Sign Guitars was founded in 1996 by Jochen Imhof in Aachen, Germany. The Sign Guitars range is largely based on classic electric designs but Jochen also makes unique custom designs as well.

Source: Sign Guitars catalog 2006.

Ron Smith

Ron Smith (born 1955) did a 4 year apprenticeship program to become a journeyman tool and die maker. He began making instruments in 1997 and was inspired by a Bob Benedetto TV show to start making archtop guitars. In 2008 he found himself unemployed so decided to put his efforts into making guitars and basses. Since then, he has taken his guitars to trade shows in Philadelphia, Pittsburgh, North Carolina, Florida, Massachusetts, and New Jersey.

Source: Ron Smith Guitars website (24 September 2020)

Santos Hernandez

Santos Hernandez (1873 to 1943) first apprenticed with Valentin Viudes before moving to José Ortega’s workshop. In 1905 he eventually took a position in Manuel Ramirez’s workshop where he made make Andrés Segovia’s famous 1912 Manuel Ramirez guitar. He opened his first own workshop in 1921 after having worked for Ramirez’s widow alongisde Domingo Esteso.

Source: Siccas Guitars - Santos Hernandez

Arcangel Fernandez

Arcangel Fernandez was born in 1932, he initially worked as a cabinet maker but in 1954 he became an assistant to Marcel Barbero in Madrid. When Barbero died in 1956, Fernandez began making his own guitars in Barbero's workshop. In 1959 Fernandez was joined by Marcelo Barbero's son Marcelo Junior and they went on to work together for the next 40 years. His reputation grew and he is considered one of the best ever Flamenco guitar makers. In 2007 (aged 75) Arcangel Fernandez stopped taking new orders. In 2011 (nearly 80) he officially retired and moved to the Canary Islands.


Musima was an East German instrument manufacturer located in Markneukirchen. This southern part of Saxony (the Vogtland), near the Czech border, has a long history as a centre of luthiery due in part to the nearby forests of spruce perfect for violins. The area was settled in the late 1600s by Protestant violin makers. Escaping persecution in their native Bavaria they established a violin makers' guild and by the mid to late 1800s Markneukirchen was the largest producer of violins.


Simms-Watts was a British amplifier brand founded in 1968 by David Simms and Richard Watts. David Simms ran a music shop in Ealing where Richard Watts also worked as technical director. Terry Marshall (son of Jim Marshall) also joined Simms-Watts in 1968. Simms-Watts launched a range of high quality instrument and PA amplifiers in 1969 and these were used by the likes of Mick Ronson and John Entwistle. In 1972 the company was bought by EMI Sound and Vision and produced amplifiers for a few more years during the 1970s - moving to solid state circuits to save production costs.

Source: Voodoo Guitar -  Oddball British Hi-Fi: Sound City & Simms-Watts Amps  (15 September 2020)


The Shane musical instruments brand was launched in the early 1980s. By the late 1980s the range included acoustic, electric and classical guitars. By 1993 the brand name was no longer in use

Sources: Shane catalog 1989; Trademark records 1982 - 1993

SG Systems

SG Systems was a division of the Chicago Musical Instrument Company (CMI). They made a range of guitar and bass amplifiers in the 1970s which combined tube power amp circuits with solid state preamps. They also made PA systems.

Source: SG Systems catalogs 1973 - 1975


Serlan guitars were made in Andalusia, Spain and distributed by Selmer in the early 1960s.

Source: 1963 Selmer Serlan catalog


Selva is a brand name of the Japanese Ishibashi Music company.


Sekova was a brand name of U.S. Musical Merchandise Corp of New York who sold Sekova acoustic guitars. electric guitars, basses, folk instruments, amplifiers, effects and accessories in the 1960s and early 1970s.

Source: 1967 - 1973 Sekova catalogs

Shergold Provocateur

Shergold Provocateur electric guitar

The Shergold Provocateur (SP01/SP02) was the second instrument released by Shergold following the relaunch of the brand by Barnes and Mullins. The Provocateur was designed by luthier Patrick James Eggle (who also does the set-up of the instruments)  and was launched in 2019. The Provocateur comes in 2 variations the SP01 and the SP02. Both are the same except for the pickup configuration: the SP01 has a P-90 at the neck and humbucker at the bridge, while the SP02 has 2 humbuckers.

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Sheldon Schwartz has been making acoustic guitars since 1992 - when he enrolledin David Freeman's guitar building course at Timeless Instruments. Shortly after the course he rented a space in a cabinetmaker's shop in Toronto and built three more acoustic guitars - seeking help and guidance from nearby guitar makers Grit Laskin and Linda Manzer. In 1995 he spent a weekend learning with Kent Everett at his shop in Atlanta. He continued making and refining his guitars and guitar building process: using the information from the different guitar builders in ways that suited how he wanted to build guitars. In 2002 he moved into a new shop: an 1800 sq. ft. building, built specifically for guitar making.


Clarence Eric Schulte (1923 - 2015) grew up in Malvern, Pennsylvania and first became interested in guitars in the 1930s. Shulte served in World War II in an engineering unit and after the war worked as an auto mechanic. In the 1950s Shulte began customising guitars and the went on to start building them. He usually made copies of the iconic American designs - like the Fender telecaster, but in 1957 he launched his own Schulte Custom design - a single-cutaway semi-hollowbody.

In 1973, he was hired by Philadelphia Music to repair guitars. He also began making his own versions of the Les Paul. In the 1980s he made ES-175 style guitars for George Thorogood which became the Schulte Custom CES-135 TD model. By the 1990s Schulte was established as one of the top custom guitar builders on the East coast and he went on making guitars into the 2000s.

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