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Luthier Focus: Turnstone Guitars

This week we’re shining the spotlight on lutherie sensation, Rosie Heydenrych of Turnstone Guitars.  



We began working with Turnstone Guitars in 2019 and it has been nothing but total joy to see these instruments progress and help to document them. With innovative design, striking aesthetics and the utmost attention to detail, the instruments created are consistently a sensation.


History

Rosie first took the plunge into guitar making just over 10 years ago and hasn’t looked back since. As many will know there are a variety of paths into lutherie and Rosie’s is a steady one, laying a great and solid foundation for the many years of guitar making that followed (and are to come)…

Whilst working full time in the city, Rosie attended an evening course in lutherie, at the London Metropolitan University in East London. It began as a once a week course and mostly with the intention of being a hobby. The initial connection to the guitar was that Rosie played guitar and gigged, sparking her interest. It also provided a creative output for when working full time in an office may have lacked this feeling. This got the wheels turning and although she admits it was difficult, it was also unlike anything she’d done before (in a good way).  Rosie was hooked. The Course was an introduction to it all. Being a guitarist, creative, possessing natural hand skills and an interest in wood, lutherie seemed to be the perfect fit to marry these elements together.

Following this, it was all about acquiring as much experience as possible. This started with assisting a female guitar technician and repairer in Denmark street. Rosie helped on the weekends whilst continuing to attend the evening course and working full time. This set-up continued for a year before the spare room got turned into a mini workshop, with a bandsaw and a guidebook on how to build ukuleles.

When the opportunity arose, Rosie went part time at work and began a lutherie internship which lasted for two years. When this time had come to an end, Turnstone guitars was founded and Rosie moved to her idyllic workshop in the beautiful Surrey countryside, where she still works currently.

You may be wondering where the name Turnstone came from, as were we, and we found it is inspired by the bird, which migrates to the British shores during winter months. They are known for flying along the beach and turning over stones, hence the name. They have a gorgeous pattern across their wingspan, which is replicated in Rosie’s logo and is the reason behind the gorgeous inlay and curvature detail in the headstock of a Turnstone Guitar.

 

The Guitars

Turnstone guitars currently offer three models, essentially a small, medium and large.

TG- Turnstone Grand
TM- Turnstone Medium
TS- Turnstone Small

The TS Model came first, having owned a dreadnought, from a physical point of view Rosie was interested in a smaller bodied guitar, and how this works for developing the most comfortable guitar for a smaller physique. The rest grew from there.

TS Model

A smaller bodied guitar, elsewhere referred to as a parlour instrument. The TS Model has a small comfortable body, whilst maintaining a punchy yet articulate voice, with powerful attack.
Fret to body join: 12th (14th on request)

  • Scale length: 635mm
  • Overall length: 955mm
  • Upper bout width: 260mm
  • Lower bout width: 355mm
  • Body depth at end: 105mm
  • Body depth at heel: 85m


TM Model


The dimensions of this model are largely based upon the traditional OM, whilst incorporating unique curvature.

  • Fret to body join: 14th (12th on request)
  • Scale length: 650mm
  • Overall length: 1025mm
  • Upper bout width: 280mm
  • Lower bout width: 380mm
  • Body depth at end: 105mm
  • Body depth at heel: 85mm


TG Model


The TG is the grand auditorium model. It has the width and depth of a dreadnought on the lower bout but with a tighter waist. The TG produces a larger sound with a pronounced bass presence. This is a true “all rounder”. It has a luscious tone but also responds well to chords, strumming and fingerpicking, a very versatile instrument.

  • Fret to body join: 14th (12th on request)
  • Scale length: 650mm
  • Overall length: 1040mm
  • Upper bout width: 305mm
  • Lower bout width: 395mm
  • Body depth at end: 110mm
  • Body depth at heel: 90mm


Additionally, Turnstone guitars often incorporate different species of woods within the bracing structure. It’s very common for luthiers to stick to spruces and cedars with the internals of the guitars, however Rosie mindfully adjusts the use of tonewoods for each guitar. Lots of hardwoods also have wonderful treble and clarity, which can be used to compliment other wood choices.

She seldom strays from the popular X-bracing structure, which is known and loved by many luthiers and guitarists out there. But often the tonebars are more considered. For example, when using a drier, punchier wood like mahogany for the back and sides, pairing this with Padauk internals can add sparkle. It’s an informed and mindful approach, as each individual element is all just adding to the bigger picture, the final instrument.


Incoming Turnstone Guitars

Turnstone TG Acoustic Guitar, Bog Oak & Western Red Cedar- £7,550


• Model: TG
• Year of Build: 2020
• Back & Sides: Bog Oak
• Soundboard: Western Red Cedar
• Neck: Flamed Sycamore
• Headstock: Solid style
• Front of Headstock: Bog Oak
• Body Binding: Bog Oak
• Finish: High Gloss
• Tuners: Gotoh 510 Gold
• Nut: Bone
• Saddle: Bone
• Scale Length: 650mm
• Nut Width: 44.5mm
• Neck Profile: Shallow C
• Neck Thickness: 21mm
• Fret join: 14th
• Inlay: 12th Fret
• Fret wire: Evo Gold
• Case: Hiscox Artist Series


Turnstone TM Acoustic Guitar, Cocobolo & Swiss Moon Spruce- £7,525

• Model: TM
• Year of Build: 2020
• Back & Sides: Cocobolo
• Soundboard: Swiss Moon Spruce
• Neck: Honduran Mahogany
• Headstock: Solid style
• Front of Headstock: Cocbolo
• Back of Headstock: Ebony
• Body Binding: Cocobolo
• Finish: High Gloss
• Tuners: Gotoh 510 Gold
• Nut: Bone
• Saddle: Bone
• Scale Length: 650mm
• Nut Width: 44.5mm
• Neck Profile: D
• Neck Thickness: 21mm
• Fret join: 14th
• Fret wire: Evo Gold
• Fret Markers: Square wood 3,5,7,12 frets
• Case: Hiscox Artist Series

To find out more about Turnstone Guitars or about either of these incoming instruments, please email us here or call us on 0207 835 5597.

Have a lovely weekend.

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