Tuesday, 5 February 2013

BJ & Byrne Roundhouse electric guitar handcrafted in London, UK

BJ & Byrne Guitars were started in 2006 by luthier Brian "BJ" Troup and financier/guitar enthusiast Tommy Byrne. Their range of electric guitars are all named after famous British music venues, and thus we have the Cavern, Marquee, Apollo, Troubadour and - as seen here - Roundhouse models. These guitars have earned themselves rave reviews for their playability, build quality, and vintage-style tones.

BJ & Byrne have also been developing an exciting new technology to produce what they call "The Green Thing". To quote from their website, this technology:
... organically turns soft woods, such as Pine into a hard, denser wood. This technology also increases the stability of the wood by over 80%. Essentially, this intellectual property is able to effectively limit the amount of moisture absorbed in and expelled out of the wood to unheard of levels. Consider a guitar neck, body or in the case of an acoustic guitar, it's Sitka Spruce soundboard which was not affected by the climate. No warping, bending, expanding etc, all of which constantly tests the integrity of the guitar build and constantly throws your axe out of tune.

So now, imagine a guitar that is a little bit lighter, has tremendous tone and sustain that does not dry and crack in the winter or in any dry climate as well as being impermeable to moisture in humid environments. NOW, on top of all of that, IT'S MADE FROM PINE !!! One of the most abundant natural resources on the planet!

Though all standard handmade BJ & Byrne electric guitars are made out of English Ash and Mahogany, we are custom building guitars using this new technology and looking to manufacture them on a larger scale once we have hit our stride in our Research & Development endeavours. We are also experimenting with this Green technology on acoustic guitars.
Indeed, this sounds like absolutely groundbreaking work in the world of luthiery, and I look forward to hearing more from BJ & Byrne on this topic in the future.

In the meanwhile, the above-pictured BJ & Byrne Roundhouse guitar is being offered for sale on eBay UK with a Buy It Now price of £380. It is a used guitar, but compare that to the price of £895 for a new example.

G L Wilson

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  1. Considering Oregon's dank climate, you reach for the truss rod almost as often as tuners, these fellows could be on to something?

    I've heard of this type of process applied to other materials with what looks to be initial success.

  2. Blimey, it's a modern guitar that I'd actually want to buy! It's like a tastefully updated version of a '70s John Birch guitar.



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