Monday, March 29, 2021
Saturday, March 27, 2021
I made this guitar in the style of a circa 1830 Rene Lacote “Legnani” model guitar. It is a small guitar, the string length is 595mm, compare that to a “modern” classical guitar string length of 650mm.
When I first made this guitar it had a very heavy Douglas fir top with a five strut Torres-style bracing, a lot of wood to drive with a short string length, the guitar’s voice was very quiet and a little choked. It now has a very light European spruce top with three braces of light and strong redwood. The under bridge patch is a thin piece of ebony that will protect the top from the knotted strings, I will use an original style “pin” bridge.
When I rap the top with my knuckles it has a loud, resonate drum-like tone, even with all the tape and clamps.
Purflings and neck are next.
Wednesday, March 24, 2021
Sunday, March 21, 2021
My “new” guitar plantilla (outline) is slightly smaller than my regular guitar, which means I need a slightly smaller work board on which to assemble the guitar. I build in the so called “Spanish method” where I attach the top to the neck and place that face down on a work board to attaché the sides and back. This method is described in Cumpiano’s Guitarmaking: Tradition and Technology; and Courtnalls’ Making Master Guitars.
My work board consists of two layers of MDF, the bottom layer is simple a base for support and the upper layer will have a scooped out area in the lower bout for the dome of the guitar top. It will be attached to the lower layer with screws.
I rough out the shapes with a jigsaw, the lower layer is refined a bit with the help of a belt sander, then I tack the upper layer on with two screws, put a flush trim rout bit in my router and trim the upper to match the lower.
Friday, March 19, 2021
Monday, March 15, 2021
Saturday, March 13, 2021
I was able to add a little bulk to the upper bout and a little adjustment with the help of French curves I am quite satisfied with the final shape!
Saturday, March 6, 2021
Thursday, March 4, 2021
Happiness is making (and scraping) your own guitar bindings!
Earlier this week, I ripped some Macassar ebony down to 15 strips 1/8” thick, about 3/8” high, by around 33” long to use for binding on the European spruce/Canadian cypress guitar. Today I thinned all the pieces down to 1.93mm thick, I was going for 2mm but I forgot to pay attention to the thickness and ended up with that number. I will double up the bindings when I glue them in the binding ledges, 4mm of ebony bindings is really going to make this guitar visually stunning.
Next week I will rout the binding ledges...
Tuesday, March 2, 2021
There is still one guitar in the shop for repair, with the other repairs out the door I have some extra time to catch up on other work, like glueing a stacked heel onto the shaft of a neck for a copy of an 1830’s Rene Lacote guitar...
Monday, March 1, 2021
I have had the pleasure of playing the magnificent guitars made by the luthier Wilson Burnham. The first impression that one perceives is ...
What holds the Holy of the Holies, what did Brahma become? Wood. Why will aspen always tremble? For the nails driven into the cross. What ma...
I will cite the case of a marvelous concert player, a Japanese lady who is barely 5 ft. tall and with hands that are real miniatures. She pl...