The Bluesbox Collection

Turn of the Century Royal Concert Guitar (probably Lyon & Healy)

This guitar came to me in pieces. The previous owner was a repairmen at a guitar shop in Manhatten. One of his apprentices had taken it apart and was in the process of converting it to X-Bracing when he abandoned the project. So I finished the bracing and put it back together. This close-up of the face shows the solid spruce top, which had been repaired in a couple of places before I received it. The rosewood bridge is new, fashioned by yours truely. The guitar originally had a tailpiece with a floating bridge. The partial outline of the tailpiece can just barely be seen in this shot. The fingerboard is rosewood, with red tinted mother-of-pearl dots. I installed a Bridge Doctor to prevent the face from distorting. This shot also shows the wood inlay sound hole rosette. The slightly arched back is solid oak, as are the sides. There is an inlaid center strip, which is not the same pattern as the rosette. The single piece neck is mahogany. The peg head sports a Royal logo decal. The tuners shown here are modern replacements. The guitar came with a mismatched set of period tuners. One side appeared to have been original, the other side was made up of spare parts. The original tuners were solid brass, thus dating this instrument probably prior to 1920. The previous owner said he thought the guitar was made by Lyon & Healy, and I concur. I have been unable to find out any information on a "Royal" guitar brand from the period, but assume it was one of the many house brands manufactured by L&H.

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