NBN Guitars

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249 Comments

Reply dave danze
8:55 PM on January 14, 2018 

Had the luck to crash in a commune in Boulder in 1974 and learnt my first chords on a jumbo NBN that belonged to some sharing hippie gal.

Years later heard NBN stopped making their guitars.   I liked the boxy shape contours of the body, not too boxy, just enough to appeal to the

craftsman in me.  


Dave Danze

Arlington Va

Reply Smithe694
11:46 AM on January 14, 2018 

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Reply David H. Thompson
5:27 AM on November 26, 2017 

I was Monty's tax man from the time he left NBN until he died.  A nicer guy, you'd never want to meet. I never charged him much, he was always cash poor and inventory rich and when he knew he was dying, he said, take care of my taxes, make sure my wife doesn't have to worry about things and gave me a guitar he'd been stiffed on by an A**hole out of Gold Hill, CO.  Anybody in the know, knows exactly who I'm talking about.  They wouldn't even let him sit in on the Sunday afternoon jams,  that's how much he was liked. Monty's widow exercised the clause in the Elvis guitar contract and bought it back for the $10,000.  She sold it for a lot more than that.  I saw that guitar during the build and it was awesome. Monty was the most detail oriented I ever met, when he was doing inlays, there was no filler, it fit.  I saw his house when he was building it and  it was just the same.  A gorgeous place, obviously built by a craftsman.  Someday I'll sell the guitar, it's been over 30 years and I still can't.  I still have one of the T-shirts from when he came back from his foray into California. Says, Monty's Back.  It's almost worn out, but I wore it down to the local bar about 6 months ago and somebody recognized it.  He had his fans. After Monty left, NBN folded fairly quickly, he was the talent. 

Reply Paul
3:54 PM on August 8, 2017 
Gorgeous! Incredible work Chuck!
Reply Chuck Morrison
1:29 PM on August 8, 2017 

Perhaps of interest is a custom guitar I just finished based on the NBN concert size acoustic. I've built several instruments based on this shape over the years from of a tracing of NBN #4 Classical courtesy of Reb Bennet. This guitar is built with African Blackwood back and sides, 5 piece curly maple & Blackwood neck and Euro Spruce top. Bracing is an X brace similar to that used in later NBNs . I don't usually do as much elaborate inlay as this instrument sports nor have I ever used pearloid binding before. It's all rather striking on such a dark background. I don't know how well these images will show up here, so if you'd like to see the full size photos, email me and I can send them directly.

   

Reply Art Tedeschi
9:03 PM on February 3, 2017 

Great website Paul!

Reply Travis T
7:47 PM on December 2, 2016 

 Hello, I have a beautiful, one of a kind NBN 12 string that I'm looking at selling. Let me first start off by saying that if I weren't in such a bind financially then I wouldn't even consider selling my NBN. That said, I just built a studio and invested in a console,outboad gear and mics. It completely tapped me it out. Anyway, my NBN 12 string was originally my dad's. He used to play the Colorado ski curcuit back in the 70's and during this time, he met Monty Novotny. The story goes that they became friends and Monty was a fan of my dad's guitar playing. Anyhow my dad had Monty build him a custom NBN 12 string. From what I was told, my dad's NBN is the only one that came in it's particular color. I don't know whether this true or not. Overall it's in good condition. there's some wear and tear on the front but the fact it's a vintage insrument from the 70's, it's iin really good condtion. Even the case that comes with it is amazing. It weighs a ton but this guitar could fall out of a plane and it would probably survive in this case. Anyhow, email me if you're interested and I can send some pics over. Thanks,

Reply plturne
3:34 PM on November 26, 2016 

Thanks Mike, great to hear of Bernie! Please extend an invitation to him to share any stories and pictures!

Reply mike gentry
12:47 AM on November 25, 2016 
I would like to comment on one of the founders of nbn guitars that I had thanksgiving dinner with today. Bernie Nettesheim of 5562 olde stage road,Boulder back then whom now lives in Loveland ,Colorado spends thanksgiving along with his wife Julie every year for the last 5 years with us in ft Collins Colorado. I brought out my Gibson Baldwin sg style guitar and was telling of how I acquired it and what I paid for it when Bernie Nettesheim told the story of building the first nbn guitars. it was most rewarding to hear about the creating of such fine stringed instruments right here on the front range of colorado
Reply Al da Costa
10:28 AM on October 29, 2016 

Larry, 

Did you sell your Limited Edition?

Thanks,

Al

Reply Warren McCosky
1:49 AM on June 25, 2016 

Just became a proud owner of my first NBN guitar today.  Very impressed with this guitar (an R-2) even though she needs some major work.  Dropping her off at my repairman's shop next week.......so for the few days between now and then, I get to enjoy her.  Obviously, when it's been repaired, she'll be even more enjoyable, but so far...........I'm "extremely" happy with it.  Never played or even saw one of these before this one............but she's already made me a big fan of NBN guitars.

Reply Jon Svetkey
12:36 PM on June 14, 2016 

Hi Tim! I've never run across Severin Browne but I'll definitely look him up! Cheers, Jon

Reply Tim Snider
12:35 PM on June 3, 2016 

To Jon Svetkey, "singer, songwriter for 25 years". Have you run across Severin Browne, singer songwriter for about 50 years now, whom I knew in high school, played bass for at reunions, on the opposite coast, famous last name but the more talented of the two of course. I am envious of good talent and I'm glad to see your "beast" of a guitar doing what it was built for.

To Reb and Andy, I don't remember knowing about yours and Monty's signatures on the end block. One more little fact that makes me smile. I hope all is still right with the world.

Reply Jon Svetkey
8:19 PM on May 3, 2016 

Hi Everyone - 
I just had an L.R. Baggs Anthem SL pickup system installed on my R-2 and it sounds AMAZING! Here's a little Facebook shout out from the luthier who installed it! 

https://www.facebook.com/207109429349271/photos/a.207580319302182.52141.207109429349271/1081105011949704/?type=3&comment_id=1081241765269362¬if_t=like¬if_id=1462315892309648

Reply Jon Svetkey
2:26 PM on May 2, 2016 

I'll let the luthier know about the plexiglass -- he was wondering if it was something like 'bakelite' (spelling?). He looked inside it and on first glance it shows that you, Andy and Monty all built the guitar. I don't know if there are other names in there yet. I do know, however, that part of Andy's name is obscured because of the hole that got drilled for the strap button! I asked him to take a photo of the signatures. I'll also try to post a picture or two so you can see it. Thanks again! Jon

Reb Bennett says...

Jon, the rosette is plexi glass and we used it to protect the sound hole area from pick damage and to strenthen the area around the sound hole to reduce overtoning. It was also easy to inlay on the fancier guitars. I'm guessing the back and sides are Indian rosewood as we normally used the Brazilian wood on the Limited Edition guitars. I would have to see the guitar to be sure. I hope you enjoy the gutar. Reb, NBN Guitars

Hi Reb -

Thanks so much for replying to my question! I definitely will give you a shout soon to learn a little more about my new favorite guitar. I'm taking it to the luthier tomorrow to have a pickup installed and to have a minor set up done -- there's some 'plinky' notes and some sympathetic ringing/buzzing -- so I can start bringing it to gigs. I also want him to take a picture of the signatures inside -- that's so damn cool. One question that I know you can answer in the meantime: What is the black rosette made of? I know the top is German spruce, the neck's mahogany, the back and sides are rosewood (Brazilian, right?) and the fingerboard is ebony -- but the rosette? Thanks again, have a great weekend, I will connect soon! Best, Jon

 

 

 

 

Reply Reb Bennett
12:34 PM on April 30, 2016 

Jon, the rosette is plexi glass and we used it to protect the sound hole area from pick damage and to strenthen the area around the sound hole to reduce overtoning. It was also easy to inlay on the fancier guitars. I'm guessing the back and sides are Indian rosewood as we normally used the Brazilian wood on the Limited Edition guitars. I would have to see the guitar to be sure. I hope you enjoy the gutar. Reb, NBN Guitars

Hi Reb -

Thanks so much for replying to my question! I definitely will give you a shout soon to learn a little more about my new favorite guitar. I'm taking it to the luthier tomorrow to have a pickup installed and to have a minor set up done -- there's some 'plinky' notes and some sympathetic ringing/buzzing -- so I can start bringing it to gigs. I also want him to take a picture of the signatures inside -- that's so damn cool. One question that I know you can answer in the meantime: What is the black rosette made of? I know the top is German spruce, the neck's mahogany, the back and sides are rosewood (Brazilian, right?) and the fingerboard is ebony -- but the rosette? Thanks again, have a great weekend, I will connect soon! Best, Jon

 

 

/Reb Bennett says...

Reply Jon Svetkey
3:04 PM on April 29, 2016 

Hi Reb -

Thanks so much for replying to my question! I definitely will give you a shout soon to learn a little more about my new favorite guitar. I'm taking it to the luthier tomorrow to have a pickup installed and to have a minor set up done -- there's some 'plinky' notes and some sympathetic ringing/buzzing -- so I can start bringing it to gigs. I also want him to take a picture of the signatures inside -- that's so damn cool. One question that I know you can answer in the meantime: What is the black rosette made of? I know the top is German spruce, the neck's mahogany, the back and sides are rosewood (Brazilian, right?) and the fingerboard is ebony -- but the rosette? Thanks again, have a great weekend, I will connect soon! Best, Jon

Reb Bennett says...

Jon, sorry about the repeat on the message to Michael. Your build date would be around 1972. Enjoy! 

So I think I'm perhaps the newest member of the NBN Guitar Owners Family... my wife just surprised me for my birthday with that left-handed R2 that was on sale at Carter Vintage Guitars in Nashville! It's Serial Number 0227 (I'll put that into your registry here). I'm going to have some minor work done on it -- a grind and polish, a neck tweak, some new bridge pins and a pickup -- and then it's going out to gigs with me! I see by this site that there's lots to check out; my biggest curiosity question is how many lefties did NBN make? Any ideas? Thanks!

[/Reb Bennett]

Reply Reb Bennett
1:20 PM on April 28, 2016 

Jon, sorry about the repeat on the message to Michael. Your build date would be around 1972. Enjoy! 

So I think I'm perhaps the newest member of the NBN Guitar Owners Family... my wife just surprised me for my birthday with that left-handed R2 that was on sale at Carter Vintage Guitars in Nashville! It's Serial Number 0227 (I'll put that into your registry here). I'm going to have some minor work done on it -- a grind and polish, a neck tweak, some new bridge pins and a pickup -- and then it's going out to gigs with me! I see by this site that there's lots to check out; my biggest curiosity question is how many lefties did NBN make? Any ideas? Thanks!

[/Jon Svetkey]

Reply Reb Bennett
1:11 PM on April 28, 2016 

Michael Niebuhr, if you explore the website you will find copies of the old catalogs and other articles that will give you some background on NBN. Paul has done a wonderful job with the site. I own #0010, also an R-2 and we built mine in 1969. This would be an approximate date for yours as well. If you get a chance, everyone who worked on your guitar will have signed the end block iinside the goitar





Jon, if you explore the website you will find copies of the old catalogs and other articles that will give you information on NBN. Paul has done a wonderful job with the site. I have # 0010, also an R-2 and it was built in 1969. I would guess that would be your build year. If you get the chance, check out the end block on the inside of your guitar. Everyone that worked on it will have signed that block. You are welcome to call me at 303-817-5588 if you have questions.  Reb Bennett, NBN Guitars 






 

Reply reb bennett
12:44 PM on April 28, 2016 

Jon, of the 375 or so instuments we made, I don't think we made but 2 or 3 left handed guitars. going from memory but that is close. Congrats on the new instument and enjoy it. I own # 0010 and play it every day. Great guitar!  Reb Bennett, NBN Guitars

Reply Jon Svetkey
11:42 AM on April 28, 2016 

So I think I'm perhaps the newest member of the NBN Guitar Owners Family... my wife just surprised me for my birthday with that left-handed R2 that was on sale at Carter Vintage Guitars in Nashville! It's Serial Number 0227 (I'll put that into your registry here). I'm going to have some minor work done on it -- a grind and polish, a neck tweak, some new bridge pins and a pickup -- and then it's going out to gigs with me! I see by this site that there's lots to check out; my biggest curiosity question is how many lefties did NBN make? Any ideas? Thanks!

Reply plturne
11:03 AM on April 28, 2016 

Hi Mike - you'll likely find this website to be the best information source. 0014 is a pretty early SN so probably built around 1970. If you're looking for a good luthier I suggest checking with good acoustic guitar shops and players as well as Internet research.

Michael Niebuhr says...

I fam so stoked to find this site..I am the owner of an R-2 #0014..i am looking for all the info....help..i can find to restore this beautiful piece of art...the sound is over the top and it needs some tlc..i live in Hawaii and i would like to restore this guitar to the best possible condition  i can..

Also any info i can get on this guitar..what year it was made...etc..as much info as i can get

Aloha and Mahalo

Mike Niebuhr

Reply Michael Niebuhr
1:29 AM on April 28, 2016 

I fam so stoked to find this site..I am the owner of an R-2 #0014..i am looking for all the info....help..i can find to restore this beautiful piece of art...the sound is over the top and it needs some tlc..i live in Hawaii and i would like to restore this guitar to the best possible condition  i can..

Also any info i can get on this guitar..what year it was made...etc..as much info as i can get

Aloha and Mahalo

Mike Niebuhr

Reply Jon
12:17 PM on April 25, 2016 

How many left-handed guitars did NBN make?

Reply plturne
11:06 AM on March 31, 2016 

Anyone else ever have this experience? Awhile back I contacted someone advertising an "NBN acoustic guitar" for sale. Turns out it was a No Brand Name!

Reply Larry Aase
11:35 PM on February 17, 2016 

The email for the NBN Limited for sale is on the registry #255

Larry Aase

Reply Larry Aase
11:29 PM on February 17, 2016 

NBN LIMITED EDITION FOR SALE

#255 NECK RESET AND FRETS 5 YEARS AGO

EX CONDITION- MAKE ME AN OFFER I CAN'T REFUSE

Reply plturne
8:36 PM on January 17, 2016 

Hi Daniel - no cases or any other merchandise is sold on this tribute site. Using the guitar measurements you should have no trouble shopping a new case.

Paul

DANIEL SCHWAB says...

I own a R3 that I purchased at willies guitar in the eary 80s, unfortunately the case was damaged. Do you sell replacement cases for this model. Please email me back with a purchase price. Thank you, Dan

Reply DANIEL SCHWAB
7:54 PM on January 17, 2016 

I own a R3 that I purchased at willies guitar in the eary 80s, unfortunately the case was damaged. Do you sell replacement cases for this model. Please email me back with a purchase price. Thank you, Dan

Reply plturne
12:40 PM on January 8, 2016 
Reply Gary Barnett
2:51 PM on December 10, 2015 

Hi Reb,

Sorry for using this site, but I cannot locate you and need your address. Give me a call.

Reply Reb Bennett
12:59 PM on November 22, 2015 

Tim,  Magic Music is playing a concert today, Nov. 22, 2015, which is being filmed and will be part of a documentary. The concert will be at the Boulder Theater in Boulder,Co. Not sure when or where the documentary will appear when completed but Andy and I were asked to be interviewed about NBN so we gave info about the company and our history with the band at a earlier filming at CU last summer. Should be great fun to see how it all works out!!  Reb Bennett, NBN Guitars.

Reply John McCaleb
6:23 PM on November 13, 2015 

I'm bummed today because I had a break-in at my office and the theives got, among other things, my NBN R2-12 guitar.. It is serial number 0038, and last seen was in its original Just-in-case. I'm just putting it out there to all lovers of NBN's...on the long shot that you should ever see it, you will know who it belongs to, and maye help it get back home to me in Tucson. My phone is 520-977-3700...best to you all, and take good care of your instruments.

John McCaleb

Reply Tim Snider
9:56 AM on November 13, 2015 

Magic Music...I hope one of them will post a history of their time and their NBN guitars on the Guestbook Extra...So, Magic Music, if you are out there, this is your invitation.

Reply plturne
12:09 PM on November 12, 2015 

MTV's "Unplugged" series seemed to be a major factor in the resurgence of acoustic music and "boutique" luthiers.


Tim Snider says...

Wow! Magic Music and NBN Guitars... getting the well deserved recognition now, after many years. I am amazed at how Taylor Guitars has gone from a start up to a major producer of fine quality instruments, rivaling the nearly two century giant Martin Guitars. And the plethora of smaller factories and independant luthiers that have survived and grown since the 70's--the same as many big time bands from the era. Maybe our favorites - NBN and Magic Music - were good enough that they didn't need the big time. Thanks for the information. I have long wondered. Now, full circle.

Reply Tim Snider
11:42 AM on November 12, 2015 

Wow! Magic Music and NBN Guitars... getting the well deserved recognition now, after many years. I am amazed at how Taylor Guitars has gone from a start up to a major producer of fine quality instruments, rivaling the nearly two century giant Martin Guitars. And the plethora of smaller factories and independant luthiers that have survived and grown since the 70's--the same as many big time bands from the era. Maybe our favorites - NBN and Magic Music - were good enough that they didn't need the big time. Thanks for the information. I have long wondered. Now, full circle.

Reply plturne
11:05 PM on November 6, 2015 

plturne says...

Chris Daniels was in Magic Music: http://www.westword.com/music/chris-daniels-talks-about-being-a-member-of-the-colorado-music-hall-of-fames-class-of-2013-5685906. Also more info here: http://magicmusicband.com/.

I vaguely remember hearing them around Boulder & Greeley in the early 70s. Those irrigation ditches outside of Greeley were great for swimming and picking wild asparagus.

 

 

Reply plturne
1:09 PM on November 6, 2015 

Chris Daniels was in Magic Music: http://www.westword.com/music/chris-daniels-talks-about-being-a-member-of-the-colorado-music-hall-of-fames-class-of-2013-5685906. Also more info here: http://magicmusicband.com/.

I vaguely remember hearing them here and there around Boulder & Greeley in the early 70s.



Tim Snider says...

Does anyone remember Magic Music? I heard them a couple of times around Greeley, early 70's. As I remember they were 3 guys with at least 2 NBN's living the bare bones hippie life, driving around in an old pickup truck. In conversation with one of them, the only part I remember of the story he was telling me was, "We stopped by a field and I was taking a bath in an irrigation ditch..." They were sitting in the grass near the University Center playing really great music. So....Magic Music, are you guys still out there?

Reply Tim Snider
11:12 AM on November 6, 2015 

Does anyone remember Magic Music? I heard them a couple of times around Greeley, early 70's. As I remember they were 3 guys with at least 2 NBN's living the bare bones hippie life, driving around in an old pickup truck. In conversation with one of them, the only part I remember of the story he was telling me was, "We stopped by a field and I was taking a bath in an irrigation ditch..." They were sitting in the grass near the University Center playing really great music. So....Magic Music, are you guys still out there?

Reply plturne
10:12 AM on September 4, 2015 

R-1 for sale: http://r.ebay.com/msvCdq

Reply plturne
11:13 AM on July 21, 2015 

NBN brochure for sale on eBay: http://r.ebay.com/ThBRQ0

Reply Tim Snider
12:32 PM on June 25, 2015 

Paul,

Thanks for the email update sent back in March regarding the new photos and the Starland Vocal Band video. (I remember the song very well.  Vic Saracini roomed across the hall from me back then and I brought my guitar from home for a few jam sessions with him. He'll always be remembered as Captain of United 175.) I missed the NBN "sightings" in the '70's; I had no TV for many years. In retirement I am building some ukuleles after finishing up a couple of guitar projects that have languished for 2 decades. NBN Guitars, Monty, Reb, and Andy gave me good memories of the '70's and always inspired me to machinist tolerances. Their craftsmanship was incomparable, their design, unique.

Tim

Reply Wayne Garrett
3:58 PM on March 23, 2015 

Monica,

Hoping you remember me from long ago> I worked with your dada, and you and I went to Longmont Junior High School together.  We had Spanish class together I believe in 7th grade.

Would love to hear from you. I have recently purchased an NBN ( after 40 years) and have been talking to Reb and Andy (and others).

Regards,


wayne Garrett

[email protected]

Monica Fesing says...

I am the oldest daughter of Monty Novotny. His craftsmanship was amazing and beautiful. HIs heart and soul went into each one of his instruments. 

Reply reb bennett
12:33 PM on March 23, 2015 

Andrew, if I understand your post correctly, the concern is for the pearl inlay which is under the lacquer finish. Around the soundhole and on the peghead, I assume. If this is the case, I belive it is the lacquer that has darkened, not the pearl. The only fix would be to strip the finish off and refinish the affected areas. I would not recommend refinishing the top as new lacquer will affect the tonal quality of the guitar. I have a R-2 #0010 and it has darkened over the years also. I like the aged look personally but I can understand your concern. If I have not understood the problem correctly, please call me at 303-817-5588 and we'll talk about it.  Reb Bennett, NBN Guitars


Reply Andrew Zeiler
10:50 PM on March 22, 2015 

Someone recently pointed out to me that the mother of pearl inlay on my R-3 has yellowed significantly where it doesn't get hand contact. I'm guessing this means that it needs oil, just a guess. I'm open to any suggesstions. I doubt I'll be able to restore the brighter color of the "contacted" mother of pearl but any restoration would be good. I live in S.W. CO which is pretty dry.

Thanks  for any ideas,

Andrew

[email protected]


Reply plturne
5:13 PM on March 3, 2015 

Al da Costa says...

I am trying to get in touch with the site manager, however the posted email address comes back undeliverable.

Thanks for help from anyone who watches the site.

Al


Al - sent you a PM same day you posted this. Paul ([email protected])

Reply reb bennett
2:11 PM on March 3, 2015 

Al, Paul Turner is the web site originator and maintains the site. He has posted on the guest book site several times and I think his contact info should be on the posts. Let me know if you are unable to contact him.  Reb Bennett

Reply Al da Costa
7:51 AM on February 27, 2015 

I am trying to get in touch with the site manager, however the posted email address comes back undeliverable.

Thanks for help from anyone who watches the site.

Al

Reply Dave Smith
11:18 PM on February 23, 2015 

Hello again to all of you NBN guitar fans.  Thanks to all of you who contacted me over the last several weeks!

My model R-3 is sold.  Andy Bennett will be doing some work on it before shipping it off to its proud new owner.  I feel incredibly privileged just to have had it in my possession for a short time.  What an amazing work of art it is.  The more I play it, the more I wish I could keep if for myself.

Sincerely, 

Dave