Concert Model 10-String Classical
A Reasonably Priced Concert Quality 10-String
So, you might be wondering, what got me started building 10-string classicals? It's all Stephen Bright's fault. In December, 2003, I sold my beloved Ramirez 1a 10-string to Stephen. That Ramirez is a wonderful instrument, and I just wasn't playing it anymore, mostly because of its 664mm scale, which I find uncomfortable. But Stephen is a pretty big guy, and for him the 664mm stretch was not difficult. So, even though I was sorry to see it go, I was glad that it was going to a good player who would be playing it regularly. Recently, Stephen sold the guitar to Perf DeCastro, who, as it turns out, is one of my clients (see some construction photos of his guitar in the "More 10-Strings" section).
About a year went by after I sold the Ramirez to Stephen. I was happily building 6-string classicals, with no intention of building multi-string guitars. Stephen found out about my guitars, and contacted me with the proposition to build him another 10-string. I thought it over for a while, and finally agreed. But I knew I would have to build two, the first one being the prototype and the second one being his. Stephen agreed to this, so planning and building commenced soon after. I used my old Ramirez as a general template for things such as neck and fingerboard dimensions, body depth, bridge dimensions, etc. But I elected to use my own body shape (aka plantilla) and my own radial bracing design on the prototype. Stephen is a big fan of Contreras guitars and requested a Contreras soundboard bracing pattern, so that is what his guitar got.
Both guitars came out sounding very nice. (See the links to the video clips of these two instruments below.) I brought the prototype to the 1st International 10-String Guitar Festival in July, 2005, where it was very well received. Since then, the orders have been coming in, keeping me busy building more 10-strings.
Check out the "More 10s" menu selection for additional photos of 10-string Concert Models I have built and photos of some 10-strings under construction.
Stephen BrightStephen Bright, owner of the Yahoo 10string group and the Cathedral Guitar 10-string website, plays a McBroom Concert Model at the 1st International 10-String Guitar Festival. A video of Stephen playing the guitar is available here.
Stephen and I also compared this guitar with the Concert Model I built for him against the Jose Ramirez 10-string I owned for 30 years. We ran a video recorder for evaluation purposes. There is nothing polished about the performances or the recording, but the sound level was sufficient to provide us with what we were after. The recordings can be found here (you will need the QuickTime player to view them). I believe my guitars compared very favorably with the Ramirez, but I'll let you be the judge.
Bruce BrogdenBruce Brogdon, past president of Guitar Houston, Houston's classical guitar society, trying out the McBroom Concert Model. Bruce is a classical guitarist, lutenist, and an historian and performer of early music for the guitar and lute.
McBroom Concert Model 10-string classical,
shown with a Canadian Lutz spruce soundboard,
padauk bridge, and optional pau ferro back and sides
Concert 10-string rear view
I use the same soundboard bracing pattern on my 10-strings as I do on my 6-strings. Their character exhibits an even balance with full, bright trebles and resonant basses. The Concert Model 10-string is designed and built in order to provide the player with a maximum level of volume without sacrificing tone and resonance. This is achieved in large part due to the soundboard bracing system. It allows for the entire soundboard to participate in resonance and volume production, not just the lower bout, which is typical of traditionally designed classicals. Further, due to additional characteristics of the bracing design, even more volume can be achieved when playing with greater force before the guitar reaches its peak output, as compared to traditionally braced classicals.
Soundboard wood: choice of Canadian Lutz spruce, cedar, or redwood
Back and Side wood: choice of Indian rosewood, padauk, palo escrito or either Peruvian or Mayan walnut
Neck wood: choice of Spanish cedar or mahogany, with ebony reinforcement strip
Indian rosewood bridge (padauk on request)
Binding is your choice of the same wood used for the back and sides (except padauk), or either bloodwood or curly maple
Purfling: curly maple on the back and sides, alternating black/white lines on the top
Bone nut and saddle (Corian if bone is unavailable)
Nut width: 88mm with 9mm string spacing or 86mm with 8.5mm string spacing
Tuners: Hauser-style Schallers, cut to fit the 10-string headstock
French polish finish
Hard shell case.
If you prefer a 660mm scale, this is available as an option. It does not cost me more to build a 10-string with a 660mm scale, but the guitar's length exceeds the inside length dimensions of the cases I normally use, and I have been unable to find a good quality standard case with inside dimensions that will accept the longer guitar (but I'm still looking). So there will be an upcharge for a custom case until I can find a standard case that will fit. At the time of this writing, custom cases that will fit a 10-string range in prices from $350 and up.
Please inquire for price with optional woods or features. Prices for optional items, especially tone woods, vary depending upon exchange rate and availability.