Home / Instruments /Accessories / Ordering / Tips / Friends


1980 D'Aquisto New Yorker Special

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 by 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.

SN#: 1138, signed by the maker on the inside back, and underside of soundboard.

Body size at lower bout: 17". Scale length: 25 " Nut Width: 1 3/4" Body depth: 3"

Materials: Solid bookmatched tap-tuned X-braced spruce top; highly figured solid carved fiddleback flame maple back, sides and neck; solid ebony fingerboard with pearl slashed-block inlays; seven ply top binding; five ply headstock binding; triple bound back, fingerboard and f-holes; split-diamond inlay on back of headstock.

Hardware: All original ebony hardware includes adjustable compensated bridge; contoured tailpiece; quintuple bound art deco pickguard; chrome Schaller sealed back tuners; original gold Gibson Johnny Smith pickup with volume and tone controls, guard-mounted 1/4" mini jack.

Notes: Jimmy D'Aquisto was the last and most celebrated apprentice to the legendary John D'Angelico. In an abbreviated career of just three decades, D'Aquisto created a peerless body of work, instruments that are now the most costly and sought after archtops ever made.

The New Yorker Special is the 17" version of D'Aquisto's top-line model, and his most traditional archtop, drawing inspiration directly from D'Angelico's famed postwar cutaways. Jimmy put his own distinctive stamp on the classic design, adding his signature S-shaped soundholes, Chippendale headstock, and contoured ebony tailpiece and finger rest.

This stunning guitar is hand signed by the maker, and dated inside the body as completed on February 26, 1980. D'Aquisto's hand written ledger shows the guitar was delivered on May 30th of that year. (Interestingly, we're told this is one of the very few instruments that Jimmy signed both on the inside back and under the soundboard as well.) Back, sides and neck are hand carved of exquisitely figured tiger flame maple, with a soundboard of close grained, quartersawn, bookmatched tap-tuned spruce. All finish and hardware are 100% original, with solid ebony tailpiece and pickguard, including the original Gibson Johnny Smith floating pickup with volume and tone controls, and guard-mounted 1/4" mini jack.

The instrument has been maintained in exceptionally fine condition, with no cracks, pick, buckle, thumb or fingerboard wear. At just 5lb. 14oz., the guitar is notably light weight and well balanced, on the lap or the strap. All binding is original and tight to the guitar as well: on the cutaway and peghead only, the multi-ply binding shows some typical stress cracks, but remains all solidly adhered to the instrument. Apart from a single lacquer check on the back of the peghead, and another by the bass soundhole, the light cherry sunburst finish is without crazing or weathering otherwise. Without cracks, pick, buckle, thumb, fret or fingerboard wear, the instrument appears some three decades after its manufacture to have been virtually unplayed.

The instrument possesses an exceptionally clear, open voice, with remarkable transparency and detail. Even and balanced across the range, it is the rare cutaway guitar with projection and power comparable to the best full-bodied models. The bass register is particularly open and resonant, with a warm, throaty mids, and exceptionally brilliant highs. The guitar has a fresh precision setup, with smooth low action over fine original medium jumbo frets, and a particularly elegant gentle D neck profile.

Included in this package are a set of three original Stanley block planes of prewar vintage, originally used by John D'Angelico, and given to Jimmy D'Aquisto, and used on their respective workbenches. They are accompanied by the original bill of sale and certificate of provenance from the D'Aquisto estate as well as a deluxe D'Aquisto fitted hardshell case of recent vintage.

An opportunity of unprecedented artistic and historical value, for player and collector alike. Call now.

Setup: This instrument is strung with medium gauge flatwound nickel strings (.012-.054). The guitar will accommodate lighter or heavier gauge strings, according to preference. String action is set at 1/16" to 3/32" at the 12th fret, with moderate relief. The action may be lowered or raised to your requirements with the adjustable bridge.

Case: Deluxe black arched D'Aquisto logo plush hardshell case.





















































Home / Instruments /Accessories / Ordering / Tips / Friends