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Drafting Instrument Plans

Drafting Instrument Plans

by Ted Davis

from his 1984 GAL Convention lecture

Originally published in American Lutherie #4, 1985 and Big Red Book of American Lutherie Volume One, 2000

I feel that for every 1% I put into the Guild, I get back about 120%. And I’m very high on the plan series. It’s an opportunity for repairmen and builders to preserve information about some instruments that would otherwise be lost. By making these plans available to more people, even if they don’t build them, they will see what they look like and what they are. Of course, you will also have the opportunity to build replicas of these fine old instruments. Many of them have historical value, and many of them have monetary value.

I’m sure there are a lot of “neophyte” luthiers in the audience today that would like to contribute to the Guild’s publications but just don’t feel they have the experience. Well, here’s something you can do. I’m sure you know someone that has a fine old instrument that’s a collector’s item, or perhaps you have one yourself, or perhaps the repairman will have one come into his shop. Take a few hours, take the dimensions of it, sketch it, and you can draw it at your leisure.

Drawing an instrument plan is not all that difficult, but it is time consuming. You’ll spend ten, twelve, maybe fifteen hours or more on your first one.

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