Welcome Taran Guitars...

We are delighted to welcome Taran Guitars onto The North American Guitar roster of acoustic luthiers. We have been big fans of Rory for some time and are extremely excited he is joining the TNAG Team!

Set up by Rory Dowling in 2007, Taran Guitars quickly became synonymous with high-quality instruments played by amazing musicians, such as Martin Simpson, and guitar players throughout Britain and beyond. With 12 years of experience as a luthier, and a first class degree in furniture design and craftsmanship, Rory has a deep understanding and experience of both wood and lutherie process. This has led to stunning and innovative guitars, using the finest materials which have been hand sourced out over the years.

This deep knowledge of the variables that go into making a world-class instrument enables him to create unique, precise and perfect guitars for each individual client.

[Picture by Mark Alexander Photography]

A new development that Rory's guitars now feature a back bracing structure which is entirely new to not only The North American Guitar Showroom, but the entire art of lutherie. Taran guitars characteristically feature a cylindrical back profile, which makes the guitar feel deceptively small and incredibly comfortable to hold, whilst still maintaining both the power and resonance of a flat back guitar. In order to be able to hold this domed back whilst keeping the guitar as light as possible, Rory has designed the ‘compression braces’. These are hollow structures, inspired by the principles of archery, which through the specific design and choice of materials, compress the back of the instrument and hold it in place.

[Picture by Annie Wheeler]

Based in the East Neuk of Fife, Rory works from a bright, spacious converted dairy farm amidst the Scottish Countryside. The stunning workshop and surrounding space mirror the unbelievably high quality of craft produced here. The Workshop features a comfortable showroom at the back end, where players can experience the guitars, away from the machinery and sawdust.

Having grown up spending a lot of time on Scotland's west coast and being inspired by the beauty of his surroundings, Rory has named all of the 5 guitars in his range after Scottish peaks.

The Taran
The Taran is the smallest of the range. Just slightly smaller than OM, the Taran is a beautifully intimate instrument. Predominately a fingerstyle instrument, while small in body size, its voice is big, bell-like and powerful even to the lightest touch.

[studio shot by Sean Dooley]
  • Frets to body: 14
  • Body Length: 480mm
  • Max Body Width: 382mm
  • Depth: 113mm
  • Scale length: 645mm
  • Width at nut: 45mm
  • Spacing at saddle: 59mm

The Tirga Beag
The Tirga Beag is larger than OM in width and depth but not in length, making it feel very compact and comfortable for its size. The Tirga Beag is designed with volume and headroom in mind enabling it to be heard in noisy sessions, but with a full rich tone perfect for smaller audiences and solo playing. It is perfect for flat picking and accompaniment with good separation between strong clear bass and thick trebles.

Tirga Beag, pronounced ‘Chigora Beg’ is the little sister of Harris’s second highest peak. She faces northeast looking out over the forgotten ridges of North Harris and on to the plains of Lewis.

[studio shot by Sean Dooley]

  • Scale: 645mm (25.4”)
  • Frets to body: 14
  • Body Length: 495mm
  • Max Body Width: 402mm
  • Depth: 118mm
  • Width at nut: 45mm
  • Spacing at saddle: 59mm

The Tirga Mhor
The Tirga Mhor is Rory's take on a 000. This is a product of a collaboration between a master craftsman and well renowned musicians Martin Simpson. The Tirga Mhor is designed with an open voice enabled by the 12th fret bridge position with lots of 'spit' with its powerful attack. As with its sister model the Tirga Beag the Mhor has good separation across a very dynamic range.

Tirga Mhor, pronounced ‘Chigora Mor’ is Harris’s second highest peak. She faces northeast looking out over the forgotten ridges of North Harris and on to the plains of Lewis.

[studio shot by Sean Dooley]

  • Scale: 645mm (25.4”) or optional Fan Fret
  • Frets to body: 12
  • Body Length: 510mm
  • Max Body Width: 402mm
  • Depth: 122mm
  • Width at nut: 45mm - Optional
  • Spacing at saddle: 59mm - Optional

The Oreval
The Oreval is based on the acclaimed Tirga Beag Mk II shape and has a classic Taran style. Stripped back detailing gives it an austere, clean and striking look. Its own unique bracing pattern and greater depth give the Oreval a big voice, perfect for noisy sessions. At home, solo, the Oreval offers a large dynamic range. Best enjoyed with something at room temperature…or chilled!

Oreval is one of the furthest west hills in Harris. Once, seated on the west side of Oreval in late October, we witnessed the most exquisite setting of the sun between the sheer cliffs of Stac an Armin and Hirta, St Kilda.

[studio shot by Sean Dooley]

  • Scale: 645mm (25.4”)
  • Frets to body: 14
  • Body Length: 495mm
  • Max Body Width: 415mm
  • Depth: 125mm
  • Width at nut: 44mm
  • Spacing at saddle: 57mm

The Ulladale
The Ulladale is the Dreadnought of the range. This modified dread has a slightly pinched waist and its own unique bracing pattern helps fill the trebles and clean the bass. It works brilliantly as a 12th or 14th fretter, and with careful attention to the separation and balance across the range, the Ulladale plays brilliantly as a rhythm guitar and a powerful flat picker as well.

  • Scale: 645mm (25.4”)
  • Frets to body: 14/12
  • Body Length: 505mm
  • Max Body Width: 406mm
  • Depth: 122mm
  • Width at nut: 44mm
  • Spacing at saddle: 57mm

We are so excited to start working with this world leading luthier and are excitedly anticipating the arrival of 2 guitars. For more information on Taran Guitars please do not hesitate to contact us on +44 (0) 207 835 5597 or email hello@thenorthamericanguitar.com.

Have a wonderful weekend.


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