- electric guitars
Ron Thorn started Thorn Custom Inlay in 1993and by the mid 1990s he and his father were the inlay artists for the Fender Custom Shop. In 2000, after a few years of building necks and bodies for other boutique builders, Ron launched Thorn Custom Guitars with the Artisan series. Exotic woods, intense inlays, and ultra-custom features resulted in every Artisan being a one-of-a-kind. Building the Artisans was time-consuming and with a backlog of 100 Artisan orders, Ron decided to stop taking new orders for them in 2005.
In 2006, teaming up with John Gaudesi and Martin Bravo, a standardized model was offered with less options and a quick delivery. Based on the wood and pickup combination of Artisan #010, the Junior Ninety model was a huge success and was built thru 2008 when they too were discontinued to make way for the SoCal series.
After 10 years of operating out of a 1500 sq. ft. workshop under the bridge in Glendale, Thorn moved into their new 5000 sq. ft. shop in San Fernando in mid-2012 - corresponding with the introduction of the DeLuxe model. The DeLuxe is based on a hybrid of the Artisans and the Junior Ninety models, with a vintage flavor.
On July 1st, 2014, after 9 months of R&D/tooling/prototyping, the Grantura was introduced. The most challenging and labor intensive model to date featuring a full laminated construction body. In 2018, Ron ceased production of Thorn Custom Guitars and accepted the newly created position of Principal Master Builder at the Fender Custom Shop. 2 years later he was appointed Director of Master Builder Operations.
Over the years Ron Thorn was helped by a number of employees at Thorn Custom Guitars. Austin MacNutt joined full time in 2012 - doing woodwork & fretwork. Tony Ramirez joined in 2003 as a CNC Operator & Millworker. Martin Bravo worked on finishing.