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Where would I look for guitar plans? (Read 6510 times)
unkabob
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Where would I look for guitar plans?
Feb 22nd, 2009 at 5:30pm
 
Ukulele lessons are not available in Winnipeg and I need a teacher to learn to play properly so I have started to take guitar lessons. The guitar that I am using is adequate but that is all. My next ukulele will be a baritone but after that I might build a guitar.

My real preference would be if Asa had a Kasha guitar plan for nylon strings. At the moment that is not available. Does anyone have a favorite source for an outstanding clasical guitar.
I can't afford a "Batson" but I may be able to build one.

Bob Cheesy
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jack
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Re: Where would I look for guitar plans?
Reply #1 - Feb 23rd, 2009 at 11:39pm
 
Bob,  Just a bit west of you is David Freeman at www.timelessinstruments.com. ; David is a builder/teacher and would be glad to help with plans, and he sells high quality parts/kits, and is a frequent demonstrator at the Guild of American Luthiers, and a nice guy.  He is in Tagaske SK.
Jack
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konacat
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Re: Where would I look for guitar plans?
Reply #2 - Feb 24th, 2009 at 7:30am
 
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obmissy-
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Re: Where would I look for guitar plans?
Reply #3 - Feb 24th, 2009 at 8:58am
 
I just finished a prototype for a tenor guitar.  I made a tailpiece similar to what I saw on a Batson.  I say similar because I'm on my third tail piece.  The first two failed.  The joint came apart when the strings were tuned to pitch.  I handcut two dovetails into the joint this time so if the joint fails hopefully it will be because the wood breaks rather than the joint failing. 
The tenor is braced ala a Baritone Kasha drawing from Mike Chock. I made it bigger and added some bracing on the sides that I saw ono a guitar forum.  Thought I'd give it a try and see what happens. 
It is oh so fun to experiment.
Personally, I think the tenor guitar is a little odd looking especially when there is no soundhole on the soundboard, rather in the side.  The bridge seems too high and the neck too long and skinny.  I guess that is because I am used to seeing the "perfectly" proportioned ukes with their bridge in the fat part of the lower bout.
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unkabob
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Re: Where would I look for guitar plans?
Reply #4 - Feb 25th, 2009 at 5:56am
 
Thanks everybody!

I have to go through all of the sites carefully to get the plans that I want. I don't want to do any practice runs on this. I have a lot to learn about guitars before I decide on a plan.

Jack, I have driven through Tugaske several times without ever noticing it. A trip this summer might be in order.

Obmissy, I still don't know what a parlor guitar is but I will solve that shortly.
For that tailpiece, would glass-reinforced epoxy do what you need for strength and you can mold it for any shape. Kevlar fiber is stronger.
Could you pin the tail piece to the tail block?

Bob
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Zippyzingo
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Re: Where would I look for guitar plans?
Reply #5 - Feb 25th, 2009 at 7:53am
 
Bob,
A parlor guitar is a generic term for a small bodied guitar. The idea used to be (late 19th , early 20th centruy) applied to smaller guitars that were marketed primarily for women to play in their parlor but the terms meaning changed over time.  

When CF Martin started building guitars, they were all  pretty small. As time passed and as the benefits of his "X" brace design were realized, it became clear that larger bodied guitars produced more volume. 100 years ago the largest Martin in production was not much bigger than most of the smaller ones built today.  As guitars started to be used in bands, there was a increasing need for louder guitars and size was the fix.  

(As an aside, I understand that the tenor guitar was originally developed for tenor and plectrum banjo players that were looking for an easy switch when banjos fell out of favor. To that end, tenor and plectrum guitars were developed, some were fitted with necks that were pretty much straight off of the companies banjo line.  )

There were a lot of small cheap guitars produced that were labeled "parlor" guitars but these don't really do justice to either the old parlor guitars or the new higher end parlors.  A LOT of fingerstyle players like smaller "parlor" guitars and a lot of slack key blues has been produced on these sizes of guitars, some of them fairly cheaply made.

They usually are not as bass heavy as larger bodied instruments, tending to be brighter in the mids and trebles. With better designs and amplification, volume isn't much of an issue today and many people find the smaller sizes just easier to hold and play.

Some people refer to classical guitars as "parlor" and some people figure that anything that isn't "jumbo" or "dreadnought" is a "parlor". I think the definition is swinging back to a specific style of guitar usually considered a "fingerstyle" guitar but , for now, the term "parlor" is still fairly generic for a small guitar, whatever the quality or style.  

ZZ
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Zippyzingo
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Re: Where would I look for guitar plans?
Reply #6 - Feb 25th, 2009 at 8:04am
 
Hi Obmissy,

That would be a lot of stress even with only 4 strings. It looks like Batson uses through tenons on his tail pieces.

How did you deal with the action? Did you cantilever the fingerboard like batson? Also, how is the break over angle for the strings at the bridge?

ZZ

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obmissy-
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Re: Where would I look for guitar plans?
Reply #7 - Feb 25th, 2009 at 3:05pm
 
I saw the through tenons also but found that very difficult to do with a 1/4 inch to 5/8 thick piece of wood.  There is not much wood behind the tenon  even though it runs against the grain.
The dovetails have been holding now for 2 days with strings tuned to pitch.  I think I have a winner.
I did not cantilever the finger board.  I understand the concept of having nothing touch the soundboard.  However, having built using a spanish heel, the heel block touches the soundboard right where the finger board does.  So nothing is really gained by "floating" the fingerboard.  I have a 14th fret connection and only about 1 1/2 more inches of finger board.  Bill, only wanted 14 frets.
The break angle of the strings at the bridge is very slight.  i haven't measured it but i'd say less than 15 degrees.  I did float the tailpiece that is why I did not pin the tailpiece to the tail block.
The break angle at the nut is 17 degrees.
When I first set up the guitar the action was very high.  I made the bridge overtall so I had to slim down the bridge.  I set the action at a little less than 5/32 at the 12th fret.  The intonation is spot on.
I'm anxiously awaiting the time to crate her up and send her off to Bill to get some feedback:  if it is a go or back to the drawing board.
I'll photograph her and post a pic as soon as I get over this naggin case of laryngitis.  It's very difficult to be a PE teacher and not be able to use my voice.
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Zippyzingo
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Re: Where would I look for guitar plans?
Reply #8 - Feb 25th, 2009 at 6:55pm
 
Thanks for the info, Obmissy.  I can see what you mean about the tenons and I can't really see why your fix shouldn't work just fine.  I was asking about the cantilevered finger board because I was wondering how you dealt with the action while maintaining enough break over at the bridge.  

It would be nice to see some pictures when you get a chance.  

ZZ

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obmissy-
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Re: Where would I look for guitar plans?
Reply #9 - Feb 27th, 2009 at 6:00am
 
Here's a photo of my tenor guitar prototype.
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tenor_front.jpg (Attachment deleted | 19 )
 
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obmissy-
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Re: Where would I look for guitar plans?
Reply #10 - Feb 27th, 2009 at 6:04am
 
hopefully the photo got posted.  i whited out my eyes because they were closed in the photo and I looked like i had been up all night. here's two others.
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tailpiece.jpg (Attachment deleted | 21 )
 
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obmissy-
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Re: Where would I look for guitar plans?
Reply #11 - Feb 27th, 2009 at 6:07am
 
i could only post one photo on the last post so here is the last one.
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side.jpg (Attachment deleted | 25 )
 
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Zippyzingo
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Re: Where would I look for guitar plans?
Reply #12 - Feb 27th, 2009 at 1:12pm
 
Thanks for posting the pictures, Obmissy. I like it.  The sound hole in particular is something I am interested in experimenting with. Seeing your's makes me think I might want to incorporate one on the instrument I working on now.

It looks like your bridge is glued down, is that correct?  I haven't got a lot of experience with flat top instruments using tail pieces instead of pin or tie bridges. That's why I was curious about the down force/break angle on the bridge.  I can see that this may not be much of an issue if the bridge is not floating.  Have you noticed any tendency for rattle at the bridge? (assuming you have been playing it,  of course. )

ZZ
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Zippyzingo
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Re: Where would I look for guitar plans?
Reply #13 - Feb 27th, 2009 at 1:15pm
 
Embarrassed
Sorry Bob,
I just realized that I hijacked your thread with my questions to Obmissy.  I don't know if an Admin or Mod can move my stuff to another thread of not. If they can I hope they will do so.

Sorry,

ZZ
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unkabob
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Re: Where would I look for guitar plans?
Reply #14 - Apr 14th, 2009 at 4:31pm
 
ZZ:
Not a problem.
I ordered a set of Kasha-Schneider classical guitar plans from Allied Luthier last week. One point that I am hesitant about is a 72 mm (3 inch) nut. I will have to go into that when the plans arrive.

Bob
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