Here's what the players are saying about Specht's work . . .
"I brought my 1942 SS Stewart to Oliver for a set up, as it was likely not done at the factory; even had the original strings on it. Also he installed new tuning buttons. The guitar I picked up probably never sounded as good as it does now. There was no BS, just 'this is what I can do.' The service was excellent and quick. If you're looking for a luthier, you need look no further. Thanks for the help and I will bring all my future repairs your way." ~ Christopher Robin Dubinsky
Nanaimo’s musical scene is so fortunate to have stringed-instrument repair person extraordinaire Oliver Specht in its midst. I needed an emergency repair to my hand-built resonator guitar just as I was leaving on tour.
Oliver came right to the rescue, fixing the monster cracks in the back and side in record time and for a most reasonable fee. As a bonus, he trouble-shot my electronics and wound up installing a new pickup on the resonator.
My guitar sounds great now and survived the tour in fine fashion. Oliver is honest, reliable and efficient – and a heck of a nice guy. I highly recommend him and his shop for all your instrument repairs and rebuilds.The
guitar’s doing great, by the way!
I lived in Nanaimo for two years and Oliver did all of my guitar work for me while I was there. He’s a really solid guitar tech with a great touch for slick setups. He also did a couple of repairs for me and he was fast, practical, and reasonably priced. Beyond his repair and luthier skills, he's just a basically decent guy (always a plus). Highly recommended for anyone looking for a solid guitar tech.
Hey Vancouver Island musicians (north of the Malahat of course) I highly recommend Oliver Specht for all your instrument ailments and enhancements.
My name is Wil, singer songwriter and guitarist. Oliver is a “details” man, analytical, asks questions and seems to not want to cut any corners. So if you are looking for a quick, cheap, bang it out, next guitar please
kind of gent, Oliver is the WRONG man, Oliver is a luthier, he cares for the wood, he looks to match the set up to the player thus digs and gets info from you like Jason Bourn! Hell, he built a baritone acoustic
from scratch which i had the pleasure of playing, and then wanting.
All of this said, i also get the sense that no guitar is more precious than another to him by way of how he treats it, no hierarchy so to speak really, if you love your instrument, he will as well, that simple.
Wil of I Break Strings
Photo above by Christopher Edmonstone
I was very pleased to have been referred to Oliver Specht when I needed some work done on my Spanish made Manual Rodriguez Classical Guitar. He repaired the previously altered bridge so that it looked like new and lowered the strings so that it is much easier to play. He also refinished the worn frets. The guitar plays wonderfully now, thanks to Oliver's meticulous detailed work. Thanks Oliver for the beautiful work on a beautiful guitar. Love playing my guitar again. ~ Karen Schwalm
Oliver, that is one of the most beautiful instruments I have ever seen . . . I will be so so proud and honored to play her!! I really am honored – we will make some great music with her! Thank you ,thank you, thank you!
Oliver’s bass is a masterpiece. I’ve been playing basses of all kinds for 35 years and I’ve been a professional violinmaker for 20 years. I have never seen such a balance between masterful workmanship and awesome sound. The bass is very easy to play and I think at last I’ve found the perfect instrument.For recommendations call me at: Village Violinmaker 604-947-9887
When you’re a very demanding player that likes perfection, Oliver is the Luthier to see. He makes a point of listening to me and my style of playing, so I’m getting exactly what I want. All six of my basses need to be set up just a little different from one another and this is why I go to Oliver. He looks at details including proper neck relief, string height to match my style of playing, getting perfect intonation, and making sure the pickups are set up properly. Checking the whole bass over for other flaws or potential problems is also very much appreciated. These are all fine details that this dedicated Luthier makes a point of doing right . Working with pleasant people like Oliver makes it easy to come back time and time again.
I can’t believe I was actually considering selling the Guild. Wholly mackerel brother – the guitar fricken rocks now! You da bomb! It’s the first time ever (even before the unfortunate mishap) that it stays in tune and the intonation is now wonderful. Open chords, bar chords, up and down the neck, even with a capo on it sings and feels and sounds so awesome! It’s now so inspiring. Thank you so much!…
Oliver, thank you for the outstanding work you did on my 40 year old Hayahi (Fender copy) 6 string acoustic!
I was playing it less and less, because I was finding it almost unplayable, but now I have to force myself to put it down.
It sounds absolutely fantastic and the action is comparable to my PRS CE 22.
You have certainly lived up to your excellent reputation.
I purchased one of Oliver’s very 1st instruments he ever built aprox. 8 years ago. It was a custom acoustic fretless base, 4 string. Beautiful instrument made out of Yew wood sides & back, Spruce top, Maple neck, Rosewood
fingerboard, & Ebony binding. Even back when he 1st started building instruments I could see a high level of craftsmanship, attention to detail, & a feel for experimenting with different woods to achieve an
original, fuller sound. The sound of that bass improves every åyear as the wood ages & matures.
I’ve bought 2 more guitars since then. An electric Baritone guitar made out of Mahogany which has six strings 20 & is open tuned to A.Absolutely Gorgeous to look at & has a big rock’n sound. It’s worked well for some funky bass lines, big heavy chords, can break out into a solo, or even a country twang. My most recent purchase which you will find pictures of on this site is a custom 5 string electric bass. It’s got a custom oversized body made out of Koa wood, Custom Koa neck shaped to fit my hand & a rosewood fingerboard.
My dream bass, I can’t say enough about it. It’s got sexy curves, wood grain like I’ve never seen before, & a huge HUGE sound. The combination of the Ultra Jazz 5 pick-ups & the tone of the Koa wood make for a sound like no other. The finish is flawless. I could stare at her for hours. The1st night I got her I didn’t sleep. I kept waking up drooling over her wanting to caress & stare at her. My girlfriend is a little jealous. Now I’ve got my eye on a nylon string acoustic he’s building. Uh oh, I think I’m addicted. Oliver, thanks for a lifetime of playing enjoyment.
I first met Oliver through a mutual friend Greg Esposito. I had been looking for a builder to take on an imagining that had been developing for some time. Being a lover of many genres of music, I had first imagined the need for several instruments. Through further explorations I realized the need for a single instrument that would encourage the eclectic expression of the many styles at once. The instrument would definitely be a nylon stringed acoustic of mahogany spruce and ebony.It would have extra scale length to add tension and pluck and allow for a larger top to be sounded.The neck to be all but full in profile with a radiussed fretboard. The body to be large in the hips and comfortable with a taper from top to bottom and balanced overall. It was suggested the guitar would naturally play jazz with influences of the soulful Spain, Brazil, Argentina, and Cuba in mind. With this arduos task I turned to Oliver. He listened well took on the specifics intellectually and the large artistic ideas heartfully and turned his enthusiasm for creative adventure loose. What he did in fact was make this mere idea possible and more. The instrument he crafted encourages the expression of many styles. It is of full and even voice bottom to top and throughout its dynamic range. The tone is already richer than I had imagined and with each playing there comes a new discovery, a new joy and wonder.
Don McEachern, Saltspring, BC
I’ve had the pleasure and fortune to find Oliver when I was in desperate need of a guitar craftsman to breathe new life into a couple of my treasured instruments.
Not only did he make them better than new, Oliver did the deed in a timely fashion and an extremely reasonable cost.
While at Oliver’s I was able to test drive a couple of guitars from his line of personally crafted works of art.
The baritone guitar had tone to die for and played like a dream…it’s now on my “most wanted” list.
Thanks for being you Oliver.
I’d recommend you anytime, anywhere, anyhow!
Dan Schmuland of Guitarra Music
Oliver, thank you for the tremendous job on my Sigma steel string. The pick-up installation and refretting are superb. It has rejuvenated my playing. Thank you also for the quick turn-around time. cheers, Andy.
UPDATE: May 1, 2007:
Oliver – the Terz Guitar you’ve built for me is a dream. How do I come up with the adjectives that convey how happy I am with it? It is so playable! Made with such care, such heart, such soul, such style. It is so unique and I’m amazed at how you knew what I needed. I highly recommend you to anyone, and anyone can contact me to discuss: junglephysicians.com
This is the second bass I’ve bought from Oliver Specht; the first being a beautiful acoustic number that I have very much enjoyed.I’ve played bass for over twenty-five years. Lately, I had been experiencing severe neck and shoulder pain, as well as tendonitis in my wrist and fingers. I asked Oliver to build me a lighter, ergonomically-designed bass guitar to help alleviate some of the pain I felt while playing.He designed a gorgeous, light, well-balanced bass that is easy to play and easy on the body. Best of all, this guitar sounds better than I could ever have imagined! Nice, deep lows; great, growly mids; clear highs…a genuine, full-spectrum sound.The neck, shoulder and back pain I usually experience as a result of playing has all but disappeared. My hands are a work in progress, but the Specht bass is easier to play than any other I’ve had.My hat is off to Oliver, I’d highly recommend him to anyone considering a custom bass or guitar. In fact, I already have.