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Learn Guitar Making Techniques

John carving a neckLearn guitar making techniques and become a better guitar maker. The simple truth is the better woodworker you are  –  your guitar building project will be less stressful and you will get better results. Having more than one way to do things is key.  I still look for better ways to perform the tasks  in guitar making process for better results and ultimately better instruments.

Your choice of  guitar building technique depends  on  few things – your skill level, how many different ways you know to perform the task , and how comfortable you are executing a particular technique. Lean more guitar making techniques and you will have more choices.

In this section I will introduce some of the methods I use to build guitars. Some of these methods are not traditional guitar building techniques but that doesn’t mean they are difficult. They will produce consistently excellent results if executed properly and can improve the sound and playability of your instruments.


In This Section

Laminating – Laminating techniques were familiar to me from my days of cabinet and furniture making. Although I was certainly not the first luthier to use these techniques on guitars, I may be the first to clearly explain the benefits of laminating.. Learn why laminating is well worth the effort and how to do it…

Plate Joining – One very basic woodworking technique you will need to learn in order to make a guitar is edge joining. In the guitar making world this is known as a plate joining. This technique is used to join tops and backs. The joint must be executed perfectly or there will be problems down the road. Learn a simple and inexpensive method of plate joining…

Making the Solera – The solera is the workboard that a classical guitar is made on. The solera sets the neck angle for  guitars built using the traditional Spanish heel method. The accuracy of this workboard will optimize your set up and improve the  playability of your guitar. See how to make a solera like the ones used in the book and DVD…

Making the Back Workboard – I get more questions on how to make a back workboard. Most backs are domed to a 15′ radius. Therefore the workboard must be dished to this same radius. People go to great lengths making fancy jigs for this purpose. Why not learn to make one of these with hand tools. It will not take very long and will teach you valuable hand skills you can use in other aspects of the project. Learn how to quickly carve a back workboard…

Guitar Building Technique Videos – Learn valuable guitar building techniques. Watch videos on how to join a top, make a bridge patch, advice on making changes to your design, how to layout your solera and more. Videos will be added regularly. Watch the videos…

Understanding Fret Buzz

No one likes fret buzz. Its annoying and sounds terrible. Finding the cause of the fret buzz will determine how and if you can fix it yourself. To fin the cause you need to know something about how the strings and the neck work. Learn about your guitar to determine the cause of fret buzz…