Funded! This project was successfully funded on September 23, 2012.

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Retronix is a new line of affordable instruments from J Backlund Design Guitars. The R-800 is our first great design for a new market.

The Retronix R-800 is the new offering from J. Backlund Design Guitars. It will be available in Tremolo, Hard-Tail and Bass models.

Here is what the world is saying about our guitars...

J. Backlund Designs JBD100: The Guitar That Robots Play In Flying Cars And Arcologies. http://www.gearwire.com/jbacklunddesigns-snamm.html

Retronix R-800b Bass Prototype
Retronix R-800b Bass Prototype

 was FLOORED by the looks of these things!  http://forum.gibson.com/index.php?/topic/56780-did-you-ever-see-a-guitar

Retronix R-800 Prototype
Retronix R-800 Prototype

...if widely spread, these guitars could change the course of guitar design and take it off its current track of dullness and easiness.  http://guitarz.blogspot.com/2009/10/john-backlund-design.html

You don't have to know diddly squat about playing the guitar to recognize how awesome these designs are. http://inventorspot.com/articles/retrofuturistic_guitars_22908

To simply say that J. Backlund Design Guitars “ups the Wow Factor” another notch is a gross understatement. These guitars blow the “Wow Factor” off the charts.  http://www.bluesboulevard.org/?p=107

Talk about retro-modern mojo! The JDB-100 shown to the left just oozes that! What a gorgeous guitar... http://guitargear.org/2009/03/24/gear-find-j-backlund-designs-guitars-jbd-100/

Hello KickStarter – We are the makers of J. Backlund Design Guitars.

You have seen our guitars on stage being played by artists like Joe Walsh , Mark Slaughter and Mark Wills.

Joe Walsh with his custom JBD-100
Joe Walsh with his custom JBD-100
Mark Slaughter at Sweden Rock Festival in Sölvesborg. Photo by Monica Lindström.
Mark Slaughter at Sweden Rock Festival in Sölvesborg. Photo by Monica Lindström.
Mark Wills on the set of his "Looking for America" video shoot.
Mark Wills on the set of his "Looking for America" video shoot.

In addition to working with established artists, we take great pride in working with future stars of the industry.  We have recently added the Van Lears to our artist roster.

The Van Lears - J. Backlund artists
The Van Lears - J. Backlund artists

Good in This World - The Van Lears

Pretty Girl - The Van Lears

Summer of Us - The Van Lears

"Bruce Bennett is one heck of a Luthier and the team at Backlund are all great guys."  Trey Bently - the Van Lears.  http://www.tdpri.com/forum/bad-dog-cafe/308180-j-backlund-guitars.html

Our instruments have been awarded the Best in Show at the 2010 Newport Guitar Show and used in advertisements for the 2010 Montreal Guitar Show, which is an invitation only exhibition for the top luthiers in the world. Our JBD-400 is currently featured on the cover of the 13th edition of the Blue Book of Electric Guitars.

Our story began several years ago when Bruce contacted our designer John Backlund after seeing the “artwork”, which John posted on Harmony Central. Once he realized that Bruce was not another person hounding him to buy a guitar, but someone who could help him bring his vision to the world they began to talk and the first generation of the team was born.

Bruce has worked with several guitar companies, such as Gibson, Steinberger, Tobias and Warrior. He has also spent many years as a working musician. Bruce has utilized his experience, both as a luthier and a working musician, as well as his incredible vision to develop the most uniquely beautiful, yet playable line of instruments to be introduced to the music industry in decades. Author, Robert Shaw in the book Electrified: The Art of the Contemporary Electric Guitar, recently recognized this accomplishment, where he listed Bruce as one of the top 125 luthiers in the world.

Electrified: the Art of the Contemporary Electric Guitar by Robert Shaw
Electrified: the Art of the Contemporary Electric Guitar by Robert Shaw
Zebra wood JBD-100 in root beer burst
Zebra wood JBD-100 in root beer burst

Since those early days, the response to our guitars has been overwhelmingly positive.  However, we hear over and over again that our designs are cool; people simply can’t afford them.  Our custom, hand made guitars range from $3500 to $7000. Some one-off models are even more. They are truly playable works of art. So, with your help and the through the magic of Kickstarter, we are going to make our guitars more accessible to working musicians and the musical world under the Retronix brand name.  

For the last three years we have been diligently working on research and development and making our designs more repeatable and less costly to produce. However, it just not possible for us to produce the hand-made US products at a price point where we can compete with the import products. In order to bring these instruments to you at the suggested price points, we will have to outsource our manufacturing. Fortunately, during this development time we have made several industry connections that will make this process doable. We are in the unique position of having sourcing relationships with Korean manufacturers that produce many of the high quality instruments for brand names that you have know for years. All of our prototypes and programming has been completed and we are ready for production.  This is where you come in. We are asking for $15,000 for manufacturing ramp up and production of the first run of Retronix guitars. We will have multiple color choices  and bass and six string models will be available. For the six-string model, you will also be able to choose between hard tail and tremolo models. Retail prices for these guitars will be between $1000 and $1250, depending on color and options. But, from now until September 22nd we will be selling them to the Kickstarter community for significantly less than that, in order to generate enough orders to meet our initial minimum production requirements. Over on the right side of the page, you will see several packages. There are pledge levels for everyone that include: guitar picks, prints, and guitars, designed by John Backlund himself. Thanks to John, we already have several designs to launch and there are more to come. 

Visit our website to see some of our other great designs. Please pledge generously and help us bring the art of John Backlund and the vision of Bruce Bennett to the rest of the world. Be a part of history. Your pledges will help change the guitar world forever.  

Design for John's art pledge level #1
Design for John's art pledge level #1
Design for John's art pledge level #2
Design for John's art pledge level #2
Artist renditions (by: John Backlund) of potential color options.
Artist renditions (by: John Backlund) of potential color options.

Current planned color options are - Black, White, Red, Sea Foam Green, Pink.  Colors and options are subject to change depending on requests and feedback received!

Mahogany JBD-800 - One of a kind $5000 pledge level
Mahogany JBD-800 - One of a kind $5000 pledge level
JBD-800 Mahogany
JBD-800 Mahogany
JBD-800 Mahogany Back
JBD-800 Mahogany Back

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  • Pledge $3 or more
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    0 backers

    You will receive our sincere thanks and a listing on our supporters page.

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  • Pledge $10 or more
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    3 backers

    You will receive our sincere thanks, a Retronix sticker for your guitar case and 6 Retronix guitar picks. (Please add $10 for international shipping.)

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  • Pledge $25 or more
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    2 backers

    John's art #1 - You will receive our sincere thanks, a listing on our supporters page and an 9 x 12 copy of John's original artwork, suitable for framing. (See the designs at the bottom of the page.)

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    0 backers

    John's art #2 - You will receive our sincere thanks, a listing on our supporters page and an 9 x 12 copy of John's original artwork, suitable for framing. (See the designs at the bottom of the page.)

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  • Pledge $500 or more
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    27 backers

    What you really want! - Early bird special #1 - You will receive our sincere thanks, a listing on our supporters page and a Retronix R-800 hard tail version. Chose from our 8 fantastic colors! (add $45 for domestic shipping - international shipping will be determined by UPS or FedEx at time of delivery) See color options at the bottom of the page.

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    6 backers

    What you really want! - Early bird special #2 - You will receive our sincere thanks, a listing on our supporters page and a Retronix R-800 tremolo version. Chose from our 8 fantastic colors! (add $45 for domestic shipping - international shipping will be determined by UPS or FedEx at time of delivery)

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    7 backers

    What you really want! - Early bird special #3 - You will receive our sincere thanks, a listing on our supporters page and a Retronix R-800B bass model. Chose from our 8 fantastic colors! (add $45 for domestic shipping - international shipping will be determined by UPS or FedEx at time of delivery)

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    4 backers

    Thank you - may I have another? Twin pack Guitar/Bass edition - You will receive our sincere thanks, a listing on our supporters page and you chose two from our Retronix R-800 (tremolo or hard tail) and Retronix R-800b bass models. You pick the models and colors from our 8 fantastic colors! (add $90 for domestic shipping - international shipping will be determined by UPS or FedEx at time of delivery)

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    0 backers

    Resale Package - Deposit level. You will receive our sincere thanks, a listing on our supporters page and ten (10) guitars in your choice of models and fantastic colors. This pledge level is for a 50% non-refundable deposit, with the balance and shipping due at time of shipment. Total commitment is $5000 (domestic and international shipping will be determined by UPS or FedEx at time of delivery)

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    0 backers

    One of a kind! - This is a rare opportunity. You will receive our sincere thanks, a listing on our supporters page, plus a one of a kind J. Backlund Design JBD-800 in beautiful fiddleback mahogany. A sight to behold! (add $45 for domestic shipping - international shipping will be determined by UPS or FedEx at time of delivery)

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    0 backers

    Resale Package - Crank it to 10! You will receive our sincere thanks, a listing on our supporters page and ten (10) guitars in your choice of models and fantastic colors. (domestic and international shipping will be determined by UPS or FedEx at time of delivery)

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  • Pledge $10,000 or more
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    1 backer Limited (2 left of 3)

    I wanna rock! – This package includes one guitar of each model (hard tail, trem and bass) as well as airfare for you and a friend, a suite at the Staybridge Suites – Anaheim and two passes as guests of J. Backlund Design Guitars at the Winter NAMM show in Anaheim, CA. We will also throw in passes to the Muriel Anderson All Star Guitar Night and as many other after hours party passes as we can get our hands on!! Plus hang out at the booth with us or wander NAMM for the entire show! (Airfare arrangements will be made according to the backer’s location. Offer only available within the continental United States. Dates of the Show are January 24-27, 2013. Hotel reservations will be January 23-27, 2013.)

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- (11 days)