I recently bought a wonderful Park Encore from forum member fopa. Here is a pic:
I have a question about the bridge. As you may be able to see above, under the "B" string, the back edge of the bridge is a bit farther back, but there is no change at the front edge -- so the actual length of the B string is not compensated. The intonation on this string was quite problematic -- even as low as fret 5 the fretted notes were quite noticably sharp. So I filed the front edge of the bridge back under the B string to create a little notch, lengthening the scale length. This helped intonation tremendously. Just wondering if anyone knows why this wouldn't have been done in the first place. I assume this design supposed to make the compensation adjustable through filing, as I did. Does she always leave the compensation "unadjusted" on new guitars?
The bridge is quite low and I currently have 5 thin rosewood shims on each side. I am probably going to ask Shelley her make a new bridge of the correct height, and when I do will ask her to compensate the B string.
As your action rises, so does your need for compensation, especially the B string. The fact that there was material available on the bridge to deal with this problem is an indication that she has dealt with this before and that different people like different action heights. In general, youset the height first and then deal with the intonation. I'm guessing that the problem wasn't as pronounced before you raised the action.
By the way, I've had the set of Newtone Django strings on for a few days. They sound and play just like the Gitane set, so once again, the only difference I can find between the two is the packaging. On my guitar they sound better than the Argies.
You know our paths have crossed before -- I run that Sugar in the Gourd old-time music site, and have your bowed dulcimer CD, and another one you did with Harry Bolick (That Banjo from Hell?). Great stuff. And a little while ago I rec'd a CD from Chuck Levy down in FL (think I have that name right) and he plays a skin-head fiddle that you made. Very cool!
Let me know if you're ever coming down my way. We can get together and play some tunes with more than two chords in them. I do build a few instruments that are, shall we say, non-standard. Sounds like you've got yourself a great guitar.