Quality 3 String Guitars
Why 3 Strings? Half The Effort, Twice The Fun
Quick (boring) overview
I served a 5 year apprenticeship as a surgical instrument maker, and this gave me a good grounding of working with my hands, and using fine tolerances. I then moved away from my home town and took a complete change of direction and went into the plastics industry.
Having met and marring my wife (34 years ago) I moved back to my home town, and into the industry of high volume close tolerance, precious metal switches
In 2005 I moved to Spain with my family, my wife qualified to become an English teacher, and I turned my hand to a myriad of varied and interesting jobs.
The here and now.
I started playing the guitar over 40 years ago, and like other guitarists had aspirations of greatness.
But the reality was I knew from those early days, I was only going to be playing for my own enjoyment, but this is not a bad thing, it doesnít matter what level you achieve in any activity, as long as you enjoy doing it.
About ten years ago I started to suffer with arthritis in my left index and middle finger, itís now got to a point where my 6 acoustic guitars, 3 electric guitars, banjo and mandolin, are just sitting in the music room gathering dust, as I canít play them anymore.
Some years ago I discovered cigar box guitars, and I thought this could be a way for me to play again, and this has turned out to be the case.
In theory they are easy to make, get a cigar box, a piece of wood for a neck, strings, and tuners. Use a 6mm bolt for a nut, a 12mm bolt for a bridge, and viola there you have it a fretless guitar. Unfortunately you have to use a slide to get anything resembling a tune as the action is so damn high, 12mm (1/2 ď), if you ever did manage to hold a string down to the fret board with your fingers (without damaging them), the intonation would be way off.
I didnít want to follow this path; I wanted to build an instrument whose neck is the focal point (the heart) of the instrument,
built in the traditional way, with a 12 degree angle on the headstock, and a slight back angle relief on the neck to the body. It could be built from either a solid piece of wood, or using a scarf joint, incorporating a volute, and having the correct angles for string tension from the saddle to the bridge, and from the nut to the tuners.
In my opinion the neck is the most important part of any guitar or bass. Get this right and it will be a joy to play.