I'm learning how to play tenor guitar. I really like the sound of the tenor, and it helps that I'm in a group class right now.
One of my friends is also in the class. She too plays guitar and ukulele and now, tenor guitar! What a small universe.
Anyway, the guitar has a typical-for-the-era laminate top. Don't turn up your nose! Gretsch and Gibson use laminate tops on a lot of their archtops. It also has a nice brown sunburst nitro lacquer finish and a super cool tortoise pickguard.
Since the guitar has a long scale, your usual tenor string set doesn't fare well. To back up a bit, the usual tenor tuning is in fifths: C, G, D, A, from low to high. The low C is the same pitch as the C on the third fret of the fifth string on a standard guitar. The high A is A 440 - fifth fret on the high E string on a standard guitar. That high A is the real issue in terms of string gauge.
My friend had a local music store put it into playing shape - they installed some fabulous Waverly tuners in place of the originals. And they strung it up. I can't remember what they put on it, but they couldn't tune it up to the normal tuning. She also tried an 008.5 high A to no avail. She wanted to be able to use the normal tuning, which is where I came in.
The previous owner thought this guitar was made by Harmony, and that's certainly possible. There aren't any labels other than the headstock decal to identify it for certain.
So back to the tuning. After some thinking and research on the interwebs, I figured a set of .007 (A), .011 (D), .018w (G) and .027w (C) should work.
That .007 is really thin. Crazy.
I also set the intonation - just a little slant of the bridge on the treble side worked fine.
Bottom line: the string set works great! The neck is straight as an arrow (it's fairly hefty anyway) and it sounds terrific!
The guitar is super loud and has a classic cutting acoustic archtop tone. We jammed on the classic "Angeline the Baker" afterwards. (I played my 1927 Martin 5-17T). The Nobility sounded great...you might say it sounds quite...princely!
Problem is, now I want one.