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2000 Victor Baker Model 18 Special
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Serial #: 18, Dated 11-14-2000
Width at lower bout: 18" Body depth: 3" Nut width: 1 11/16" Scale length: 25" Neck depth, 1st/10th frets: .89/1.00
Materials: Solid hand-graduated Sitka spruce soundboard; solid carved Bigleaf maple back, sides and neck; solid ebony fingerboard.
Hardware: All original hardware includes bound tortoise pickguard with Bartolini floating humbucking pickup and ebony volume and tone controls, gold Grover Rotomatic tuners, compensated adjustable ebony bridge, ebony tailpiece with 1/4"endpin jack, adjustable truss rod.
Notes: San Diego based luthier Victor Baker crafts archtop guitars meticulously by hand, and his artist roster includes the likes of Peter Bernstein and other top players. Commissioned to recreate a series of D'Angelico Master Builder archtops, Baker's work has been recognized as among the most accomplished of modern builders.
This Model 18 Special is a rare example of his full size super jumbo guitar, and is crafted of all solid woods, bookmatched, quartersawn and hand carved throughout. The Venetian cutaway body is crafted with a hand-graduated Sitka spruce soundboard, with back, sides and neck of highly figured bookmatched Bigleaf maple, all trimmed with variegated multi-ply grained ivoroid binding.
The top is parallel braced in the style of the classic Super 400, Emperor, and D'Angelico New Yorkers, with a vibrant acoustic voice that is notably clear and open, offering excellent projection and cutting power, all faithfully captured by the floating Bartolini humbucking pickup. The neck features a comfy traditional C profile that is solid in the hand, with smooth low action over a dark ebony fingerboard, over a fresh high precision setup.
Carefully maintained, the guitar is in excellent original condition, without pick, buckle, or thumb wear in the subtly shaded prewar style sunburst lacquer finish. The solid ebony fingerboard is graced with striking art deco inlays, and fitted with polished original fretwork in unworn condition. Apart from a few incidental lacquer nicks, the instrument shows few signs of play altogether.
Orchestra style 18" archtops are unmatched for their voluminous response and warm, buttery resonance. But they have become hard to find in recent years, in the work of most contemporary builders. A marvel of performance and style, this hand crafted wonder is a joy to play, and a true best buy in a top-flight luthier built guitar. One only, call now.
Setup: This instrument is strung with medium gauge half round strings. The guitar will accommodate lighter or heavier gauge strings, according to preference. String action is set at 4/64" to 5/64" at the 12th fret, with moderate relief for acoustic playing with medium strings. The action may be lowered or raised to your requirements with the adjustable bridge.
Case: Deluxe plush lined hardshell case.