Description: Acoustic Guitar - 1929 Lucien GELAS double top
Gélas is well known for inventing and patenting a guitar design which uses a double top: It is often called a Gélas guitar, or a double-top guitar (or double-resonance-guitar); and was common in the first half of the 20th century.
Gélas was awarded a Gold Medal at the Bordeaux Exhibition in 1907 and a Gold Medal at the Brussels Exhibition in 1910; for his double-top instruments.
The two tops of the instruments have a resonating space between them; and the inner top is not parallel to the outer one, such that the guitar can be observed to have a particular tilt. Also: the strings run through the bridge (which is on the inner top) and are attached at the bottom, in such a way that the plucked part of the string before the bridge is at an angle to the part of the string after the bridge. This is achieved by having the plucked part of the string slightly angled to the inner top (in conventional guitar it would be parallel); resulting in a raised tension in the inner top.
The patent was first filed in Paris in 1905; and the patent text is downloadable in French and English.
His guitars were played by numerous important artists, particularly in the first half of the 20th century. Heinrich Albert (1870–1950) obtained a Gélas guitar (from Gaudet in Paris) and ascribes his concert successes in a large part to the guitar, praising its carrying sound, ease of responsiveness, and tone-colour. Other players of Gélas guitars include Luise Walker (1910–1998) and Bruno Henze (1900–1978)...
Gélas produced the instruments with the help of guitar-makers (following his patent): at first Théodore Gaudet and later Jean Roviès, Beuscher, Richard Jacob and others. The instruments included classical guitars, mandolins, jazz double-basses and Hawaiian guitars
4 cracks on the lower top have been repaired by luthier who kept the original polish.
The higher top is in very mint condition and the signature of Gelas is carved on the wood.
Bridge has been repaired and is the original one.
One button of the tuner has been changed and mechanics are the original ones.
Everything is original and the guitar is in very good conditon for its age, and ready playable.
You can hear Gelas guitars on youtube.
I can't load pictures so, don't hesitate to ask me for them.