The original 1930s Duolians were National’s budget guitars, and as such, were often the model of choice for blues players wanting to be heard above the sound and fury of a juke joint. Like the musicians, the guitars led hard lives, and most of the surviving instruments require a repair regimen, if not complete resurrection. The Dueco is the remedy. And it comes with something those old guitars don’t include — rock-solid reliability. The Dueco is available in both the early 12-fret, large-body or later 14-fret, small-body version. That steel body houses National’s 9.5-inch handspun resonator — a new resonator that’s so sweet sounding many players insist on swapping them into their vintage guitars. Best yet, the new Dueco boasts a truss-rod-supported neck that won’t bow like a piece of archery equipment. You can choose the Dueco in either the traditional gray-green crystalline frosted or the rare golden finish. And playing the Dueco is like playing the best vintage Duolian — except there are no rough edges, no roadblocks, no excuses needed. It’s like stepping back in time and finding a brand-new National, and instead of compensating for 80-year-old foibles, you can focus on making music.