MotorAve BelAire $5500

The BelAire is a flat top, semi-hollow guitar. It's the same basic size as a ES-335, except that it has a wider waist. This makes it appear quite large. Average weight is 7.75-8.5 lbs.

Construction/Specs Overview

-MAHOGANY BODY AND BOOK MATCHED BACK
-SCARF-JOINTED, QUARTERSAWN MAHOGANY NECK
-CARBON FIBER REINFORCEMENT RAILS
-HOT HIDE GLUE CONSTRUCTION
-24.625” SCALE LENGTH, 22 FRETS
-TAPERED, STRAIGHT MORTISE NECK JOINT
-SINGLE PLY WHITE BINDING THROUGHOUT
-MEDIUM FRETWIRE .100” WIDE AND .050” TALL.
-“PAINTED IN” BONE NUT
-ROSEWOOD OR EBONY 12” RADIUS FINGERBOARD
-WIDTH AT NUT IS 1.68”, 2.19” AT END OF FINGERBOARD

Standard Hardware

- GROVER IMPERIAL TUNERS
- TONEPROS AVR 2 BRIDGE
- CUSTOM T-ROD COVER AND JACKPLATE
- 3 WAY TOGGLE SWITCH
- 2 VOLUME/ 1 TONE with “BUMBLEBEE” CLONE CAP
- CONTROL LAYOUT WITH SWITCHCRAFT & CTS COMPONENTS
- REFLECTOR CAP KNOBS
- TKL 335-STYLE HARDSHELL CASE

Finish Choices:

TRANSPARENT
-Cherry (bright or faded)
-Natural (light or dark) 

OPAQUE TOPS (natural back/sides/neck)
-BlackTop
-Moss Green
-Midnight Blue
-Gold
-Aged Pelham Blue

ALTERNATE FINISHES: > $150

Mark mixes his colors according to his own recipes. His results are fairly consistent- but colors do differ from guitar to guitar.

Options

TAILPIECE:
- Bigsby tremolo $0
- Handmade String-Thru Tailpiece $250
- Handmade Trapeze Tailpiece $400

PICKGUARD:
- Black plastic $0
- Aluminum $250

CHOICE of PICK-UPs: 
- WolfeTone Dr. V Humbuckers
- TV Jones Classic Filter-Trons
- WolfeTone P-90s

INLAYS:
Dots $0
MOP block inlays $250
Double parallelograms $400

BINDING:
Price depends on configuration. 

MISC:
Gold Pickguard/Gold Bigsby $500
Custom CedarCreek Case > $400
Custom Calton Case > $1000

 
 

Design Notes:

No matter how you dress it- the MotorAve BelAire sounds huge, and like all of Mark’s guitars... is designed to be played loud. Stylistically, the pick guard is a nod to the thinline telecaster. The F-hole is a sharp reaction to the Rickenbacker cat’s eye. The body is double bound like any self respecting fancy guitar should be. With a Bigsby and Filtertrons, the BelAire may resemble a Gretch (even with your eyes closed). While the BelAire is the same basic size as a 335, they are not constructed in the same way, and for this reason they sound quite different. The variety of inspirations that make up the BelAire have resulted in fairly multipurpose chassis. Out fitted with your choice of tailpiece and pickups, the BelAire lends itself to many styles. But this guitar is no mere Frankenstein... there is also innovation in what may first appear to be tradition.

For instance, Mark’s trapeze tailpiece is not hinged to the bottom side of the guitar. It is in fact attached to the center core through the top, by a hook that is then locked into place by a bolt that runs through the end pin and threads into the tip of the hook. As a result, this trapeze does not flop around. On the contrary, it sits suspended above the top and as a result stays in tune beautifully.

Mark also designed the String Thru tailpiece- which is equal parts form and function. He first put one of these on a guitar as a point of style. Though, it quickly became apparent that this tailpiece “drives” the guitar- giving it a deeper, more resonant growl.

The body of a BelAire starts off as a solid core and a book matched back plate. The body is routed to reveal a center block running through the length of the guitar. This block anchors the tail piece, bridge, and pickup; connecting them to the neck via the long tenon that locks the neck into the body. Before the back is glued on, it is finished, sanded, and buffed on the F-hole side; and the rest of the cavities are sealed and shielded as well. 

This attention to detail runs throughout the entire building and finishing processes. Mark does not let anything slip. In the end, after much time and money has been spent leading up to that moment when you open up the case... our goal is to blow your mind. And if it takes you a few months to get past the shine; all the better!