2010s Veillette Avante Gryphon High-Tuning 12 String Guitar

A friend bought this Korean-import-version Veillette Gryphon from Elderly Instruments at a reduced rate because it had a damaged heel. These are tres cool little boxes but the one-bolt connection at the heel is a terrible design flaw. They're 12 strings but strung in unison like a mandolin and with a short enough scale so they can be tuned almost an octave above a normal guitar. Standard pitch for these is DGCFAD above normal tuning -- so 10 frets up.

The sound is somewhere between mandolin, bandurria (because of the glued-on/pin-bridge setup), and a guitar with a capo on it. It's woody and sweet and extra-chimey. I think this would be great on record when you need just that little extra something that's not just a guitar with a capo on it. The benefit of being able to pick around mandolin-style for lead work is nice, too.

Repaired included: regluing a damaged section of heel and reinforcing it, adding two extra neck bolts so they could attach into fresh/undamaged wood and support the joint, a restring, light cleaning, and a setup.

Setup notes: the neck is straight and action is bang-on at 1/16" at the 12th fret.

Scale length: 18 1/8"
Nut width: 1 15/16"
String spacing at nut: 1 3/4"
String spacing at bridge: 2 7/16"
Body length: 15"
Lower bout width: 12 1/2"
Waist width: 7 3/8"
Upper bout width: 8 1/2"
Side depth at endpin: 3 1/2"
Top wood: solid spruce
Back/sides wood: solid mahogany
Neck wood: mahogany
Bracing type: x
Fretboard: rosewood, zero fret (yay!)
Bridge: rosewood, bone saddle
Neck feel: slim C-shape, ~12" board radius

Condition notes: damaged heel area that's repaired and two extra bolts in the back of the body. I would've added four like a Fender, but the neck block isn't large enough to do that. I also consider that a design flaw. They were going about the design on this a little too fancy/slick and without enough simple durability concern. I guess they didn't want someone peeking in the soundholes and seeing an extra-big neck block in there.


Unknown said…
According to Joe Veilette, the neck is not a traditional bolt-on. It is actually a horizontal dovetail joint. The single bolt acts as a pin to prevent sliding of the dovetail, and of course to tighten the joint.

I suggest that the guitar was either defective from the factory, or took quite a hit. The construction of the Woodstock version and the Korean version are supposed to be identical, and both have been used on the road by many performers without problems. All that being said, it looks like a excellent and well executed repair!
Jake Wildwood said…
This one was a standard electric-guitar-looking-neck-joint -- flat on flat.