Preliminary Announcement - Photos are of the guitar, as it arrived, prior to repair/restoration.
31/05/2019 - "In the Workshop" for restoration & already "pre-ordered" for a customer in Germany!
24/06/2019 - Restoration Completed, Sold and 0n it's way to the customer!
Feedback! - "The condition of the Kay is amazing considering it is an almost 60 year old instrument......it is a nice blues guitar and I really like it."
Dating & Original Catalog Description....The K6116, described in the Kay Catalogs of the period as.....
"KAY'S GLEAMING SUPER AUDITORIUM MODEL has a Solid Spruce top, laminated crack-proof figured Maple back and sides - all finished by hand-rubbing and polishing. Beautiful shaded Walnut finish with golden sunburst. Heavy celluloid binding with a heavy black and white block inlay on top edge and soundhole. Slim steel-reinforced neck - of course. Oval Rosewood fingerboard, celluloid-bound. Glued on Rosewood bridge."
The K6116 appears in Kay Catalogs, available on the very useful Kay Vintage Reissue website, via the "Support" and "Vintage Catalogs" options, for the years 1959 trough to 1962, but the editions for 1958 and 1963 are not available, so there is no confirmation on whether the production run for the model may possibly have started earlier, or extended beyond 1962.
What can be determined, however, is that this example was not produced later than the year 1961, as in the 1962 Catalog the description alters slightly to read "....with adjustable trussrod.", which this guitar does not have, rather than "....steel-reinforced neck.....".
* Overall Length: 41.5"/105.4cm. * Body Length: 20"/50.8cm. * Body Width - Lower Bout: 15.5"/39.4cm. * Body Width - Upper Bout: 11.25"/28.6cm. * Body Width - Waist: 9"/22.9cm. * Body Depth - Front: 3.65"/9.2cm. * Body Depth - Rear: 4.1"/10.3cm. * Scale Length: 25.75"/654mm. * Nut Width: 1 5/8th. inch/1.625"/41.5mm. * Neck Thickness at Nut: 0.93"/23.5mm * Fingerboard Width at 12th. Fret: 2"/51.5mm. * Fingerboard Radius/Material: Very nice Rosewood 'board, described as "ovalled" in original Kay catalog....in completing the re-levelling of the fingerboard the original 12" radius has been eased a little to around 14". * String Spacing at Bridge: 2.1"/53.5mm. * Soundhole Diameter: Smaller than usual at 3.5"/8.9cm.
Original KLuson Deluxe enclosed tuners show a small degree of age-related discolouration, but remain quite bright & work fine.
The guitar appears to be original & complete, except for the following........
The original metal "Kay" name logo is missing from the headstock.
The original Nut is missing.
The original Rosewood bridge, which is both glued and has factory-fitted original decorated head bolts, and the characteristic string-through, wraparound Kay design, probably had a fretwire saddle, which has been replaced with a bone saddle at some time in the past. Also there are signs that the bridge has been previously re-glued, before it arrived here.
There is a small hole drilled in the side, about half way round the rear of the treble side of the lower bout, at the point where you would normally expect to find that a jack socket outlet has been added, but this hole is too small for a jack, at only about 5mm. diameter.
It is not certain whether the neck joint has been reset before it arrived, but likely, as this could explain the very slight change in angle of the fingerboard alignment at the point of the body-join.
There are a few very fine lines in the finish, but no movement along them, so no evidence of cracking into the timber, but a previously fitted wooden cleat under the line just on the bass side of the soundhole provides reinforcement and again no movement is detectable.
The restoration has included the following work..........
Precautionary cleat reinforcement just inside soundhole checked....no movement evident/satisfactory.
Remove original heavily worn frets, re-level the fingerboard & install new frets.
Purpose-make & fit new Bone Nut.
Re-shape & refit the previously replaced Bone Saddle.
Suitably plug drill hole, unless a jack socket is to be installed....buyer requests this be left in readiness for his own jack installation.
Final set-up to be completed after the guitar has had a couple of days to settle.
Action at the 12th. fret is currently around 2.75mm. judging from the single string in place, which if maintained on completing of the restoration will be a good low/medium action.
Strings to be fitted will be Martin MM12 Retro Monel Light, 12-54 gauge for use with the buyer's DeArmond 210 vintage soundhole pickup. Quote extract from Martin website "Retro" page....."Retro® strings offer enhanced longevity with warm natural tone, and they sound great plugged in."
There is no case with the guitar. I may be able to supply it with a specially fitted Hiscox Liteflite hardshell case. These cases of course do offer much better protection, but even the smallest case produced by Hiscox does require a couple of their extra internal pads fitting, in order to hold the small guitar correctly. I will be happy to advise whether I can marry the guitar to a suitable case, at the time of purchase.