The Black Mamba guitar was a custom-ordered KT Series guitar that was actually a gift from Jessica for her husband Brian. Brian had wanted a custom guitar for a long time and by the time he actually got one he knew specifically what he wanted. Since Brian lives in Tampa, Florida he was able to visit Virgil several times during the build. The Black Mamba has amazing tones and feel and exactly what the customer ordered!
Name: Black Mamba
Series: KT Series Carved-Top
Fingerboard:22 frets, 25" scale, 12" radius
Weight: 8.23 lbs.
Tuners: 3+3 Black Schallers
Nut: Bleached bone
Pickups: In-house handwound LickupPickups
Electronics: Vol, Tone are push/pull for coil tap, 3-way toggle with total of 8 separate tones.
Bridge: TonePros AVTII Black wraparound bridge
Neck: Flamed Maple
Fretboard: Ziricote with white binding.
Pickup rings: Black metal
Extras: White mother-of-pearl dots, handmade maple control knobs & Black Mamba snake head inlaid into trussrod cover.
My journey with Virgil began in November 2014. My wife Jessica wanted to surprise me with a custom guitar as a wedding present (we were married that prior October). She initially intended it to be a surprise but I got wind of it. I am sure glad I did because I got to be involved in all aspects of the build and more importantly, I got to know Virgil as a person.
I visited his workshop multiple times to 'hang out' while he was working on my build. He is equal parts luthier, artist, musician, renaissance man and mad scientist. My life has been enriched immeasurably through my association with him. He probably should have lived in 16th century Florence, Italy; he would have fit in perfectly there at that time!
The guitar he built for me is truly exquisite cosmetically. That is self-evident when you look at the pictures on this page. I am most impressed, however, by the playability and tone. It has the straightest, most perfect neck out of all my guitars and it plays better than any other guitar I've owned or picked up. There is not one quirky spot on the neck where there is even the slightest buzzing/fret rattle. The pickups are incredible. I prefer vintage-style pickups because of the clarity and warmth of sound, and I prefer to get overdrive/distortion from the amp and not my pickups. So, I had Virgil put in his handmade vintage-style LickupPickups. These pickups, combined with the 25 inch scale of the fingerboard, create crisp, bell-like tones and a tighter bottom end compared to my Les Pauls. There is a less of a murky sound and notes are more articulate with a snap to them. The LickupPickups are the clearest sounding humbuckers I've come across. My guitar really has the strengths of a Strat and a Les Paul without the associated limitations of both.
If you are in the market for a boutique, custom guitar, I sincerely hope you will consider Virgil Guitars. I am very grateful to my wife Jessica for bringing Black Mamba and Virgil into my life.
Brian Wilson - Tampa, FL