The great grandaddy of all 'Backlund' guitars.

Discussion in 'Other Guitars, other instruments' started by John Backlund, Sep 26, 2020.

  1. John Backlund

    John Backlund Poster Extraordinaire Gold Supporter

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    ...is this J. Backlund Design Co. Model 100 (Originally called a 'Sharq', before the numbered model designations were used), built by Bruce Bennett in Chattanooga, TN. as the prototype for all following model 100's. With the exception of the electronic components, this guitar was entirely hand-built and carved by Bruce. Screenshot_20200926-084047~3.png
    The photo, according to Kevin Maxfield, was taken at the 2008 winter NAMM show in Anaheim.

    Here it is with the original prototype JBD 'Backlund' model 200, also crafted by Bennett at about the same time as the100...
    Screenshot_20200926-084407~3.png
    Following model 200's were quite different from this prototype, but with the exception of electronic components, bridge, pickups (and about four headstock re-designs), it has remained very close in form to this original design.

    I believe that both guitars are currently owned by K. Maxfield, who was one of the several principal owners of the J. Backlund Design Co. back then.

    Yes, I like to talk about this stuff. ;)
     
  2. Injam

    Injam Tele-Meister

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    Looks like a fifty seven Chevy.
     
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  3. ZenGuitarist

    ZenGuitarist Tele-Afflicted

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    And I like to hear about this stuff. The Model 100 was the first guitar of yours I ever saw so for me it's really interesting to hear about its origins. Thanks for sharing.
     
  4. John Backlund

    John Backlund Poster Extraordinaire Gold Supporter

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    Probably the one that George Jetson drove.

    ;)
     
  5. John Backlund

    John Backlund Poster Extraordinaire Gold Supporter

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    A very early color marker comp of what would become the model 100, probably from 2005...
    Screenshot_20200926-093636~2.png

    A refined pencil concept drawing of what would be the model 100, still called a 'Sharq', and still with the vertically positioned neck pickup, which was shortly after placed in the radical, and initially problematic, slant that continues to the present..
    Screenshot_20200926-093412~2.png

    The prototype Model 100 being held at the 2008 winter NAMM show by the owner of a Minneapolis-based company called 'Oolala'(?), who manufactured a series of effects pedals at the time. I don't recall the woman's name, and I don't think they are in business anymore. JBD had arranged to display the two guitars at the Oolala booth that year.
    Screenshot_20200926-093352~2.png
     
  6. Deeve

    Deeve Poster Extraordinaire Silver Supporter

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    Last edited: Sep 26, 2020
  7. John Backlund

    John Backlund Poster Extraordinaire Gold Supporter

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    I don't know who is selling that guitar, but that particular model 200 is not a true prototype JBD-200. With the exception of it being metallic blue, it's the same as my own black/ivory JBD-200, which is also a hand-built custom by Bennett, but is in no way a true prototype, as these were almost all custom-ordered JBD guitars. The only true model 200 prototype is the one in my old NAMM photo in my starting post.

    As the model-200 JBD guitars were never serial numbered, it would be impossible to know in what position in their production sequence any of the estimated thirty of them were made in.

    The model 200 that is for sale is, however, a very rare guitar, and according to Bruce's own estimations, no more than thirty were made by him during his time with the JBD Co.

    $12,000 for any guitar is, to me, a crazy amount, but who knows, maybe someone would pay that kind of money for a one-of-thirty handmade instrument.

    Time will tell.
     
  8. tery

    tery Doctor of Teleocity

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    Leo did not do anything that you did not John .
     
  9. John Backlund

    John Backlund Poster Extraordinaire Gold Supporter

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    I believe there were only six JBD-400's made in total by Bruce Bennett, and only one finished in that metallic red, the other five being metallic blue. So that particular guitar is extremely rare, and in my opinion, probably well-worth it's asking price due to that rarity, but what do I know?

    Although these guitars were never officially serial-numbered, my model 400 is signed by it's builder, Bruce Bennett, and shows that it was #4 of the six 400's built by him, and finished on either July 9th, 2013, or possibly September 7th of that year, depending on how you interpret the dating sequence.

    IMG_20190228_191506343.jpg

    I own one of those six, very rare, JBD model-400's, a metallic blue example, but don't know who has the other four blue ones.

    I was very lucky to have spotted my 400 when it was being offered as a used guitar by an east coast dealer four or five years ago, and was able to buy it for about 3G's.

    The Bennett-built JBD model 400's were priced somewhere around the $4000-$5000 range when new, depending on the options ordered.
     
    Last edited: Sep 26, 2020
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  10. John Backlund

    John Backlund Poster Extraordinaire Gold Supporter

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    I don't know about that, Leo was a success, that's a big difference right there.
     
  11. ZenGuitarist

    ZenGuitarist Tele-Afflicted

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    That metallic red JBD-400, wow, that's just jaw-dropping. I'm speechless.
     
  12. tery

    tery Doctor of Teleocity

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    You are a success John to design and produce your own guitars .
     
  13. John Backlund

    John Backlund Poster Extraordinaire Gold Supporter

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    They weigh a ton though, the 400's were very heavy guitars. I think my example is 13-14 lbs.
     
  14. ZenGuitarist

    ZenGuitarist Tele-Afflicted

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    It depends on how you define success.
     
  15. tery

    tery Doctor of Teleocity

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    John - many talk , some dream , a few try , but you did it .
    Put one of your guitars in every Guitar Center and see what happens .
     
  16. ZenGuitarist

    ZenGuitarist Tele-Afflicted

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    I have a Les Paul that weighs 11 lbs. and I wouldn't trade it for anything. What's a couple of extra pounds?
     
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  17. ZenGuitarist

    ZenGuitarist Tele-Afflicted

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    I wish I could own an original, but a reissue will have to do. This is on its way to me right now:

    Backlund Model 100.jpg
     
    Last edited: Sep 26, 2020
  18. John Backlund

    John Backlund Poster Extraordinaire Gold Supporter

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    Nice! Hope they gave you a deal on it.

    I'm probably going to sell off one of my model 100's in the very near future. It's a red/cream Eastwood that was sent to me as a production sample a couple years ago. It just hangs on a wall and looks pretty, I've never plugged it into an amp.

    It's the one on the right...
    IMG_20200611_145446046.jpg

    I have four model 100's, three Eastwood's and one Retronix. not counting my crappy Chinese knockoff POS 100.
     
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  19. ZenGuitarist

    ZenGuitarist Tele-Afflicted

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    Thanks John. Mike and I have been having conversations about a few things.
     
  20. John Backlund

    John Backlund Poster Extraordinaire Gold Supporter

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    Sounds scary.
     
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