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Stonebridge Guitars

 Frantisek Furch has been building acoustic guitars in the Czech Republic (formerly Czechoslovakia) since 1981. Growing up under a Communist government where American music was frowned upon, Furch and a large group of the youth at the time fell in love with the charms of our culture’s music, especially Bluegrass and the acoustic folk-based types. They hid their passion from authority and met and played late at night around campfires or deep in the woods, far from the ears of authorities.

Understandably, many of the youth had difficulty procuring quality instruments, due to a multitude of reasons, namely restrictive government trade policies, and lack of sufficient spending money. This necessity led Frantisek, originally a banjo player, to begin building guitars and mandolins to supply his friends and fellow music lovers. For the first 8 years of his professional instrument building career, business was conducted in secret because the communist government outlawed private enterprise. In the garage of his parent’s home he built acoustic guitars, selling them to the growing underground music community. Well before the fall of Communism, Furch’s reputation grew and reached the ears and hands of many an impressed music lover. Beginning in 1989, after the fall of Communism, Furch was finally able to build and sell formally under his own name. His company was named Furch Musical Instruments. By then, he was producing acoustic guitars that were superb in quality and in no time, he couldn’t keep up with the demand. So employees were steadily added and in 1993, they moved the production into a renovated mill.

Furch and his shop quickly gained a great reputation throughout Europe and Japan for making highly affordable and extremely nice world-class guitars. By finely handcrafting his instruments from traditional guitar tone woods like Rosewood, Mahogany, Maple and Cedar, and having direct access to such highly desired species as the European Spruces, Furch’s guitars rank high with many of the greats. When compared to other similar guitars, though, his stand out in value.

Furch and his shop of builders have also made use of many modern advancements in their old- world shop. His guitars today use a modified bolt-on neck joint as well as top notch hardware like Schaller Tuners, and Headway pickup systems.

In 1994, Furch entered the Frankfurt music fair for the first time. This proved to be quite successful, and the demand for the instruments quickly surpassed their production capacity. Orders were sold out for at least six months ahead of time.

In 1999, the new Millennium Series of acoustic guitars was introduced. By then, they were completing thirty guitars a week, with a staff of 20 people.

In 2002, they delivered a guitar with the serial number of 15000 and had almost doubled their production rate.

In 2003, they purchased a much larger section of the mill, which they began to completely rebuild. The Durango and Bluegrass series of acoustic guitars were launched at the Frankfurt music fair and were received with much enthusiasm.

In 2004, they moved into the new facilities and completed guitar number 18000.

In the summer of 2005, a decision was made to adopt the name of Stonebridge, to be used internationally, and arrangements were put in place for distribution into North America and the UK under this new brand name.

Little has been known about the instruments in America, until now. Under the name Stonebridge, the name of a Czech landmark originally built in the 1300’s, Furch and Company offer their fine old world products to the rest of the globe.

Czech Republic
Adam Karch, Aria Summer, Michael Brunnock, Robert van der Zwan, Nudie And The Turks
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