14 Comments

  1. rgdaniel
    September 17, 2010 @ 5:08 pm

    There’s a pretty thorough series of videos on building an acoustic guitar on The Wood Whisperer site…(guest poster, not Marc’s build)… You could probably apply a lot of it to electric guitar building… or possibly run screaming from the degree of difficulty….

  2. Gareth
    September 17, 2010 @ 11:31 pm

    Hi Steve,
    Have a look at this:
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xH0ePznNZ3A

    Apparently this beautiful guitar was built by a novice and it cost $700AU, which I take to be Australian dollars. Dunno what that computes to in $US, is $700US a lot? I imagine it is, seeing as a full tank of petrol costs you 85 cents and you get half a cow with fries and onion rings for “two bits”, whatever they are.

  3. Adam
    September 17, 2010 @ 11:53 pm

    Check Grizzly.com, click on Fast Index (top center), click on Luthier Supplies (right side). Everything from kits to individual parts to finishes to specialized tools.

  4. iamsteve
    September 18, 2010 @ 10:16 pm

    I bought a Grizzly.com ukulele kit for my son. It was a fun build, mostly just measuring, marking off, and gluing. I got the whole build photo-bucketed.

    http://i536.photobucket.com/albums/ff327/steveaguado/04-13-10_1606.jpg

    http://i536.photobucket.com/albums/ff327/steveaguado/04-14-10_1350.jpg

    http://i536.photobucket.com/albums/ff327/steveaguado/04-22-10_1221.jpg

    http://i536.photobucket.com/albums/ff327/steveaguado/04-22-10_1631.jpg

    Personally, I thought the fretless bass was more fun of a build.

  5. Paul
    September 19, 2010 @ 2:46 am

    So you think you’re as cool as Jack White now do you?

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xCFXeChXfcI

  6. Josh B
    September 19, 2010 @ 9:24 am

    Love the drum! But, Buy your son a hollow body Fender… LOL.. JK 😉
    * You are right to think it would be cheaper and all around better to purchase a guitar from a professional, That is, IF your son is truly trying to play guitar. If it’s just for fun… then no worries..

    Luthiers are the most precise and intricate of all woodworkers, much respect to anyone who builds a stringed instrument from scratch that keeps its tone. A lot of musicians know it’s ‘almost impossible’ to get precise intonation all the way throughout the fretboard. A ‘G’, the further up the neck you go, will not be a ‘G’ on most peoples guitars, built or bought. (unless you paid 2000$+ dollars for it… and even then a lot of times you have to get them properly setup for perfect intonation by a professional luthier.)

    Do homemade string instruments ‘Work’, yes… But, to ‘Train an Ear’, proper tone is a MUST. ‘Training an Ear’ Means that a person can tell a ‘G’ (or any note) by sound alone. They could play any instrument ‘by ear’ instead of relying on sheet music and tabs.

    That’s just my 2 cents, as a bluegrass guitarist… Keep up the great work!

    If you do make this endeavor, do some real research on the matter. Or use a kit, but that is basically cheating… 😉

  7. Torch02
    September 20, 2010 @ 11:04 am

    Check out http://www.eguitarplans.com/blog/
    There are several, complete, electric guitar builds documented in word, photo, and video.

  8. Larry
    September 20, 2010 @ 1:17 pm

    Hey Steve,
    Those drums are also called Tongue drums. Do an internet search for tongue drum and you’ll get lots of information on them. They can be tuned to a key by carefully measuring and adjusting the length and width of the “tongues” that you drum on, but only during the build as far as I know. I’ve got a small one that was given to me years ago as a gift. It’s made entirely of plywood and has a pretty good sound. After seeing yours I think I’ll have to try to make one, too.

  9. iamsteve
    September 20, 2010 @ 7:51 pm

    Always was a huge fan of http://www.stewmac.com/

  10. Brian
    September 22, 2010 @ 12:50 pm

    This post made me want to build slit drum. I think I will add it to my list of things to try!

    As for the cost of buying a new vs. building a guitar, you might spend more to build it, but the value of the guitar built by his father, would be many hundreds of times that of the store bought version.

  11. SAR
    November 10, 2010 @ 7:34 am

    Have you considered starting small with something like a cigar box guitar?

    Building one may help decide if you want to take the time to build a more refined electric guitar. You may already have most of the materials you need in your shop. And, you could practice many of the guitar specific building skill on something simpler.

  12. Anonymous
    November 17, 2011 @ 3:45 pm

    This guy makes guitars and violins with his carvewright. http://www.liquidguitars.com

  13. drunkenbullfrog
    February 17, 2012 @ 8:10 pm

    reading archives… and, gotta say, the most expensive parts of a guitar, are the non-wood components. nearly any hardwood will do for the body, the less porous the better, cast concrete would even be an option, density and stiffness is important. a really stinky cheap sears guitar can be pressed into service, they’re usually set up as stratocaster ripoffs, but with rather usable necks. making a new body takes no time at all when you have a router, bandsaw and template cutting bit, a hardboard template makes things easier as well. you can make it with a drill, jigsaw, and lots of sanding though.
    my first guitar was a sears, it came as this vaguely guitar shaped lump of mdf that rang, hummed and lacked sustain, attached to a good guitar, so freeing the good guitar from that anchor was important for enjoyment. with a new homemade body learning and playing became an absolute pleasure… by comparison, still had to learn.

  14. Intarsiaman
    December 7, 2012 @ 5:50 pm

    Hey Steve. I’m only 13 and I’m building a solidbody Fender strat for my dad for christmas. If you go with the solidbody design, you don’t need to bend any wood for the sides, you can just laminate a big blank together and cut out the shape. The neck can be tricky, and involves lots of hand rasping, sanding, and scraping. It’s up to you how intricate it gets from there, with inlays and accessories you can add. You can buy the electronics prewired at http://www.stewmac.com, and they have lots of articles and products that will help you along the way. They also sell a guitar plan that comes with a 2 1/2 hour long step-by-step video which I highly recommend. I think they even sell pre-made bodies and necks if you want a simpler option (I made mine out of solid padauk and birdseye maple, so I don’t have any experience with the pre-made parts). So, if your at all interested, it might be worth checking out. Hope you’ll consider joining the “elite corps” of luthiers. : )