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Please feel free to contact us with any questions regarding your instrument, repairs, any instruments we have for sale, ordering an instrument, or any instrument you wish to sell.

800 Greenwood St
Evanston, IL, 60201
United States

847-864-7730

I began making guitars in 1966 in Dayton Ohio, where I worked out of my house. From 1968-1970 I lived in Mexico City, returning during the summers to build instruments at the Dayton location. 

During this time I was studying Anthropology and playing flamenco guitar professionally in various troupes in Mexico and around the U.S. In 1972 I moved to Chicago and worked briefly out of the back of a music store before moving to my present location in 1973. 

At that point I gave up any pretensions of being a professional guitarist and dedicated myself full time to lutherie.

 


My 800 Greenwood Street shop has undergone several renovations and changes over the years, the most recent being the 1995 massive renovation I did of the outside and inside of the building. 

As a result, my building is now climate controlled throughout the entire 4,000 square feet, and it has now acquired a nicer facade, with more interior showroom space than was previously available. 

Consequently, we are better able to serve those who prefer to visit the shop to select an instrument from our extensive inventory, which is housed in glass fronted rosewood cabinets. Being able to play many instruments side by side is very helpful in making a final selection, and we have full repair/restoration facilities on the premises for minor action adjustments to major restorations of valuable collector instruments.

1974 José Ramírez R-1455

1974 José Ramírez III 2a (Spain) No R-1455, 664 mm scale, 53 mm nut, strings are spaced 45 mm on centers between 1st and 6th, action at the 12th fret is 4.5 mm on the bass side, 3 mm on the treble side, there is still 1.5 mm of saddle projecting above the bridge on the bass side.  Cedar top, Indian rosewood sides and back, sides are laminated with Spanish cypress internally, original catalyzed urethane varnish, embossed gold Fustero tuning machines.  Condition is near mint with one visible small bonk on the top by the lower treble bout and some minor back center seam stress apparent which in no way affects the utility nor longevity of the instrument.  Yes, we know the sides and back are supposed to be Brazilian rosewood according to the catalog specifications, but we are certain this is slab sawn Indian with a reddish tint added to the varnish, not Brazilian rosewood.  These 2a (“segunda”) Ramírez instruments were virtually identical to the 1a models save for the wood and machine head selection, internally they are indistinguishable.  Actions varied considerably with 1a and 2a instruments depending on which specific solera (work board) they were assembled on, which is one of the reason the initials or identity of the specific maker is pointless in establishing the quality and playability of the instrument, which is why we discourage focusing on this detail.  Judge the instrument, not the label or stamp.  This instrument is a great example of the early 70’s Ramírez model which was revolutionary at the time, having many non-traditional features such as laminated sides, sprayed finishes, and synthetic glue used to assemble them.  The sound is huge with a bright penetrating treble and firm focused bass, very colorful, the embodiment of what some call the modern “Madrid School” of guitar making.  Playing instruments such as this Segovia was able to project to the furthest seats of the largest concert halls during his world tours without amplification.  Don’t let the scale length put you off, the playability of an instrument is more dependent on the action than the scale length, and this instrument is highly playable.  $6,500