Body: Sipo Mahogany
Neck: one piece Wenge
Pickguard: Gold anodized aluminum
Pickups: 4 Kent Armstrong Lipstick Single Coils, wired to work in a humbucker mode
Bridge: Jazzmaster style
Tremolo: Jazzmaster style, improved for 12 strings
Tuners: 12 Gotoh Kluson Style, 6 left, 6 right
Circuit: Mastervolume, Mastertone, Pickup Leslie, 2 Single Coil switches
Deimel 12-String for Lee Ranaldo
Basically this guitar was an experimental edition of the offset waist series I did together with Pascal Stoffels. We just wanted to put anything that came up in our minds into one guitar. Since we both loved the sound of Sonic Youth we wanted this guitar to be the ideal “Sonic Youth” guitar. We never really intended, that it would be at any point one of Lee Ranaldo guitars. This just happened years later.
Once Nikki Sudden showed up at my studio to let me know about Sonic Youth wanting to get to know my guitars. Nikki just had shown his own Deimel custom guitar to Sonic Youth during their soundcheck and they got excited about it. So having the “right” piece already on hand, I brought the ideal “Sonic Youth” guitar backstage. First I showed it to Thurston and later to Lee, who immediately liked it. He told me to send it to New York. That night before in Italy somebody offered him a hand built amplifier and now he had to choose between these two options. Luckily he decided for the guitar and so it found its place in the Sonic Youth program titled “Expressway your Skull” and two other songs. It also later appeared as a X-Ray picture for the sleeve design of the Sonic Youth DVD “Corporate Ghost” on the front cover. Just recently Lee Ranaldo is using it quite a lot fot his new solo album.
The guitar has 12 strings, four pickups, one tremolo, one pickup leslie circuit, and a variety of switches. We searched for a noble, sort of “english” look, and decided for a see through green finish on mahogany, an oiled Wenge neck, and a gold anodized pickguard. All 12 tuners were mounted on a standard 6 string headstock on the left side! This was achieved by turning the octave string tuners by 90 degrees, using left-handed tuners, and put them in between the regular tuners in a Rickenbacker manner.