"It is a rhythmic gift continuously binding us to our natural experience, our very human existence. It is the fundamental variable determining the time & meter on our planet. The Solstice represents our connection to what is real, and to me music is the most experiential aspect of that."
~Ryan R. Elewaut
...a new line of masterpieces...
The guitars we create are customized individually. We believe that strategic variation is the key to creating uniquely perfect instruments for different players. Every Solstice guitar is handcrafted, one by one with the highest level of craftsmanship and quality. Our models feature a blend of modern and traditional design work with innovative construction methods.
The Transit model is a completely variable guitar. Your design options traverse an array of potential styles, giving a near-endless combination of specs, look, tone and purpose. It is the most modular guitar we offer. Four different colors, four different bridge types, various spec options like nut width and fingerboard radii, neck and fingerboard wood choices... too many variations to mention here. Visit the Transit details page for a full list of examples and options. Our production schedule is limited. Check the build calendar!
The Ecliptic model is a big acoustic instrument for being a somewhat small guitar. Utilizing our unique Compound Parabolic bracing pattern, combined with our woven-A-frame neck support system, every Solstice acoustic is designed to deliver the optimal response from each and every piece of wood. During construction, all tops are individually voiced and tap-tuned, creating the best potential combination from each cut of wood. Every piece, including the braces are hand-picked and paired together based on consonant tonal characteristics and tap tones. Our acoustics are offered with standard wood choices or exotic upgrade options. Hot hide glue is used exclusively for top bracing and the bridge joint. Other spec options and choices available for custom orders.
past • present • future
Solstice represents the culmination of a career dedicated to guitar luthiery.
Founder and master luthier, Ryan R. Elewaut began building guitars at age 15. His first classical guitar earned him an apprenticeship at a boutique acoustic repair shop called Shade Tree Instruments in Laguna Niguel, California. He started Custom Sound in 2004 after a decade of training and practicing repair luthiery in different shops. R. Elewaut has completed various formal and informal apprenticeships with a number of different technicians and luthiers, including official training in the Taylor Guitars repair center in El Cajon. Elewaut has completed over 14,000 repairs and built over 50 guitars.
"Hi. I'm Ryan. My past history as a repair luthier has informed my approach to design and building in a significant way. The way a guitar plays and feels, let alone its longevity and stability are huge components of the target I'm shooting for. It is impossible to fully understand what goes into hitting this target without working on thousands upon thousands of guitars. Aesthetic beauty, tone, and function are the other primary aspects of the target. Another aspect of the target for me is strategic variation. This variability is built into our production approach and build process to create guitars that always feel like one-of-a-kind masterpieces even within the same model. After repairing and building for many years and doing commissions for specific customers, I have refined my approach and techniques, and my philosophy toward guitar building. My repair career has led me to a deeply informed understanding of what makes a great guitar sound amazing and play perfectly. Playability, tone and function are to me the most important aspects of any guitar. Aesthetic is tertiary albeit paramount and representative of what the player experiences. And that experience happens-- I think in most cases-- aside from the looks. Your experience is in the function, the tone and the overall feel. I believe in creating models that feature specific variables and choices to provide you with the best set of specifications to suit you and your playing. This is what creates a perfect experience when you find the right Solstice, or when it finds you. The experience is perhaps the only thing that can be truly perfect."