Acoustic Guitar Construction in the small shop -- Kenneth Michael Guitars LLC

Information, ideas and help for those constructing scratch built acoustic guitars or acoustic guitar kits - © 2017
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The purpose of this forum site is to provide a means for acoustic guitar makers at all skill levels to forward information, share experience and ask questions if project obstacles are encountered. We ask that egos be left at the door – the highest levels of courtesy and respect are to be shown to all. Posts containing disparaging comments will be removed. The “Acoustic Guitar Construction Forum” is owned by Kenneth Michael Guitars and is copy protected. Direct links to luthier suppliers are not permitted and will be edited.

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PostPosted: Wed May 31, 2017 1:17 pm 

Joined: Mon Dec 19, 2011 4:19 pm
Posts: 2200
So I do you guys find the title statement to be true in your building of guitars? The more of them I build the more I find this to be so true.
I am only on my 13th guitar. I don't expect to ever make a perfect guitar, but I sure do expect that I should get better at making them. I am finding out that on every one I've built, I get caught not watching out for all the details.
It is the little things that can make a difference in the build quality and the aesthetics that keep getting me. I've decided that I must make a check off list of all the little detail areas I seem to forget to do and check and start to use it religiously
if I am going to move to (I hate the phrase) "to the next level" in my building. At 62 my ability to remember the details is fading it seems
So I'm wondering, how many of you guys use a check off list while building your guitars?

The one little deal that caught me on Monday was installing binding and purflings. I'm using BWB purfling, and at the back side, tail end I had a joint of the purfling and the binding. I made sure the two ends of the purfling fit together really well, nice and square. I glued in the binding and and the purfling on one side, then did the other side. All looked well, but.....two things I didn't do. One, I did not place the purfling joint a little behind the binding joint, which supports the purfling and keeps the joint inline. I've had done this correctly before. ARg. The second thing I neglected to do, is put a clamp end to end to pull that joint in snug. This I also always do. Both of these details I neglected. So the result was my purfling joint is tight but offset slightly, not much, probably only 1/128", but it is enough that it blares at me!!
I can and will live with it, but this is just one example of the things that catch me.

What do you guys do so the the devil doesn't visit you on the details?

PostPosted: Wed May 31, 2017 3:18 pm 

Joined: Mon Jul 04, 2016 6:32 pm
Posts: 25
As you've started a topic on "how could I possibly have done that," I've got one that may be hard to beat. My last build used a bolt-on neck from LMI, and, after gluing the sides to the head and tail blocks, I cut the hole for the sound port -- on the wrong side.

After a couple of days of slapping my forehead while asking that question, I started the recovery process which worked out OK. But my procedure for avoiding the devil's visits, periodic specific-to-the-build checklists, wouldn't have helped. I find that my devil is focussed on the sequence of events -- doing one thing too early so that later efforts are blocked or made more difficult. Interim checklists help me there; big, stupid mistakes (like confusing left from right) require more powerful tools -- which I (obviously) don't have.

PostPosted: Fri Jun 02, 2017 5:34 pm 

Joined: Tue Nov 27, 2012 8:01 pm
Posts: 738
Location: Kalamazoo, MI
A clean and simple design, crisply executed, trumps an elaborate one with observable slop, much less one with gross errors. Complex feature sets help sell factory made products, but are not usually the "innovations" that marketing departments claim they are. Features tend to clutter my mind and create negative situations (my wording for "mistakes").


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