I have written some posts about a commission for a guitar by Lucio Nunez.
I found Lucio Nunez by googling classical guitar luthiers in Texas. Looking at his web site, and listening to his guitars played by professional artists, I fell in love with his work.
So I called him, arranged to drive to San Antonio to meet, and we spent several hours one afternoon and several more the next morning selecting woods, rosette, tuning machines, etc.
Lucio is very passionate in his work. As an amateur steel string builder, we could talk on a good level, and he showed me things, taught me things, and I got to play one of his instruments as well. We became friends, and both of us intend to keep the friendship going - much to my advantage.
I was not demanding in any way of what I wanted. I'm not a very accomplished player, so I deferred to his judgement as to what he did with the guitar.
The bracing is lattice. Supposedly this gives a greater volume if I understand correctly. The guitar can be loud. I see it having a nice dynamic range.
Go to the "Listen" page on his website: http://lucionunezguitars.com/
for a taste of how his guitars sound - and look.
Thursday afternoon, I picked up the guitar. It meets all my expectations. It's beautiful, it sounds great, it plays nicely. It has great volume, so dynamically, it will be tremendous. I just need to learn to play it well enough to enjoy the craftsmanship that Lucio put into the work. Here are some pictures of the guitar that I took.
Western red cedar top.
Cocobolo rosewood sides.
Sloane tuners. These tuners are about $300 a set. Other than the wood involved, the tuners can be most important. Sloane makes very high quality tuning machines, and these are no exception. There is no slop in tuning. If reversing direction while tuning, you get the feeling that once you have the note you want, it doesn't matter if you tuned up or down. Tuning up is preferred, but I don't think it would matter here. The knobs are black as are the rollers. They have good weight to them - not being too heavy, but not light by any measure. I really like them already.
I love what Lucio did with the sides at the bottom of the guitar. It's subtle, but I like subtle, and I like precision. This is beautiful to me.
The headstock is unique to each luthier. Understated, but having taken parts of the Cocobolo that were left over from the back, Lucio put them to great advantage on the top of the headstock and on the back side as well. Again, I love the taste he has in his work.
Here's a close up of the purfling and binding on the top. Nice selection of colors to make the top look good. Notice the "rippling" in the cedar top that you can see. These are called medullary rays, and to luthiers, it's called silking. It's a waviness in the grain and indicative of a good quartersawn top.
I could not have picked a better luthier with whom to work. We became good friends and I hope to continue this friendship for the rest of my life. He's wonderful to work with.
Thanks for looking.