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cripe Bolt Series Prototype

Bolt Series Prototype
This guitar was made before Lightning Bolt and was prototype for Garcia's Cripe and the Bolt series.

“Green heart core with Lignum Vitae top and back - two of the hardest and heaviest woods in the world.  Laminated Brazilian rosewood and maple neck, laminated headstock shaped very similar to the upper end of the body, 22 fret Brazilian rosewood fretboard with inlayed Lignum Vitae sapwood lightning bolt, Schaller hardware. Bright sound with unbelievable sustain.” —Original description by Steve Cripe and transcribed by Hal Hammer, Jr.


“Zebrawood core with Cocobolo top and back, laminated Cocobolo and maple neck with Brazilian rosewood center stripe, 22 fret ebony fretboard, laminated headstock, black Schaller bridge, Grotoh tuners.  Wired same as #4. Warm sound.  The only reason I did not send this guitar (instead of Lightning Bolt) to Jerry was because the fretboard was 22 frets.  I assumed that he would want 24 frets, so I built the “Bolt” using this guitar as the basic design.” —Original description by Steve Cripe and transcribed by Hal Hammer, Jr.

cripe Palm Tree Rosebud

Palm Tree Rosebud
“After reading an article about Cripe shortly after Garcia died, I had this guitar custom made for me. I traveled to Cripe’s workshop in Trilby, Fl, and worked with him picking out woods, stains and design.

It has a maple core and a cocobolo top and back with a nine-ply laminated neck through the body.  The laminated headstock is made from the opium bed used on Jerry’s Bolt.

Cripe was a neat guy, easy to work with and we developed a great relationship.  I helped him choose the butterfly and bookmarked cocobolo.  Looking down at the guitar, the maple core is really cool looking.  I actually watched Steve sculpt out the dog eared cutaways with a flat blade while I was there.  I actually drew out the flying bird design and Steve replicated them with precision.

I remember seeing the Cripe Eagle while visiting him.”  —Thomas Farr

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Adam Palow

Adam Palow in 1996 holding a Cripe guitar with oval inlays. Note the unique headstock design.

cripe template

Cripe's template for the Irwin dog-eared style guitars.

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