National Duolian Resophonic Guitar (1933)
National Duolian Model Resophonic Guitar (1933), made in Los Angeles, serial # C6507, Frosted Duco finish, steel body, mahogany neck with ebonized fingerboard, black hard shell case. Item # 7241
This early 12-fret "C" series Duolian hails from 1933, the deepest period of the Great Depression when instruments had to be built and sold as inexpensively as possible for their makers to stay in business. The Duolian was introduced in 1930 as the least expensive metal-body resonator National guitar; offered at $32.50 with a thin-gauge steel body and minimal appointments this model may well have enabled the company to survive the early 1930's. The steel body has a crystalline silver/green baked-on enamel finish the company called "Frosted Duco" and the first style "flat cut" F-holes. The natural-finish 12-fret mahogany neck is topped with a squared-off slotted headstock with the "National Duolian" logo stamped into the face with the serial number hand-impressed along the top edge. Tuners are the simplest flat-plate Waverly strip units with celluloid buttons. Despite (or perhaps because of) the guitar's status as an economy model, the Duolian is considered one of the classic Blues guitars of all time, and remains unsurpassed for an "authentic" slide and fingerpicked tone. These were also popular with early country players, and in all cases offered exceptional sound value for the price. This is an exceptionally fine-playing example, truly "Blues approved"!
Overall length is 38 1/2 in. (97.8 cm.), 14 1/4 in. (36.2 cm.) wide at lower bout, and 3 1/4 in. (8.3 cm.) in depth, measured at side of rim. Scale length is 25 in. (635 mm.). Width of nut is 1 3/4 in. (44 mm.). An excellent player with a great sound, This Duolian has just emerged with a fresh neckset ready for the next 75 years. All work is very cleanly done; the radiused fingerboard, frets, saddle and nut are new (the original cheaply made flat-radius dyed wood fingerboards often crumble when frets are replaced) but all else is original including the cone, biscuit, tailpiece and tuners. There is typical wear to the finish both body and neck but this is a fine gigging example of this classic National, in a better state of preservation than many and a better playing guitar than most! Excellent - Condition.
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