4/27/2014

c.1963 Hopf Gagliano 12-fret Classical "Parlor" Guitar




Update 2015: The "big brother" of this guitar is right here (click link).

Funky West German guitars (read: Framus!) have always been interesting to me since I started playing and scrounging them at flea markets and tag sales. This one arrived in the same manner and it's a curious little thing: it has a Framus-style super-laminate neck (these are 100% stable... you can probably run them over with your car and have no issue) that's bolted to an all-laminate 12-fret, 13" lower bout body that's shaped in a vague interpretation of those gut-strung early-1900s German parlor guitars. It's like a retro-futuristic classical for the 60s. I'm pretty sure this came out of the Framus factory, by the way, and it has dating inside to May of 1963.

My work on it included a fret level/dress, cleaning, and setup with a fresh set of D'Addario Pro Artes. It plays well and has a modern-feeling classical neck, by which I mean flatter on the back profile and thinner front-to-back compared to older classicals. It's also got a 1 7/8" nut and shorter 24 1/4" scale which makes it feel really cozy in the lap. Soundwise -- not bad for its size and materials! It's definitely more of a "folk" classical as it has that early, ladder-braced gut-strung voice which is boxier than a full-on Spanish-style guitar.





The nut is a little dilapidated, but after setup, quite functional. The tuners have a replaced button and one re-glued broken button, but work just fine as-is.


I'm fond of the big slab rosewood boards I'm familiar with on these super-lam necks.


The original rosewood classical-style bridge is perfectly functional with its weirdo curled-over aluminum saddle.


There's a tiny "crunch" in the top layer of this laminate top and someone painted this cute little clef right over it. It's stable... you can really abuse laminate if desired.





It's easy to adjust action with this guy... simply un-bolt the neck and shim (or choose not to shim) in the front of the neck pocket. This has a tiny shim to angle it back and put action right at 3/32" at the 12th fret (standard classical action). It feels good at this and any lower and you'd have buzzing unless you've got an extremely light touch.




Oh, yeah... original chip case, too.

2 comments:

Unknown said...

I have the exact same one. Seems to be in a little better shape.

Cassandra Mohr said...

I just picked this same guitar up at goodwill for 10$. love the sound, the narrow, super wide neck, and the low action.I've been looking everywhere online and haven't been able to figure out what specific guitar I have. the info usually found In the sound hole is missing. What is the model and year? how much is it worth? thanks!