4/26/2014

c.1945 Regal 12-fret "Parlor" Guitar




I was pretty psyched to see this guitar pop up for sale as I don't often see a lot of later-period Regals of this same basic design. This one definitely dates from the early to mid 40s but has earlier (read: 20s-30s) features including the cool multicolored inlaid rosette and "old style" 12 fret body shape. The difference between this and older Regals is that the neck shape is flatter on the back rather than v-shaped and the fretboard is actual rosewood rather than dyed maple.

I installed a new (compensated) bridge and bone saddle but reused the original wood pins. I also cleated up and lightly filled the top center seam which had separated (thus making a "hairline" crack) so that's good to go and also glued up a very tight side crack pictured lower in the post. The frets got a leveling and dressing and the whole thing also got a setup. It plays spot-on with a straight neck (3/32" bass and 1/16" treble at the 12th fret) and has that classic chimey, sustained Regal 12-fret sound that's particularly useful to folk fingerpicker and blues players.




The top is solid spruce with a "real" rosette but painted-on "purfling" along the top edge. The pickguard is original and while it looks like very thin mahogany I think it may actually be some sort of celluloid product.


Original bone nut, cool 40s-50s Regal decal, and original Kluson tuners. One button is replaced.


I like those clay or celluloid dots. The brass frets are original and are tall and thin in the usual Regal way. This has a 1 3/4" nut and a pretty chunky profile to the back of the neck. If you don't mind Kay "baseball bat" style necks then this is for you.



I added the new compensated rosewood bridge. This is better quality than the (dyed) birch one that was on it and... it plays in tune, now.



The back and sides are solid birch (no cracks on the back) and finished in this cool orangeburst coloring.


I'm thinking the neck is maple under that finish.


The neck set and angle was quite good as it came to me but I installed a bolt-through for the neck with a strap button on the outside for reinforcement. I only really do this if the neck has a "flat" back at the heel to make a button useful there. It's unobtrusive but gives peace of mind and tightens up on the inside with a generously-large hex nut that won't strip out.



Here's that repaired side crack. It was so tight that it took a bit of effort to open it up enough to shoot glue in and clamp it up.




Did I mention that original Geib chip case? It's in good shape, too.

3 comments:

Clifford Hall said...

Nice! What's the asking price?

Jake Wildwood said...

Hi Cliff -- $350 shipped. I haven't listed it yet... so shoot me an email if you're interested and you can have first dibs. :)

bonnybroome said...

If still available I may be interested.
Looks and sounds great