Saturday, February 25, 2006

CHF Model

Here's another model that began life as a custom order, and proved to be such a winning combination of style and sound that I reproduced it in variations many times. This one pictured was made for the owner of Axis Instruments, and features the following:

  • Hollow-Chambered Mahogany body with AAA Flame Maple top, "C" Shape
  • Set-neck construction with tilt-back headstock, Mahogany
  • "Vintage V" neck profile
  • Indian Rosewood Fingerboard, Abalone Inlay
  • Wilkinson Classic Tremolo
  • Honey burst finish
  • Lindy Fralin Vintage Hot Strat Single Coil Pickups
  • Seymour Duncan Mini Humbucker Pickup


Same as above, but:

  • Solid Mahogany body
  • 2 pickup configuration featuring Lollar P90 Pickups
  • Wraparound Tone Pros bridge/tailpiece


  • Various tonewoods
  • 2 pickup configuration featuring Lollar Imperial Humbucking Pickups
  • Acoustic bridge pickup w/custom blending electronics

The Shop

Pictures are some items from the past and present, in various states of completion.


  • Hollow-Chambered Koa or Mahogany body
  • Set-neck construction, Mahogany
  • Acoustic bridge and bone saddle
  • Clear gloss finish
  • Seymour Duncan Hum Canceling Single Coil Tele Neck Pickup
  • EMG acoustic saddle transducer pickup
  • Custom electronics which blend acoustic and electric pickup sounds, for an extremely rich tone
  • Volume and blend controls
  • Uses acoustic (bronze-wound) or electric (nickel-wound) strings
  • F-hole optional

Similar Models:

Hybrid Bolt-on
Same as above, but:
  • Hollow-Chambered Mahogany body
  • Mahogany or Maple Bolt-on neck

TH Custom

This was one of my favorites. I am generally not a huge fan of gold hardware because of how the plating degrades so easily, but the MK Blonde & tortise shell just screamed out for it for some reason. This one is hollow swamp ash with a AAAAA birdseye maple neck, and a really colorful Indian Rosewood fretboard. The neck uses my modern profile, so it's a bit thinner and rounder than my vintage profile. While I normally use Lollar pickups nowadays, this one called for something with a bit more output, while retaining a vintage tone - so I used Lindy Fralin's Steel Poled
Tele pickups. These things sound a good bit like a Gibson P-90, and are about 15% hotter than stock Tele pickups. I also used a 4-way switch which allowed standard Tele switching in the first 3 positions,
and used both pickups in series in the fourth position, for a HUGE humbucking tone.
Sadly, this one was borrowed for a recording session, and never returned. I have been searching for it for quite a while now, as quite alot of time and money went into it's creation.

THL Performer

This one was made for a friend who had to cancel his order due to some pretty tragic unforseen circumstances, and it's just hung around the shop ever since. The lousy picture to the right doesn't do it justice - it's alot prettier than it appears here. This one has turned out to be extremely versatile as a recording/performing guitar. It's hollow mahogany with a AAAAA flame maple top and an eastern flame maple neck with a gorgeous bois de rose fretboard with clay dot inlays. The neck is my "modern" profile. The original order called for a mahogany neck with a ebony fretboard, but when the order fell through I used that one for another guitar, and found that the maple neck brightened it up so that it really cuts through the mix. The pickups are Tom Anderson humbuckers, and these can be blended with the installed acoustic bridge pickup, using custom electronics. The Anderson pickups have a really distinct sound. When in humbucking mode, they are fat and bold, but don't sound much like the classic PAF that most humbuckers are going after. When in single-coil mode (often referred to as "coil-tapped"), they sound very Strat-like - something rarely achieved when splitting a traditional humbucker. This combination came together so nicely that it got it's own model distinction - "Performer".