Home / Instruments /Accessories / Ordering / Tips / Friends



1938 D'Angelico New Yorker

Status: Pricing and hold status for all instruments currently available is shown on our Instruments page here. If this instrument does not appear on the Instruments page it has been sold, and is no longer available. Photos and descriptions of Previously Sold instruments may be found here. To be notified of examples of this model or similar instruments in the future, please contact [email protected],. Please be specific on which instrument(s) you're looking for, and we'll be happy to contact you as soon as they become available.

Serial number: 1349, stamped inside back

Body size at lower bout: 18" Scale length: 25 5/8" Nut width: 1 11/16" Body Depth: 3 1/8" Neck depth, 1st/10th frets: .95/1.02

Materials: Solid hand-graduated Adirondack spruce top; solid hand-graduated curly maple back and sides; solid flame maple neck with 3-ply walnut/maple centerstripe; engraved mother of pearl split-block fingerboard inlays; pearl art-deco peghead inlay, 7-ply body and headstock binding, triple bound fingerboard and soundholes.

Hardware: Original hardware includes gold engraved art-deco tailpiece; first edition Grover Imperial tuners; adjustable ebony bridge with inlaid feet. Vintage multi-bound engraved tortoise stairstep pickguard.

Notes: The instruments of master builder John D'Angelico are widely regarded as representing the pinnacle of the modern luthier's craft. Completed in June of 1938, as recorded in D'Angelico own hand, this sumptious guitar finally left the shop in September of that year in the hands of one Stephen Miller. Of Mr. Miller we know little else, but the guitar was at one time in the collection of prolific LA sideman Joe Vitale, whose credits range from Joe Walsh to CSN and the Eagles among many others.

With its full depth 18" body, this New Yorker model was the maker's top-of-the line offering, and looks and sounds every bit of it. From the ornate geometric peghead inlay to the stairstep pickguard and engraved trapeze tailpiece, the instrument is in every way a masterpiece of high art deco design. This handsome example has been maintained in fine playing condition, with a striking flame maple body and a fine-grained, tap-tuned soundboard of prewar Adirondack spruce.

The sunburst finish is subtly shaded, with just enough fine age checking to verify its originality. The gold hardware is all original as well, including the engraved deco tailpiece, early Grover Imperial tuners, and the inlaid ebony bridge. A perfectly splendid vintage bound tortoise pickguard replaces the original, with D'Angelico's signature engraving near the neck and bracket. (If it wasn't crafted by the Maestro himself, we'd love to know who did, as it is of considerable age, and absolutely brilliant in its detail.) The extravagant seven ply binding is all tight to the body, with classic split block inlays in the solid ebony fingerboard.

The neck profile is a classic gentle C, pleasingly full in the hand, with smooth low action over a fresh high precision setup. The finish shows some weathering under the pickguard, and a small patch of button wear on the back, along with some incidental scattered nicks here and there. A hairline crack under the pickguard has been soundly resealed, along with a another short one at the left end of the fingerboard. The neck shows the thumbwear of a long pro career, along with an older repair at the headstock, rock solid and fully inspected on our bench.

With its parallel braced, hand graduated Adirondack soundboard and long scale, the guitar is a rhythm powerhouse, with warm, throbbing bass, and the clear, open voice of prewar tonewood played-in over many decades on the bandstand. Accompanied with a copy of its original ledger entry, this magnificent instrument is complete with its original deluxe faux alligator plush lined hardshell case. Simply thrilling to play, this magnificent creation from the King of Kenmare Street leaves little doubt what all the fuss was all about. One only, call now.

Setup: Bridge height adjusted; bridge compensation set; string slots at nut and bridge inspected and recut as required; bridge foot contour inspected; bridge radius inspected; bridgewheels and tuners lubricated; fingerboard and bridge conditioned; body and neck cleaned and hand polished. This instrument is strung with medium gauge bronze 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.








































































Home / Instruments /Accessories / Ordering / Tips / Friends