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Ormsby CustomShop and Standard Series - Plus Our Philosophies and Thoughts

Want a new guitar? Fancy something different? Great!

Firstly, let's explain a few things:
We aren't your normal guitar maufacturer. We dont have a bunch of models with set specifications. You can have whatever you like. We are a true custom shop. We are not limited by boardrooms, accountants, or constrictive production techniques. What we won't do, is infringe on current trademarks (eg: a headstock design from one of the few major manufacturers), or do any work which may be morally offensive to the average person (use your imagination!). Everything else is fair game, and your imagination is the only limit.
We have two types of guitars: CustomShop and Standard Series. The CustomShop guitars are a little more expensive, take a lot longer to make, but offer un-matched levels of quality and imagination. Anything goes! If you want something which reflects your personality and playing style, with some fancy inlay to match, then a CustomShop instrument is for you. If you hate hearing the words 'no' or 'sorry, we can't do that', then the CustomShop is for you. If you want guitars geeks chasing you after every gig, just wanting to talk to you about your guitar, the CustomShop is for you :)
TheStandard Series are a little more subtle, and are limited in some aspects (some timbers not available, and no custom inlays). Our Standard Series is still more custom than most of the big brands 'custom shop' guitars. Maybe you prefer something very simple and elegant, thats cool too :)
Either way you go, the build quality is the same, and the same luthiers put in all the handcrafted work to build your dream.

Below we have listed some information about our guitars. Please note the full specifications for the Standard Series guitars are listed on the specifications.age for that range of instruments.

Timbers:
We source the entire globe looking for only the best timbers. Fancy a Brazilian Rosewood fretboard on a solid Wenge neck, set into a Honduras Mahogany body, with a 5A spalted Maple top? No problem. Prefer a single piece Alder body, with a laminated Rock Maple neck? Cool!
We have Brazilian Rosewood. We have Honduras Mahogany. We have piles of premium quality Maple tops, in Flame, Quilt, Birdseye AND Spalted figuring.
We have been fortunate to partner with numerous international and local timber suppliers to ensure only the best timbers are available. We do not have any standard timbers. YOU choose the pieces YOU want. It's YOUR guitar.

Neck Joints:
We offer all of the usual neck joints: Bolt-on, set in (glued) and through neck style, in any body shape. We also offer all the headstock joints used by all the big manufacturers: One piece necks, scarf jointed, and laminated.

Shapes:
We have a bunch of shapes which we use regularly, but we are equally at home crafting a hand built instrument to your own design. Don't feel limited to the usual shapes, why not work on a real custom design built to suit your preferences?
Our more commonly built shapes have been given names. Here is a brief description of each:
SS - The most popular shape. Think modern Strat. Think, SuperStrat! Flat top, or carved top.
VS - Our tip of the hat to Leo's most famous design. Double cutaway.
DC - Double Cutaway. Think earlier Junior style. This shape is available as a Standard Series instrument.
SC - Single cutaway. Our slightly tweeked version of the classy carved top single cutaway's design by Mr. Paul. Streamlined neck joint for better upper fret access. Flat top, or carved, you choose.
VT - If the VS is Leo's most famous double cutaway, the VT is his most famous single cutaway! Try it with a carved top to be different.
SX - Our newest shape. Very sleek. Looks as fast as a Ferrari. Extra large cutaway for extended fret instruments and Multiscale TM guitars. The SuperSUPERstrat! This shape is available as a Standard Series instrument.
V - Flying V. No more words needed.
Explorer - We used the classic old school design as inspiration. Hard rockers heaven!
Metal - \m/ \m/ Horns up for this one, the meanest of the bunch.

Headstocks:
We offer three headstock designs (both available in reverse format) for all our guitars, plus the option of a unique 'custom' shape to suit the main body of your custom guitar if you prefer. Anything is possible, so long as no trademarks are infringed. Tilt back, or straight headstock styles are available. Volutes are a favourite around here, not just for the classy looks, but added strength and durability.
Here are our designs. Feel free to design your own... after all, it's YOUR guitar.
Scoop (aka Sharkbite) - Standard or reverse format. A classy 3 per side design to suit nearly any body shape. Our trademark headstock design. The standard Scoop headstock is large enough for 7 string designs (3+4 machineheads), and can be modified for 8 string designs also (4+4 machineheads)
Blade - Standard or reverse format. A pointy 6/7 inline headstock with a sharp attitude.
VS - Standard or reverse format. A tribute to one of the most recognisable headstocks ever designed.

Scale Lengths:
By now, you should be able to guess what we are about to say... ANYTHING GOES! Prefer a shorter scale length for easier vibrato? De-tune to B, and need a Baritone style guitar? Want the best of both worlds with a Multiscale (tm) neck?
Scale length has an effect on the tone, playability, sustain, and feel of a guitar. Choosing the right scale length can make a good design on paper, become a fantastic design in reality. If you tend to down tune for a heavier/darker tone, consider an extended scale length (26.2" and 27.5").
Our most commonly requested scale lengths are: 24.75", 25". 25.5", 26.2", 27.5" and Multiscale (combination of two scale lengths with a splayed, or angled nut, frets and bridge).
What can you expect the difference to be between different scale lengths? Well, the longer the scale, the tighter the tone, and the faster the attack. The longer the playable string length (all other parameters equal), you'll notice more sustain, better intonated accuracy over the entire fretboard, and richer harmonics. Longer scale lengths also allow the use of thinner strings for the same string pitch, without compromising on tone.
Ormsby Multiscale TM fretboards feature the best of both worlds. Added bass string length (generally 27.5") gives a fatter, tighter, faster attack, and the treble side (generally 25.5") offers easier bending, vibrato, and 'shredding'. The fact the fanned layout of the frets matches the natural arc of your forearm whilst playing, contributes to easier bar chords, more accurate sweep runs, and less wrist and tendon complaints.

Electronics:
All the guitars and basses we build, come standard with our own handwound pickups, or alternatively, at no extra cost, pickups from Seymour Duncan, Dimarzio, or EMG. Other pickups are available on request. Piezo, synth, active, passive, etc etc. One of our clients has contracted us to build a piezo loaded Floyd Rose bridge, to fit into a passive pickup loaded guitar, with a seven band Bluetooth wireless module, synth modelling, on board tuning, AND optic fibre inlays! Nuts? Totally! Achievable? Certainly. Fancy a Koas pad or inbuilt onboard effects? How about fibre optic side dot markers, that can change three different colours depending on your mood? Lets do it!

Inlays:
We use a variety of shell (both natural and reconstituted), stones, timbers, metals, and synthetic materials to achieve the stunning inlays found on Ormsby guitars. No inlay work is too big, nor too small. Fancy some simple dots? Sure. Prefer a fretboard scene depicting the Last Supper? Bring it on! Challenge us with your inlay ideas.
Our trademark 'Shark' inlays are a favourite with our clients. A elegant design shows off not only our handiwork, but an array of beautiful shells and stones hand picked to colour match (or contrast) with the main body colours or themes.

Finish:
We offer three types of finish: Natural - our own blend of oils to seal the timber, whilst still allowing the feel of the raw timber, Nitrocellulose* - for those that prefer the older style lacquers in any colour that age with time, and Two Pack - for the ultimate in durability and shine. All our finishes are thin skin, to allow the timbers to vibrate rather than be choked by a 'wrapped in plastic' style finish.

Sounds:
Nearly last, but by no means least, is the tone of your instrument. Prefer more mids? Looking for a heavy rock tone? Crying for the blues? Downtune to Drop C and need more bottom end with being flubby? Let us work with you to achieve that tone in your head.
By carefully selecting the timbers, and matching those unique pieces with our own handmade pickups, you are sure to own the ultimate players guitar.
All the materials used to construct an electric guitar contribute to the tone. As a general rule, here are some estimates on the areas and parts of a guitar and how much they actually contribute. Of course, all percentages are to be taken as a rough guide:
Pickups - 25% (Hotter pickups override the natural tone more, especially with active systems)
Body wood - 20%
Top wood - 15%
Neck wood - 25%
Fretboard - 5%
Bridge type - 5%
Scale length - 5%
Neck joint style - 5%
Other (nut, machineheads) - 5%
If you know your mathematics, you'll notice thats more than 100% tone. Yes we do have more tone that the others ;)

Family:
We are friends with our clients. Actually, it's more than friends, we consider them family. It's extremely hard to communicate with each other over an extended period of time, building a dream instrument, and not become 'mates' with each other. That's how it should be, right? We like the fact we can visit a town or city we have never been to, and know that a client is just a phone call away.
We offer a generous repeat customer loyalty discount for those that feel the need to own two or more ultimate guitars. Try that out with your big box mass produced guitars. Ownership of an Ormsby guitar or bass opens up vault of gear and support when you are enterring the studio to record, or have a big gig planned.
The Ormsby Family extends throughout the world. Perth, our home base is obviously the number one city, closely followed by the east coast of Australia. We also have numerous guitars throughout the USA, Canada, UK, Europe and Asia.
For those who truely want the Ormsby Family experience, we have a range of merchandise only available to owners, including jacket patch sets (we call them 'colours'), and hardcover books featuring YOUR guitar. Of course we also have a standard range of merchandise including t-shirts and jumpers, hats and stickers.

Warranty:
For CustomShop instruments:

We offer the original manufacturers warranty on any premade parts (for example, bridges, or aftermarket pickups), and a full lifetime guarantee against faulty workmanship and materials on anything we have built. That's your life, or ours, whoever goes first!
EVERY YEAR, you are entitled to one full premium setup, at zero cost to you (except strings). There are two conditions on this free setup: You must supply the strings, and you must deliver the guitar to us.
At ANY time, you are also entitled to UNLIMITED truss rod, action and/or intonation adjustments. Same conditions apply. Read more about our warranty  here

For those not located close to our factory, note that we do travel throughout Australia every year, and visit the USA every 12-18 months. During these trips, we offer our servicing at zero cost. You are the faces of our products, it's the least we can do.

For Standard Series instruments:
We offer the original manufacturers warranty on any premade parts (for example, bridges, or aftermarket pickups), and a two year guarantee against faulty workmanship and materials on anything we have built.
In the first year of ownership, you are entitled to one full premium setup, at zero cost to you. There are two conditions on this free setup: You must supply the strings, and you must deliver the guitar to us. Read more about our warranty  here

For those not located close to our factory, note that we do travel throughout Australia every year, and visit the USA every 12-18 months. During these trips, we offer our servicing at zero cost. You are the faces of our products, it's the least we can do.

Where:
We ship worldwide. All guitars are built to order. You cannot buy a new CustomShop Ormsby, without going factory direct, and dealing directly with us. No middlemen. No stores. Just you, and us, working together. You WILL talk directly to the person making your dream guitar. Isn't that how it should be?

For Standard Series insturments, we are slowly accumulating authorised stores throughout Australia that will be stocking our guitars. They will be available in stock, allowing you to 'try before you buy'. When there is not a store in the state you live in, you will need to order factory direct. You will be able to order a Standard Series guitar with some custom options: exotic tops, different colour paintwork, hardware colour (Chrome, Black or Gold), etc.

Whilst we are located in Perth (the most isolated city in the world!), we regularly travel to the east coast of Australia, and the West coast of the USA (generally July/August each year) to deliver guitars to clients, and conduct 'meet and greet' days.

 

Ready for a quote on a CustomShop instrument? Check out our interactive online quote page.
For details and pricing for the Standard Series range of guitars, please visit here.

 

 

Visit the Ormsby Guitar Diary for pictures and details of guitars in progress.