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The New Lowden Fan Fret

George’s comments on the Design

Specifications - Fan Fret option available on all models

“The main aim of the design is to increase bass depth through increasing the string length on the bass side, while at the same time achieving more ‘bell like’ trebles by shortening the string length on the treble side. However, it is important to choose string lengths which will allow any player to quickly adapt to the fan fret design .... The angle of the first fret was also a factor in the design choices with playability in mind again - too much angle and it becomes difficult to play, too little and the bridge has to be angled too much for effective acoustic coupling between the bridge and the soundboard bracing.”
“When considering the acoustic coupling of the bridge to the soundboard bracing I decided to attempt a cantilever design - where the bridge footprint was our normal design, with the saddle support partially suspended slightly above the soundboard, rather than glued to it. I was aware that this was totally uncharted territory - but I like that! So when I finished the first prototype with the cantilever bridge I was more than a little interested in the tone of the guitar. Unfortunately I was disappointed in the tone - there was a certain
vacuous quality to it and I immediately decided to glue the cantilever section fully onto the soundboard. Immediately I did that, the tone was fantastic - with the deeper basses and the more bell like full trebles! Hence the birth of the extended fan fret bridge design.”
“I then compared the tone of the extended bridge version and the other prototype where I had used the more usual slanted bridge, and listened to what the players had to say during the NAMM show. As the guitars were played and began to open up, virtually everyone agreed that , on balance , they marginally preferred the extended bridge version.” (Prototype F-35 HR/RW shown)

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SCALE LENGTHS
Bass string length: 680 mm (26 3/4”)
Treble string length: 635 mm (25”)
The only question now is:- (as one player asked me during the NAMM show) “shouldn’t all acoustics be designed with the fan fret ? ” Good question! It remains to be seen, but for sure it works - especially in dropped tunings with a medium gauge bass string.”
Available as an option on all models.
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