Today I cut out the face from mahogany. I am trying some inlay. So many possibilities!
Second body bent and kerfing added. I cut the seam at bottom and added a little keystone detail. I am making the top from a piece of quarter sawn , figured poplar for the first instrument and am making the second top out of mahogany. I am currently teaching woodturning for the winter at The Center For Furniture Craftsmanship so I am able to make these guitars from the material people are throwing out. That is allowing lots of experimentation without worrying about the cost. When I get the process down I will spring for some really great stock. I have made a little box that fits over mold so I can glue top on by using bent sticks to apply pressure. We call these “Go sticks”.
Everything is going great! I have bent two bodies for guitar so far. I am trying different types of kerfing to see the benefits. Kerfing holds the thin sides stiff and provides a surface to glue top to. I have also glued blocks in both ends, one for joining to neck and one for strap button.
Now I am really having some fun. Tom Buchner gave me a proper electric steam bender, and with a little practice I am getting great results. I have made a mold that holds the side pieces after I form them and I have bent 2 sets and let them dry in form. Here is what it looks like!
Happy New Year!
The Strum Factory has been distracted for the last couple of months. I have been traveling and Laura has been renovating her shop space. I have purchased a new house in Saint Petersburg Florida, which will be our new Strumfactory.com headquarters. From now until April 1, I will be teaching at The Center For Furniture Craftsmanship. I have started a new guitar, and thought I would take you through the process.
Step 1 is always “the idea”. I have started playing the tenor guitar and thought I would focus my attention on creating the perfect one for me. This is process that might take the making a bunch of instruments. While at the Martin guitar factory I really liked the old-time small guitars and I loved the style with F holes. Here is my idea…
Last week, I went on a tour of the Martin Guitar factory, Nazareth PA. You can walk in and take a quick tour, or you can make reservations ahead and take the two hour tour. Take the two hour tour! There was so much to see, I could not take it all in. It costs $20.00, but you get a gift bag at the end worth more than that. I am going to have to show everything I saw in a couple of posts. The first thing that struck me was the mass quantity of wood that they have stored. They work with wood species that can not be purchased any more. They have 9 years’ worth of wood stored in case anything happens to world markets.
I recently visited my good friend Keun Ho Peter Park in Philadelphia. We teach summer workshops together in stringed instrument making. He is currently teaching a creative instrument class at The University of the Arts. I stopped by to teach a turning workshop and he showed me all the great instruments they are working on. Here he is playing the new electric guitar he made, he also shared the finer techniques of saw playing.