This is an interesting National model that is no longer offered. It has a large 1940s style headstock with the National crest decal, the word “Reso-Phonic” in white silkscreen, and then six art deco angled straight lines with “Radio” vertically and “Tone” horizontally between them in a fat, “circus” type font. The East Indian rosewood fingerboard is inlaid with 9 grained ivoroid dotmarkers in 7 positions; the face has 6 deco cut-outs (3 on each side of the fingerboard extension) and a 10” diameter cover plate with the traditional design of 9 groups of 41 holes comprising diamonds. The top is bound in grained ivoroid.
On one on-line forum (called gearpage) a contributor named “9fingers” had this to say – he published this almost exactly one month before the start of The Great Recession: “I wanted a wood body National as I like that tone, but since I play with a slide on my middle finger I absolutely need a cutaway. The Bendaway is the only one like that. It is loud (loudest acoustic guitar I have ever heard if I hit it hard) if needed, has a great biscuit "boing," better sustain than the average biscuit bridge guitar and has better low end than most other models. It responds better to picking dynamics than any acoustic I have played - it loves to whisper and moan as well as roar. National hit a home run for me with this model and I feel privileged to have one. It is a wonderful slide guitar!”
“righthandman” says “It's a truly fantastic sounding guitar, much louder than you would think,” and “johneeevee” adds “It is an awesome sounding instrument with great projection. The big soft V neck on it is fantastic. I'm not much of a blues player, but have kept it due to its uniqueness and its possible collectability. I guess now that they are discontinued it may be even more desirable.”
This guitar shows extremely little in the way of appearing as if it has ever been played – perhaps a single small scuff on the upper treble side, but not a whole lot more. It is exceptionally clean and appears to be somebody’s “under the bed” guitar. We always liked this model and were sad to see it go. One forum contributor said that’s because it cost them more to build than they charged their dealers. Hearing and playing it, I can understand that. It’s a very fine sounding, charming and thoroughly affordable cutaway instrument.
This was $1850, but is NOW ON SALE -