- electric guitars
Rolf Spuler (born 1958) opened his first shop 'Gitarre-Stübli' in Winterthur, Switzerland in 1981, where he repaired and made guitars. Collaboration with Matthias Grob led to the development of the the PPP (Polyphonic Piezo Pickup) and the Polysubbass. In 1984 he opened Paradis Guitarworks with Matthias Grob and Iris Dressler - but Dressler soon left replaced by Jury Roten. In 1988 Spruler made the first prototype of his Avalon guitar design and it made its debut at the 1989 Frankfurt trade fair.
Spruler's creative genius was noticed by Ibanez who hired him as a designer. He went to live in Japan and designed the Ibanez Affirma (AFR) bass series, which used some of the design touches from the Paradis guitar. His guitars had many clever features: he used the "faux binding" fretting technique, whereby the fret tang and fret slots are cut so precisely that it looks like the fretboard has a wood binding, or his very clever yet simple D extension on the low E string. All this time Paradis was still active and in 1993 they employed Roman Affolter, Matthias Wolfensberger and Peter Scott. Heinz Fässler and Toni Brajdic to help out with production. In 1995 they made 57 Avalons in the first 6 months of the year, but they experienced a falling demand for high end instruments and closed down the workshop in the Summer of 1995. Over 250 instruments had been made up to this date. Toni Brajdic took over the remaining inventory and established the Andona company. Spruler went back to his original profession of an industrial designer but eventually Paradis Guitars was started up again and production of Avalons resumed in 2005 - Rolf created a new company Rolf Spruler GmBH to make them .
Rolf Spuler died in 2014 from mesothelioma aged just 56, but his long time collaborator Matthias Grob and other colleagues have managed to put Rolf's designs back into production.
Source: www.rolfspruler.com (archived 2009)
Source: Paradis.com (4 December 2019)