We are glad to service a lot of the most profiled amateur luthiers worldwide. Since this internet shop has started early 2007 we are glad to have served customers in (excerpt): Argentinia, Australia, Austria, Belgium, Brazil, Canada, China, Croatia, Cyprus, Czech Republic, Denmark, England, Finnland, France, Germany, Greece, Hawaii, Ireland, Israel, Italy, Korea, Luxembourg, Malta, Montenegro, Netherlands, Norway, Philipines, Portugal, Russia, Serbia, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, Taiwan, Turkey and the USA as well as Vietnam.
Among our customers are the best luthiers of our times including (click on underlined names to get to their web sites, no underline = no website yet; every link opens in a new window), :
Aerie GuitarsAndrew Edwards Guitars
Ross GutmeierColin Morison
(names above in alphabetic order)
Remark to the list above: there is a post at Delmar reg. a reknown luthier from Spain who is (was) on the list: in this post it is reported that he said not to have used wood from me. I do not want to reply to this post but want to inform you here that I have deleted this luthier from the list instantly when I was pointed to this post.
WE ARE DELIGHTED BY THE NICE AND FRIENDLY CONTACTS AND YOUR INTEREST. We appreciate it very much !
Contact: drop us a line and we will get in contact with you soon:
If you want to contact us directly through this website, please use the following feedback system - we will get in touch with you soon:
Useful links for luthier (email if you know a link to be added here):
AGF AcousticGuitarForum - the place to be for luthiers
UMGF UnofficialMartinGuitarForum - name says it all ...
Guitar-Builder.com - a Luthier´s directory
BuildYourGuitar.com - very good compendium for tonewood, sources, books etc.
The 13th fret.com - top class professional luthier and semi-professional builder
FOR MORE LINKS REGARDING WOOD INCL. TAP TUNING ETC. PLEASE SEE THE "WOOD"-SECTION OF THIS SITE or click HERE.- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
WALL OF SHAME - FRAUD ALERT
We want to thank all numerous customers worldwide we had the luck to cooperate with during the last years for the mostly very pleasant contacts and excellent business behaviours - some even corrected calculation mistakes caused by us that were to their benefit!
Again and again we get the feeling that luthiers are a special kind of human being and we feel personally very well to cooperate with such great people!
Beside these highly positive experiences we do make sometimes bad experiences with some people, this is life and luckily rarely happening, but we think that these "clever people" who abuse our trust and cooperation should be named here in public.
All listed names/companies were given several chances to correct the issues before finally naming them here publicly.
No customer of these people from the list below can be sure that the instrument they might get / might be ordering from anyone listed below is NOT made with stolen (unpaid) material. In worst case the instrument could even get confiscicated by legal action when coming across Europe, just to mention.
Due to legal reasons: the below published writing is my personal experience I made with these named people, qualifying descriptions are no meant as an offence or insult but as my personal conclusion.
4. Hans Gastager from "Alpes Tonewood" in Germany
www.alpes-tonewood.de (Gewerbering 4, 83370 Seeon / Germany)
Eine Warnung vor Hans Gastager bzw. seinen Geschäftspraktiken:
Ich erhielt aufgrund einer Testbestellung bei ihm mit einiger Verzögerung die in einer alten Bananenkiste verpackten Decken, bestellt und bezahlt waren einige bester Güte und Qualität, welche er telefonisch vollmundig anpries, ebenso einige zweitbester und mittlerer Sortierung.
Erhalten habe ich Decken von m. E. katastrophaler Qualität, selbst die der besten Sortierung waren sehr stark abholzig und hatten gar Harzgallen im Gitarrenumriss, ferner waren sie weder feinjährig noch gleichmäßig gemasert. Allein aufgrund der Harzgallen ist dieses nach meinem Qualitätsverständnisses nur Feuerholz, welches offenbar hochpreisig veräußert wird (die nächstbesten Sortierungen haben einen Jahresring-Abstand von bis zu 1,5 Zentimetern!).
Ich habe die Decken umgehend mit einem sachlich-freundlichen Hinweis bezüglich der mangelhaften Qualität retouniert und um Rückzahlung gebeten.
Die Decken erhielt der "Tonholzexperte" gemäß DHL-Beleg am 31.08.2016 zurück, jedoch reagierte er bezüglich meiner Rückzahlungsforderung nicht.
Ich habe in den folgenden Wochen diverse und sehr freundliche "Erinnerungsmails" geschickt, welche alle unbeantwortet blieben.
Daraufhin habe ich eine rechtsverbindliche Rückzahlungsaufforderung mit Fristsetzung gemailt und per Einschreiben an ihn versandt. Darin kündigte ich bei Nichtzahlung eine Strafanzeige wegen Betruges an sowie die Übergabe der Angelegenheit an einen Rechtsanwalt und Ankündigung einer sachlichen Veröffentlichung der Angelegenheit im Internet.
Hierauf erhielt ich eine Mail von ihm mit Zusage der Rückzahlung bis Anfang der letzten Septemberwoche 2016. Nachdem auch die seinerseits gegebene Zusage (Frist) erneut ohne Rückzahlung verstrichen ist, sehe ich mich leider veranlasst, diesen Hinweis als Warnung an die ehrliche Gitarrenbauergilde zu veröffentlichen.
Warning regarding Hans Gastager from "Alpes-Tonewood" from Germany (www.alpes-tonewood.de, Gewerbering 4, 83370 Seeon / Germany): this man tries to sell minor woods with resin pockets and irregular and wide grain spacing, loaded with run-outs, as prime tonewood. After returning my order he did not pay back, my actual experience is that this man is a scammer and everyone should be aware of the risk when dealing with him. More infos on request.
Mr. Gastager has paid as per October 2016 !
3. Theo Scharpach
Surprisingly the man who invests a lot of energy in marketing turned out to be a member of this "Wall-of-shame-Club". Just to get my rented material + tools back from him took me an enormous amount of time, payment for the additionally "bought" goods he has never sent.
My parcel to him was well received without issues and confirmed by Mr. Scharpach through mail - but no payment followed. Last deadline ran out on March 12, 2014, so he gets the "honor" to be published here. There are no reasons for holding back any payments and his non-paying attitude and trial to play tricks seems to have hit others, too.
There seems to be a quite long story about this man here in Europe among some people who made their own experiences. Unfortunately I was pointed to this too late, would have saved me much time and life energy (apart money).
According my personal experience I do not trust Theo Scharpach in any way anymore, it was not a good idea to deliver him materials before I had full pre-payment landed on my bank account.
I´d have been better advised not take all he says for real, in the end he did not fulfill just one promise/agreement regarding payment of his bought materials!
My personal experience is that he starts to play games once he feels himself in a powerful situation (in my situation: getting wood and CNC-service and workmanship without paying the prior agreed money).
During the last 10+ months I have made several "special experiences" with Mr. Scharpach that led me to the conclusion that he is not just an excellent actor and storyteller, but not worth (my) trust.
To me he was not playing fair, trying silly tricks and it seems to me personally that he gets some satisfaction out of the abuse of other people who finally co-finance his business because he refuses payment.
I learned and am now aware of such people and hopefully won´t get trapped again by a (in the begining) friendly communication.
Theo Scharpach seems to me to be more a marketing man and self-ordinated "master designer and luthier", but most of his guitars are mainly done by Menno Bos and just get finally a "Scharpach label" in his workshop (as one of the few "last steps of the building process" he is doing according my information personally).
He wants to make money from other´s work and Theo´s main job seems to be to keep the selling price up and doing the "marketing and designing part" of the business. My guess is that about 10% of his sales price is based on materials, the rest is for the outsourced work, marketing - and for his profit and the "label", last may be the most expensive part of his guitars.
(I want to state clear that Menno Bos is not involved in my issues with Theo Scharpach, I cannot say anything bad about Menno!)
I have deleted Scharpach-Guitars from my customer and reference list, nothing to be proud of to have materials etc. delivered and being ripped off. This man is now relying on the fact that international legal prosecution for me is not economical. Here he is right and can now be proud to have saved his so well cared money by not paying and he has abused the trust of me.
The long story with Theo will be published here more detailed in the future, just wanted to spread the truth quickly after my last deadline for payment has expired and I regulary get most positive feedback from people worldwide who like to keep the "guitar community" clean, being thankful for my hints.
This writing is intended to protect other sellers (and buyers) from making the same "strange experiences" I had to do.
Feel free to contact me directly if you want to know more details (and other references) about the issues in detail.
I am always playing fair: this publication incl. the background of my warning was announced to Mr. Scharpach several times before, but he still decided not to pay - so here it is. TBC.
More to come, stay tuned!
March 13, 2014
Fun with Theo goes on: he seems to be highly interested in a special Thinline-body, made of very old woods, this body is in my possesion - and that I will not sell to him (anymore). He now offers to pay the still unpaid invoice and for this Thinlinebody if I deposit the body at a notary office in my hometown for further processing through a notary. He will pay to the notary´s bank account. I shall organize all and can pick a notary...
With other words: only if he gets the Thinlinebody he is willing to pay and I shall invest some more hours of my time to find a notary here that would be willing to be a part in such a game and investing more energy in organizing such game. Theo´s brain seems not to be able to accept that the seller sets the rules and he sets up a fight for getting the feeling to have changed anything so the final system is according his wants.
Just for clearification: there is absolutely no reason for him not to trust me as I have done everything according my promises and even had delivered goods without prepayment on the base of trust - it is him who failed in many aspects incl. payment.
Most likely he had bespoken a custom order on base of the Thinlinebody: if the potential buyer reads this please be aware that the only reason why Theo did not get this special Thinlinebody is because of his rotten behaviour, he had all opportunities to get this body at a very reasonable price. He just did not pay the first business of quite low volume and then got struck in his sandpit.
If anyone who reads this has ever made a tonewood-deal through a notary - being seller or buyer - feel free to contact me: you will get a master grade top from my old private stock for free.
Just found out that this warning shows up on the first page in Google´s search results when you look for "Theo Scharpach" and "experiences" - right behind his own website-links and his website marketing, describing his guitars with his own words. My computer-man did a good job when trying to lift this up with Google! ;-)
It becomes more and more boring: Theo has now engaged a German lawyer who contacted me today, trying to talk me into the "notary exchange"-system I denied before. This was accompanied by the possible "outlook" that Theo will accuse me legally because of "insult". There is a lot that Theo does not know incl. that you (he) cannot move me to any action by force or threating. Apart from naming the truth I did not "insult" anyone and in case that the truth is an insult for Mr. Scharpach he should consult additionally other people that are professionals for other than legal aspects.
After consulting a lawer myself I revisited above information in a way that my writing is now purely based on legally secure facts that I can prove myself without involving others. I removed his personal address and some aspects that I (just) have heared from other people from the "guitar community".
2. Amichai Benjamin
Shipping address was:
49 Nof-Hacarmel street
DHL sending# was 677286437482, personally received and signed by him on 22nd of July, 2013 at 10:44 a.m.
Booked his Paypal payment back through his Credit Card company, Paypal informed me that he is behaving like a "typical scammer".
I mailed him a last time, he had a last chance to correct everything till Monday, 12th of August 2013, afterwards the story with all proves will be published here. He was contacted prior publishing this note, informing him about the publishing if he does not react now.
UPDATE 22nd of August 2013: bad experience went on, he did not react to my last emails, so I warn any possible employers he is applicating in the future and generally all companies and persons he contacts: do not trust this man: he is a liar and thief but an excellent actor with criminal behaviour and an obviously rotten soul.
1. Batson Guitar Co. http://www.batsonguitars.com
Cory Batson got several master grade tops from us back in October 2010, promising to pay after receiving them. Before sending them out we had a nice and friendly conversation, what stopped when the tops were shipped. The tracking has shown that they received the tops and I asked for payment or shipping back several times, offering even to cover the shipping costs for returning.
My bad experience was that they unfortunately did not reply anymore (while I know that they correspond with others), but from later pics of finished guitars I was convinced that the tops were used, for sure they received the woods anyway according postal proof.
The address the tops were sent to was (their companie´s address):
Cory Batson c/o Batson Guitar Co.
5543 Edmondson Pike, #154
Nashville, TN 37211
According my experiences I just can warn other companies incl. competitors to make business with Cory Batson and other guys from Batson Guitars on another base than fully pre-payment through bank wire to avoid the experiences we unfortunately made.
There were some more trials to scam us, but these (few) people were clever enough to see the danger they are in from publicly naming them and the story behind here and paid their duties, knowing the disadvantages of Googles "everlasting" memory" when it comes to i.e. future job applications etc. ... be sure your name will be checked by hiring companies at least by simple Google-search - and the "members" of the list above will be at least found here with a documentation of their real behavior.
Dear scammers, whenever you get in the future an application back without being invited for a job interview: the reason might be your membership of the "scam list" above, you will never know. Would you like to work with liars and scammers?