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westhemann

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Well this has been around for a while, figure I should post some info about myself.

I'm 29 years old and build guitars strictly as a hobby. I'm not looking to have it generate income - It's more of something to blow off some steam. In my "real" life, I'm a Certified Financial Planner and have a practice outside Boston. It demands very long hours, so projects don't get much attention during the week.

I started playing the guitar only 7 years ago - something that I had always wanted to do, but was intimidated by taking it on...so much to learn. Finally I had a friend teach me a few chords and I got a guitar. Shortly thereafter, my instinct of "lets take this apart and make it better" got the better of me and I took apart my Strat to see what makes it click. This led do a "I could probably built this" mentality. After doing a lot of reading, I put my woodworking skills to work on a guitar.

I'm much more of a Tele/Strat/LP type of guy than an Ibanez/Kramer/etc fan. I decided that I wanted a guitar with a *monster* rock sound, but with a creamy blues capability as well. Oh, and some Tele twang to compliment it. I did lots of experimeting and found that a dual humbucker tele body was my ax of choice. I've spend the past 3 years refining that. I'm now in the early stages of designing my own body, something that won't be mistaken for a brand name (and something that will not trigger a "cease & desist" letter from Fender). :D

Recently I moved to a house that has allowed me to build a nice shop. I have a large workspace with a 6"jointer, 13" planer, Table saw, drill press, air compressor, spray equipment and an air filtration system. I have lots of irons in the fire right now, including a humidor, dresser, and various "wedding gift" items.

I've become very good at finishing, much due to a long time friendship with a gentleman who is reguarded as one of the best furniture refinishers in Pennsylvania. He has done work on priceless pieces of furniture and Grand Pianos for concert halls...he's also an extremely talented woodworker.

I've become the "go-to" guy for many local rock bands when the guitarist needs some work done...I usually have a few set-up's, pickup replacements, and minor repairs sitting around the shop..going rate is a case of beer B)

Here are some pictures of the three of the Tele's I've built. The second one is played by a friend of mine who's band it making the news here and in Europe..."The Good North"...so it's fun to see him play, and hear how other bands always ask where he got that guitar...the other two are mine.

Thanks for reading!

-Ben

maple.jpg

mahog.jpg

Full_Guitar.jpg

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My name is Sam Fisher I am a hobby builder who is currently "debugging a carved top jem" building a neck thru archtop and making a solder top for a DC tele by cort. I am by no means a professional. I am skilled in soldering and wiring though.

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My name is Kaj Adams (pronounced Ki or Kye) and I first read Melvin Hiscocks book when I was just a nipper. I'm 24 now and now that I'm out of uni and working I decided that I could now afford to build a few guitars. I'm a Mechanical Engineer by trade but working as an Electrical Engineer.

I've begged, borrowed and bribed myself into some tools and do all my building in the spare bedroom on a wobbly work mate as my shed's got no electric. I'm currently in the middle of my first two projects which are a double cut LP Jr built from scratch and my polished-turd-ocaster which is an old plywood strat copy that I've hollowed out and put a top on.

I'm not rushing the builds mainly because of lack of funds, predominately brought about by exploding motorbikes. The latest bill is for about £1,000 for a seized engine brought about by a stoppie.

I think it's safe to say that I'm not a professional builder (I even cut the f holes on the polished-turd-ocaster with a chisel) but I'm determined to make the LP Jr a profesional job.

Once these two builds are done my brother wants me to make a perspex body for his bass, I like most people here work for beer :D

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Howdy All,

I am a hobbiest with delusions of competency. I am a Stay at Home Dad with a 3yo daughter and an understanding wife. I have this habit of jumping in to things without fully thinking them through, and knowing that I am doing so does not always stop me.

Jobs before getting into building guitars for fun. These are just broad categories.

Cook.

SW engineer

Stockbroker

SW Sales

Body shopper (aka placement specialist)

Home audio sales

BA in political science

I spent 20 years going to the car races. 8 of them resucing race car drivers who did not make it around the track all of the way, 2 years doing technical inspection, 2 years doing the PA. The rest of the time was doing various other things.

I do NOT know it all, though sometimes I talk as if I do.

I do not mind being a bad example, provided somebody else can learn from me.

I got into guitar building as a result of arrogance, and have continued out of humility and enjoyment.

I am always willing to give advice or suggestions if asked, and sometimes if I am not.

For me, most of the fun is in working with the wood.

The last time I did any woodwork was in highschool, and I graduated in 1979.

My adventures in guitar building are chronicled Here. I don't think that I provide a lot of information on what you should do, but I believe that there is a fair bit about what you should NOT do.

And I can not play guitar worth a hill of beans. Or even sand.

Take care and take photo's.

Guitar Ed

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Im Dan B)

Im a 19 year old Australian and ive been playing guitar for almost 5 years, with 3 years of saxaphone before that.

Im new to the building side of things, but im as keen as anything to get into it. So far ive only made it through a few 'refurbishments' of second hand guitars, and im slowly working my way up to a full build. I try to keep my building advice to a minimum since my knowldege base isnt very large or reliable, so dont be afraid to set me in line if im opening my pie-hole where i shouldnt be (onya perry :D).

On a non-guitar related line, Im currently completing bachelors of Business, IT and Communcation Design at University and I am co-owner of a partnership Web Design & Development business which is going very well. Im also a coach of Australian Rules footy, mostly for the grassroots development program, Auskick. I -love- Australian Rules Football :D

- Dan

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I have played guitar for about 20 years - but more seriously only the last 5 years - after beginning to build my own guitars. My first guitar was a semi-acoustic, not very sofisticated - but it works quite well. This gave inspiration to the playing, which again gave inspiration to study more about how guitars works. I bought a few books, among them, Making An Archtop Guitar of Robert Benedetto. The book is nice, more practical than theoretical, so I have been working with the physics of sound and materials on my own to complete the knowledge a bit. I bulit an other semiacoustic, combining known techniques with a new angle of attack. The result this time was satisfying and gave a taste for more of this. I started to bulid a solid body guitar - still not finished because I came up with the Magnum648 idea during the project, and that one really took off!

In my professional life I am working as a mechanical development engineer and therefore I can handle, and have available the most advanced CAD and FEM tools for designing guitars.

The last year I have been playing with the idea of being more professional about this, and as a friend has a web hotel and helped me out buliding my own web page, this now becomes closer to reality...

I found this (extremely well made) forum in May and put the Magnum648 up for "project of the month", and ended up on the Project Guitar front page! - Resulting in a few enquiries and an ortder! B) (Thank you all for the votes!!!)

The future will show if I end up doing this on a full time basis or if it continues to be a business related hobby...

So am I a luthier? - well -no I don't feel like that - I think I feel more like a guitar designer.... :D

-Knut

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Hi, I'm Michael. I'm 23 years old and live in Fort Worth, Texas. I like fluffy bunnies, helping old people, and.... wait, was that out loud?

I've been playing for nine years, doing all my own repairs and fixes along the way. I worked for a short while at Jackson/Charvel as the main QC guy and sometimes warranty-repair-boy. When Fender bought Jackson they moved my and everyone else's job without us. I've been doing random repairs here and there. I'm trying to find work as a touring guitar tech, but there just isn't much call for it around here.

I'm not a luthier. I think that's an abused word. Too many people think they're luthiers because they put together some parts from Warmoth. That's nice, but let's see you build one from scratch, along with an achtop jazzbox, a violin, and a cello or two. If you can do that, you're a luthier. I can't, so I'm not. I don't even consider myself a repairman. I don't do finish work, I don't work on acoustics much, so that's stretching it a bit. I'm a guitar tech. I can set guitars up, I can swap necks, I can change pickups and pots and bridges. I can do it all fast and do it right. This isn't ego, it's truth. I'm not a repairman, and I sure as hell am not a luthier, but I am a pretty good tech.

The only thing I've ever built is a parts guitar made from a Charvette (yeah, you read that right) neck and a Washburn body I picked up on eBay for $35. I learned just how weak swamp ash can be when I nailed one of the trem studs through the body while installing the bridge. Score one for harder woods. It's a great guitar, despite the super cheapass components. I'll have to get some pictures of it sometime soon. I think I'm about to embark on a Saga kit, so I'll probably chronicle that a bit. Should be fun. I've been toying around with some pine I had laying around, building bodies with it. Nothing worth showing yet, but I'm getting to the point I'm ready to use some REAL wood. :D

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Hi, my name is Wes and I'm an alcholic.. Oh sorry wrong forum.

No really I don't drink. But I do work on guitars from band members and other friends. I have had so many different guitars it was easier for me to work on them than it was to take them in for repairs.

I am 47, and have been playing 26 years now and been repairing and building guitars for 7 years. I was lucky to have a good teacher. Lynn Ellsworth who started Boogie Bodies guitars. He was the first authorized Fender replacement parts builder. He split up with a man named Warmoth who a lot of you have heard about (Warmoth Guitars) and also Wayne Charvel of Charvel/Jackson guitars.

I learned a lot while working there part time (for free). But I did get one fantastic guitar out of the deal. I built a strat body out of claro walnut with a cocobolo neck and fret board.

I currently am working on a caribburst fretless "P"bass. I am by no means professional, but it is pretty much the only work I do. Also I play bass in a nameless blues/rockabilly band. 14 years, we have played without a name. It has to be some sort of record.

I spend a fair amount of time here in the forum. If I ever post information it is because I have some knowledge on that subject (except the slam thread on which I just make stuff up).

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hey im eric. Im from Northridge CA. Its basically Los Angeles. Well i hav been playing guitar for about 3 or 4 months now. I pick up quick because i already know how and why a guitar works. Im only 14 too. Right now im making a custom Les Paul and want to enter it in the agust contest for amuture. So glad to have this forum to help me and educate me with the art and the skills of diy guitar.

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Hi All I am Derek I live in Naperville, IL.

I have been playing for almost 15 years. Working on guitars for the past 3 years. Started building complete guitars from scratch last year. Have some templates made and still learning how to get all of this setup.

I have worked in a wood shop for the past three years on and off, and experimented with a lot of woods. I really like hard open grained woods, personally I think they sound better than anything else that is out there.

I run bigdguitars.com as a source to fund my building and its taken on a life of its own.

i only post what I know, I usually avoid knocking people.

Open Grained Hardwoods you should try:

Satinwood

Purpleheart

Paduk

Panga Panga

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wow ok so I am new here, this place has been recommended by a couple of guys that are members, so far I am in love with the site, ive been wandering it for about 6 hours now, I am Dave, here to be known as my soloist name Anekretia Anek for short...I have been slingin axes and burnin fret boards for twenty some-odd years now. I only recently decided to build one, and even did some digital mock ups of future possibilities you can find those here :

My Baby

we used only the highest quality parts, the body wood is honduras mahogany, and the neck is (carvin) eastern hard rock maple. with a carvin m22sd pickup grover tuners, and a beautiful black paint job with metallic siler axe edges..simply called the "Caliber Axe"

My partner and friend designed the body and we cut it up and put it all togetheri did a nice bit of set up on it. the original concept was to build our own guitars, but we have decided to be "overnight" luthiers and start our own company with a few select designs....let me know what you think, I am a father of three sons and a husband to a beautiful wife. I look to be in this industry for life and make a decent living at it.

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Hi. I'm boB. Some of you know me.

Almost 49 - Drink too much - Love guitars - Married to a MILF - Been playing guitar, on & off, since age 15 - Have learned repair by default - Desire to build a custom to fit my personal needs and upgrade my present guitars.

By trade I am a small studio owner that dabbles in Voice-Over, mixing and mastering. As far as building guitars, I guess I'm a wanna-be hobby builder and forced into repair and customization by great need and a lack of funds... As a guitarist I am also a wanna-be, hobby player. Time is the biggest enemy in both cases.

I like this forum. With the exception of myself, it seems to attract some serious and talented people. I am here to learn whatever I can about the art of guitar building and just to rub shoulders with some old friends.

Edited by Bus Bob

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My name is Brent. I am 36. Been playing for twenty years and have done the easy stuff on my own guitars for a long time. Been interested in building for awhile and found this site looking for info. This is a really good site and look forward to learning alot from erveryone. I am just getting started on a les paul and a strat from kits. Starting out easy.

:D

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A little about myself. My name is Dave and I'm in the process of building my second guitar. My main ax is the drums and I have an AS degree in music about 25 yrs ago. Needless to say I don't make a living making music. Hence the screen name (idrum4food). Several years ago my son took over my drum set and now I don't get much chance to play since he has usually carted it off to some garage to jam. He's an excellent drummer and always complaining about no one to jam with that takes it as seriously as he does. So I've decided to rekindle the old desires to be a guitar player.

My first project guitar turned out far better than I was hoping for. I built it when I was still in college. Made everything from scratch. Had help with the neck from a luthier in Tampa, FL. I got a little impatient with some of it. I didn't know where to buy a truss rod so after routing the neck I went to the local hardware store and bought a length of 1/4" steel stock. I put a slight back bow in it by putting one end in the crack between my truck bumper and body and bending it. I cut it to size and put a bunch of glue in the truss rod channel and c-clamped it in place. This guitar spent years in a storage shed wrapped up in a blanket. When I finally dug it out, the neck was and is still dead straight. The neck kinda reminds me of a telephone pole. Too narrow and too thick.

Thanks for all the advice in other threads and many thanks for this site.

This site has been extreamly helpful. My current project is a Mockingbird of which I received the body/neck blank several days ago. found it on ebay.

My real job is a radiation protection technician at a nuclear power plant near my home. Demanding job with lots of OT so guitar building will give me a good way to relax.

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My name is Joseph, and I live in the DFW area of Texas. I've been playing guitar for 16 years, and recently stumbled upon this place because I'm refurbishing a couple of my first guitars. But after reading, I've been bitten by the bug to build my own. I've done some woodworking, though most of my work has been in metal fabrication and plastic reinforced fibers (fiberglass, carbon fiber, and kevlar).

Hopefully by this summer I'll be through with refurbishing my guitars and will be able to start work on my own guitar.

GBT

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bythe way the picture of the koa is not mine...it is drak's..i was just posting it for him

ahh. that had me confused. but im ok now

PHEW!

:phew:

is that a smiley?

I sure hope so?

:D

(is that one? LOL!!!11`)

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My Name is Ian and I'm from Washington UK. I'm 38 and been playing guitar since I was 8. I play violin also.

Played in bands when I was in my teens, went to Uni, got a job...still having fun...then got a wife. Now I have a daughter (just turned 6).

I started building guitars about 1981...learning my woodworking skills from my late father who was a carpenter..later to become a master craftsman and art renovator.

Built many guitars during my time...then took sabbatical for too many years...getting back to both playing and building again now. Just (3 weeks ago) finished my first from scratch guitar since I stopped in the early 90's (I'll post some pics).

Currently have several projects on the go...one of which is a 20" scale guitar (electric, jackson type) I'm building for my daughter...yup, truly!

I like the electronics side of guitart making and love to experiment.

I hope to help out here if I can...

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it's funny I should post now i'm not likely to build anything for a while.

I'm Mike, from sunny Lincoln, UK.

I'm 24 and have been a "player" (not playa) since i was 16, no joke, i'm way worse than I should be. I am a terrible guitarist! I have no previous experience of wood working and to be honest i'm a bit of a pen pusher.

I've built two guitars, a solid ash firebird/tele thing and a semi hollow SG thing that got me an undeserved GOTM! I make do with less tools and space than most people and haven't attempted a neck as yet, I'm way off pro standard but getting better with practice.

My philosphy is you should try something new with every build and certainly not go out of your way to copy other designs, originality is the fun part, thickness planing and routing for the first time is NOT the fun part.

I'm about to move to a flat with no shed or garden so maybe the art of the luthier will be on hold, the missus won't like the kitchen full of sawdust.....

Edit: This makes me sound REALLY talentless! It's not as bad as all that, I know my guitars and have plenty of experience in modifying and repair work.

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This is a good post, hadn't run into this one yet until now...

I'm Lance, age 41, from Houston, TX. I have a degree in electronics engineering technology, and I do computer control system engineering work for chemical plants to pay my bills. I've been playing guitar since I was 10 or 11. In order to be happy, I have to be creating something. Whether it's writing music, building furniture, building guitars, designing control system graphics, etc. It doesn't matter as long as I'm creating something.

I'm told that I'm a decent player, but it's all relative. I did finish in the top 10 in a guitar contest back in '89, but got beat by a dude with a purple mohawk and polka-dot skin-tight pants. You just gotta love the 80's!! lol

I was lucky enough to take 4 years of woodworking classes in high school, and that's probably what sparked my interest in building guitars. Over the years, I've spent most of my time playing guitars, and goofing off with building whenever the urge hit me. I've re-wired countless guitars, replacing pickups, switches, etc. I've done 4 or 5 refinishing jobs, assembled various parts into several Frankenstein guitars, and built 3 bodies for pre-built bolt-on necks. All of this work was done for myself, never for a customer. I've never built a neck from scratch as I'm intimidated by the fretwork! I am by no means an expert on guitar building, most of what I know was learned through trial and error, and my knowledge has increased exponentially since joining this forum. I believe in creativity, and I love new designs.

My next project(s) will be neck-thru's, my first attempt at these. I recently put a Carvin fender-replacement neck on a tele body, and it absolutely brought that guitar to life, so I'll probably try Carvin's neck thru. Progress has been slow lately, as my wife and I have a 10-month old son, and I'm usually up to my elbows in diapers and bottles. Plus, babies don't nap well with power saws, sanders, and routers screaming in the garage! But I do have a couple of BM sets of camphor burl, a BM set of spalted maple, and a body blank of mahogany in my garage, and some limba and walnut coming in the mail. For now, I'm sponging up all the info I can, and developing plans accordingly.

Thanks to everyone for sharing their knowledge! Tons of good stuff here...

Lance

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