This week in Lutherie

It has been a good busy week, I have to say. Going backwards, Last night I cut some gold/ white pearl for a guitar I am assembling for a friend. This little logo is from a drawing of his initials that I will put on the headstock. I must say my peral cutting skills are getting better, and for a good reason. Last summer at the ASIA symposium (Association of Stringed Instrument Artisans) in Stroudsberg, PA. I took a seminar with David Nichols of Custom Pearl Inlay.

One of the things david taught in the class was proper body position, staying above the work and holding the saw in a proper vertical position. It really works. Dave is a master at inlay. I only broke one blade in this, thats good for me. After I cut it out and filed the edges with some very fine swiss jewelers files it was beautiful. Thanks Dave.

Cutting a logo out of gold/ white mother of pearl

Earlier in the day I played at a farmers market in Rivervale, NJ with my friend John. Everybody seemed to enjoy the music. We got paid in Amish Woopie pies, vegetables and and Ices. Played for about three hours and had a very good time.

In the shop this week I worked on assembling a cocobolo back set with a herringbone center strip and began to scrape it in preparation for final dimensioning.

And I began this week creating a cedar neck for another parlor guitar I will be building. This was done with a spanish cedar blank from Hibdon Hardwoods using a scarf  joint to set the headstock at about an 11 degree angle. There is a great description the process in the J.S. Bogdanovitch book “building the classical guitar”

That’s it for now. More soon.


Clamping a scarf jointed cedar headstock
Scraping a beautiful set of Cocobolo
John and I playing at the Rivervale farmers market

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