Wurlitzer, Herbert.

Herbert Wurlitzer by Cameron Brown and Kield …

Herbert Kurt Wurlitzer was born on March 8, 1910 and died December 12, 1986 .
He was originally trained as a violin maker, working for Max Heischkel. Later, like many of his contemporaries, he started to make guitars. At one stage he was employed by Osbama ( Oswald Bachmann ) and it was maybe there that he learnt how to make guitars, as his work certainly shows many similarities with Osbama guitars.
In 1953 he opened his own guitar workshop in Erlbach, joining the MIGMA cooperative and remaining a member until he died.

Carved models

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A sickle holed Wurlitzer at the left and a Wurlitzer made Osbama at the right. Very similar in many ways.


At the left a fine Wurlitzer sample with carved sprucetop. He produced very nice carving …with rather flat tops with steep recurve around the edges.

Very often the pickguards were very close to the shape used on Osbama Tango models.

He used various sickle-shaped soundholes , and a extra wiggly “sperm cell” soundhole like these.
Sometimes a classic f-hole like here : https://www.google.dk/search?q=migma+gitarre&espv=2&biw=1366&bih=667&tbm=isch&tbo=u&source=univ&sa=X&ved=0ahUKEwi9ivyeiuTOAhVBjCwKHRfLAMAQsAQIKQ#imgrc=kr06xTQFgXAcDM%3A ( Pickguard,pickup and tailpiece not original )


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Headstock with soft curves and another ( left ) with almost the same shape as an Osbama Tango. Often with this art deco styling on the head, which you can also see on many Osbamas. There are also often just white and black lines around the edge.


Fretboard is radiused  seen from the front and it often contains a hidden Rellog pickup. Often there are holes in the fretboard above the pickup, once again a common Osbama feature. The number of holes varies and they are not always there.

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Large, rectangular heels with Stauffer screw ,- in this case a Rubner anchor made by Rubner who is also famous for tuners. The neck is not glued in place.

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The neck extension is most often very straight with a small angle or rounding at the end.


Typical neck/head transitions and volute.

Wurlitzer also liked multiple binding, even on the cheap models. Here from a highend model :


The finer models often shows a  single tonebar or brace located centrally under the top ( again like Osbama Tangos)


Cheaper models.

He also , like many other makers, made cheaper domed guitars with typical Vogtland bracing for this type.

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The cheaper versions , like this one with domed solid spruce top, shows many of the same details as the finer ones, except for bracing …..

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Rather typical Vogtland bracing under top. Back with a center reinforcement and ladderbraced.


Lets end the story by having a look at this beautiful highend :




Thanks to Arne, Udo Kretzschmann, Stefan Lob, Dirk Wacker