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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


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.

Julian Llorente

1880 Julian Llorente/1904 Manuel Ramirez (Spain)  640 mm scale, 50 mm nut, spruce top, Cuban mahogany sides and back.  Please do not confuse this with the modern commercially made instruments with a similar name, Julian Llorente was a Madrid builder (see Romanillos, p 212) whose work rivaled that of Torres and Vicente Arias.  In fact, Llorente’s instruments could easily pass as the work of Arias, they are very similar in both interior and exterior details.  This instrument, one of only 2 known surviving authentic Llorente guitars (the other of 1879 in a private collection) is unique in that the top was replaced in 1904 by Manuel Ramirez, whose additional secondary label is attached to the back of the instrument.  Manuel saved the original bridge and rosette.  Most likely at the same time, Manuel converted the guitar from mechanical tuning machines to wooden pegs by changing the head.  The evidence of this conversion is visible on the side of the head, where the half moon filled hole of the original mechanical set is visible.  Most recently, the guitar was repaired very conservatively by Michael Gurian in 1968, and his repair label is also visible inside the instrument.  Were all this history not enough, the instrument comes to us from the Otto Winkler collection, and the accompanying legend is that this guitar belonged to Miguel Llobet.  We are currently researching photos to see if we can confirm this.  In terms of sound, this guitar is a real surprise.  The smaller size belies what is a very clear firm instrument with wonderful character and projection, and instrument that is thoroughly modern yet 100% historical.  Very easy to play, it still bears the set of frets we believe was installed by Manuel Ramirez when he restored the guitar.  We have priced this guitar based on the fact that it is a composite guitar, however it is is very arguable that the luthier who replaced the top is the more famous of the two responsible for the instrument. This instrument has to be held and played to be truly appreciated.  $12,000