James Romeyn Fine Guitar Broker proudly presents the first ever Thorell “Grand Auditorium” flattop guitar.  We commissioned this guitar for all the great attributes for which Grand Auditorium size guitars are loved: a superb balance of volume, playing comfort, and sweet tonal qualities.  Add highly refined Thorell artisan craftsmanship and the result is the beautiful piece depicted herein.  We love this Grand Auditorium so much that we commissioned another due late 2010.

Thorell “The Grand” Flattop S/N 09-067, Turquoise Rosette

Price lowered to $5495 USD with Cedar Creek hard case (see Corina case)

Includes 100+ hours primeVibe seasoning!

Dimensions

1. Waist: 9.875”
2. Length, Total: 41”
3. Width, Nut: 1.8125″
4. Length, Scale: 25.4
5. Length, Body: 19.8125
6. Diameter, Sound Hole: 4”
7. Width, Bout, Upper: 11.75”
8. Depth, Body @ Butt: 4.5”
9. Depth, Body @ Neck: 3.875”
10. Width, Bout, Lower: 15.6875”
11. Spacing, String @ Saddle: 2.3125″

Materials and Construction Details

  1. Saddle: bone
  2. Fingerboard: ebony
  3. Binding, Neck: ebony
  4. Rod, Truss: Adjustable
  5. Bridge: ebony, tapered
  6. Frets Clear/Total: 14/21
  7. Guard, Pick: clear plastic
  8. Pin, Neck Strap End: gold finish
  9. Headstock Face Laminate: ebony
  10. Top: one-piece red/Adirondack spruce
  11. Cap Trim, Back of Neck at Body: Ebony
  12. Purfling Side Body: ebony, maple, ebony
  13. Binding, Body/Center Back: quilted maple
  14. Headstock Inlay: “Thorell” in mother-of-pearl
  15. Side and Back Set: Wild Olive Wood from Zambia
  16. Finish: Nitrocellulose, standard on all Thorell guitars
  17. Rosette Inlay: One-of-a-kind, turquoise, walnut, ebony
  18. Pins, String End: ebony with mother-of-pearl dot inlay
  19. Purfling, Top/Back: ebony, maple, walnut, maple, ebony
  20. Markers, Position: hollow maple “frog eyes” on edge binding only
  21. Purfling, Headstock Side: maple toward front, ebony toward back
  22. Neck: book matched mahogany, black dyed boxwood center stripe
  23. Headstock Shape/Crown: tapered/Thorell signature multi-radius flattop crown
  24. Machines, Tuning: Gotoh Delta Series 510 sealed, 1:21 ratio, gold finish w/ black buttons
  25. Pickup: K & K Sound Systems “Pure Mini”, no controls, nickel-finished output serves as strap end pin
  26. Headstock Back Laminate: figured maple over ebony.  An ebony teardrop decoration at the base extends from the center radius of the back of the neck.  Touch and feel this piece to experience its beauty, timelessness, simplicity, and originality.

Narrative

Is the first always favorite? In this case maybe yes, maybe no. Yes, this guitar is special because it’s the first guitar Thorell built for us. No because if you look around here you might just notice that picking a favorite among these guitars is an exercise in futility. Fun, but futile.

After owning four Dreadnaughts and a pre-war Martin 0-16NY I contracted with Thorell for something sized between those two extremes. This, the first Thorell “The Grand” follows the long-established Grand Auditorium theme.

Each custom luthier offers their own take on the GA form, some better than others. The Grand is exceptionally pleasing in size, shape, curvature, and proportion. I know I’m biased. These are only one person’s opinions, worth exactly what you paid. For comparison here are images of two GA, Martin followed by Taylor, the two biggest fish in the guitar-building pond:

Martin GA cutaway
Taylor GA no cutaway
I invite readers to carefully consider the three shapes. It’s interesting to note the cosmetic effect of the overall package. You might presume we have a favorite among these three and you’d correctly presume it’s the Thorell. As usual, YMMV.

The Grand embodies perfectly all the best attributes of the GA size: a supreme balance for all flattop styles of playing, leaning toward a fuller and stronger bass than the smaller Corina. This particular guitar, even though it is smaller than my best Dreadnaught (Martin HD-28LSV, Adirondack top, Indian rosewood side/back set) plays louder and has a larger dynamic capacity. To say it has greater harmonic nuance and sweetness is an understatement.

B