Russ Wootton

I met Russ accidentally a few years a go and we found we had a lot in common. Not least that he makes fabulous smaller-bodied acoustic guitars with classical style-neck joins that make the instruments much more responsive to picking dynamics.

They have rosewood fingerboards and the necks are reinforced with non-adjustable steel t-profile bars. He offers larger and more ornate models, but I prefer the very sparsely-styled ones.

have four so far – my original spruce and rosewood S12 model; a matching 12-string, the only 12-string he’s made and the source of much greying of hair; an all-mahogany S12 model and the even smaller spruce and maple parlour model, again his only one so far.

They all electrify well with a Fishman soundhole pickup and record well, especially the all-mahogany one. All are as new with Hiscox fitted hard cases, though I house the mahogany one in the case which my Guild M20 arrived in as fits and looks great. Russ is truly a hidden treasure.

9 Responses to Russ Wootton

  1. Enid Edwards says:

    I beg to differ. My Russ Wooton guitar which I paid 1200 quid for was not supported on the neck and I have never really played it. I was very new to guitars and was encouraged to go to Russ’s house and choose one by someone who supposedly knew lots.. I have since tried to find Russ to see if it is posdible to take the neck off and put a steel support in. He seems to have moved house and phone number so there we are. One smart looking guitar which noone wants to play! A sad tale n’est pas?

  2. Rockbeare says:

    Sorry to hear that. I will forward your comment to Russ in case he wants to make contact with you and resolve this. (I assume the email you responded from is current and that you monitor the inbox reasonably frequently).

  3. Andrew says:

    Russ made me a small bodied guitar in 2007 and it has matured and gone from strength to strength. This is by far the best guitar I have ever owned. Not sure if Russ is still making guitars. If not. then a sad loss to acoustic guitarists.

  4. Rockbeare says:

    He’s slowed down but still making a few. Saw him last week, first time in 2 1/2 years because of lockdowns. Very glad you are so fond of yours, me too.

  5. Wes Bowen says:

    I bought one secondhand when I knew very little about their construction and lack of adjustable truss rod. It was to be my first solid body – I was over-excited and enamoured by the sound.

    Unfortunately, as I learned more, I was distraught that the rising action could not be lowered (saddle already on the floor). The guitar was made in 2006, apparently already had a neck reset and is now, sadly, unplayable for me. It pains me greatly to get it out the case. One of the best sounding acoustics I’ve heard, yet by far the worst purchase I’ve ever made.

    How can I contact Russ? I’d love to know my options for saving this guitar if possible. All it brings me currently is very hard feelings – unplayable and unsellable.

  6. Rockbeare says:

    Sorry to hear that. I’ve had a few disappointing experiences with guitars, including luthier-built ones, over time too. I’m not sure how much work Russ does any more but you can try contacting him at [email protected]. If the guitar still sounds good as I know they can, it’s worth fixing and there are good luthiers out there. If the top is stable and the saddle is already at minimum, then the previous neck reset couldn’t have been much good. If the top is bellied, that can be fixed too. Even a bowed neck can be brought back to tree given time. Good luck anyway.

  7. Wes Bowen says:

    I really appreciate your reply, thank you. Despite the saddle being at minimum and action too high to play for long, the guitar still sounds incredible. I’ve tried some very expensive guitars that can’t compare (including a Martin New Yorker). I will email Russ to find out what my options are.

    The top bellying is the main issue as these are such lightly-braced, thin top guitars and the unmindful original owner had used high-tension, coated strings. The neck isn’t actually too bowed. I’d dearly love to have this guitar fighting fit for another decade and treat it right with light, silk & steel strings.

    Thanks again for your assistance. All the best.

  8. Richard Oakes says:

    I’ve a 12 string guitar that Russ custom made for me. Spruce top ,Indian rosewood back and sides in virtually unplayed condition fitted pick up and complete with hiscox hardcase tel Richard 07813 976 168 if interested

  9. bobwootton says:

    Thanks Richard but one RW 12 is enough for me!

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