Dyer Harp Guitar Walnut-Upgraded Style 4
Stunning sound, superior quality
I’m proud to offer this fine 100% hand-made in South Pasadena, California instrument, my first listing of a “New Dyer.” The Dyer name is now under trademark, and owners Scott Holloway and Jim Worland take the legacy quite seriously. While there are a few modern improvements and cosmetic upgrades – like the wonderful walnut back and sides on this specimen – the intent is to capture the Larson brothers’ original aesthetic and tone, at an affordable price. It has proven a challenging goal, but in this instrument I believe they have achieved it!
Simply put, fit and finish (a light satin finish on this one) is very fine, every shape and line is precisely copied from one of Scott’s many vintage Dyers, and, most importantly, tone is classic Dyer from top to bottom!
Jim (who built this one) has been subtly finessing his bracing and seems to have found the magic bullet. The main strings are gorgeous all up and down the neck and transition seamlessly to the sub-basses, where they remain big and bold to the lowest string (currently strung with my DR medium SB set), even when it is slackened to low E. Punch, volume, beauty, complexity – it has it all!
In comparing to a standard mahogany Style 4 built at the same time with the same Alaska Sitka top, I found this one slightly louder and warmer (“rounder”?). It’s not “better,” just a matter of taste. But the gorgeous walnut back kicks it up a notch! The orange tops of these Style 4 models often display slightly different colors (again, a matter of taste). To my eye, it’s nicely toned down on this particular instrument. And the investment in custom wood purfling (rosettes and back strip) that duplicates the original Larson Dyers is much appreciated!
The neck is contoured nicely somewhere between the vintage Dyer it was patterned on and modern expectations, and is quite comfortable. The adjustable truss rod allows it to be shallower than its vintage predecessor. Be aware that it does have the traditional 1-7/8” nut width.
Full specs are below. It comes with a gig bag and no electronics (easily added). My full 48-hour approval period applies, with the company’s standard limited lifetime warranty as long as you own it.
For those looking specifically for the best possible vintage Dyer sound, this is without question the closest you can currently get for anywhere near this price.
Bravo to the 21st century Dyer Harp Guitar Company!
- Gregg (Sir Gregory) Miner
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