Making a Guitar

I’m making a guitar. Not a thing of beauty and loveliness with a tone to make grown boys cry, but a harsh slapdash half conceived stab in the dark.

Allow me to elaborate. Having successfully made a stomp box, I was after a new challenge. Along with all the instructional videos on YouTube for stompboxes I saw one for a cigar box guitar.

I don’t smoke cigars. I don’t smoke guitars either, but the point is that a suitable wooden box is going to be slightly more tricky to come by. However, I could always use one of these:

A5 File Box

A5 File Box from Ryman stationers. Rugged external construction with cheap thin back to resonate and a flap lid to allow easy access for fitting the insides.

And I have no scraps of wood lying around from when I last repaired my hen house (or boundary fence, or gun cabinet, or gibbet – this is a very American kind of instrument) but I can always use one of these:

Plain wood baluster

Plain wood baluster from B&Q. Plenty of strength and unlikely to warp a lot, and resllient to shaping on the sander.

So, we’re good to go. I have a resonant box, a length of wood, and I can always take the bits off my acoustic bass (which has warped beyond repair and needs to be sent to the bonfire) if I need tuning pegs and so forth.

As for electronics, you’d be amazed what you can get off eBay in terms of pots and caps to wire your own guitar from scratch. Alternatively, the bass has an on-board unit which does EQ and such. A bit advanced for this, but well worth a look. I’ll just have to salvage whatever I can.

The basic design I’m going for is three strings in open tuning, suitable for slide guitar redneck soundtracks. If this works, I’ll let you know. If it doesn’t I’ll probably still admit to it and you can all laugh.

I mean, how hard can it be?


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