Photos are of the guitar, as it arrived, prior to repair/restoration.
Update - 21/02/2021 - Pre-ordered for a returning customer in Shropshire!
Another "Little Gem".....lovely Historic looks, Rope Binding, back centre-stripe, V-neck, Transverse Ladder Bracing, characteristic of L&H guitars.
*** FEEDBACK RECEIVED FROM THE N.IRELAND BASED BUYER OF ANOTHER RECENT VTG RESTORATION OF A SIMILAR AGE/TYPE GUITAR, ALSO OF LYON & HEALY/WASHBURN ORIGINS, BUT SMALLER TERZ SIZE....DETAILS CURRENTLY TO BE SEEN ON PAGE 8............
"Hi Bob - Guitar arrived safe and sound - unpacked - tuned ........and what I can I say ...it is superb!! Perfect setup for Blues and Ragtime fingerpicking. Feels great -looks great- sounds great!!!......a beautiful restoration.Many thanks for a very fine job. Kind regards
....AND THE UNSOLICITED FOLLOW-UP TWO WEEKS LATER!......
Hi Bob, Hope you are very well.After many hours playing my latest acquisition I am very happy to report that my love for the Terz has not diminished in the slightest.The strings have mellowed and the shorter scale easily facilitates those tricky Blues and Ragtime stretches.My enjoyment is not confined to the sound and playability but I also like to just sit and look at the instrument as an aesthetically pleasing object.-the proportions and those aged and beautifully coloured woods.
I'm sure I'll have the pleasure of buying from you again.After I discovered your website a couple of years ago I knew I would eventually order something.Take care and keep well.Best regards.
.......AND AGAIN NEARLY 4 MONTHS LATER!............
"I really enjoy playing the Terz and guitar playing friends are fascinated by the great tone and volume from such a small body."
Stock Number: VTG1052.
There is no certainty to the age-estimation, and in fact similar guitars are often seen advertised with older age attributions....certainly if indeed it is correct to attribute the manufacture of the guitar to the Lyon & Healy/Washburn conglomeration, they were a major force in the Chicago Music/Manufacturing industry, certainly producing fretted stringed instruments from the 1880s onward.......
As confirmed in the "Condition" section below, the guitar has been assessed with the professional luthier I work with, and the construction details confirmed as, of course all solid timbers, with Top of European Spruce, Back of Flamed Maple, Sides are a type of Mahogany or Sapele....not entirely clear as combination of stained down timbers can be confusing....Neck, with characteristic slotted headstock, is Birch or Poplar, with Brazilian Rosewood Fingerboard.
The guitar appears to original, with just a couple of exceptions, being the fretwire saddle floating bridge it came with....no doubt basically the same type as the original, but appears to be a little used replacement, and the original rivet held rather than screw fixed cog tuners, which were worn & defective & have had to be replaced. These were reverse-mounted, and if it works well, I will follow suit & reverse-mount the replacement StewMac "Golden Age Restoration Tuners", already obtained & as shown in the photos....search on www.stewmac.com
Overall, in good structural and cosmetic condition for a probably 90+ year old guitar! Inevitably there are chips and scratches accumulated over the better part of a century, but these are honest scars of a long life, and in no way detrimental or unsightly. Possibly there may have been some thin over-finish applied to the body, but if so this is itself very old & may have contributed to the rather attractive finish crazing on the back, but apart from gentle cutting back & polishing to remove some minor surface imperfections, no cosmetic work is appropriate, other than basic cleaning & tidying. and the over-finish is subtle & not evident.
Prior to sale, work on the restoration will be completed, in accordance with the assessment and recommendations of the luthier I work with. This looks likely to include taking off the original fingerboard, which appears to have been reset before, possibly in conjunction with a neck reset, but has not been well re-glued & possibly shows signs of lifting.
We will possible line the underside of the fingerboard with Hardwood veneer, aiding alignment and strength, prior to re-fixing, following which we would re-level & re-fret the fingerboard. The original wooden nut is intact at present, but whether it will survive removal & re-fitting is not known, and if a replacement is necessary, we will individually purpose-make it in Ebony.
A fine crack line in the bass-side lower bout will be glued and reinforced internally, and a slight displacement along the back centre-seam line will be checked, and any further work needed will be carried out. A couple of the back braces have been untidily re=glued in the past, but on careful examination around the interior it is confirmed that all braces are intact, and no signs of any detachment.
Original tailpiece is sound, but when fingerboard work is completed we will have to assess the questions as to whether it will be necessary to purpose make a new bridge....either Rosewood or Ebony, probably with inset bone saddle, if the fretwire saddle one it came with is not going to work on height or other for any other reason. Small holes where bridge had previously been unnecessarily pinned, should not show.
On completion of the neck reset/fingerboard re-alignment, and any other work found to be necessary, we will be looking to set the guitar up with an action of around 3mm. at the 12th. fret, which with just a tad more string height at the nut/first fret in order to aid bottleneck play, I reckon is ideal for a parlor or Stella "all-rounder", good for Bottleneck play, but with fretting aided by the shorter scale length and consequent lower string tension, therefore ideal for a mixture of finger-style and bottleneck play.
Additionally it could also be used for full-time slide with a nut riser costing no more than a few pounds. The sound is typically loud and pokey, just as a Stella should be - a great Bluesy voice! It has "That Sound" in spades - even, woody, bright, clear, ringing tone! Unless otherwise requested, it will be strung with Martin Bronze Light 12-54 strings, and really sounds tremendous - and loud!
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, and if so agree with you an inclusive price for Guitar + Case.