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Musical instruments were one of the earliest known commercial uses of aluminum. Although aluminum is among the most plentiful metals in the earth's crust and its existence was known in Biblical times, its chemical identity wasn't discovered until and the first pure aluminum ingot was not extracted until when it was exhibited at the Paris Exposition. The acoustical properties of the metal were identified early but it wasn't until that the first American patent was issued to Charles Martin Hall for a cheap method of extracting the metal. That same year, Neil Merrill began experimenting with making musical instruments from aluminum. Instruments of the day were fragile and difficult to make; the back of a Neapolitan mandolin might consist of as many as 64 separate strips of wood. If aluminum proved suitable, several manufacturing problems could be eliminated. He experimented for several years and from to the Aluminum Musical Instrument Company catalog listed guitars, mandolins, fiddles, banjos and zithers under the Merrill brand.
Whether you are looking for a unique vintage instrument, or a fine modern interpretation of a classic, we can assist in the search and selection. We understand how important it is to choose the correct strings, cases, fittings and accessories for you and your instrument. Written appraisals serve a variety of purposes. For instance, they may bewritten or insurance purposes, for tax deductible charitable donations, estate settlement issues, or as documentation of a collection. Over forty years experience in the field of musical instruments provides special perspective in helping with solutions for the instrument related questions and issues faced by individuals, collectors, and institutions. Vintage Instruments has long been a center for fine instruments and craftsmanship.