Framus 5/59 Sorella, show model red-gold, 1960
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- Order number: 690
In the fifties and sixties, countless dance bands and small combos played in the many clubs and dance bars, because good music systems and DJs did not yet exist. Whoever was a guitarist and could afford it, played so-called show instruments with eye-catching design and varnish. Our model with its red-gold "extremely impressive show finish" (original text Framus brochure) is such a stage instrument and the rarest Sorella version ever. In addition to the red and gold version, there were also versions in black and gold and white and gold. Of course, all of them were personally approved by Framus production chief Richard Müller and this was confirmed by his signature on the soundhole label. All show Sorellas were offered for only two years, cost significantly more than the usual Sorella finishes and sold almost not at all. Except for the finish and bindings, it is identical to the standard Sorellas. Our guitar is stamped 60K, so it dates from October 1960.
The guitar has a spruce top and maple sides and back. The neck is also made of maple and has a truss rod. The top and back are of course arched. The intricate, multi-layer lacquer is perfectly applied. Beautiful two-tone bindings around the body, as well as creamy white around the neck, headstock and soundholes. The fingerboard is rosewood with pearloid dot inlays and already side dots (for the stage performer!). It has pearloid rectangle inlays in four frets and nice inlays also in the black lacquered headstock. Open tuners, polymer bridge and solid tailpiece with Sorella engraving.
Unknown. However, the guitar may not have served its intended purpose, because in this condition it was certainly not in professional hands and has guaranteed never seen stages or rehearsal rooms. However, it has been tinkered with a bit, because when we got it, cheap US tuner copies from the Far East were mounted and the original pickguard was missing.
All lacquer surfaces have been carefully and meticulously cleaned and bale polished, the body blown out. Instead of the US tuners, we refurbished, re-oiled and mounted open, original Framus tuners from the era. Fingerboard and frets were lightly stripped and oiled/polished. We replaced the missing pickguard: an unused Framus original with perfectly matching cream-white color now completes the guitar again. The tailpiece also received a polish. Finally, new strings were mounted and a basic setup was performed.
This magnificent Sorella is really a show instrument! Extravagant, eye-catching and very harmonious in appearance, it is still eye candy today. The varnish shines perfectly, the creamy white pickguard matches perfectly with the creamy white binding strip, string saddles and fingerboard inlays. After our work, the guitar is back to 100% original condition. Given its sixty years, it is practically in unplayed new condition. A few tiny lacquer cracks under a closed surface, a few micro-scratches here and there - all of this is almost invisible in the original and is actually only enhanced by the flashlight of the camera. Everything is, of course, stable and resilient, all glue joints bombproof, everything works as it should, fretboard and frets are as new. Playability is child's play and together with the low string action of 2 mm at the 12th fret, we have here a top player on today's quality level. The sound is mellow and warm, nicely balanced, woody and with plenty of sustain. Of course, this Sorella is a collector's item, very rare, not available in this condition and potential highlight of any collection. Yes, you can play it wonderfully, but this condition should continue to be preserved and in this respect it also fits in a showcase.
Overall length 42.1”/107 cm, body length 20.9”/53 cm, lower bout width 16.5”/42 cm, waist width 10.2”/26 cm, upper bout width 11.8”/30 cm; body depth 3.3”/8,5 cm, scale length 24.8”/63 cm (zero fret to saddle), fingerboard width 1.7”/4,3 cm at nut, 2.1”/5,3 cm at 12th fret; overall weight 2.280 g, string action on 12th fret 0.08”/2 mm.
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