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Hand Made Guitars by Luthier Dan Koentopp

An In-depth review of a custom Chicagoan called “The Owl”


By Trevor Hanson


This is the story of a special guitar, “The Owl,” built for me in 2018-19 by Dan Koentopp. The instrument is unusual; it is worth a look. But perhaps more interesting is the process we used to create it. This article reviews the guitar’s design, construction, and refinement, focusing on how builder and client worked together to make this happen. If you’re thinking about a custom guitar project, you may find this helpful.


Click here to Read the full Review in Guitar Connoisseur Magazine 



Trevor Hanson


“…Koentopp believes strongly in designing a guitar around a player. This is more than just an awareness of player style and musical direction. He recognizes that, for many guitarists, our instruments become extensions of ourselves. Finding distinctive personal elements, both musical and decorative, helps him create a special bond between guitar and guitarist.

There is hardly an aspect of the instrument that didn’t undergo extensive discussion and analysis. From the choice of materials, to the geometry of the neck, to the unusual scale length, body size, and nut width, to the surprising electronics choices, to a dozen other details and puzzles, we talked out the many options and created interesting solutions. I feel a definite sense of being a co-designer of this guitar. My role was small – Danny did the heavy lifting. But he never would have built this particular guitar for somebody else. Nobody else would have picked this particular set of features and properties.”


Click here to Read the full Review in Guitar Connoisseur Magazine 








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