"It is a rhythmic gift binding us to the natural human condition. The time & meter of our very existence on earth is defined by this fundamental cycle. It represents our connection to what is real. For me, music is the most vivid expression of this experience."
~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 is a completely variable guitar. Your design options traverse an array of potential styles. We give you a nearly endless combination of specs, looks, tone and purpose. It is the most modular guitar we offer. Four different colors, four different bridge types, various spec choices like nut width and fingerboard radii, neck and fingerboard woods... 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 Compound Parabolic bracing pattern, each top is also braced with our Woven-A-Frame neck support system. Each Solstice acoustic seeks the optimal response from each piece of wood. During construction, all tops are individually voiced and tap-tuned. We are looking for the best potential combination of component mass and dimension. Every piece, including braces, are hand-picked and paired based on consonant tonal characteristics and tap tones. We offer standard wood choices or exotic upgrade options. Hot hide glue is used exclusively for top bracing and the bridge joint. Spec options & choices available.
past • present • future
Solstice represents the culmination of a career dedicated to guitar luthiery.
Ryan R. Elewaut, founder and head luthier, began building guitars at age 15. His first classical guitar earned him an apprenticeship at a boutique acoustic shop called The Shade Tree in southern California. He started Custom Sound in 2004 after a decade of training and practicing repair luthiery in various shops. Elewaut has completed various formal and informal apprenticeships with a number of different technicians and luthiers, including official training at the Taylor Guitars repair center in El Cajon. He has completed over 6,000 repairs and built over 50 guitars.
My history as a repair luthier has informed my approach to design and building in a significant way. How a guitar plays and feels, let alone its longevity and stability are all components of the target I'm shooting for. It is impossible to fully understand what goes into hitting this target without working on thousands of guitars. Aesthetic beauty, tone, and function are other primary aspects of the target. Just like each trip around the sun is different every time, every piece of wood is different. And every guitar is different. We build every Solstice guitar with the final target of strategic variation. This variability is built into our approach with production & process to create guitars that are always one-of-a-kind masterpieces.
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. 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... or, when you have one made exactly for you.
An experience is perhaps the only thing that can be truly perfect." -R. Elewaut