Build Your Own Guitar, Acoustic, Bass

This course is for people who want to build an instrument to their own specification, and need more flexibility with build time, but are less interested in building at home.

The aim of the course is to be a building experience as there is little spare time for theory.

There is a limit to what can be created from scratch in 5 days, and this course enables students to make a more customised guitar than the Build your own first guitar. It is not more difficult, rather that each deviation from a simpler specification adds extra workshop time and cost.

Many electric guitars and basses can still be completed in 5 days, but some cannot &ndash for example carve top and tremolo guitars will either need extra course days OR need to be built on Custom build your own guitar course (which takes place over a week).

Acoustics are longer term projects taking a minimum of 13 days (depending on the specification), as they need more time for gluing/drying etc.

The BYOG course runs throughout the year with a variety of dates including weekends, and there may be a mix of builders at each session. Electric builders will need a minimum of two visits and acoustic builders will need a minimum of four, but these can be spread out over any time period that suits.

There will be a maximum of four people on this course.

By the end of the course you will:

  • understand how your guitar is constructed
  • have hands on experience of every stage in the guitar building process
  • be familiar with power tools and how to use them
  • be aware of Health and Safety issues
  • have had some of your guitar building questions answered
  • have notes and instructional materials to take away and use
  • have made a fully working high quality electric, bass or acoustic guitar to take home

Course outline (Electric and bass guitars)

Note: some specification may need extra building days.

  • Arrival day
    • Health & Safety
    • Choosing wood, confirming specification and preparation
  • Day 1
    • Start work on the neck
  • Day 2 & 3
    • Continue neck & body work
    • Carving, fretting inlay
  • Day 4 (finishing day)
    • Final carving, sanding cavities, link holes
  • Day 5
    • Assembly
    • Fret dressing
    • Wiring
    • Fitting all parts
    • Setup and testing

Course outline (Acoustic guitars)

  • Day 1
    • Start work on the back and front. Aim is to complete all preparatory work for the box. Custom designs may require a design session.
  • Day 2 – 10/11
    • Continue body & neck work
    • bending, bracing, binding, making neck, fretting, inlay
    • Finish is applied once all build work is complete
  • Day 11/12 & 13
    • Assembly
    • Bridge fitting, neck glueing, fret dressing, fitting all parts including pick up (if chosen)
    • String, set up and testing

(Places are available with or without overnight accommodation, but all daytime refreshments are provided.)