electric guitars

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First Act is a music instrument brand often associated with entry level or student instruments. They have a limited edition series made by luthiers in Boston, as well as their main range of non-USA made budget guitars.


The company was founded by Leo Fender as Fender's Radio Service in late 1938 in Fullerton, California, USA. While repairing musical instrument amplifiers in his electronics workshop he noticed their design flaws. He began making a few amplifiers using his own designs or modifications to designs. By the early 1940s, he had teamed up with another local electronics enthusiast named Clayton Orr (Doc) Kauffman, and they formed a company named K & F Manufacturing Corp. to design, manufacture, and sell electric instruments and amplifiers. Production began in 1945 with Hawaiian lap steel guitars (incorporating a patented pickup) and amplifiers, which were sold as sets. Leo Fender decided to concentrate on manufacturing rather than repair. Kauffman remained unconvinced, however, and they had amicably parted ways by early 1946. At that point Leo renamed the company the Fender Electric Instrument Company.


The Japanses Fernandes brand was first used in 1969 on flamenco guitars. The company expanded to produce a range of acoustic and electric models, and became Japan's largest maker of Fender copies. The 1970s Fernandes Stratocaster copies were well regarded. In 1992 Fernandes USA was established in Los Angeles, California and in 1996 the Fernandes USA Custom Shop was founded - but it has since closed.


Farnell Guitars Inc. is a Calfornia based electric guitar brand, previously known as Farnell Custom Guitars. Farnell sold USA made as well as imported instruments.

Currently Farnell makes the Electra-lite Series Guitars with patent-applied for molded bodies made of High Impact Polystyrene. These plastic bodies are ultra light (approximately 1/3 to 1/2 the weight of similar sized wooden guitars and basses)


Kent "Carlos" Everett has been building guitars since 1977 and is mainly self-taught. During the 1980's, Everett worked for and later owned the Atlanta Guitar Works - the premier repair shop in the area. While repairing guitars during the week Kent was also making guitars in the evenings and weekends. He was making a variety of archtop, semi-hollow, solid-body electrics, acoustics, Dobros & mandolins at the time and even patented an electric guitar design. In 1990 Everett was able to close the Guitar Works and began building full time - opening Everett Guitars a one man workshop focused on handmade high-end acoustic guitars. By the mid 1990's Everett Guitars was making over 50 guitars a year with a network of dealers across the USA and Europe. Everett launched the Laurel Series in 2000 - these guitars (128 in total) were made in collaboration with Terada in Japan.


Jim English began making guitars in 1993. As a player with nearly 60 years experience he had a good idea of what works well and sounds good. Building one at a time, by order means customers can choose neck dimensions, scale length, pick ups, fret board radius, color, flamed or plain maple wood, etc.. Jim English is best known for his Gretsch 6120 style laminated hollow body electrics and has even published a book on making this style of guitar.

Source: Jim English Guitars website (19 April 2017)


Dodge Guitar Founder, Rick Dodge, has over 35 years of experience starting in 1975 as an Apprentice to Guitar Builder Paris Banchetti in Miami, Florida. As an apprentice, Rick mastered instrument building and repair, including steel string guitars, classical guitars, violins, cellos, and the viola de gamba. As a young person, it was in this apprenticeship that he learned the use of hand tools as taught by an expert and developed a sense of professionalism in master woodworking wherein excellence in all creation, fabrication and repair work is paramount. In 1995, based on Rick's patented design of modular electric guitar, the Dodge Guitar Company was founded in Tallahassee, Florida. As owner and president, Rick personally developed instrument design and prototypes, and entered into limited and exclusive production of Dodge Guitars.

Source: Dodge Guitars website (24 March 2017)


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