A Lifetime in the Making
When a selection of wide-curl maple tops were making their way into the Private Stock Wood Vault, Paul Reed Smith knew they should be saved for something special. That special something ended up being the Paul’s 85.
Paul’s 85 are a special run of Private Stock guitars, painstakingly spec’d by Paul Reed Smith and meticulously crafted by the Private Stock team. Paul picked the tops, the selection of woods, assisted on the neck shapes of every guitar, spec’d the pickups, and played and adjusted each guitar until it was “right.” The team executed each detail while he looked after each instrument on a daily basis.
The chosen specifications also include dark Peruvian mahogany necks, Honduran rosewood fretboards and headstock veneers, solid red abalone birds with mother of pearl outlines, bone nuts, vintage-style tuning pegs, and aluminum stoptail bridges with brass inserts and brass studs.
Every piece of guitar-making knowledge at PRS is also in these guitars: the wood drying methods, the feel of the neck, the color and stain technique (Electric Tiger Glow – an exquisite stain and spray technique that accentuates the beautiful wide curl maple), the finish (a very special paper-thin, vintage-formula nitrocellulose that will crack over time), and the pickups (PRS TCI pickups that were spec’d to be full, clear, and musical).
These guitars are available exclusively through Authorized PRS Private Stock dealers, and there are only 85 of them worldwide.
“We believe guitar making is an ongoing process of discovery, and this Paul’s 85 guitar utilizes all of the parts, processes, and workmanship I have spent my career (to date) seeking, testing, refining, and teaching our craftsman. My hope is that these benchmark instruments are something remarkable for our company and the industry. There is no better way to close out our 35th Anniversary than with these extraordinary, hopefully magic, guitars.” – Paul Reed Smith