Guitars – ‘Intensive’

INFORMATION

Thank you for your interest in attending an upcoming ‘Guitar Building ‘Intensive’. Please find comprehensive information about the workshop below. If you have any further queries, please contact me directly.

Course Dates/Times

The guitar making ‘intensive’ workshops are held over six (6) full days.

A workshop familiarisation and hosted ‘meet & greet’ dinner will be held on the evening prior to the first workshop day (Sunday), which is an opportunity to provide you with an overview of the space, to answer any questions and for everyone to enjoy some social time together before we begin the build. The familiarisation at Lot 19 will be held at 5pm and dinner will follow at 6pm with venue being confirmed in the days leading up to the workshop.

To achieve the construction of your guitar in the allocated timeframe, the workshop commences at 9am sharp the next morning, and each morning following.

A generous lunch is provided between 12-1pm on each of the six workshop days (at the workshop, with Lot 19 grounds to wander). Morning and afternoon refreshments are also provided during scheduled 15 minute breaks. Note: Please indicate on the Application form if you have any dietary requirements ie. gluten/dairy free.

Completion time is at 5pm daily, on all six workshop days.

Venue/Location

The workshop is located at Studio 13, Lot 19, Langslow Street, Castlemaine (enter Lot 19 via McShannags Road) See map www.lot19art.com

Castlemaine is located within the Mount Alexander Shire in Central Victoria. By road from Melbourne, it is 150 km from the city centre, off the Calder Freeway. There is also a V-line train arriving at Castlemaine train station from Melbourne at approximately 8:30am (see PTV for exact times). A range of accommodation is available in the area. See www.maldoncastlemaine.com.au

What to expect

Guitar ‘intensive’ workshops are intended for beginner level participants with basic woodworking skills. Processes have been streamlined to ensure complex issues associated with an advanced-level build are negated. However, the workshop schedule has been carefully designed to allow participants as much hands-on input into their prospective instrument as possible.

Types of guitars

There are three (3) distinct types of acoustic guitar on offer. All three are well known 20th Century steel strung instruments that have become benchmarks for comparison of tone, timbre and musical styles. All instruments are flat-top, radiused-back, 14 frets to the body and will be constructed from solid timbers.

Models:

000 style

  • Back & Sides: Indian Rosewood
  • Top: Sitka Spruce
  • Bracing: Sitka Spruce
  • Neck: Mahogany or Queensland Maple, depending on availability
  • Fingerboard: Indian Rosewood 20 fret
  • Bridge: Indian Rosewood
  • Bindings: Indian Rosewood with white side purfling
  • Rosette: Rosewood ring with edge detail
  • Scale length: 24.9” 632.5mm

OM style

  • Back & Sides: Indian Rosewood
  • Top: Sitka Spruce
  • Bracing: Sitka Spruce
  • Neck: Mahogany or Queensland Maple, depending on availability
  • Fingerboard: Indian Rosewood 20 fret
  • Bridge: Indian Rosewood
  • Bindings: Indian Rosewood with white side purfling
  • Rosette: Rosewood ring with edge detail
  • Scale length: 25.4” 645.2mm

Jumbo style

  • Back & Sides: Nth American Maple
  • Top: Sitka Spruce
  • Bracing: Sitka Spruce
  • Neck: Mahogany or Queensland Maple, depending on availability
  • Fingerboard: Indian Rosewood 20 fret
  • Bridge: Indian Rosewood
  • Bindings: Maple with black side purfling
  • Rosette: Rosewood ring with edge detail
  • Scale length: short – 24.75” 628.7mm or long – 25.4” 654.2mm

Common to all three instruments:

Solid wood bindings & tail graft

  • Bone nut, saddle & bridge pins
  • Abalone fret position markers
  • Medium gauge fretwire
  • Gotoh tuners
  • Phosphor Bronze strings .011” – .052” Light gauge

Content of workshop

  1. Rosette installation
  2. Bending sides
  3. Top and Back bracing construction & shaping
  4. Body assembly
  5. Neck shaping and fitment
  6. Fret position marker inlaying
  7. Fingerboard shaping & fretting
  8. Bridge shaping
  9. Assembly
  10. Setup & finish

Tools & Materials

The tools used in the workshop are common to luthiers the world over. These are primarily hand tools such as; rules, squares, chisels, saws, rasps, files, scrapers and reamers. Participants will work directly with small power tools on certain processes, however where high-power, electrically driven, power tools are required, these tasks will be completed by the instructor.

All materials will be pre-organised and equipment ready to use so as to provide the participant with the best opportunity to complete their chosen instrument to playing condition.

Basic PPE (Personal Protective Equipment) will be provided for the duration of the workshop; apron, glasses, hearing protection and dust masks. It is a requirement for participants to wear fully covered hard shoes or boots whilst in the workshop. All tools and equipment remain the property of the instructor for use by participants in subsequent workshops.

 Finishing

A simple coating of shellac will be applied during the final stages of the workshops to seal and give basic protection to an otherwise vulnerable instrument ‘in the white’.   Finishing (painting) of a guitar can be approached in a number of ways. The coating applied in this workshop is the basis of a French polish finish and should participants wish to do so, they may continue the process. Alternatively, shellac is an excellent sealer prior to a more ‘modern’ sprayed finish. Participants may wish to have the instrument finished at a later date by a finisher of their choosing. The preparation and finishing of a guitar is a time-consuming process and can, depending on the type of finish chosen, take almost as long as the building of the guitar itself.

What is included? What can I expect?

  • Professional guidance and well-structured processes focused on construction (to completion) of a solid wood instrument
  • The availability of quality materials and tools to build the instrument
  • Adequate time for completion of the instrument
  • Ample space for construction of the instrument and access to necessary tools and resources
  • Lunch and refreshments on each of the workshop days (taking into consideration dietary requirements indicated on the Application Form)
  • Adequate time for breaks and access to amenities
  • The guitar you have constructed
  • A hard case

Can I record the workshop?

Audio recorders are allowed, for personal use of recorded material only.

 

Important note: It is your willingness, not my guarantee that you will leave with a quality instrument. Wonderfully, instruments vary – this is the beauty of a hand built instrument! It’s important to understand that every piece of wood, by nature, is different. When compared to another instrument, it will produce a sound characteristic of its structure and the way it is processed, how it is assembled and finished.

 I’d like to attend. What do I need to do now?

Guitar workshops are strictly limited to six (6) people to ensure generous instruction time. Please complete the online Application form.

I will contact you to discuss/confirm acceptance into the chosen workshop. At that time I will give you my account details – a non-refundable, 20% deposit is required ($698) to secure your place.

You will receive an Information Pack by post prior to the commencement of the workshop, so please ensure you have provided your full address.  This pack will include a list of what to bring and a set of notes about the instrument you will be building, for you to familiarise yourself with prior to the commencement of the workshop.

 

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