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Sexauer JB-16
 
An innovative small jumbo with a multi-scale fingerboard and an asymmetrical body.
August 23, 2023
 

Northern California luthier Bruce Sexauer offers flattop guitars in a large range of body sizes. He recently brought three guitars into the Peghead Nation video studio, and we’ve already taken a look at the smaller FT-L00-JB/2 and JB-CN. In this video, Bruce and I discuss his largest model, the JB-16, and I demonstrate it by playing it solo and in a duet with Peghead Nation instructor Doug Young, who played the JB-CN.

The JB-16 has a width of 16 inches across the lower bout, and like Bruce’s other JB models, it features an asymmetrical design, with an off-set waist, a multi-scale fingerboard with fanned frets, and a slanted bridge. As a custom maker, Bruce offers many wood combinations, but this JB-16 is built with gorgeously figured Brazilian rosewood back and sides and a wide-grained Adirondack spruce top. The guitar’s relatively subtle appointments include small dot position markers in the ebony fingerboard, flamed maple purfling, and a multi-ring rosette. Like the other two guitars we’ve featured, this JB-16 includes a sound port in the upper bout, as well as Schertler open-gear tuning machines. 

The JB-16 is the boldest guitar of the trio of instruments Bruce brought along. As a rule, I like responsive, powerful guitars with a large dynamic range, and this JB-16 didn’t disappoint. It is a superb fingerstyle instrument, able to respond to a soft touch, deliver the complexities of low tunings, and provide enough volume for unamplified performances in intimate settings. Even though I don’t typically play multi-scale guitars, the fingerboard on the JB-16 didn’t take much getting used to, and I enjoyed the slightly looser tension of the treble strings. Simply put, the guitar had a huge sound, both in terms of volume and its large frequency spectrum. 

Although Bruce continues to take the occasional custom order, most of his output is now found in “spec” guitars such as this one. Considering the success of this JB-16, it’s clear that Bruce’s 50-plus years of guitar making have resulted in an ability to build spectacular instruments that will delight many guitarists without the need for individual modifications. 

SPECS: 13-fret mini-jumbo body. Adirondack spruce top with X-bracing. Brazilian rosewood back and sides. Honduran mahogany neck. Ebony fingerboard and bridge. Multi-scale fingerboard measuring 25.4 inches on the bass side and 24.9 inches on the treble side. 1¹³/₁₆-inch nut width. 2⁵/₁₆-inch string spacing at the saddle. Schertler tuning machines. Made in the USA. $22,000. sexauerguitars.com

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    ● Courses
    ● Live Workshops
    ● Instructors
    ● Sample Lessons
    ● Notation Guide
    ● For Beginners
 
 
    ● Vintage Vault
    ● New Gear
    ● Fine Lutherie
 
 
    ● Workshops
    ● Advice
    ● Repertoire
 
 
    ● Recordings
    ● Events
    ● Breaking News
 
 
    ● In The Studio
    ● Live Onstage
    ● Backroom
 
 
    ● New Products
    ● Inside Look
    ● Performances
    ● Partner Pages
 
 
© Copyright 2024 PegheadNation.com