Posts Tagged ‘guitar builder’

The other day, I was surfing around the web to find some pricing on Solid Cables, and stumbled upon Moser Custom Shop, a dealer for Solid Cables. Of course, as the name implies, cables aren’t their primary business. So, curious, I poked around the site to see Neal’s wares, then I gave him a call to talk to him about his guitars and his build process.

Such a BICH

If you’re at all familiar with BC Rich guitars, then you may know that Neal Moser is the designer of BC Rich’s Rich Bich guitar; an eclectic 10-string that looks like a Vulcan lute from Star Trek – or at least something Spock might play. I’m not really into pointy guitars myself, but I actually dig the look of that guitar. There’s something about it that – at least to me – oozes a cool mojo.

And based upon the Bich, you have an idea of the style of guitars Neal designs. Most are pointy, very aggressive-looking guitars. Even his more traditionally-styled guitars have a decidedly edgy look to them. But that’s not a bad thing at all. In fact, Neal’s guitars have a very pleasing vibe about them. I look at Neal’s guitars, and the first thing I think of is that these guitars are meant to be played through a fully cranked amp. You’d be doing a disservice to the guitar if you didn’t let it breathe fire. 🙂

As the name implies, Moser Custom Shop specializes in custom-made guitars, and one thing I dig about his process is that everything is done by hand. Neal uses custom jigs and templates, and hand-shapes everything. No wonder I like these guitars. Just like Saint Guitars, which are made in the same fashion, each custom guitar Neal builds has its own character. There’s nothing production line about these guitars!

Here’s an interesting factoid: BC Rich and Moser Custom Shop have an agreement that allows him to  to continue to build Bich’s, though he has to call them his 10/6 model. Unlike the production line stuff from BC Rich, if you want a custom Bich, you can specify everything on a 10/6! How cool is that?!!!

Moser Custom Shop also has a line of Korean imports, much along the same vein as PRS, contracting out the manufacturing to a Korean builder. I think that’s totally cool because if a buyer really wants a Moser design but can’t afford the cost of a fully custom guitar, the imports cost a fraction of the price. For instance, the Korean MMI-T, which is based upon the MCS Scimitar model, costs $649 and comes with a case. That’s a steal! You don’t get all the electronic bells and whistles of the Scimitar, but you get a nice design and a capable guitar at a great price!

A little about Neal

Neal has been around quite awhile. He started working with guitars in 1964, first as a guitar repairman, and over the course of his career, has worked on guitars of some very famous cats, including Jimi Hendrix, Stephen Stills, and David Crosby. He formed Moser Custom Shop after a long stint with GMW Guitar Works, coming out of retirement to start the company with his wife Earlleen.

Neal is one of those personable guys that you just love to talk to. In fact, he’s one of the nicest people I’ve met in a long time. He’s got a very friendly and inviting demeanor, and he speaks his mind. Even after almost 50 years working with guitars, you can tell he has a passion for what he does, and that comes through in how he talks about how he makes them. Passion is what it’s all about to last this long in ANY industry, and Neal’s got tons of it!

For more information about Moser Custom Shop, visit their site! While there, give Neal a call.

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Wow! Goldie’s, my Saint Guitars Goldtop Messenger is really starting to take shape. In this next set of photos, Adam has cut and shaped the general profile for the Goldtop’s neck, and the neck is ready for final shaping. As the pictures progress, the neck curve is really becoming evident. As far as the neck profile is concerned, the radius at the nut is 12″. Adam typically uses a wide profile, but as my fingers are kind of short, playing up high on the neck can be difficult. So to compensate, Adam will gradually tapered the neck curve to be a flatter C near the body than at the nut. By the way, the wood here is rock maple.

Every time I see pictures of the progress of this guitar, I start to salivate in anticipation.

For more information on Saint Guitars, go to the Saint Guitar Company web site!

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When I first discovered Saint Guitar Company through a faithful reader of GG, “Crash,” I found their site, and kind of snickered at its design. But all I had to do was look at the pictures of the guitars, and I thought to myself, “Who cares about the site? Look at those beautiful guitars!” Well, that curiosity led me to contact Adam Hernandez, owner and luthier of Saint Guitar Company, and thus, we began a friendship that is evolving into a trusting partnership in our passion for his guitars.

In any case, I am proud to announce that Saint Guitars has just released its new web site! It’s not fully complete just yet, but the one thing that I want to point out that is the most special thing about the site that will be complete in the next couple of days is the “Your Dream Guitar” link. On this page, you’ll be able to spec your own guitar by filling out an online form! Once you fill out the form and submit it, Adam will contact you to discuss the guitar in greater depth. What a cool concept!

By the way, I wrote “The Back Story” mini article in the About Us area. I gotta tell ya, what this kid is doing is special!

Check out the new site at: http://www.stguitars.com!

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