We have two guitars being built for us by the great Sevilla flamenco maker Francisco Barba, so I stopped by the shop when I was in Spain to pay a visit. Francisco wasn’t there that day, but I got to hang out with his sons, Juan and Jose, and see the shop, which is quite spacious and turns out to be the home in which the sons were born, now converted to a shop. Unlike most makers, who make a few guitars at a time, the Barbas work in one large batches that they complete once a year, so that they spend most of each year preparing all the parts they will use to make a year’s worth of guitars. They prepare the woods in winter when the humidity is high, they assemble the guitars in the spring and they finish guitars in the fall.
Aside from the birds, one of the more interesting thing I noticed in the shop was the circular cutouts from the soundholes (see photos) that they keep so that if ever need to make repairs they have wood from the top of the very guitar they are repairing. We have a blanca and a negra coming from them which should be ready shortly.
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