bass guitars

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Oktober Guitars was an American guitar brand based in Baltimore, Maryland. The company was founded by Tony Leicht in the early 2000s as October Guitars and initially specialised in hand made custom electric guitars. The name was later changed to Oktober Guitars around 2011 and lines of imported guitars were introduced alongside the original US custom made designs. Leicht collaborated with various  players including Mark Gallagher and Doyle Wolfgang von Frankenstein to replicate their signature guitars. Oktober Guitars was sold a largee guitar maker in 2016 and they closed the brand in 2017.

Source: Oktober Guitars website (archived 2014)


.strandberg* Guitars grew out of a project called the Ergonomic Guitar System started  in 2007 by Ola Strandberg.  Ola had been making guitars since the mid eighties, but his innovative Ergonomic Guitar System designs quickly gained momentum through Internet forums. Soon he was able leave his day job in software, patent his EndurNeck™ neck shape and devote his time to making .strandberg* Guitars.  .strandberg* Guitars focus on egonomics with a headless design, comfortable EndurNeck profile, fanned frets and ergonomic body shape that enables multiple playing positions. .strandberg* Guitars' use proprietary hardware and often come in 6, 7 and 8 string models as well as basses.

Source: Strandberg Guitars website (17 September 2018)


Ian Noyce began making guitars as a teenager in the 1960s. He studied engineering but quit his engineering career in 1975 to become a full time guitar builder. Since then he has developed a range of electric and acoustic guitars, basses and mandolins which he makes in Mount Clear, Australia.

Source: Noyce Guitars website (14 September 2018)

Nova (USA)

Nova Guitars USA was founded by John Buscarino in the early 1980s. By the late 1980s the Nova range included electric guitars and basses as well as electro-acoustic steel-string and nylon-string models. Buscarino developed an improved releasable neck joint for his instruments (patented in 1989). Around 1991 the Nova Guitar Company was sold to Japanese investors -  so they could obtain the rights to this neck joint. Buscarino carried on making archtop guitars under his own name and the Nova USA brand was discontinued in the early 1990s. Since then Sears catalog company has used the Nova brand for Chinese made electric guitars.

Source: Nova catalog 1989.

Source: Buscarino neck patent

Source: Buscarino website


Steve Hinde (Hinde Custom Instruments) has been building custom made instruments since 2002. Hinde makes: mandolins, mandolas, octave mandolins, acoustic and electric guitars, resonator guitars, electric mandolins and electric bass guitars. Hinde has earned a reputation for building great custom mandolins and guitars.


Jim Normandy makes aluminum archtop guitars and basses by hand in Salem, Oregon. Normandy Guitars was founded in 2007. Normandy was previously a professional bass player and the first Normandy instruments were basses, but they soon added 6-string guitars to the line-up. The Normandy arcthop guitars pay homage to the classic Gibson and Gretschs design but there is also a telecaster style Normandy Alumicaster model.

Source: Normandy Guitars website (5 September 2018)


Dave Bell runs Nolan String Works in West Yorkshire, UK. Dave began making guitars in the 1980s where he established his own workshop in his garage in Carmel, California. In 1989 he began selling instruments, Dave makes one of a kind instruments to custom order including electric, acoustic, classical, archtop and bass guitars.

Source: Nolan String Works website (4 September 2018)


Carey Nordstrand began instrument making with Traveler Guitars in 1993, and designed several guitars while working there. Nordstrand then trained with Steve Azola in 1996, then going on to work with Suhr Guitars in 1998. He started making Nordstrand basses in 2002, and word spread of the Nordy-J model via the forum. Carey Nordstrand started winding his own pickups to use with his own basses, but soon began selling them to other luthiers and began making guitar pickups in 2004. By 2017 Nordstrand Audio were also offering guitar and bass pedals.

Source: Nordstrand Audio website (4 September 2018)


Norma brand guitars, basses and other instruments were made in Japan for distribution by Strum and Drum of Wheeling, Illinois from 1957 to 1972 at least.

Source: Norma catalogs


Don Noble was an accordion player in pre-war Chicago who founded Don Noble and Co. Inc. a musical instrument distribution company in the late 1930s. As an importer of Italian accordions he was in an ideal position to import Italian made guitars when many of the accordion companies switched to making them in the early1960s. Intially Noble distributed Crucianelli made electrics but by 1963 the company had agreed a deal with Wandré to make Noble branded guitars. By the mid 1960s Noble guitars were being made in Japan. There were also Noble branded amplifiers

Source: Don Noble catalogs 1966 - 1967


Noah Guitars started in 1993, when Renato Ruatti and Giovanni Meli designed a cutting-edge electric guitar which combined the metal construction of the National Style “O” with the body style of the Fender Telecaster. The initial plan to use a chrome plated brass body was soon abandoned in favor of an aluminum body and in 1995 Mauro Moia became involved in the project. The first Noah aluminum guitar was made in 1996. By 2016 the Noah range included guitars, basses and lap steel guitars

Source: Noah Guitars website (24 August 2018)


Nevborn guitars is the brand of Swedish luthier Fredrik Nevborn. Nevborn graduated with honors from the Roberto-Venn School Of Luthiery in 1996 and specialises in unusual electric guitars including multi-neck models and 8 string baritone guitars. Nevborn Sleipner XL 8-string guitars were used by Meshuggah.


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