American Lutherie #141
Winter 2020

On this issue’s cover we see Charles Fox operating a shop-made jig to finalize the angle of the neck and provide a proper surface to support the fretboard.

Photo by Mark French

American Lutherie #141 – Winter 2020

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Romantic Guitars in Norway

by Leonardo Michelin-Salomon

A Uruguayan luthier enrolls in a craft school in Norway to study Romantic-era guitars built by Italian, German, and French makers two hundred years ago. He writes an article about his techniques and discoveries that is published in an American journal with readers in over forty countries. Yes, it’s a big beautiful lutherie world. We are all just leaves on one wide-spreading, figured-maple branch.

On this issue’s cover we see Charles Fox operating a shop-made jig to finalize the angle of the neck and provide a proper surface to support the fretboard.

Photo by Mark French

American Lutherie #141 – Winter 2020

$14.00$16.00

Clear
SKU: N/A Category:

Additional information

Choose Membership Status

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The back cover shows a small auxiliary table in the shop of John Calkin. Spruce braces are being glued to a mandolin-shaped tenor uke back of Casuarina wood.

Photo by John Calkin

The Charles Fox Guitar-Building Method, Part Three

by Mark French

In this episode of the landmark series, the back and top plates are braced and glued to the rim to form the body of the guitar. The body is then bound and purfled using Fox’ distinctive method of fitting everything dry, taping it in place, and running superglue into the seams.

When Your Business Hits a Bump

from his 2017 GAL Convention workshop by Evan Gluck

What should you do when an unexpected event upsets the smoothly-running apple cart of your guitar-repair business? Don’ freak out. Take good advice from the trustworthy folks around you, and proceed with confidence. That’s the story, but raconteur and lutherie superstar Evan Gluck tells it better.

Ukulele Scale Intonation

by Peter Hurney

Here’s a direct and accurate real-world method for calculating the exact position of a uke bridge. The jig does all the work and considers all the variables. No math required!

GAL Instrument Plan #79: 1964 Harmony/Regal Guitar

by Steve Kennel

Here’s a detailed drawing of a straightforward and ubiquitous mid-century, solid-wood, American-made guitar. This inexpensive model was the first instrument of a generation of would-be folkies and rockers. Not a classical, but certainly a classic.

Beachcombing for Cedar

by Gerry Chicalo

All the guitar soundboards ever made don’t add up to a toothpick in the vast lumberyard of the timber industry. A stray cedar log that washes onto a beach in British Columbia can be lutherie gold, and harvesting it can be a lot of nice fragrant outdoor fun.

The Seven-Year Itch

by Erik Wolters

Wolters started his first instrument-making project later in life than some. But with an excellent mentor and years of patient determination, he completed a doozy of a first guitar. Dreams can come true. At least lutherie dreams.

Stiffer Guitar Linings

by F.A. Jaen

These linings are something like reverse kerfing, but they are built up in place, starting with an ingeniously aligned set of individual blocks. There’s always a new way to do it.

Guitar Making with an X-Carve CNC Router

by Mark French

Here come the robots. Although CNC routers are not yet at the Jetsons stage, we are far beyond the days when computer-driven tools were only in luthiers’ dreams, not their workshops. Mark French brings us up to date as he selects and installs an inexpensive machine in his home shop.

Auxiliary Workbenches and Tables

by John Calkin

There’s no fancy-schmancy foolin’ around at Calkin’s shop. Your bench is covered in projects and tools? Make a little benchtop on legs and let it stand above the clutter. Wish your bench had a radiused top? Make a tiny one that does. Frustrated by cam clamps that don’t reach the middle of your workbench? You know what to do.

Drawing the Traditional Acoustic Guitar Pickguard

by R.M. Mottola

Pickguard outlines are like body shapes; you could copy them, or you could sketch them freehand. Or, if you are serious about it, you could construct them geometrically. Mottola gives us step-by-step instructions for drawing a pickguard to fit any size or shape of guitar to get that authentic traditional look.

Reviews: The Spanish Guitar: 1750–1950

by Chris Sobel

Françoise and Daniel Sinier de Ridder, authors of The Spanish Guitar, will be familiar to American Lutherie readers from their ambitious restoration articles. Our reviewer loves this lavish and informative picture book.

It Worked for Me

by Steve Johnson, Chris Garland, Carl-David Harlin, Cary Corson, Steve Dickerson, Steve Kennel, and Terence Warbey

Height-adjustable guitar nut. Modified glue pipette. Wrangling pickup wires. Uke arm bevel. Colored dust caddy. Nested radius sanders. Pre-bending herringbone purfling.

Questions

edited by R.M. Mottola

Cutting purfling channels for Spanish-heel construction. Consistent excitation for frequency response testing. The sound of ladder-braced guitars vs X-braced guitars. Do guitar finishing materials sound different? Superglue in fretboard cracks.