuillin which, at this time of year should be either a view from my window in my other place to be  or a place to be climbing on. Might well have passed you up there. 
    0reaction image LOL 0reaction image Wow! 0reaction image Wisdom · Share on Facebook Share on Twitter
  • Limehouse_BluesLimehouse_Blues Frets: 1119
    artiebear said:

    Absolutely lovely. The guitar looks amazing, plus, I'm getting all teary eyed at the mention of The Cuillin which, at this time of year should be either a view from my window in my other place to be  or a place to be climbing on. Might well have passed you up there. 
    You're super lucky! My retirement plan is to end up somewhere in the NW Highlands for most of the year. Without Covid next week should have been a London Mountaineering Club week on Skye. Next year maybe! I'll try to get some more pictures up as Florian has done such a great job with the finish. While the guitar's dedicated to the Cuillin, the inspiration was really Slash's Derrig guitar. 
    0reaction image LOL 0reaction image Wow! 1reaction image Wisdom · Share on Facebook Share on Twitter
  • pjfpjf Frets: 100
    Here's my Brook, made by a couple of blokes down in Devon :) Please excuse reflections, photography not my strong suit...






    0reaction image LOL 13reaction image Wow! 0reaction image Wisdom · Share on Facebook Share on Twitter
  • lincolnbluelincolnblue Frets: 126
    It seems that in the world of electrics people are generally very set in their ways - Gibson, Fender etc. But with acoustic there's so many more makers and some mighty fine ones, as you say, not from USA>
    0reaction image LOL 0reaction image Wow! 0reaction image Wisdom · Share on Facebook Share on Twitter
  • EpsilonEpsilon Frets: 321
    It seems that in the world of electrics people are generally very set in their ways - Gibson, Fender etc. But with acoustic there's so many more makers and some mighty fine ones, as you say, not from USA>
    Agreed. High end UK luthiers are well known internationally in the acoustic world, but much less so in electric. Acoustically we have the likes of Lowden, Sobell, Fylde, Brook, Atkin, McCilroy, Avalon etc

    On the electrics I wouldn't expect many overseas to be aware of Patrick Eggle or Gordon Smith, who I think are probably the most high profile UK electric builders.
    0reaction image LOL 0reaction image Wow! 1reaction image Wisdom · Share on Facebook Share on Twitter
  • artiebearartiebear Frets: 448
    Epsilon said:
    It seems that in the world of electrics people are generally very set in their ways - Gibson, Fender etc. But with acoustic there's so many more makers and some mighty fine ones, as you say, not from USA>
    Agreed. High end UK luthiers are well known internationally in the acoustic world, but much less so in electric. Acoustically we have the likes of Lowden, Sobell, Fylde, Brook, Atkin, McCilroy, Avalon etc

    On the electrics I wouldn't expect many overseas to be aware of Patrick Eggle or Gordon Smith, who I think are probably the most high profile UK electric builders.
    Very true and some of those builders work go for big money in countries such as the USA.

    What seem a real shame is that many great builders of both electric and acoustic instruments in the UK are not known about more widely here in the UK.  I stand guilty as charged over times when I have lusted over a custom built US instrument, while all along the reality is that there might be a guy working an hour or so away, who could have delivered all that and more.

    0reaction image LOL 0reaction image Wow! 2reaction image Wisdom · Share on Facebook Share on Twitter
  • artiebearartiebear Frets: 448
    pjf said:
    Here's my Brook, made by a couple of blokes down in Devon :) Please excuse reflections, photography not my strong suit...






    That is quite stunning !
    0reaction image LOL 0reaction image Wow! 0reaction image Wisdom · Share on Facebook Share on Twitter
  • WhitecatWhitecat Frets: 3203
    Fidelity Double Standard - made in Cambridge -



    Fidelity is our very-own highly underrated "British Novo" - with arguably even more unique designs. But he loves roasted woods, distressed finishes and all the toanz... he uses Mojo pickups and top-class hardware in these things, which are also chambered. You can get a hand-built guitar from this guy for £899 which is crazy considering how good they are.

    JPG 'Bob' - made in York



    Josh Parkin, now based in York (but he cut his teeth in Japan), can do just about anything you like, but he builds a very under-the-radar series of takes on the Harmony Bobkat. This one is 'Bob' - the "vintage" spec version - all-poplar (but for the rosewood fretboard and ebony bridge), genuine vintage 1963 DeArmond gold foils and an absolute Boaty McBoatface of a neck. He also makes 'Kat', a modern-spec take on same with a smaller neck & more traditional woods and now also 'Big Kat', a humbucker-laden larger-bodied offset inspired by the Bobkat but also evolved into something more aggressive!
    0reaction image LOL 4reaction image Wow! 1reaction image Wisdom · Share on Facebook Share on Twitter
  • Joe123Joe123 Frets: 7
    Hi, how about Manson guitars? They are now quite well known in many many countries, right?
    0reaction image LOL 0reaction image Wow! 2reaction image Wisdom · Share on Facebook Share on Twitter
  • EpsilonEpsilon Frets: 321
    Joe123 said:
    Hi, how about Manson guitars? They are now quite well known in many many countries, right?
    Probably only for Muse fans.
    2reaction image LOL 0reaction image Wow! 2reaction image Wisdom · Share on Facebook Share on Twitter
  • grungebobgrungebob Frets: 1756
    I have this Lucem silver series Orthodox with Lucem based in Cumbria, this one is made in Korea though. 


    0reaction image LOL 0reaction image Wow! 0reaction image Wisdom · Share on Facebook Share on Twitter
  • artiebearartiebear Frets: 448
    grungebob said:
    I have this Lucem silver series Orthodox with Lucem based in Cumbria, this one is made in Korea though. 


    Very nice, I have not, knowingly, come across this guy. Great design. I do know a couple of those he mentions as mentors. This is exactly the kind of stuff that easily goes under the radar.
    0reaction image LOL 0reaction image Wow! 1reaction image Wisdom · Share on Facebook Share on Twitter
  • StratavariousStratavarious Frets: 375
    My ’92 Patrick Eggle LA is incredibly well put together and has a neck to die for.

    My current number one is a Fretking Esprit - UK designed. 
    0reaction image LOL 0reaction image Wow! 1reaction image Wisdom · Share on Facebook Share on Twitter
  • DavidReesDavidRees Frets: 119
    I have a JJ Retro and once upon a time had a custom Chris Eccleshall - best guitars ever :) ...
    0reaction image LOL 0reaction image Wow! 0reaction image Wisdom · Share on Facebook Share on Twitter
  • artiebearartiebear Frets: 448
    DavidRees said:
    I have a JJ Retro and once upon a time had a custom Chris Eccleshall - best guitars ever :) ...
    That takes me back ! In the mid 80's I has a Chris Eccleshall acoustic ( about OM size as far as I remember ). It was a lovely thing with style 42 abalone inlay on the body. I was touring a lot with bands then and I think it proved to be a bit delicate for that constant regime. I played a couple of his electrics, they were great too. I seem to remember my guitar having a unusual headstock carve which was part of the Eccleshall trademark look ?
    0reaction image LOL 0reaction image Wow! 0reaction image Wisdom · Share on Facebook Share on Twitter
  • artiebearartiebear Frets: 448
    Epsilon said:
    Oof - would love to get my hands on that Sobell!


    Apparently, Stefan is currently building his first Brazilian rosewood guitar for some years at the moment, due to just sorting out up to date CITIES paperwork. 
    It's going to be a New world model which is closer to, but slighter larger than OM size with a 25.3 scale (shorter than mine) and lighter bracing for an easier response. 
    He gave me one of these to play up at the workshop a few years ago and it still haunts me as one of the best guitars I have played. So light to play with gorgeous overtones. It also had a lovely soft V neck carve ( very vintage Martin ).
    I must admit that when I heard about this new one, I have had to try to talk sensibly to myself to say "step away from the phone, you really do not need it" 
    I am sure it will be a stunner.
    0reaction image LOL 0reaction image Wow! 0reaction image Wisdom · Share on Facebook Share on Twitter
  • CollingsCollings Frets: 276
    edited June 7
    I think Patrick Eggle is making some of the best guitars around at the moment.

    I've got a couple of Macons that i've played exclusively lately.

    Here is the newest brought Dec last year:





    0reaction image LOL 3reaction image Wow! 0reaction image Wisdom · Share on Facebook Share on Twitter
  • stardustudiosstardustudios Frets: 4
    edited July 9
    I'm quite chuffed to own a Fingerbone Explorer, made by the late Paul Richardson in the early 80s. I've been told it's not the original Tobacco Burst colour & was recoloured by Bernie Goodfellow some time back. Original hand wound Kent Armstrong pickups sound amazing & you'd have to prize it out of my cold, dead hands if you wanted it. 

    0reaction image LOL 0reaction image Wow! 0reaction image Wisdom · Share on Facebook Share on Twitter
  • Revolting1Revolting1 Frets: 267
    For sheer bite its hard to beat my Ebony on Oak necked set neck Tele by our very own Rabs Wood.

       Its cured any gas for a custom shop Tele  :3
    When logic and proportion
    0reaction image LOL 0reaction image Wow! 0reaction image Wisdom · Share on Facebook Share on Twitter
Sign In or Register to comment.