Iconic Maker, Spruce & Sycamore - "In the Workshop" for extensive restoration & partial rebuild, and available to reserve on "pre-order".

Preliminary Announcement - Photos included were taken before restoration commenced.

I have sold quite a number of Petersen guitars of quite a few years now, both original Harald Petersen made examples, as well as the high quality Concert Classical Guitars made by Peter & Tom Petersen, who continued the iconic Petersen guitar production after the death of their father in 1969, until about 1984.

This is an older example, made by Harald Petersen himself, probably in the 1950s, on which I have already commenced restoration work.

I am now finding that I regularly "pre-sell" my guitars, at the stage where I am still working on them, and although previously I had my doubts, this arrangement has now worked well in quite a number of cases, so I have decided to list some of the guitars coming through the workshop, in advance of them being fully ready, and welcome further enquiries.
Stock Number: VTG1252.

Harald Petersen moved to England from Denmark, and became a highly respected Classical Guitar Maker, based in Cumbria, but famously associated with, and selling many of his guitars through the Spanish Guitar Centre, established by Len Williams, father of John Williams, in 1952. After his death in 1969, his two sons continued making the same pattern of Petersen Concert Classical Guitar models, until I believe about 1984.

I have owned and sold previously a good number of Petersens, but I think that this is probably the earliest of the ones I have had. I know a number of good players who have collected Petersen Guitars and, from discussion with them, it is clear that they have a strong appreciation for their qualities.

The dimensions appear to be quite traditional, with 652mm. scale and full width fingerboard, 52.5mm. at the nut, on a reasonably shallow, slightly "D" profile neck. The high quality of the construction detailing should be apparent in the photos, with handsome black-edged triple binding to both top and back, intricate inlayed soundhole Rosette and matching stripe inlays to the Rosewood bridge. The top is Spruce, and the back and sides Sycamore, showing beautiful "fiddle-back" markings.
The guitar is principally original, and originality will be maintained as far as is possible, in restoring it in accordance with the advice of the highly-respected classical guitar builder/luthier I work with, and the work will be completed in his workshop, under his supervision. Mysteriously the guitar came with two right-handed sets of tuning machines....identical tuner plates, and quite nice ones, but replacing them is posing a problem.

The difficulty is that the posts are at 32.5mm. centres, rather than the standard 35mm. for modern tuners. All the main luthier supply companies confirm that they do not know of any maker now producing three-on-a-plate classical tuners with 32.5mm. centred posts. Accordingly the choice is either to plug the present post holes and re-drill, or to fit individual tuning machines to the existing spacing, and we think it will be prudent to go for the later on an elderly guitar like this....not least as the headstock is made from two pieces of timber, and we have already inserted stabilising glue where the join was just beginning to part.

There have clearly been repairs carried out in the past. The Ebony fingerboard is very thin, suggesting that it may well have been planed or sanded down in order re-level it in the past, and frets are poor. I have already removed the fingerboard, and the underside will be thoroughly cleaned off and lined with an approx. 2mm./2.5mm. Ebony fillet will be thicknessed and sized, before gluing to the original fingerboard to give adequate thickness/strength for the future, before re-gluing to the prepared neck and re-fretting.

There are signs of old crack repairs and past sanding to the top, but clearly some unevenness where braces appear to have been detached, with signs of previous inadequate re-gluing attempts. The braces are clearly very light, and the top will be removed, and entirely re-braced, using the Ramirez bracing pattern, including the angled transverse principal brace, positioned behind the soundhole, which will give direct support to the area showing slight depression at the moment. The original dyed Sycamore binding will have to be sacrificed, and following the re-fixing of the top new bindings will be fitted.

The bridge was lifting slightly at the rear edghe, so has been removed and both the underside and the seating area on the top will be thoroughly cleaned of old glue, to provide good surface for re-gluing, once the top is reinstated. It is likely that parts of the guitar, certainly the neck will require re-finishing, once the structural work is complete....certainly to the neck, and this will give the opportunity to remove some minor indentations from the back of the neck.

The original Ivory nut and bone/Ivory saddle hav been kept to re-fit if possible, but they may not be tall enough following the new fingerboard aliugnment, in which case bone replacements will be purpose-made.
Action, strings & cases
The action will be determined by the new fingerboard alignment and saddle height, but we will be aiming for a good/standard classical action at the 12th. fret at 3.5mm./4mm. On completion of the work it will be re-strung with quality USA made La Bella 850-B Classical strings, with Golden Alloy Basses and Black Nylon Trebles.

There is no case included. However, I may be able to supply a Hiscox Liteflite hardshell case with the guitar, if available, at modest additional cost.


I have a stock of guitars which is added to regularly, but some tend to take a little time to find their way through my workshop, so if you do not see what you are looking for on my website currently, please enquire - who knows, I may have just what you are looking for!

Contact us about this guitar
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Delivery details
You are welcome to come and try out the guitars available, and of course to collect your guitar. Alternatively I may be able to deliver in person, within reasonable distance, at cost. Otherwise, I will pack securely and post as per arrangements made with you.

Postage Costs:-
To U.K. Addresses usually £15.00, for Parcelforce Express 24 service.
To European Addresses £30.00 to £50.00, for Parcelforce Euro Priority service, depending on size, weight, value and delivery location.

If you need further information postage costs/timing/insurance or advice on other matters, please contact me via Contact form above, telephone 01543 677140. If no immediate response, I may be contactable via my mobile number 07970 832955, and I will do my best to answer any questions.


In addition to hundreds of UK sales, during the last few years I have sold and had safely delivered many guitars to buyers in EU Countries, including Belgium, Denmark, Finland, France, Germany, Ireland, Italy, Netherlands, Portugal, Spain and Sweden, and also to Switzerland and Norway. I am always happy to advise potential buyers from throughout Europe with regard to postage arrangements and delivery costs.


In addition to the Testimonials on The Home Page, and this page, to see the hundreds of complimentary feedback comments kindly left for me by eBay buyers, please check out my eBay ID "vintagetraditionalguitars", and eBay Shop "Vintage and Traditional Guitars".

**** YOUTUBE ****

A search of YouTube has so far failed to produce any clips recorded on a Petersen guitar. So, I'm afraid that I am thrown back on the Classical Guitar clips from YouTube which I regularly use, and I have embedded a clip of a favourite piece - John Williams playing Asturias by Isaac Albeniz.

The added Useful Links are clips of further favourite pieces....Francisco Tarrega's Recuerdos de la Alhambra played with the Flamenco Tremolo (piami) on a Flamenco Guitar as Link #1, and Concierto de Aranjuez - Adagio - Joaquin Rodrigo played by Paco de Lucia as Link #2.
Useful links
YouTube clip - Francisco Tarrega's Recuerdos de la Alhambra played by atrafana
YouTube Clip - Concierto de Aranjuez - Adagio - Joaquin Rodrigo - Paco de Lucia
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