Nigel Tufnel's guitar [Archive] - Glock Talk


View Full Version : Nigel Tufnel's guitar

10-24-2004, 16:51
The tach goes to "11", as do all the knobs.

Ernie Ball just auctioned off the official "#11" Nigel Tufnel Limited Edition Guitar via eBay and proceeds from the auction will help fund pediatric kidney research.

The winner in the auction that closed May 7? The person (understandably) wishes remain anonymous, but the agent or person making the bid was nicknamed Prawnbroker on eBay. Appropriately, the final price for the guitar was $11,000.

After all, this guitar is the 11th of 25 collectible guitars displaying the signature of "Nigel Tufnel," guitarist in the 1984 cult classic/mock-rock comedy, "This Is Spinal Tap." With special features surrounding the number 11, it is easily understood and appreciated by Spinal Tap fans.

All 25 of these hot-rod theme guitars are embellished with flamboyant details such as chrome exhaust pipes, orange and yellow flame paint scheme, four humbucking pickups, a functional tachometer, and a rubber-booted, iron gear shifter for the tremolo bar, topped by a black eight ball. The "#11" Nigel Tufnel Guitar is one of a kind, and features a tachometer that tops out at 11 rather than 8 and a tremolo "gear shifter" topped by an 11 ball instead of an 8 ball. The 11th fret is custom inlayed with two dice, one showing 6 and the other 5.

The movie "This is Spinal Tap," quickly gained a cult following when it came out in 1984. Band members went on tour in 1992 and actor/guitarist Christopher Guest who plays Tufnel, commissioned Ernie Ball to create a hot-rod style guitar for the tour.

When Guest was recently asked to commission a special edition guitar for an auction, this guitar was the only one that he had in mind. The idea evolved into the 25 signed Nigel Tufnel Limited Edition Guitars. Most of the other guitars were auctioned off at the NAMM show in January 2001. All proceeds are marked for the Casey Lee Ball Foundation to support research in pediatric kidney disease at UCLA. Sterling Ball created the Casey Lee Ball Foundation, after his son Casey, now a healthy 13-year-old, was diagnosed with kidney disease.

"With the kind generosity of Christopher Guest, we are looking to raise a substantial amount with this limited edition of Spinal Tap guitars," remarked Sterling Ball, president of the Ernie Ball Company. "No one will make any money from this auction except pediatric kidney disease researchers dressed in white coats--This is true charity."

The "Limited Edition Spinal Tap Guitar #11" product specs are as follows:

Music Man Albert Lee Guitar body style, with maple neck and matching headstock
4 humbucker pickups, sized to match the string width as it travels down the body
Rubber selector switches, with on/off status lights, colored to match the light signals on a drag strip
Stainless steel exhaust headers, protruding from the side of the body
Functional Tachometer, built into the body, with adjustable redline. Measures the attack on the strings while playing. The tach on this guitar "goes to 11!"
Key Signature Inlays on the fretboard
Tire volume knob, which controls volume and activates the tachometer lighting when pulled out
Floyd Rose Licensed Tremolo system, with a gear shifter rather than a tremolo arm. "11" ball on the end of the gear shifter.
Flame paint job on the bridge end of the body
Autographed by Nigel Tufnel, guitarist of spinal tap
Each model numbered by the autograph: 11-25 refers to the 11th guitar made out of 25 total.

The Casey Lee Ball Foundation is a nonprofit organization where every dollar donated goes directly to research. The major source of funding for the Casey Lee Ball Foundation has been the Casey Lee Ball Golf Classic, an annual charity golf tournament held with celebrity guests. The fund raising efforts have raised over two million dollars to pay for much needed pediatric kidney research. As a result of this research, several new medicines have made it to market and are helping to reduce the side effects of kidney transplant anti-rejection medicines.

The Casey Lee Ball Foundation endows a chair at UCLA, which represents a million dollar contribution and one of only six chairs at UCLA that are endowed, ensuring kidney research will go on in perpetuity.

Big Road Blues congratulates the person for not only winning the auction, but also supporting such a worthy cause. Frankly, we also congratulate you on having $11,000 to spend on a guitar!



10-24-2004, 17:35
Killer movie. "I'm gonna send ya back to BI*CH SCHOOL....":)
"Talkin' bout mud flaps, my Baby's gottem..."

10-25-2004, 08:12
Why don't you just make 10 louder? ;f

10-25-2004, 08:49
This one goes to 11!

10-25-2004, 09:09

10-29-2004, 21:56
I have an MCI Intertek S/S 3000 I customized. I used a plasma torch to cut razor aluminum sheeting for the pickguard, I used 3 different humbucking pickups, I forget which ones. There are no volume or tone knobs, each pickup has its own on and off switch, and a phase reversal switch (That does have a change in tone). The entire pickup cavity I shielded using adhesive backed copper foil, and I used shielded cable to run to the 1/4" output jack.

Edit: BTW, those 4 humbuckers will eventually suffer reduced output because they are so close together. The magnets are in a constant opposing flux with that mounting method, and will hae weakened fields over time. This is why I did not use 4 pickups in my Intertek. Spacing is key.

10-30-2004, 08:57
I like the inlays in the neck to show Nigel where to put his fingers for the correct chord.

Kinda like the old instructional books had stick-on decals for the neck.....

And actually, Chris Guest is not a half-bad guitarist IRL.


California Jack
10-30-2004, 22:11
We shouldn't even be looking at it. Not even a picture of it.

11-01-2004, 17:21
Do you hear that? Listen to that sustain!

09-24-2005, 15:47
It's in e minor, the saddest of all keys. It's called "Lick my Lovepump".


09-24-2005, 15:51
Originally posted by Tommy21
And actually, Chris Guest is not a half-bad guitarist IRL.

Indeed, I could tell he knew how to play from the movie...and as someone in the music bz, no one needs to tell you of all people that every inside joke in Tap is dwarfed by reality.

09-24-2005, 23:16
That thing needs a couple more pick-ups

10-06-2005, 20:11
Thanks for the newsflash!

I used to be an avid devotee of Spinal Tap lore, but lately I've been too busy Workin' on a Sex Farm to keep up with the latest developments.

Truly, the Tufnel guitar was--and in my opinion, always will be--one louder. And dude was an artist with that thing! To pull that kind of sound out of a guitar--any guitar, Tufnel's or otherwise--without the assistance of boggles the mind.

My only question is, why would you keep folding it?

Fred Hansen
10-06-2005, 21:26
"You can't dust for vomit."