1999 Christopher Dean 

Woods: lovely aged Brazilian rosewood and perfectly sawn alpine spruce, French polish. Honduran mahogany neck. Dean rosewood is CITES certified.

Miscellany: 650mm scale, 53mm nut, 43mm string spacing at nut, 57mm at saddle. Just under 4mm bass string height at 12th fret. Plenty of saddle for future adjustment if needed.  TKL type case. Tuners are considered to be Rodgers.

Condition: very good. The setup and neck angle appear to be original. The French polish on the back and sides is still luminous, to the great advantage of the extraordinary set of Brazilian rosewood. There are two cleated, non displaced back cracks and some very minor clouding in the shellac, in places.  The top shows normal wear for a guitar of this age. While the nail marks are numerous below the trebles and scattered elsewhere, a collector who hopes to possess a perfect Dean guitar should know refreshing the top polish would makes these superficial traces disappear. They are hardly visible except when subjected to a harsh cross light.

Comment: my experience with Christopher Dean’s guitars is less than his country mate, Kevin Aram. I hold these two in equal thrall as being of the top five British luthiers in the last thirty years, if not the best two. This Dean is a little heavier than my last Aram and deeper, as Kevin likes his Torres dimensions. I would venture to suggest the sound of this guitar is a little bolder and slightly more rounded in intonation than the spruce Aram that just came through. But the reason to compare them is that they have a very similar voice. For traditional, fan braced guitar purists, the trebles are the gold standard. Bright, clear, intelligent, understated when rest strokes are applied, with warmth and mesmerizing vibrato, this is what these builders stake their greatness on. As much fun as a lattice guitar or big double top is to play, this is the guitar one comes home to  and reaches for when the music is private and serious. It is not too much to say there is a sensuousness that is available to be drawn out that a lesser guitar, or perhaps a new guitar,  cannot offer.

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Price: $6595
Sale Price: $5595

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