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Lentz Reserve ‘56 S-Style-Preowned

Lentz Reserve ‘56 S-Style-Preowned

Price: $--SOLD

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hard shell case included

At 7.3 pounds, this guitar has the liveliness of very light weight construction, but also--paradoxically--the sustain and depth of a heavier guitar, meaning the tonal pallet is enormously broad. For the JR Reserve guitars Scott uses wood that has been aging in his shop for more than 25 years, the best of the best of his considerable wood reserves.

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If you came to CR Guitars and this guitar was on a stand across the room, you’d see a familiar shape. The two upper horns, three thin pickups, and tremolo arm; you’ve seen thousands, and played many times. If you're a guitar player, you know this guitar - or at least you think you do. But on the stand across the room is a Lentz JR Reserve, and I promise you don’t know this one. The resemblance to all the S style guitars you have known washes out when you pick it up and play those first few notes. This guitar is astonishing in every way.

In 1954 when the first S style guitars appeared on the market, they were thought of as a joke - a guitar design that would fade away quickly and be forgotten. Those early naysayers were wrong, to say the least, as any look through a current guitar magazine will reveal countless guitars from makers all over the globe that owe their DNA to the original S style.

Over the years millions and millions of S style guitars have been made, including countless instruments assembled from parts acquired from varied sources by guitarists themselves. Variations abound, with diverse guitarists and luthiers finding ways to personalize their S style guitars, and you find such guitars in all walks of music, from pure jazz to death metal.

However, having a great design doesn’t necessarily yield a great guitar, and it takes a very special kind of luthier to recognize the deeper possibilities and brilliance of a traditional guitar design; to work patiently over years and years to thoroughly understand that guitar’s potential. Scott Lentz is that luthier. He has been building his own S and T style guitars for many years, and keenly understands the grand potential of these instruments. In addition, Scott has restored, repaired, and refinished untold numbers of vintage S and T style guitars, and has long been the ‘go to’ luthier for work on such instruments.

Scott and his son bring over 60 years of experience to the guitars they make, and they are tirelessly focused on making uncompromising instruments. They bring their considerably mastery to all the instruments they make, but for the JR Reserve instruments, the goal is nothing short of perfection.


This guitar - this sublime and wondrous instrument - represents the pinnacle of what an S style guitar can be. On this particular build, I orginally asked Scott to craft a guitar that was a "tribute" to my beloved '56 Strat . My '56 has been with me since the early 70's and has seen me through all the touring and studio work I've done since it was acquired. I wanted to see if Scott could build a Reserve version of my baby, using his cabinet aged woods and his gifted skills.

At 7.3 pounds, this guitar has the liveliness of very light weight construction, but also--paradoxically--the sustain and depth of a heavier guitar, meaning the tonal pallet is enormously broad. For the JR Reserve guitars Scott uses wood that has been aging in his shop for more than 25 years, the best of the best of his considerable wood reserves. Like my ’56, the body is a single piece of lightweight alder: a rarity because it is very difficult to obtain a single piece large enough for a guitar body. It's also unusual for alder to be so light. The payoff for such a special piece of alder is remarkably warm, and responsive - yet incredibly articulate - tone.

Scott’s necks are among the best I have ever played, and this guitar’s full, soft V neck is both perfect and a joy to feel in your hand. The fretboard is also fantastically balanced across all the frets. And the figure in the maple is just extraordinary, with a visual depth that is striking.

The finish, of course, is immaculate, but for one tiny nick. A traditional burst with an elegant, deep chocolate fade that is so beautiful the photos can’t begin to capture it. The only way to fully appreciate the finish is to have the guitar in your hands.

This is, indeed, a very special guitar that will be a partner in music making rather than merely a tool, and I would expect it to be the new owner’s muse.

If you'd like to find out more about this item, just call or e-mail me. It would be my pleasure to talk to you about it.

Scott Lentz has an enduing reputation as a legendary guitar maker and restorer of vintage guitars. In fact, before he opened Lentz guitar in Southern California, he had restored hundreds of vintage instruments and had become widely known as "the" guy for vintage finish restorations. Lentz guitars are known for being deeply resonant, uncannily vintage in feel, and for having an expanded tonal pallet. Scott believes that the tone of great vintage guitars is due to the accretion of thousands of tiny details from (of course) the finest tone woods to the interaction of fretboard and neck materials. He is also one of the few electric guitar makers that takes the trouble to use hide glue in his guitars. He counts his vast experience with vintage guitars as the key to developing his ear for guitar tone, and for teaching him what a great guitar is all about. Scott is a restless spirit, ever in search of perfection, never content to rest on his laurels. He is the quintessential guitar maker as artist, passionate about bringing artful and musical guitars into the world. His son Scott, Jr. has now worked with his father for 20 years, and together they are the force behind some of the most finely crafted guitars you will find anywhere in the world.

CR Guitars is incredibly fortunate to have Scott Lentz and his son Scott Jr craft a very select reserve line of classic S and T style guitars. Each one is built using only woods that have been cabinet aged a minimum of 25 years or more. These guitars are built with the deepest knowledge of what these legendary models could and should be. Decades of experience have gone into discovering and executing the elements that give the best of the vintage Fenders their magic. Scott's obsession with every detail has helped him unraveled all the nuances to the magic imbued in vintage Fenders. A Lentz is truly what a Masterbuilt guitar should be. Everything is just is as you'd dreamed it would be. No detail is overlooked, from the chemistry of the lacquer to the handwound pickups, every part and procedure is done for a reason. It's really exciting to be able to share Scott's vision and creations with you.

Bodyalder, one piece cabinet aged 25 years
Colortwo tone sunburst
Neckmaple, one piece cabinet aged 25 years, uber flame 1956 soft V: 1.655-0.900 at the first fret – 9.5 radius
Dotsblack phenolic
PickupsLentz Custom Edition; front alnico-5 5.64k – middle alnico-5 5.70k - lead alnico-5 5.78k
Pickguard1 ply lacquered nitrate
HardwareGotoh; Tuners – Callaham; neck plate, mini pickguard shield – Lentz, strap buttons
BridgeCallaham Vintage S’ Model (standard Fender length trem arm)
Electronicsupgraded pots and capacitors (oil + paper)
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