2005 Flammang EL35

$4495 CAD ($3596 USD)
David Flammang is an Iowa-based luthier who has a well-earned reputation for creating modern guitars that capture much of the sonic vibe and character of the flat-tops built by Gibson during the Depression era. The EL35 is a small, deep-bodied, short-scale guitar that is styled after a late 1920’s Nick Lucas Special.

The origin of this model traces its roots to Flammang’s appreciation of singer-songwriter Greg Brown, another Iowan, who’s instrument of choice during his formative years was a 1928 Gibson Nick Lucas. Flammang was building this model prior to getting to know Brown, but his inspiration for it was that Nick Lucas that shaped so much of Greg’s music.

This example is a sweet and strong sounding guitar with a voice that is remarkably reminiscent of a good mid ‘30’s L-00. Single notes are nicely rounded, and the midrange is focused and strong. First-position chords have a full, transparent, and open sound with plenty or warmth and harmonic richness. It’s quite a lovely instrument and sounds significantly larger than it looks.

Red spruce top with scalloped X bracing and small maple bridge plate. Mahogany back and sides with a body depth that tapers from 4-3/8” at the endpin to 3-5/8” at the neck heel. Mahogany neck with bound ebony fingerboard, 24.9” scale, 1-3/4” nut, 2-5/16” spacing at the bridge. Soft-V neck carve that’s not unlike the feel of my own 1933 L-00 neck.

The fingerboard features a gold mother-of-pearl floral pattern that shows some 30’s Gibson influence and ivoroid bindings. The ivoroid continues around the body and headstock as well, and the top features half-herringbone purflings and rosette. Nickel Waverly tuners with ivoroid buttons, bone nut, saddle, and pins.

The guitar is in excellent condition and has seen no repairs. There is a small ding/scratch behind the bridge, and the finish shows a band of tiny bubble-like marks (like flat soda fizz) along its center that are likely caused by lacquer interaction with microscopic resin pockets in the spruce. It’s quite minor, but worth mentioning. Fretwear is light, finish wear is lighter.

Set-up in our shop with 12-53 strings and an action of just under 5-7 64ths.

With original hardshell case