11/05/2016

1970 Harmony-made Fender "Sovereign" Jumbo Flattop Guitar





If you know your Harmony guit-boxes, you probably know that this is an H1260 Sovereign with different detailing. Before and after Fender's in-house acoustic builds, they'd contracted with Harmony to produce "Fender" acoustics. This is one of the later versions and it sounds and feels, unsurprisingly, like an H1260 -- a ladder-braced, wide-body (16"), long-scale guitar that has just enough volume, bass, presence, and woody sustain to make it a classic.

The owner of this is just a bit of a nut for old Sovereigns and he has a few in different liveries. This one is an addition to that group and will be in fine company. Work on it included a bridge reglue, neck reset, fret level/dress, new tuners, reglue of the headstock veneer, a new truss rod cover, and a new drop-in bone saddle. It's turned-out full-sounding and easy-playing and is in good health overall save one small, old repaired crack on the back.




The board is rosewood with faux-pearl dots and is bound in cream. The neck profile is a little chunkier than average but not as big as the mid-60s upscale Harmony makes.



The tortoise bits all over are the real attraction -- let's admit it!


The bridge was originally bolted as well as glued, but I've removed the bolts after regluing it (they tend to split the bridges if the glue comes up). A new, drop-in bone saddle makes action adjustments easy-peasy as well. Harmony never located their saddles in the right place, anyhow!





Originally this had those old Fender "F" tuners, but one was missing and I couldn't get a good replacement, so I stuck repro-style Kluson tuners on instead. They're a lot more functional and look good enough.


The heel cap had deteriorated a lot. I like the factory strap button in the neck block, too!



I forgot to mention -- yes, this is a solid spruce over solid mahogany guitar.



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