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(the brand new Grand Panormo Model)
All about the bass:
The very first bass I ever built was a Panormo model. It’s a fantastic bass, but it was so large I haven’t made another in the 15 years since. So, it was a very cool opportunity to get a commission to build a bass very similar to that first instrument... but even larger!
This new and improved Grand Panormo model, or GrandPa, is modeled on a bass attributed to William Taylor which was built around 1800.*
GrandPa's outline is very similar to my first Panormo model, but it is about 1 1/2 inches longer in the lower bouts and has very deep ribs. The ribs are so deep that I had to modify my spindle clamps to put the bass together!
It is made out of some pretty excellent woods. Along with the fantastically Bear-clawed European Spruce top, I used a huge piece of Oregon Big Leaf Maple which was milled locally for the back. It is almost a one piece back with very small wings on the lower bout.
As with the original, the archings on both the front and back are very high and the plates are relatively thin by today’s standards. The center strip of the purfling is dark red, and although we wanted to keep it fairly simple in the tradition of the English basses, I did do a small amount of purfling inlay in the button region.
The Grandpa model has a 41 and 3/4 inch long string. This is longer than my typical basses, but the higher over-stand reduces the tension so the bass is quite relaxed feeling to play. The severe bend in the back makes Grandpa quite accessible despite its grandiosity. The bass is lovely sounding, sweet and articulate but when you want it, the big body produces big sound and has big projection.
The owner described it s "thunderous!"
String length : 41 3/4 inches.
Dimensions across the back:
Body length including button: 47 3/4 ”
Upper bout: 21 13/16”
C-Bout: 15 1/2”
Lower bout: 27 5/8 "
Rib at Neck: 6 1/8 "
Ribs Everywhere Else 9 3/8 "!
*Many thanks to Kieran O'Hara of O'Hara Fine Instruments in Brewster, NY, for being amenable to fulfilling the commission to measure and trace this fine instrument which he has for sale in his shop, and for doing a top-notch job of it.
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