Other Guitars

Just a Couple of Cuties


I'd heard that this was one of the last amps that Gar Gillies designed before passing; very cute with that little Gibson.


I love these little Gibsons. They are such the perfect travel guitar. I had an ES125T 3/4 that was wonderful. Gretsch should make these, with a 24" scale and call them Ramblers....or Wayfarers, to resurrect a Gretsch name.


Owwww....there’s a 1950 that’s on my kick-my-own-@$$ list for ever letting go. Yours is freakin’ gorgeous!


Owwww....there’s a 1950 that’s on my kick-my-own-@$$ list for ever letting go. Yours is freakin’ gorgeous!

– tubwompus

Oh that's not mine. I dig the Garnet as much as the Gibson.


I think there are only a couple of the Mansfields Gar built out there.

The guy running Garnet now is still building them. Oh, maybe he’s not building them.



I've been playing music since the '50s, was a professional stagehand for over 40 years, and have been around gear all of my life, and I've never even seen a Garnet amp in person, much less played one. They're the rarest of the rare.


There was one Garnet called the Gnome. I heard that BTO used these back in the 70s.


I think the photo is from Pete Thiessen, yes, the guy running Garnet. A few Garnets passed through here over the years; there were quite a few models made. My favorite was an early Pro. Two EL 34 power tubes and the nicest overdriven sound I've ever found. Gar built 'stencil' amps under different names too for other companies like Sears. They were probably not very common in the USA, in part due to trade restrictions. (That was before 'free trade') The biggest early Garnet was called the BTO, not for the band BTO, but 'Big Time Operator." It was the Pro X 2, with four EL34 power tubes, GIANT transformers and....heavy.

Some Garnets sounded great; some not so great, but a good amp tech can mod them to sound fantastic. The weak link in most of the early Canadian amps, Garnet, Traynor, etc., was the speakers. Canadian made Marslands were often the only guitar speakers available for reasonable prices, again, due to trade restrictions, and generally regarded as crappy sounding. Trade restrictions with the USA is another reason why it's not uncommon to find old amps with vintage British and Japanese tubes. I just had an old Bell & Howell Filmosound converted to a guitar amp and it had two old English Mullard preamp tubes in it; a nice surprise.

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