A note on intonation

Intonation is an extremely tricky subject, and the study of it is one of my hobbies. Historical tuning systems, the mathematics behind various temperaments and scale degrees, and application of new theories is absolutely fascinating. Yes, I’m a serious nerd. Delving into intonation is a daunting task, but I’ll try to distill it to it’s most …

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Securing a floating bridge

Hollowbody guitars are often equipped with a floating bridge, which are prone to shifting while playing, travel, and during string changes. Floating bridges are usually only held in place by string tension, and as they’re very easy to knock out of place, it’s easy to throw your intonation all out of whack. The solution here …

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Bloody bass!

Occasionally, being a guitar tech is dirty work, especially in a town like New Orleans. Over the years I’ve seen some really funky, and sometimes downright disgusting guitars, which I’ve been tasked with cleaning up and getting back into fighting shape. You would not believe some of the stuff I’ve encountered: sweat, blood, beer, unidentifiable …

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The perfect guitar?

It’s a common misconception that just because a guitar is brand new it should be perfect. Unfortunately, that’s not the case: most guitar manufacturers pump out hundreds, if not thousands of guitars every day. Just one of Gibson’s many factories can complete upwards of 800 guitars a day! As much as we’d like to think …

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Guitar wiring

tele strat les paul hybrid

Finally! I’ve been blogging about my guitar work here for a while, and now I’ve  got a chance to show off my guitar wiring skills. I’m no electrical engineer (although I have taken a handful of electrical engineering courses over the years), but I’d like to think I’m pretty handy with a soldering iron. When …

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Permanent link to this article: http://www.strangeguitarworks.com/guitar-wiring/

Fretting a maple fretboard

glueing fret slots

Every  guitar is different, and each have their own unique set of challenges. This week I refretted a guitar with a maple fretboard, and it tried to fight me every step of the way. First of all, the maple in this particular board was very soft, giving the frets nothing to hang on to; second, …

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Shielding a guitar

shielding paint

Today I performed one of my favorite tasks: shielding a guitar. I really enjoy doing this because it’s fun, easy, and provides a real benefit for just about every guitar. The trouble is that your electric guitar’s electronics function very well as an antennae to pick up all sorts of interference, which then gets sent …

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Making a guitar nut from scratch

scoring the nut

It’s a great day to be a guitar tech in New Orleans. While it’s raining cats and dogs outside, I’m in the shop working on guitars – it’s a pretty sweet gig. Today, I made a bone nut for a Les Paul. Making a guitar nut from scratch separates the men from the boys – …

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Refretting a bound fingerboard

fret tang fits in slot

A few days ago,  I posted a blog about what not do to when refretting a bound fingerboard (see A Case For Great Fretwork). Today, I’m going to show how to do it correctly. A client recently brought in a 1979 Gibson ES335 guitar, which was in dire need of a refret. I pulled the frets, …

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Taylor Fret Buck

seated frets

My good friends Aaron Younce (at Fodera Guitars) and Megan Younce (at Taylor Guitars) recently helped me snag the very last Taylor Fret Buck. I’ve wanted one of these tools for years, and on a whim I got in touch with Megan to see if they had one laying around, even though they’ve been discontinued …

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