(NEW) Waterloo WL-S “Stella” Model, Sunburst – $1,980

(NEW) Another compelling addition to the Waterloo lineup, the Stella!

Like everything in the line, this guitar is inspired by the no-frills instruments that were being manufactured for the catalog and department store markets during the Great Depression. The cosmetics can be spare, with nary a rosette or purfling line to be seen, but the dry and honest tone that these guitars produce has really captured the hearts of over a thousand players so far, not least among them the great Julian Lage, John Sebastian, Bill Frissell and one Jeff Tweedy.

The WL-S is a short scale, 12-fret ladder-braced guitar with a parlor-sized body (14″ lower bout). There are many vintage-style specs like a pyramid bridge with cut-through saddle and non-adjustable neck reinforcement (updated, in this case, to carbon fiber, stiffer and lighter than the wood that was removed from the neck). By pairing a Sitka spruce top with cherry back and sides, Bill Collings and the Waterloo team have crafted an instrument with surprising warmth and complexity of sound. It is very comfortable both strummed or picked, and light as a feather to boot.

The neck carve is a comfortable modified oval that morphs into a soft “V” around the 7th fret. It doesn’t feel as aggressively vintage as the original WL-14 necks, nor is it quite as fast as the low oval necks on the WL-12 and WL-K. It seems to sit nicely between those two.

The sound of the WL-S may be a bit of a throwback, but the intonation, playability and fretwork are pure Collings. Comes with original TKL hardshell case.

Serial #1408
List Price: $2,200… AMW Price: $1,980