Saturday, March 15, 2014

How many instruments do you make at a time?

I’m often asked, “How many instruments do you make at a time?” Well, at the moment there are four on the go. As all of my instruments tend to be custom built, I never have the opportunity to build them in batches. So, although four might be built at the same time, they are still treated as individual, unique instruments.
 There are stages in making when you might spend an hour or so fitting or joining two components together, they’re then glued together and ideally left until the next day to thoroughly dry. Also, I feel that if you thickness a piece of wood, for example, from 5 to 2.5mm it’s sensible to allow it to rest/acclimatise before going on to the next stage.
So, at the moment the day starts by lightly sanding Ian’s guitar which then has polished applied at various intervals throughout the day.
In between those intervals other things happen……..
Maybe the fingerboard is fitted and glued on to Alan’s mandolin; the next day the fingerboard will be sanded level and cambered, the position dots glued in and cleaned up and fretted the following day.
The linings have been going into the rim of David’s mandolin; 8 individual pieces are bent, but only two can be glued on at a time, in other words they go in over the course of 4 days. 
Similar is true of the bracing; one or two pieces at a time…….
And then towards the end of the day I’ve been making up the neck blank for Jeff’s walnut twin point. Here you’ve got three stages over three days.
Day 1
 Day 2
 Day 3

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Blogger The Two Terriers said...

That's a serious dose of patience Gary, wonderful stuff. John

8:08 AM  
Blogger Gary Nava, Luthier said...

As a fisherman, I'm sure you know all about patience too, John!
Cheers Gary

6:16 PM  

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