BUNKER GUITARS
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BUNKER GUITARS
Also Bunker Instruments. Instruments currently built in Sequim, WA. Distributed by Bunker Guitars, LLC, of Mill Creek, WA. Guitars were previously built in Tacoma, WA between circa early 1960s to mid-1960s (Astral Series), 1976 to 1982 (Pro-Line), and in Mill Creek circa late 1990s.
Luthier/designer and musician David Bunker has been building guitars and basses for more than forty years. In 1955, Bunker built his first doubleneck Touch Guitar with his father, Joe Bunker. This model was named the Duo-Lectar. Bunker later received input from Irby Mandrell (Barbara Mandrell's father) regarding scale length. Bunker was granted his first patent in June of 1961. Bunker and his Touch Guitar was the foundation for The Dave Bunker Show, which was very popular in Las Vegas at the Golden Nugget between 1965 and 1974. Bunker also built other guitar models for his fellow performers in the band.
The Astral Series models, often described as "radically designed," debuted in the early 1960s. The advertising for Bunker guitars proclaimed them to be "The Guitars of Tomorrow!" Of course, the same advertising also had a favorite catchphrase: "It Looks Like No Other Guitar - Because It Is Like No Other Guitar!" Rather than be different for different's sake, Bunker's Astral Series models were designed to solve certain inherent solid body design flaws. Bunker instruments are completely modular - you can change out any piece (neck or headstock or body or electronics, etc.) rather than repair the guitar, if you so chose. These detachable body and headstock pieces bolted to the center neck/minimalist body. Pickups and bridge hardware were also directly attached to the center frame.
In 1976, Bunker built a small number of Pro-Line models (twelve, actually). These models are identifiable by their headless (reverse tuning) headstock, upswept lower bout with reverse tuners, and Bunker pickups. Even the cases were custom-made, and built by Case's Inc. of Seattle, WA.
After the Bunker company, David Bunker was later involved with PBC Guitar Technology, Inc. in Pennsylvania, which had noticeable success with the "Tension-Free" neck design and the Wishbone hollowbody series (see PBC). PBC was in business from 1989 to 1996, and produced a number of high quality bass and guitar models with innovative ideas.
After PBC closed their doors, Bunker relocated to Mill Creek, WA. In 1998, Bunker was back to building the same quality PBC-style models, as well as the Through-body Bridges, a new Touch Guitar model, a new full body acoustic model, and Tension Free neck modifications. Bunker and a number of the key employees from PBC will be debuting the "new" Bunker models in the near future, but information and purchasing news is currently available at the company's website. So, for current information regarding the new Bunker instruments, contact Bunker Guitars directly. Bunker model information courtesy Ryland Fitchett of Rockohaulix.

From Blue Book Publications:


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