My Guitar Journey Part 3

Posted by & filed under Guitar Journey.

In early 1992, I had a chance to go to the NAMM show in Anaheim as a guest of a friend who was in the music business. During the show, I found a magazine called “Guitarmaker”, which was published by ASIA, the Association of Stringed Instrument Artisans. I was blown away by this magazine, and read it cover to cover. Among all the amazing articles about building guitars, there was an ad for a guitarmaking class (eight days), to be held in August at a place called “Peter’s Valley Craft Center”, near Layton, New Jersey. The class was to be taught by Dick Boak of the Martin Guitar Company, and Bill Cumpiano, who had written the book I had been using as a guide and reference book. I called and signed up for the class, along with my friend who had invited me to the NAMM show. I felt very fortunate that a class like this even existed- and I was going to be a part of it.

The class was excellent. I have included several photos below. We built Martin kits, and even though I had already built about four guitars, and was pretty familiar with the basics, I had a chance to ask about a million questions- of a couple of very experienced guitar makers, and work with some jigs and molds that were new to me. In addition, both Dick and Bill were great. They were very approachable, and kept the class running smoothly. One afternoon, we closed up shop early, and were invited over to the home of Bob Benedetto, the great archtop builder, for a shop tour and dinner. At that time, Bob lived and worked in nearby Stroudsberg, PA, which was just across the Delaware River from Peter’s Valley. This was an unbelievable trip, and started to give me a lot more insight into what tools were needed, shop setup, and a chance to ask even more questions of another of the greatest guitar makers of our time (and a really great guy). From this class, I knew that I wanted to be a serious guitarmaker. I still kept my day job, but began making guitars in my spare time. I was invited to come back to Peter’s Valley to help teach the guitarmaking class, which I did over the next few years, helping Frank Finnochio teach the class.

This class, and others that I have taken since, motivated me to start teaching my own classes, which I’ve offered since 2001. My classes have been referred to as the “Weekend Warrior” classes, where people come and spend about fifteen Saturdays in a row, building their own guitars. It’s been great to watch the classes bond as each person creates his/her own very high quality instrument, from bending sides, to neck carving, to inlay, and spraying and buffing out their finish.

Below:  Dick Boak Addresses the class.   Next photo:  Bill Cumpiano helps a student position the bridge.

Scan13a Scan15a

Below left:  Dick Boak helps a student route the binding slot.  Below right:  the author tapes and glues his binding

Scan14a  Scan16a

 

Below:  A shot of Bob Benedetto’s shop  circa August, 1992.  Next photo:  Bob showing us his binding router table

Scan12a Scan11a

 

Below:  Bob showing us one of his recently completed archtops.  Last photo: our class photo.  Bill is front center..That’s me front row on the left.

Scan10a Scan09a

 

 

 

 

The post My Guitar Journey Part 3 appeared first on Phoenix Guitar Company.

My Guitar Journey Part 3

Posted by & filed under Guitar Journey.

In early 1992, I had a chance to go to the NAMM show in Anaheim as a guest of a friend who was in the music business. During the show, I found a magazine called “Guitarmaker”, which was published by ASIA, the Association of Stringed Instrument Artisans. I was blown away by this magazine, and read it cover to cover. Among all the amazing articles about building guitars, there was an ad for a guitarmaking class (eight days), to be held in August at a place called “Peter’s Valley Craft Center”, near Layton, New Jersey. The class was to be taught by Dick Boak of the Martin Guitar Company, and Bill Cumpiano, who had written the book I had been using as a guide and reference book. I called and signed up for the class, along with my friend who had invited me to the NAMM show. I felt very fortunate that a class like this even existed- and I was going to be a part of it.

The class was excellent. I have included several photos below. We built Martin kits, and even though I had already built about four guitars, and was pretty familiar with the basics, I had a chance to ask about a million questions- of a couple of very experienced guitar makers, and work with some jigs and molds that were new to me. In addition, both Dick and Bill were great. They were very approachable, and kept the class running smoothly. One afternoon, we closed up shop early, and were invited over to the home of Bob Benedetto, the great archtop builder, for a shop tour and dinner. At that time, Bob lived and worked in nearby Stroudsberg, PA, which was just across the Delaware River from Peter’s Valley. This was an unbelievable trip, and started to give me a lot more insight into what tools were needed, shop setup, and a chance to ask even more questions of another of the greatest guitar makers of our time (and a really great guy). From this class, I knew that I wanted to be a serious guitarmaker. I still kept my day job, but began making guitars in my spare time. I was invited to come back to Peter’s Valley to help teach the guitarmaking class, which I did over the next few years, helping Frank Finnochio teach the class.

This class, and others that I have taken since, motivated me to start teaching my own classes, which I’ve offered since 2001. My classes have been referred to as the “Weekend Warrior” classes, where people come and spend about fifteen Saturdays in a row, building their own guitars. It’s been great to watch the classes bond as each person creates his/her own very high quality instrument, from bending sides, to neck carving, to inlay, and spraying and buffing out their finish.

Below:  Dick Boak Addresses the class.   Next photo:  Bill Cumpiano helps a student position the bridge.

Scan13a Scan15a

Below left:  Dick Boak helps a student route the binding slot.  Below right:  the author tapes and glues his binding

Scan14a  Scan16a

 

Below:  A shot of Bob Benedetto’s shop  circa August, 1992.  Next photo:  Bob showing us his binding router table

Scan12a Scan11a

 

Below:  Bob showing us one of his recently completed archtops.  Last photo: our class photo.  Bill is front center..That’s me front row on the left.

Scan10a Scan09a

 

 

 

 

The post My Guitar Journey Part 3 appeared first on Phoenix Guitar Company.

The post My Guitar Journey Part 3 appeared first on Phoenix Guitar Company.

My Guitar Journey Part 3

Posted by & filed under Guitar Journey.

In early 1992, I had a chance to go to the NAMM show in Anaheim as a guest of a friend who was in the music business. During the show, I found a magazine called “Guitarmaker”, which was published by ASIA, the Association of Stringed Instrument Artisans. I was blown away by this magazine, and read it cover to cover. Among all the amazing articles about building guitars, there was an ad for a guitarmaking class (eight days), to be held in August at a place called “Peter’s Valley Craft Center”, near Layton, New Jersey. The class was to be taught by Dick Boak of the Martin Guitar Company, and Bill Cumpiano, who had written the book I had been using as a guide and reference book. I called and signed up for the class, along with my friend who had invited me to the NAMM show. I felt very fortunate that a class like this even existed- and I was going to be a part of it.

The class was excellent. I have included several photos below. We built Martin kits, and even though I had already built about four guitars, and was pretty familiar with the basics, I had a chance to ask about a million questions- of a couple of very experienced guitar makers, and work with some jigs and molds that were new to me. In addition, both Dick and Bill were great. They were very approachable, and kept the class running smoothly. One afternoon, we closed up shop early, and were invited over to the home of Bob Benedetto, the great archtop builder, for a shop tour and dinner. At that time, Bob lived and worked in nearby Stroudsberg, PA, which was just across the Delaware River from Peter’s Valley. This was an unbelievable trip, and started to give me a lot more insight into what tools were needed, shop setup, and a chance to ask even more questions of another of the greatest guitar makers of our time (and a really great guy). From this class, I knew that I wanted to be a serious guitarmaker. I still kept my day job, but began making guitars in my spare time. I was invited to come back to Peter’s Valley to help teach the guitarmaking class, which I did over the next few years, helping Frank Finnochio teach the class.

This class, and others that I have taken since, motivated me to start teaching my own classes, which I’ve offered since 2001. My classes have been referred to as the “Weekend Warrior” classes, where people come and spend about fifteen Saturdays in a row, building their own guitars. It’s been great to watch the classes bond as each person creates his/her own very high quality instrument, from bending sides, to neck carving, to inlay, and spraying and buffing out their finish.

Below:  Dick Boak Addresses the class.   Next photo:  Bill Cumpiano helps a student position the bridge.

Scan13a Scan15a

Below left:  Dick Boak helps a student route the binding slot.  Below right:  the author tapes and glues his binding

Scan14a  Scan16a

 

Below:  A shot of Bob Benedetto’s shop  circa August, 1992.  Next photo:  Bob showing us his binding router table

Scan12a Scan11a

 

Below:  Bob showing us one of his recently completed archtops.  Last photo: our class photo.  Bill is front center..That’s me front row on the left.

Scan10a Scan09a

 

 

 

 

The post My Guitar Journey Part 3 appeared first on Phoenix Guitar Company.

My Guitar Journey Part 3

Posted by & filed under Guitar Journey.

In early 1992, I had a chance to go to the NAMM show in Anaheim as a guest of a friend who was in the music business. During the show, I found a magazine called “Guitarmaker”, which was published by ASIA, the Association of Stringed Instrument Artisans. I was blown away by this magazine, and read it cover to cover. Among all the amazing articles about building guitars, there was an ad for a guitarmaking class (eight days), to be held in August at a place called “Peter’s Valley Craft Center”, near Layton, New Jersey. The class was to be taught by Dick Boak of the Martin Guitar Company, and Bill Cumpiano, who had written the book I had been using as a guide and reference book. I called and signed up for the class, along with my friend who had invited me to the NAMM show. I felt very fortunate that a class like this even existed- and I was going to be a part of it.

The class was excellent. I have included several photos below. We built Martin kits, and even though I had already built about four guitars, and was pretty familiar with the basics, I had a chance to ask about a million questions- of a couple of very experienced guitar makers, and work with some jigs and molds that were new to me. In addition, both Dick and Bill were great. They were very approachable, and kept the class running smoothly. One afternoon, we closed up shop early, and were invited over to the home of Bob Benedetto, the great archtop builder, for a shop tour and dinner. At that time, Bob lived and worked in nearby Stroudsberg, PA, which was just across the Delaware River from Peter’s Valley. This was an unbelievable trip, and started to give me a lot more insight into what tools were needed, shop setup, and a chance to ask even more questions of another of the greatest guitar makers of our time (and a really great guy). From this class, I knew that I wanted to be a serious guitarmaker. I still kept my day job, but began making guitars in my spare time. I was invited to come back to Peter’s Valley to help teach the guitarmaking class, which I did over the next few years, helping Frank Finnochio teach the class.

This class, and others that I have taken since, motivated me to start teaching my own classes, which I’ve offered since 2001. My classes have been referred to as the “Weekend Warrior” classes, where people come and spend about fifteen Saturdays in a row, building their own guitars. It’s been great to watch the classes bond as each person creates his/her own very high quality instrument, from bending sides, to neck carving, to inlay, and spraying and buffing out their finish.

Below:  Dick Boak Addresses the class.   Next photo:  Bill Cumpiano helps a student position the bridge.

Scan13a Scan15a

Below left:  Dick Boak helps a student route the binding slot.  Below right:  the author tapes and glues his binding

Scan14a  Scan16a

 

Below:  A shot of Bob Benedetto’s shop  circa August, 1992.  Next photo:  Bob showing us his binding router table

Scan12a Scan11a

 

Below:  Bob showing us one of his recently completed archtops.  Last photo: our class photo.  Bill is front center..That’s me front row on the left.

Scan10a Scan09a

 

 

 

 

The post My Guitar Journey Part 3 appeared first on Phoenix Guitar Company.

The post My Guitar Journey Part 3 appeared first on Phoenix Guitar Company.

The post My Guitar Journey Part 3 appeared first on Phoenix Guitar Company.

My Guitar Journey Part 3

Posted by & filed under Guitar Journey.

In early 1992, I had a chance to go to the NAMM show in Anaheim as a guest of a friend who was in the music business. During the show, I found a magazine called “Guitarmaker”, which was published by ASIA, the Association of Stringed Instrument Artisans. I was blown away by this magazine, and read it cover to cover. Among all the amazing articles about building guitars, there was an ad for a guitarmaking class (eight days), to be held in August at a place called “Peter’s Valley Craft Center”, near Layton, New Jersey. The class was to be taught by Dick Boak of the Martin Guitar Company, and Bill Cumpiano, who had written the book I had been using as a guide and reference book. I called and signed up for the class, along with my friend who had invited me to the NAMM show. I felt very fortunate that a class like this even existed- and I was going to be a part of it.

The class was excellent. I have included several photos below. We built Martin kits, and even though I had already built about four guitars, and was pretty familiar with the basics, I had a chance to ask about a million questions- of a couple of very experienced guitar makers, and work with some jigs and molds that were new to me. In addition, both Dick and Bill were great. They were very approachable, and kept the class running smoothly. One afternoon, we closed up shop early, and were invited over to the home of Bob Benedetto, the great archtop builder, for a shop tour and dinner. At that time, Bob lived and worked in nearby Stroudsberg, PA, which was just across the Delaware River from Peter’s Valley. This was an unbelievable trip, and started to give me a lot more insight into what tools were needed, shop setup, and a chance to ask even more questions of another of the greatest guitar makers of our time (and a really great guy). From this class, I knew that I wanted to be a serious guitarmaker. I still kept my day job, but began making guitars in my spare time. I was invited to come back to Peter’s Valley to help teach the guitarmaking class, which I did over the next few years, helping Frank Finnochio teach the class.

This class, and others that I have taken since, motivated me to start teaching my own classes, which I’ve offered since 2001. My classes have been referred to as the “Weekend Warrior” classes, where people come and spend about fifteen Saturdays in a row, building their own guitars. It’s been great to watch the classes bond as each person creates his/her own very high quality instrument, from bending sides, to neck carving, to inlay, and spraying and buffing out their finish.

Below:  Dick Boak Addresses the class.   Next photo:  Bill Cumpiano helps a student position the bridge.

Scan13a Scan15a

Below left:  Dick Boak helps a student route the binding slot.  Below right:  the author tapes and glues his binding

Scan14a  Scan16a

 

Below:  A shot of Bob Benedetto’s shop  circa August, 1992.  Next photo:  Bob showing us his binding router table

Scan12a Scan11a

 

Below:  Bob showing us one of his recently completed archtops.  Last photo: our class photo.  Bill is front center..That’s me front row on the left.

Scan10a Scan09a

 

 

 

 

The post My Guitar Journey Part 3 appeared first on Phoenix Guitar Company.

The post My Guitar Journey Part 3 appeared first on Phoenix Guitar Company.

My Guitar Journey Part 3

Posted by & filed under Guitar Journey.

In early 1992, I had a chance to go to the NAMM show in Anaheim as a guest of a friend who was in the music business. During the show, I found a magazine called “Guitarmaker”, which was published by ASIA, the Association of Stringed Instrument Artisans. I was blown away by this magazine, and read it cover to cover. Among all the amazing articles about building guitars, there was an ad for a guitarmaking class (eight days), to be held in August at a place called “Peter’s Valley Craft Center”, near Layton, New Jersey. The class was to be taught by Dick Boak of the Martin Guitar Company, and Bill Cumpiano, who had written the book I had been using as a guide and reference book. I called and signed up for the class, along with my friend who had invited me to the NAMM show. I felt very fortunate that a class like this even existed- and I was going to be a part of it.

The class was excellent. I have included several photos below. We built Martin kits, and even though I had already built about four guitars, and was pretty familiar with the basics, I had a chance to ask about a million questions- of a couple of very experienced guitar makers, and work with some jigs and molds that were new to me. In addition, both Dick and Bill were great. They were very approachable, and kept the class running smoothly. One afternoon, we closed up shop early, and were invited over to the home of Bob Benedetto, the great archtop builder, for a shop tour and dinner. At that time, Bob lived and worked in nearby Stroudsberg, PA, which was just across the Delaware River from Peter’s Valley. This was an unbelievable trip, and started to give me a lot more insight into what tools were needed, shop setup, and a chance to ask even more questions of another of the greatest guitar makers of our time (and a really great guy). From this class, I knew that I wanted to be a serious guitarmaker. I still kept my day job, but began making guitars in my spare time. I was invited to come back to Peter’s Valley to help teach the guitarmaking class, which I did over the next few years, helping Frank Finnochio teach the class.

This class, and others that I have taken since, motivated me to start teaching my own classes, which I’ve offered since 2001. My classes have been referred to as the “Weekend Warrior” classes, where people come and spend about fifteen Saturdays in a row, building their own guitars. It’s been great to watch the classes bond as each person creates his/her own very high quality instrument, from bending sides, to neck carving, to inlay, and spraying and buffing out their finish.

Below:  Dick Boak Addresses the class.   Next photo:  Bill Cumpiano helps a student position the bridge.

Scan13a Scan15a

Below left:  Dick Boak helps a student route the binding slot.  Below right:  the author tapes and glues his binding

Scan14a  Scan16a

 

Below:  A shot of Bob Benedetto’s shop  circa August, 1992.  Next photo:  Bob showing us his binding router table

Scan12a Scan11a

 

Below:  Bob showing us one of his recently completed archtops.  Last photo: our class photo.  Bill is front center..That’s me front row on the left.

Scan10a Scan09a

 

 

 

 

The post My Guitar Journey Part 3 appeared first on Phoenix Guitar Company.

My Guitar Journey Part 3

Posted by & filed under Guitar Journey.

In early 1992, I had a chance to go to the NAMM show in Anaheim as a guest of a friend who was in the music business. During the show, I found a magazine called “Guitarmaker”, which was published by ASIA, the Association of Stringed Instrument Artisans. I was blown away by this magazine, and read it cover to cover. Among all the amazing articles about building guitars, there was an ad for a guitarmaking class (eight days), to be held in August at a place called “Peter’s Valley Craft Center”, near Layton, New Jersey. The class was to be taught by Dick Boak of the Martin Guitar Company, and Bill Cumpiano, who had written the book I had been using as a guide and reference book. I called and signed up for the class, along with my friend who had invited me to the NAMM show. I felt very fortunate that a class like this even existed- and I was going to be a part of it.

The class was excellent. I have included several photos below. We built Martin kits, and even though I had already built about four guitars, and was pretty familiar with the basics, I had a chance to ask about a million questions- of a couple of very experienced guitar makers, and work with some jigs and molds that were new to me. In addition, both Dick and Bill were great. They were very approachable, and kept the class running smoothly. One afternoon, we closed up shop early, and were invited over to the home of Bob Benedetto, the great archtop builder, for a shop tour and dinner. At that time, Bob lived and worked in nearby Stroudsberg, PA, which was just across the Delaware River from Peter’s Valley. This was an unbelievable trip, and started to give me a lot more insight into what tools were needed, shop setup, and a chance to ask even more questions of another of the greatest guitar makers of our time (and a really great guy). From this class, I knew that I wanted to be a serious guitarmaker. I still kept my day job, but began making guitars in my spare time. I was invited to come back to Peter’s Valley to help teach the guitarmaking class, which I did over the next few years, helping Frank Finnochio teach the class.

This class, and others that I have taken since, motivated me to start teaching my own classes, which I’ve offered since 2001. My classes have been referred to as the “Weekend Warrior” classes, where people come and spend about fifteen Saturdays in a row, building their own guitars. It’s been great to watch the classes bond as each person creates his/her own very high quality instrument, from bending sides, to neck carving, to inlay, and spraying and buffing out their finish.

Below:  Dick Boak Addresses the class.   Next photo:  Bill Cumpiano helps a student position the bridge.

Scan13a Scan15a

Below left:  Dick Boak helps a student route the binding slot.  Below right:  the author tapes and glues his binding

Scan14a  Scan16a

 

Below:  A shot of Bob Benedetto’s shop  circa August, 1992.  Next photo:  Bob showing us his binding router table

Scan12a Scan11a

 

Below:  Bob showing us one of his recently completed archtops.  Last photo: our class photo.  Bill is front center..That’s me front row on the left.

Scan10a Scan09a

 

 

 

 

The post My Guitar Journey Part 3 appeared first on Phoenix Guitar Company.

The post My Guitar Journey Part 3 appeared first on Phoenix Guitar Company.

My Guitar Journey Part 3

Posted by & filed under Guitar Journey.

In early 1992, I had a chance to go to the NAMM show in Anaheim as a guest of a friend who was in the music business. During the show, I found a magazine called “Guitarmaker”, which was published by ASIA, the Association of Stringed Instrument Artisans. I was blown away by this magazine, and read it cover to cover. Among all the amazing articles about building guitars, there was an ad for a guitarmaking class (eight days), to be held in August at a place called “Peter’s Valley Craft Center”, near Layton, New Jersey. The class was to be taught by Dick Boak of the Martin Guitar Company, and Bill Cumpiano, who had written the book I had been using as a guide and reference book. I called and signed up for the class, along with my friend who had invited me to the NAMM show. I felt very fortunate that a class like this even existed- and I was going to be a part of it.

The class was excellent. I have included several photos below. We built Martin kits, and even though I had already built about four guitars, and was pretty familiar with the basics, I had a chance to ask about a million questions- of a couple of very experienced guitar makers, and work with some jigs and molds that were new to me. In addition, both Dick and Bill were great. They were very approachable, and kept the class running smoothly. One afternoon, we closed up shop early, and were invited over to the home of Bob Benedetto, the great archtop builder, for a shop tour and dinner. At that time, Bob lived and worked in nearby Stroudsberg, PA, which was just across the Delaware River from Peter’s Valley. This was an unbelievable trip, and started to give me a lot more insight into what tools were needed, shop setup, and a chance to ask even more questions of another of the greatest guitar makers of our time (and a really great guy). From this class, I knew that I wanted to be a serious guitarmaker. I still kept my day job, but began making guitars in my spare time. I was invited to come back to Peter’s Valley to help teach the guitarmaking class, which I did over the next few years, helping Frank Finnochio teach the class.

This class, and others that I have taken since, motivated me to start teaching my own classes, which I’ve offered since 2001. My classes have been referred to as the “Weekend Warrior” classes, where people come and spend about fifteen Saturdays in a row, building their own guitars. It’s been great to watch the classes bond as each person creates his/her own very high quality instrument, from bending sides, to neck carving, to inlay, and spraying and buffing out their finish.

Below:  Dick Boak Addresses the class.   Next photo:  Bill Cumpiano helps a student position the bridge.

Scan13a Scan15a

Below left:  Dick Boak helps a student route the binding slot.  Below right:  the author tapes and glues his binding

Scan14a  Scan16a

 

Below:  A shot of Bob Benedetto’s shop  circa August, 1992.  Next photo:  Bob showing us his binding router table

Scan12a Scan11a

 

Below:  Bob showing us one of his recently completed archtops.  Last photo: our class photo.  Bill is front center..That’s me front row on the left.

Scan10a Scan09a

 

 

 

 

The post My Guitar Journey Part 3 appeared first on Phoenix Guitar Company.

My Guitar Journey Part 3

Posted by & filed under Guitar Journey.

In early 1992, I had a chance to go to the NAMM show in Anaheim as a guest of a friend who was in the music business. During the show, I found a magazine called “Guitarmaker”, which was published by ASIA, the Association of Stringed Instrument Artisans. I was blown away by this magazine, and read it cover to cover. Among all the amazing articles about building guitars, there was an ad for a guitarmaking class (eight days), to be held in August at a place called “Peter’s Valley Craft Center”, near Layton, New Jersey. The class was to be taught by Dick Boak of the Martin Guitar Company, and Bill Cumpiano, who had written the book I had been using as a guide and reference book. I called and signed up for the class, along with my friend who had invited me to the NAMM show. I felt very fortunate that a class like this even existed- and I was going to be a part of it.

The class was excellent. I have included several photos below. We built Martin kits, and even though I had already built about four guitars, and was pretty familiar with the basics, I had a chance to ask about a million questions- of a couple of very experienced guitar makers, and work with some jigs and molds that were new to me. In addition, both Dick and Bill were great. They were very approachable, and kept the class running smoothly. One afternoon, we closed up shop early, and were invited over to the home of Bob Benedetto, the great archtop builder, for a shop tour and dinner. At that time, Bob lived and worked in nearby Stroudsberg, PA, which was just across the Delaware River from Peter’s Valley. This was an unbelievable trip, and started to give me a lot more insight into what tools were needed, shop setup, and a chance to ask even more questions of another of the greatest guitar makers of our time (and a really great guy). From this class, I knew that I wanted to be a serious guitarmaker. I still kept my day job, but began making guitars in my spare time. I was invited to come back to Peter’s Valley to help teach the guitarmaking class, which I did over the next few years, helping Frank Finnochio teach the class.

This class, and others that I have taken since, motivated me to start teaching my own classes, which I’ve offered since 2001. My classes have been referred to as the “Weekend Warrior” classes, where people come and spend about fifteen Saturdays in a row, building their own guitars. It’s been great to watch the classes bond as each person creates his/her own very high quality instrument, from bending sides, to neck carving, to inlay, and spraying and buffing out their finish.

Below:  Dick Boak Addresses the class.   Next photo:  Bill Cumpiano helps a student position the bridge.

Scan13a Scan15a

Below left:  Dick Boak helps a student route the binding slot.  Below right:  the author tapes and glues his binding

Scan14a  Scan16a

 

Below:  A shot of Bob Benedetto’s shop  circa August, 1992.  Next photo:  Bob showing us his binding router table

Scan12a Scan11a

 

Below:  Bob showing us one of his recently completed archtops.  Last photo: our class photo.  Bill is front center..That’s me front row on the left.

Scan10a Scan09a

 

 

 

 

My Guitar Journey Part 2

Posted by & filed under Guitar Journey.

My first custom guitar order came about in an interesting and unexpected way. One of my very good friends knew a local musician who wanted to get a custom guitar (he wanted a Martin-style tenor guitar with a cutaway). He had contacted some of the big guitar companies, but couldn’t find anybody who would build it for him to his specifications. He came over to my house to check out my guitar. He told me what he wanted and asked if I could make it. I reminded him that I had built only the one guitar, but the guitar he wanted didn’t seem that complex—so I felt confident that I could do it. He asked me my price, and I told him. I then said that I’d need about half down up front to buy materials. He took out a handful of $100 bills and dropped them on the coffee table, and said, “Is that close enough”? Suddenly I had my first order (and my first panic attack). It’s one thing to casually make a guitar for yourself, but quite another to have the responsibility to make one that someone will pay for, and show around and play around town.  I needed a plan.  First, I had to order a set of plans for an “O” size tenor guitar, and design how a cutaway would go into the plan. I had to make a workboard for the guitar (I used Bill Cumpiano’s method-instead of making a mold). I then carefully dove into the construction—very similar in a lot of ways to the guitar I had just built for myself—only simpler without the sharp cutaway and the multi-piece back. As I got further into the construction, I realized that this was really fun, and some of the panic became excitement to see the finished product.

At around the same time, a friend at work heard that I was building guitars, and he ordered a custom Strat-style solid body. All of a sudden, I had two orders. I had never thought about this becoming a business. However, l began to develop an inkling into its possibility. From that point, I further educated myself on guitar building. I bought a couple of books on electric guitar wiring diagrams (you can see the wiring harness for the Strat below), and started expanding the tools in my shop. I also had to learn how to put a stain on a guitar. A lot of experimenting went into this step.

My effort paid off, as both guitars turned out great.  Please see the photos below. I’ve lost track of the tenor guitar over the years, but my friend is still playing the Strat, which he brought over to show me about a year ago, just before I moved from Phoenix to Southern California.

Following the completion of those guitars, I continued to do repairs and a couple more custom instruments before I had an opportunity to take a giant leap in my guitarmaking. From that point forward, I knew this is what I wanted to do…Stay tuned…more to come…

Scan01a Scan02a Scan03a Scan06a Scan04a Scan05a

The post My Guitar Journey Part 2 appeared first on Phoenix Guitar Company.

The post My Guitar Journey Part 2 appeared first on Phoenix Guitar Company.

The post My Guitar Journey Part 2 appeared first on Phoenix Guitar Company.