I've had three Pimentels and each one of them was a great guitar. My first Pimentel was a prototype for the folk size steel string model built by Lorenzo, the same guitar that was reviewed in Acoustic Guitar magazine. Being a proto it had a few issues as covered in the review, but was a really comfortable small bodied guitar. When I heard Lorenzo was missing it (it was his baby afterall) I traded it back to the family for a really nice classical cutaway. The classical was a custom order that had never been paid for, so was being sold. It had a red and green motif on the rosette and I thought of it as my Christmas guitar, even named her "Chiquita." Chiquita was an excellent guitar, nice sustain, warm, mellow and volume to spare-she had something special to offer for classical, jazz and fingerpicking. Hard times hit, lost my job with a mortgage to pay, and I sold Chiquita to a collector back east and greatly missed having a Pimentel in the house.
I went a few years without any guitar and felt disconnected, so bought an old Gibson archtop (L1) from a musician listing it on Craigslist. We sat in his living room talking about vintage guitars when the subject of Pimentels came up. When I told him about my love for these great family-built guitars, he grinned and pulled out his "everyday" guitar from a nook behind the fireplace (!) It was an old Pimentel student model classical dating from 1989. The cedar top was beat up from being previously owned by a professional flamenco player and looked very much like Tommy Emmanuel's trade mark Maton guitar with worn finish and gouged surfaces in almost the exact same places. She had an under saddle pickup installed and a big screw hole where a guitar strap stud was once attached to the neck's heel. But that old Pimentel, oh, the sweet tone...and she bore the scars of a life on stage, retired but still ready to be played, any time, anywhere..
So fast forward a year and I'm taking lessons at a local guitar store when the owner says, "Hey, you mentioned you like Pimentels...I just got one in yesterday, it's going to be hard to sell, but you might like it." And he brought in the old Pimentel, the same one I drooled over in that living room, built in their small shop on Lafayette Drive. The owner put it up for consignment at the guitar store. The shop owner/teacher told me the Pimentel would be difficult to sell with the damage to the top and it's overall "well-played" condition. So I asked, "How much?" We settled on 3 hun and I played it right away on my lesson that day. As soon as I got her home, she got a good thorough cleaning and polishing-and a soothing salve of hand rubbed shellac on her wounded top (just a light rubbing to protect the worn wood). A new set of D' Addarios gave her back her voice. Now old "Scarface" sits by my desk ready to play any time. She's light as a feather, her tone warm and inviting. In her retirement as a player's old friend, she sings out sweet and mellow and even gets a hug now and again when her voice is right in tune with my touch. I love my Scarface. I love Pimentels.
So, yeah, I have some experience with Pimentels. They're great guitars, built in a family environment. In a small shop that smells like wonderful, fresh sawn tonewoods and craftsmanship permeates everything.
Last edited by ironvic on Mon Dec 24, 2012 7:32 pm, edited 2 times in total.