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Category Archive for: ‘Technique’

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I’m Not A Guitar Maker, I Just Make Guitars

I don’t know about you, but in order to be fully connected with my work and fully invested emotionally in it, I have to be clear on what I’m actually doing. What is the point of it all, why is it important? When I sort through all the different layers and levels to get down to the core of what …

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How Does A Guitar Work? Guitar Physics Part 2: Bridge & Top

In How Does A Guitar Work? Part 1 we looked into what is going on with the guitar string when it is set in motion, and the kind of information and vibration that is present within it. Now we’re ready to move on to the next step which is the point at which the string energy gets converted into a …

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Endgraft

How to Cut A Guitar End-Graft By Hand

On most steel string or classical guitars the end-graft provides an opportunity to get creative and add some subtle details to your guitar. The design you use can be complex and very involved, or minimal and precise. Whichever style you chose will require you to cut a clean and perfect slot at the end block of your guitar where the …

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Hand Scrapers For Guitar Making

The steel scraper blade is one of the most used tools in my guitar making workshop. Don’t be fooled by how simple it appears, it is actually a very intuitive tool requiring experience to master the subtleties of using it to its fullest potential. At first glance, it seems like it’s just a piece of metal, but the scraper can …

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How Does A Guitar Work? Guitar Physics Part 1: Strings

The first step to being able to make the right adjustments to your guitar, to take the right measurements , to really be able to fine tune your instrument and get the most from it; starts with gaining a better understanding of this question; how does a guitar work?  What are the basic principles of physics and other types of phenomena and …

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Guitar truss rods

Guitar Truss Rods: Which One Is Best For Your Next Guitar?

When it comes to the stability and playability of the guitar neck, it is beneficial to spend some time thinking about the truss rod and which type is best for your application. The guitar truss rod is a critical component of any guitar. Without it, the playability of the instrument cannot be effectively controlled over time as the instrument responds …

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Olson Guitars - Guitar in progress

Jim Olson Guitars – Shop Tour

A Visit To Olson Guitars My journey to visit Jim Olson of Olson Guitars began a long time ago in California at the Healdsburg Guitar festival in 2003 where I had a chance encounter with a master luthier who up until then I only knew as, “the guy who makes guitars for James Taylor”. Since James Taylor was my inspiration …

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Hand Carving An Archtop Guitar: Time-Lapse Video & Photo Timeline

This Time-Lapse Guitar making video shows the process I use for sculpting the back of a 17 archtop guitar from my personal collection of master grade flame maple. It is a time lapse, and It goes by pretty quick, so I put together a timeline below that you can use to see some of the steps that are going by …

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Magnetic Mapping For Floating Guitar Pickups

Getting the best amplified sound from your guitar can be tricky sometimes especially if you are unaware of some of the finer things happening under the surface regarding the magnetic field of your pickup and how it relates to the strings of your guitar. Hand Made Floating Pickups & Placement All of the pickups that I use for my archtop guitars …

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Luthier Wall Chart

Introducing a new resource for luthiers, designed to help you gain a deeper understanding of how the guitar functions acoustically. My new Luthier Wall Chart, created in partnership with Mel Bay Music, is a wonderful addition to any guitar workshop for easy reference when building your guitars. There are many different manuals to show you step by step how to …

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