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  #1  
Old 01-12-2018, 09:57 PM
James77 James77 is offline
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Default Guitar Building Starter

Hey all! Thinking about getting into building. Would like to build me a nylon string. Is guitar building hard? Really interested. Looks fun and rewarding.
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  #2  
Old 01-13-2018, 08:00 AM
Kieran Kieran is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by James77 View Post
Hey all! Thinking about getting into building. Would like to build me a nylon string. Is guitar building hard? Really interested. Looks fun and rewarding.


It's not hard to make a terrible guitar that sounds crap.
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  #3  
Old 01-13-2018, 08:58 AM
Truckjohn Truckjohn is offline
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The biggest thing is to know yourself.

Do you generally finish what you start.
How many hobbies do you already have?
Are you pretty handy with your hands?
Do you build or fix things as a hobby?
Do you want to spend your time building guitars or playing guitars?

Can you commit to about 100 hours of work?

Of the people who buy a kit to start a build - 75% never start.
Of the ones who start - 90% never finish.

Of the people who do finish - 99% of them are hooked and build more instruments.

Next is why do you want to do this?
To save money - wrong... You won't save any money especially once you count the tools and supplies...

Generally hobby instruments fall into one of these 3 categories:
1. Unplayable hot mess
2. Instrument that looks great but doesn't play well or sound particularly good
3. Instrument that plays and sounds great but doesn't look good...
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  #4  
Old 01-13-2018, 09:02 AM
Quickstep192 Quickstep192 is offline
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Take this with a grain of salt - itís from a guy who never built a guitar.

Itís not necessarily hard, but will require some specialized tools and some amount of expensive parts, which if ruined will bring sadness and/or frustration.

Many people start with a kit to simplify things.

Hereís a link to a recent thread about one of our memberís second build. If you follow it, itís an interesting account of the problems, mistakes and learnings he faced and how he overcame them. It will help you understand what youíre getting into, but also how rewarding the result can be.

http://www.acousticguitarforum.com/f...d.php?t=463946
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  #5  
Old 01-13-2018, 09:12 AM
LouieAtienza LouieAtienza is offline
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Probably not as hard as one would think with the minimum of tools, depending on your capabilities and will...
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  #6  
Old 01-13-2018, 09:29 AM
printer2 printer2 is offline
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Do you have any woodworking experience and access to tools? I am thinking of doing a build using the minimum of tool cost and have to rethink how I do things. Just put the piece in the vice and go at it with a chisel. But what if you do not have a bench or vice but a kitchen table? When I join the top or back to the sides I have about 20 clamps. Can you build with two rather than twenty?

Yes it is rewarding, not all of it fun and games. I just dinged the top of the guitar I am building after getting it finish sanded. You do learn how to fix mistakes, they happen. Some people make a first guitar that rivals the better builders here. Most of us end up with one that could have been done better even if it is in a small way. Many ways of going about building a guitar, check out the builds here, some blogs with every step shown are also good to learn from. Many videos that help also.

Do you know which guitar specifically that you want to make or size of guitar? Do you want to build a kit or go off road and source the materials yourself? Lot of good help here whichever way you go.
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Old 01-13-2018, 09:52 AM
Kieran Kieran is offline
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[QUOTE=Quickstep192;5601232]Take this with a grain of salt - itís from a guy who never built a guitar. /QUOTE]



It was intended as a tongue in cheek comment, simply making the point that making things is often not that hard but making things fit for purpose and aesthetically pleasing is somewhat harder. In this case a guitar that looks and sounds good.
And as you correctly point out I know very little about guitars.
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Old 01-13-2018, 09:58 AM
Quickstep192 Quickstep192 is offline
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[QUOTE=Kieran;5601321]
Quote:
Originally Posted by Quickstep192 View Post
Take this with a grain of salt - itís from a guy who never built a guitar. /QUOTE]



It was intended as a tongue in cheek comment, simply making the point that making things is often not that hard but making things fit for purpose and aesthetically pleasing is somewhat harder. In this case a guitar that looks and sounds good.
And as you correctly point out I know very little about guitars.
Sorry, my comment was not in response to your post although I now see that it would appear to be. Iím the guy I was referring to who has never built a guitar.
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  #9  
Old 01-13-2018, 10:03 AM
Kieran Kieran is offline
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Oh well, it was a suitable response to my flippant humour. [emoji6]
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  #10  
Old 01-13-2018, 10:14 AM
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Bruce Sexauer Bruce Sexauer is offline
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On a more serious note: Some people will find guitarmaking unbelievably complex and challenging, others will not. Some minds just work this way, a sort of latent engineering skill potential. This is a talent I believe. When I started building it seemd simple to me, while others would look at what I was doing and comment ďI could never do thatĒ. In other words, if you think you can, youíre probably right.
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  #11  
Old 01-13-2018, 11:34 AM
Otterhound Otterhound is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bruce Sexauer View Post
On a more serious note: Some people will find guitarmaking unbelievably complex and challenging, others will not. Some minds just work this way, a sort of latent engineering skill potential. This is a talent I believe. When I started building it seemd simple to me, while others would look at what I was doing and comment ďI could never do thatĒ. In other words, if you think you can, youíre probably right.
So many things in life are like this .
We all have some innate skill/s within us concerning something and we wonder why someone else finds that particular thing so difficult while they look at us and wonder how we do it .
The really neat thing is when you find something within you like this that you had not realized before and/or you see that happening to someone else right in front of your eyes regardless of what it may be .
We all have something to contribute , we just need to find it .
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  #12  
Old 01-13-2018, 01:18 PM
printer2 printer2 is offline
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I had the same idea on learning how to play music. I saw my buddies with all these chords, scales and no real rhyme or reason (so to speak) I had the aha moment once at work, then I was real disappointed in my buddies for not trying to explain it to me. The thing with building a guitar (or even the car I one attempted) is not to see the whole and getting overwhelmed but to see the construction as a series of small steps. Once you see the order you will need to make them it is just going through the motion of doing them well. I have talked to people and they say I don't know how you looked at that piece of wood and made what you made (not necessarily a guitar). No, you work backwards. This is what I want, now what do I have to do to get it. At least that is how my mind sometimes works.
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  #13  
Old 01-13-2018, 02:37 PM
runamuck runamuck is offline
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I don't think there's anything hard about guitar making - as long as you know what you're doing.
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  #14  
Old 01-13-2018, 05:00 PM
LouieAtienza LouieAtienza is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bruce Sexauer View Post
In other words, if you think you can, youíre probably right.
One of the great quotes from Henry Ford...
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  #15  
Old 01-13-2018, 05:17 PM
LouieAtienza LouieAtienza is offline
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I will add that just because a certain process is simple, doesn't mean it's necessarily easy to do. A miter is one of the simplest forms of joinery. Making one such that the join is almost invisible in light colored woods is not the easiest task. Sanding is a simple task. Doing so that you leave a level surface and remove all previous sanding lines is not as easy as one would think at first.

Like anything, there's some skill-building involved. The more you do it, the better you get and the easier it gets. You also have to have faith in yourself that you will finish it, even though you don't have a clue how. It's like driving cross country. Yo can only see a mile or so of road ahead of you at a time, yet you can drive 3000 miles and get to the other side of the US. You trust the road signs and markers, make a few detours, get stuck in traffic, car breaks down, you get lost... and somehow, you still make it through, as long as you believe you will get there.
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