MACCAFERRI
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MACCAFERRI
Instruments previously produced in Italy circa 1923. Instruments designed for the Selmer company in France date between 1931 and 1932. Maccaferri instruments were produced in America circa the early 1950s to the early 1990s.
Italian-born luthier Mario Maccaferri (1900-1993) was a former classical guitarist turned guitar designer and builder. Born in Bologna, Italy in 1900, Maccaferri began his apprenticeship to luthier/guitarist Luigi Mozzani in 1911. At age sixteen, Maccaferri began classical guitar studies at the Academy in Siena, and graduated with highest possible honors in 1926.
Between 1931 and 1932, Maccaferri designed and built a series of instruments for the French Selmer company. Although they were used by such notables as Django Reinhardt, a dispute between the company and Maccaferri led to a short production run. In the two years (1931-1932) that Maccaferri was with Selmer, he estimated that perhaps two hundred guitars were built.
In 1936 Maccaferri moved to New York. He founded Mastro Industries, which became a leading producer of plastic products such as clothespins (which he invented during World War II), acoustical tiles, and eventually Arthur Godfrey ukuleles.
In 1953, Maccaferri introduced another innovative guitar made out of plastic. This archtop guitar featured a through-neck design, three-tuners-per-side headstock, and two f-holes. Despite the material involved, Maccaferri did not consider them to be a toy. Along with the archtop model Maccaferri produced a flattop version. But the 1953 market was not quite prepared for this new design, and Maccaferri took the product off the market and stored them until around 1980 (then released them again).
In the mid-1950s, Maccaferri was on friendly terms with Nat Daniels of Danelectro fame. As contemporaries, they would gather to discuss amplification in regards to guitar design, but nothing came of their talks. Maccaferri stayed busy with his plastics company and was approached by Ibanez in the early 1980s to endorse a guitar model. As part of the endorsement, Maccaferri was personally signing all the labels for the production run.
The Maccaferri-designed instruments were produced by the atelier of Henri Selmer and Co. of Paris, France between 1931 and 1932 as the Selmer model Concert. However, due to the dispute between the company and Maccaferri, experts estimate that less than three hundred were made (note Maccaferri's estimate, above). Source: George Gruhn and Dan Forte, Guitar Player magazine, February 1986; and Paul Hostetter, Guitares Maurice Dupont.

From Blue Book Publications:


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