December 12, 2023

On the road …again with a travelling guitar

There`s often something in the human condition that makes one feel one “oughta be someplace else”, to paraphrase the great John Steinbeck, and that compulsion or feeling might be even more exaggerated in the mind of the musician and especially the songwriter seeking inspiration.

Personally I would call the travel experience a pre-requisite food for the musical imagination and to that end I left my hometown around four years ago on a mission of discovery for the purpose of writing a collection of songs. It’s been a long hard road and when I began I had to make a very difficult choice as I could only take one guitar, one suitcase and one bicycle. I chose my stratocaster, some good jeans and a bmx.

SO today I`m going to have a look at travel guitars and of late the selection has just been growing and growing so lets get on the road with Jack Kerouac and hit up the rails with some great travel guitars.

Traveler guitars

Since 1992, Traveler Guitar has been the leading manufacturer of full-scale electric and acoustic travel guitars. Since then, the original design has grown into a dynamic line with travel solutions for all types of players. We have the largest selection of quality-crafted electric, acoustic, nylon and bass travel instruments, all of which are lightweight, portable and extremely durable.

For 15 years Traveler Guitar has set the standard for what portable instruments ought to look, feel and sound like; with the all new, fully-loaded Traveler Escape EG-1we have raised the bar once again. Building upon the ideas of our already successful Escape line, we have created a new travel guitar for the electric purist. The Escape EG-1 is our top of the line electric travel guitar complete with a built in headphone amplifier from Pocket Rock-It, a full-size humbucker, a full 25 1/2 inch scale, 22 jumbo frets, an array of classic colors and a top-of-the-line custom gig-bag from High Sierra. Pocket Rock-It’s custom electronics provide classic clean and distortion tones, both through the headphones and through a traditional amplifier. If you’re a serious traveler, and an even more serious electric guitar player, then the Escape EG-1 is the most sophisticated electric travel guitar you’ll ever play


The SoloEtte is a solid-construction, disassembling frame-design, travel, practice & performance guitar. It plugs directly into stereo headphones or standard amplification equipment. The frame comes apart and fits into a small carrying case. The features of silent practice and portablility, combined with the amplification capabilities provide a bright new innovative concept for the serious musician. The soloette travel guitars are endorsed by none other than the mesmerising Sharon Isbin.

SoloEtte has licensed the design to the Aria Guitar Company for overseas manufacture and worldwide distribution. As an affordable option to the USA hand-built SoloEtte, the Aria “Sinsonido” is a Chinese-made instrument that successfully embodies the light weight convenience and durability of the frame design with on-board headphones amplification.

The Aria Sinsonido AS-100C is suitable to use as a travel guitar or for late night practising. AS-100C features a nut width of 52mm and a flat fingerboard for classical guitar players.The combination of the mahogany body and the frame provides a comfortable playability to guitarists. Not only that but you can use this guitar wherever and whenever you like, any time of the day or night.The secret behind Sinsonido’s natural acoustic sound is in the innovative pickup developed by Wright Guitar Technology in U.S. Two condenser microphones inside the pick up sense the string vibrations in stereo and thus are able to produce more natural,  dimensional sounds of a real acoustic guitar, unlike the usual flat-sounding piezo pickups. A 9V battery-operated preamp amplifies the stereo signal without affecting the sound of the pick up and puts out a clean, clear signal.

With the volume and tone controls you can adjust the output to be compatible with all headphones, and play through any mic input or CD input on “boomboxes”, car stereos, Karaoke machines, etc. Plug into computer speakers, guitar amplifiers and sound systems and control your own tone and volume.

I already mentioned these awesome modern guitars here! Check them out. The Blackbird Rider features an all-hollow uni-body shell setting it apart from any guitar in the world. That is the body, neck, and head are cast in one-piece with the sound board, fretboard, tuners, etc. added to that main component.

Forming the main component in one-piece eliminates the weak and sound-absorbing joints associated with standard guitars. This patent-pending construction relies on the incredibly strong and stiff properties of carbon fiber as well as plenty of unique design features to create the strongest, most resonant small-bodied guitar available anywhere.

Composite Cargo Travel guitar

The Andy is a ¾ scale archtop electric guitar that is perfect for either travel or serious youth guitarists.

Not a toy, the guitar’s 23” neck scale features a solid carved spruce top and a solid carved maple back, with laminated maple sides.

The guitar incorporates the same design features of its big brothers with an ebony fingerboard, fingerrest, tailpiece and bridge. A mini-humbucking pickup with volume and tone control is built into the top.

Before the Atlas Series, Breedlove was a custom shop guitar manufacturer only. In 2003 the Atlas line was launched with the intention of incorporating high-end custom features into a production line. The Atlas line is made overseas and goes through the setup and quality control process at the Breedlove Custom shop located in Bend, Oregon.

The all new Breedlove Atlas Series comes in four categories: Stage, Studio, Solo and Retro lines. Each category has a specific sound and application.

The newly voiced instruments feature the all new LR Bagg’s Stage Pro Element pickup with chromatic tuner. We worked with Lloyd Baggs for over 5 years developing this pickup to be the best performing on-board pickup of its kind. Stylish L.R. Baggs Stage Pro controls include volume, EQ, notch, phase and fast battery access highly sought after by today’s touring musicians. Lloyd Baggs explains, “The sound and combined performance features were previously unattainable, until now.”

Each new Atlas Series name (Stage, Studio, Solo, and Retro) implies the purpose of each design. The Stage, Studio and Solo models are all braced for balance and reinforced with the bridge truss to maximize sustain and dynamics. The Retro models offer a combination of balance and power.
Breedlove Atlas Series instruments are designed and engineered by Kim Breedlove and are quality assured at our Custom Shop in Bend, Oregon.

The Atlas Series includes six-string Concerts, Dreadnoughts and Jumbos, twelve-string Concerts and Jumbos and four and five-string acoustic basses. We also offer a nylon-string Atlas acoustic guitar in a concert size.

Epiphone V

This half-scale flying V from epiphone features a Rosewood fingerboard, a 3 Position switch for Clean, Distortion, Volume and tone, and is powered by by a 9 Volt battery with a Gibson style Stop/Tailpiece and Tuneamatic bridge and one humbucking pickup.

Although it has a full-width neck, the VEE WEE is only 32 inches high and the short scale means that the frets are closer together than they would be on a standard-sized guitar, and that it should be tuned to GCFA#/BbDG or ADGCEA instead of the standard tuning because otherwise the strings would be too slack.

Erlewine lazer & chiquita

The Erlewine Chiquita has been around since the early 1980s. It is a travel sized electric guitar, just 28 inches long and weighing 4.5 pounds. Scale length is short, at 19 inches.

The body is mahogany. Hardware is a Schaller bridge, single humbucking pickup and single volume control.

These beauties can often be found on ebay!

The Erlewine lazer as seen below is used by Johnny Winter. ‘Nuff said. Johnny’s lazer, custom built by dan erlewine himself, features a single coil neck and humbucker bridge pick up, plus a boost toggle which kicks out the jams. Johnny usually runs through a fender super reverb or musicman clone to deliver a hardhitting tone that clearly says “Dont Mess with Texas”.

Cort Earth Mini – comes in mahogany or spruce top and is a mini dreadnought.

The X5 was born out of a need for a guitar that was small enough to take anywhere, Strong enough to endure anything and with a sound that would make you want to play it all the time rather than just when you are travelling.

The X5 unlike most guitars its size is a full scale length guitar that allows you to play in the way you are used to so you don’t need to adjust your playing style. It also offers great tone and volume that defies its size.

As with all Emerald guitars you get the highest of craftsmanship and we have spared no expense in putting all the best hardware on it while still keeping it at an unbelievably low price.

You shouldn’t just think of the X5 as a travel guitar because it is so much more, it’s a great guitar that just happens to be small.

This is the guitar you have been looking for this is a guitar for “life” !

Tacoma Papoose

The original Wing Series instrument! Portable and unique. Superior construction and tone make this the perfect vehicle when you want to fatten up your recording project with rich high-end harmonics. And who says you have to know Mandolin chords to sound like one when you are on-stage. This “A”-tuned guitar acts like a normal guitar capoed at the 5th fret. It’s chiming tone perfectly complements the lower registers of its standard guitar cousins. Availabe with pickup.

Taylor Baby

This is my personal favourite and these just sound and play so great!

The Baby Taylor is the ultimate travel companion, delivering volume and tone that surprise for its diminutive dimensions. At three-quarters the size of a full-sized guitar, the Baby Taylor lives for the road. It also loves little hands, which makes it an irresistible choice for kids taking lessons. Available with either a solid spruce or solid mahogany top.

Big Baby
Slightly bigger than a Baby Taylor but just shy of a full-size guitar, the Big Baby is ideal for easy-playing, great-sounding guitar fun. Sporting a solid spruce top, sturdy laminate back and sides, and genuine Taylor craftsmanship, the Big Baby is pure acoustic bliss.

Top: Solid Sitka Spruce or Mahogany (Baby-Mahogany). Back/Sides: Sapele Laminate.

Triff Bone Guitar

Through its attractive and compact design and innovative shape, TheBone-guitar® is a very versatile headles Guitar with integrated pickup system, volume- and tone-controls.

Its light weight and pack size, make it ideal to take along.

Almost like a “travel guitar“ only a lot better to hold and perform with, thanks to our patentet “BodyClip”.

Sound quality, playability and handling as well as portability were the main considerations in the development of TheBone-gutar®. Select woods and finishes, electronic components as well as specially developed hardware, were carefully selected to meet these requirements.

Vagabond Travel Guitar

Designed as a dynamic, lightweight alternative to a full size guitar, the Vagabond really knows how to get around… an impressive rich, balanced, and satisfying sound in a guitar specially designed to travel light and easy. Since 1981, the Vagabond has pioneered the travel guitar, defining the perfect marriage of size and function. Now the Vagabond leads this new generation. Other compact guitars are either shrunken versions of standard guitars, too bulky for full travel convenience, or too small to develop any sound at all. The Vagabond is a work of functional art in every respect, renowned for fine fretwork and precise intonation, great sound, and still very stowable. The Vagabond sounds as great as it looks. Beautifully handcrafted of the highest quality materials, the Vagabond was designed by musician and luthier Kevin Smith. Kevin patiently experimented with different wood, materials, soundhole placement, and shape to create a truly remarkable and distinct instrument that is highly respected by collectors, travelers, and professionals in the music industry.

Washburn Rover

*  Full size 24″ scale
* Solid spruce top
* Mahogany body and neck
* Rosewood fingerboard
* Quality geared tuners
* Professional binding and inlay
* RO10 comes complete with the higest quality cordura case with hard foam lined, molded interior
o Internal and external storage pockets
o Backpack and luggage straps
o 3D rings are used for straps or luggage clip ons
o Sized to fit airline overhead storage
* Great sound, great shape, great fun!
* List: $225.90
* Case: Included
* Rover Colors: Natural, Black, Blue, Red

Wildwood travel guitar

This pint sized guitar is perfect for taking on the road as it measures at just 65cm. It has a scale length of 43.5cm (3/4 size), but incorporates a standard width neck for exceptional ease in playing. With a solid, one piece spruce top and a bolt on Jarrah neck, this robust little unit produces a superb sound. A guitar this size is perfect for children too! They have a beautiful golden/Jarrah sunburst finish, with the amazing “Wild Design” motif on the face of the instrument.


Jake Edwards

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