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What Is The Cheapest Guitar You Can Build?


Jens
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Hi everyone!

I still havn't made by first guitar yet, being a poor uni-student...

So my question is: What is the cheapest guitar possible to build? How much would it cost and what parts would be on it? Any suggestions? :D

The bodydesign can always be made to fit my desire but it's all the electronic parts that is the real problem...

I don't have the kind of money to build a highquality one but I still want to build something... :D It's a first build after all.

How should I reduce the building cost?

I just want it simple with one or maybe two pickups.

Maybe I should just build a body to begin with?

So can you guys help me with a checklist of parts(model) and the possible price of these? B)

Edited by Jens
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Ah a man after my own heart...

It helps to be resourceful. For one thing, your best place to start is to take a bolt-on neck guitar --preferably with a neck you like a lot --and build a new body for it in the shape you want. The only place where you shouldn't try to save too much is the neck, because that's pretty much the most important part of the guitar.

Actually, my first attempt at guitar 'building' was to take an existing guitar and re-shape and re-finish the body. Plenty of fun, that one!

As for building the neck, there are varying opinions on this one. If you're already comfortable with working with wood, and if the guitar just won't feel like it's 'yours' unless you build the neck too, then by all means go for it. If not, there are many of us (myself included) who are perfectly happy with a pre-built neck.

There are a lot of used guitars out there that could easily suit your purposes. Take what you need, sell off the rest to help recover some of your costs.

Wood isn't expensive (at least, paint-grade wood) and if you're lucky you'll find some good scrap...for free...and you should have access to all the tools you need, preferably at someone else's house --and that someone else should be willing to guide you, if you don't know how to do any of this stuff.

Assuming your body came out well, then you'll have the option to upgrade your hardware as time goes on --maybe you'll want different/better pickups, better tuners, etc.

The most expensive part of building, I've found, is actually in the finish --even if you decide to go with a natural wood color, you're still looking at from 4 to 8 cans of spray lacquer...unless you go for an oil finish, that'll cost you a lot less.

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Univeral Jems SAGA kit is the way to go for a happy first-timer. The finishing materials like sandpaper and a real set of strings and rattle-can laquer are going to make you forget what you paid for the kit. If you have 40 hours of spare time and the funds, go for it! Take everything you think it will cost you and double it. The end result should give you a real bond with your new guitar. It worked for me and I love every single mistake I made doing it. Mistakes ROCK!!! :D

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Hi Jens,

I am building a Saga Strat kit and if I can do this anyone can!

It's not just painting and and putting it together I've learned so much and I'm only just starting. The neck didn't fit on the body so I had to sand it down - now it fits. My uncle got me some better tuners because he said the ones it comes with are crap and the new ones didn't fit I had to drill out the holes bigger - they fit now! And the head is shaped like a big dumb square so I shaped it like a strat. This is so much fun and I can't believe I'm doing it all myself. Get a kit and get started you'll love it.

My new head - still needs some sanding and I have to decide how to finish it.

IMG_8917_160.jpg

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Why would you buy a cheap guitar. Add 50 hours to a kit or a couple hundred to a from scratch custom and you have a something that might, (in a few generations of design and workmanship) be worthy of gotm. You can buy a cheap guitar anywhere, why sink extra money and time into building one.

The contradiction to this is IF you plan on building more than one, or THE PERFECT ONE.

If you plan on building the perfect one you better do some serious homework. I personally expected my first build to be a complete toss of cash. Ya know just to see if I could do it. The real problem in my reasoning is that I thought I could produce a quality instrument for less than I could purchase it retail.

I assume you are on a budget so... forget going to the movies, forget heading down to the beer gardens, forget tapping the cute sophmore down the...ok don't forget that (but you will be tied up in something that isn't so easy to walk away from).

If you want a quality instrument then you need three things.

Good Information

Good Tools (and knowledge of how to use those tools)

Patience

Nate Robinson :D

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My old guitar teacher had a toilet seat guitar and one made out of a spade :D all made by hugh manson of manson guitars fame (as in john paul jones and matt bellamy).

Cheapest guitar is probably a telecaster if you're making it from scratch. or a single pickup metal axe B)

Don't bother if you want to make one on the cheap. Buy one! easier and cheaper and less work!

:D

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Hi everyone!

I still havn't made by first guitar yet, being a poor uni-student...

So my question is: What is the cheapest guitar possible to build? How much would it cost and what parts would be on it? Any suggestions?  :D

The bodydesign can always be made to fit my desire but it's all the electronic parts that is the real problem...

I don't have the kind of money to build a highquality one but I still want to build something...  :D It's a first build after all.

How should I reduce the building cost?

I just want it simple with one or maybe two pickups.

Maybe I should just build a body to begin with?

So can you guys help me with a checklist of parts(model) and the possible price of these?  B)

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Hi.I'm just collecting all the parts to make my first "telecaster" look-a-like. I bought a set of plans from e-bay, and compiled a list of parts required(always best to get bits first, then no problems with fitting into holes etc. that might be wrong shape/size)Before buying from suppliers I checked out e-bay again.Wow, what terrific savings I've made already.For example,a complete neck for £24, a bridge complete with both pickups for £16, all the switches and knobs for £4,etc etc. If you can wait a little it's ceratinly worth it. Body will be a reclaimed mahogany table-top.Good luck.Mike.

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