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Making acoustic guitars from a kit

benjsbenjs Toronto, ON Posts: 9,030
Hey all!

I'm about to purchase a Martin replica kit to build. Just curious if anyone has experience building an acoustic, and how it went for them!

Thanks in advance,
Ben
'05 - TO, '06 - TO 1, '08 - NYC 1 & 2, '09 - TO, Chi 1 & 2, '10 - Buffalo, NYC 1 & 2, '11 - TO 1 & 2, Hamilton, '13 - Buffalo, Brooklyn 1 & 2, '15 - Global Citizen, '16 - TO 1 & 2, Chi 2

EV
Toronto Film Festival 9/11/2007, '08 - Toronto 1 & 2, '09 - Albany 1, '11 - Chicago 1

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    tempo_n_groovetempo_n_groove Posts: 39,655
    benjs said:
    Hey all!

    I'm about to purchase a Martin replica kit to build. Just curious if anyone has experience building an acoustic, and how it went for them!

    Thanks in advance,
    Ben
    This seems like fun.

    Pictures as you go please.  Maybe I can finally own that Martin I've always wanted!
  • Options
    benjsbenjs Toronto, ON Posts: 9,030
    benjs said:
    Hey all!

    I'm about to purchase a Martin replica kit to build. Just curious if anyone has experience building an acoustic, and how it went for them!

    Thanks in advance,
    Ben
    This seems like fun.

    Pictures as you go please.  Maybe I can finally own that Martin I've always wanted!
    If it turns out I have any talent at it, you'll be welcome to one of my first at a steal of a deal.
    '05 - TO, '06 - TO 1, '08 - NYC 1 & 2, '09 - TO, Chi 1 & 2, '10 - Buffalo, NYC 1 & 2, '11 - TO 1 & 2, Hamilton, '13 - Buffalo, Brooklyn 1 & 2, '15 - Global Citizen, '16 - TO 1 & 2, Chi 2

    EV
    Toronto Film Festival 9/11/2007, '08 - Toronto 1 & 2, '09 - Albany 1, '11 - Chicago 1
  • Options
    tempo_n_groovetempo_n_groove Posts: 39,655
    benjs said:
    benjs said:
    Hey all!

    I'm about to purchase a Martin replica kit to build. Just curious if anyone has experience building an acoustic, and how it went for them!

    Thanks in advance,
    Ben
    This seems like fun.

    Pictures as you go please.  Maybe I can finally own that Martin I've always wanted!
    If it turns out I have any talent at it, you'll be welcome to one of my first at a steal of a deal.
    HA! I might just make my own too!
  • Options
    benjsbenjs Toronto, ON Posts: 9,030
    benjs said:
    benjs said:
    Hey all!

    I'm about to purchase a Martin replica kit to build. Just curious if anyone has experience building an acoustic, and how it went for them!

    Thanks in advance,
    Ben
    This seems like fun.

    Pictures as you go please.  Maybe I can finally own that Martin I've always wanted!
    If it turns out I have any talent at it, you'll be welcome to one of my first at a steal of a deal.
    HA! I might just make my own too!
    Can't say enough good things about John Hall at Blues Creek Guitar. His kit included a beautiful adi top with mostly uniform wide grain. He's also happy to hold your hand with phone calls and emails the whole way through (in addition to a pretty good Youtube series of instructions). Great guy.
    '05 - TO, '06 - TO 1, '08 - NYC 1 & 2, '09 - TO, Chi 1 & 2, '10 - Buffalo, NYC 1 & 2, '11 - TO 1 & 2, Hamilton, '13 - Buffalo, Brooklyn 1 & 2, '15 - Global Citizen, '16 - TO 1 & 2, Chi 2

    EV
    Toronto Film Festival 9/11/2007, '08 - Toronto 1 & 2, '09 - Albany 1, '11 - Chicago 1
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    tempo_n_groovetempo_n_groove Posts: 39,655
    I just read reviews on these.  Not looking good... Hopefully you get good components.
  • Options
    benjsbenjs Toronto, ON Posts: 9,030
    I just read reviews on these.  Not looking good... Hopefully you get good components.
    Weird - where'd you find a negative review? I don't think I came across a single bad one when I did my research.

    As for the components - I'm super impressed with my set. Abalone-inlaid ebony fretboard, nice wide-grain adi, good looking mahogany bent to shape, pretty faux tortoise shell binding, Waverly tuners, excess fret wire in case of a mistake, pre-scalloped braces that are pre-radiused.. all great stuff. While I'm not an expert, it's pretty clear that it's a quality kit. 
    '05 - TO, '06 - TO 1, '08 - NYC 1 & 2, '09 - TO, Chi 1 & 2, '10 - Buffalo, NYC 1 & 2, '11 - TO 1 & 2, Hamilton, '13 - Buffalo, Brooklyn 1 & 2, '15 - Global Citizen, '16 - TO 1 & 2, Chi 2

    EV
    Toronto Film Festival 9/11/2007, '08 - Toronto 1 & 2, '09 - Albany 1, '11 - Chicago 1
  • Options
    tempo_n_groovetempo_n_groove Posts: 39,655
    benjs said:
    I just read reviews on these.  Not looking good... Hopefully you get good components.
    Weird - where'd you find a negative review? I don't think I came across a single bad one when I did my research.

    As for the components - I'm super impressed with my set. Abalone-inlaid ebony fretboard, nice wide-grain adi, good looking mahogany bent to shape, pretty faux tortoise shell binding, Waverly tuners, excess fret wire in case of a mistake, pre-scalloped braces that are pre-radiused.. all great stuff. While I'm not an expert, it's pretty clear that it's a quality kit. 
    I saw a bunch of them.  One person recommended you build a mandolin first to get some of the intricacies down before tackling the guitar.

    It was a good rabbit hole I went down, lol.

    Really looking forward to your take on it.  I wonder if the people w the negative reviews thought it'd belike a lego set and not to have any mechanical skill?
  • Options
    benjsbenjs Toronto, ON Posts: 9,030
    benjs said:
    I just read reviews on these.  Not looking good... Hopefully you get good components.
    Weird - where'd you find a negative review? I don't think I came across a single bad one when I did my research.

    As for the components - I'm super impressed with my set. Abalone-inlaid ebony fretboard, nice wide-grain adi, good looking mahogany bent to shape, pretty faux tortoise shell binding, Waverly tuners, excess fret wire in case of a mistake, pre-scalloped braces that are pre-radiused.. all great stuff. While I'm not an expert, it's pretty clear that it's a quality kit. 
    I saw a bunch of them.  One person recommended you build a mandolin first to get some of the intricacies down before tackling the guitar.

    It was a good rabbit hole I went down, lol.

    Really looking forward to your take on it.  I wonder if the people w the negative reviews thought it'd belike a lego set and not to have any mechanical skill?
    Ah, you're talking about building a kit guitar in general.

    Yes, I think the negative reviewers were expecting a lego set. A kit doesn't provide you with all the tools needed - you still need to build or buy things like radius dishes and go bar decks. You still need to understand the nuances of what glue to use and how to get things to adhere optimally. You still need to be precise, and sometimes even fix imprecise manufacturing potentially (not on mine thankfully). You still might fuck it up yourself - over-sanding or applying braces asymmetrically or ending up with a fly in your finish. 

    I recommend reading Bill Cory's book, a Complete Guide to Building Kit Guitars. There's a chapter where there's a synopsized step-by-step that basically explains all the steps. It's a good starting point before buying to decide if you think it'll be too much. On that front, check your PMs.
    '05 - TO, '06 - TO 1, '08 - NYC 1 & 2, '09 - TO, Chi 1 & 2, '10 - Buffalo, NYC 1 & 2, '11 - TO 1 & 2, Hamilton, '13 - Buffalo, Brooklyn 1 & 2, '15 - Global Citizen, '16 - TO 1 & 2, Chi 2

    EV
    Toronto Film Festival 9/11/2007, '08 - Toronto 1 & 2, '09 - Albany 1, '11 - Chicago 1
  • Options
    tempo_n_groovetempo_n_groove Posts: 39,655
    benjs said:
    benjs said:
    I just read reviews on these.  Not looking good... Hopefully you get good components.
    Weird - where'd you find a negative review? I don't think I came across a single bad one when I did my research.

    As for the components - I'm super impressed with my set. Abalone-inlaid ebony fretboard, nice wide-grain adi, good looking mahogany bent to shape, pretty faux tortoise shell binding, Waverly tuners, excess fret wire in case of a mistake, pre-scalloped braces that are pre-radiused.. all great stuff. While I'm not an expert, it's pretty clear that it's a quality kit. 
    I saw a bunch of them.  One person recommended you build a mandolin first to get some of the intricacies down before tackling the guitar.

    It was a good rabbit hole I went down, lol.

    Really looking forward to your take on it.  I wonder if the people w the negative reviews thought it'd belike a lego set and not to have any mechanical skill?
    Ah, you're talking about building a kit guitar in general.

    Yes, I think the negative reviewers were expecting a lego set. A kit doesn't provide you with all the tools needed - you still need to build or buy things like radius dishes and go bar decks. You still need to understand the nuances of what glue to use and how to get things to adhere optimally. You still need to be precise, and sometimes even fix imprecise manufacturing potentially (not on mine thankfully). You still might fuck it up yourself - over-sanding or applying braces asymmetrically or ending up with a fly in your finish. 

    I recommend reading Bill Cory's book, a Complete Guide to Building Kit Guitars. There's a chapter where there's a synopsized step-by-step that basically explains all the steps. It's a good starting point before buying to decide if you think it'll be too much. On that front, check your PMs.
    More on that building tools part.  I know that Martin sells their old molds from time to time.  If you make a hobby out of this u might want a Dreadnaught jig.  U can be a guitar maker, lol!
  • Options
    benjsbenjs Toronto, ON Posts: 9,030
    benjs said:
    benjs said:
    I just read reviews on these.  Not looking good... Hopefully you get good components.
    Weird - where'd you find a negative review? I don't think I came across a single bad one when I did my research.

    As for the components - I'm super impressed with my set. Abalone-inlaid ebony fretboard, nice wide-grain adi, good looking mahogany bent to shape, pretty faux tortoise shell binding, Waverly tuners, excess fret wire in case of a mistake, pre-scalloped braces that are pre-radiused.. all great stuff. While I'm not an expert, it's pretty clear that it's a quality kit. 
    I saw a bunch of them.  One person recommended you build a mandolin first to get some of the intricacies down before tackling the guitar.

    It was a good rabbit hole I went down, lol.

    Really looking forward to your take on it.  I wonder if the people w the negative reviews thought it'd belike a lego set and not to have any mechanical skill?
    Ah, you're talking about building a kit guitar in general.

    Yes, I think the negative reviewers were expecting a lego set. A kit doesn't provide you with all the tools needed - you still need to build or buy things like radius dishes and go bar decks. You still need to understand the nuances of what glue to use and how to get things to adhere optimally. You still need to be precise, and sometimes even fix imprecise manufacturing potentially (not on mine thankfully). You still might fuck it up yourself - over-sanding or applying braces asymmetrically or ending up with a fly in your finish. 

    I recommend reading Bill Cory's book, a Complete Guide to Building Kit Guitars. There's a chapter where there's a synopsized step-by-step that basically explains all the steps. It's a good starting point before buying to decide if you think it'll be too much. On that front, check your PMs.
    More on that building tools part.  I know that Martin sells their old molds from time to time.  If you make a hobby out of this u might want a Dreadnaught jig.  U can be a guitar maker, lol!
    Ha, all good! I have an OM sized mold so far, I think I’m going to try making a dreadnought mold myself based on Martin specs though. 

    And as for the being a guitar maker - that’s why I’m starting with a kit, to try to gain some understanding of the process with a more minimal investment. I’ll be making one from scratch in September with a local luthier!
    '05 - TO, '06 - TO 1, '08 - NYC 1 & 2, '09 - TO, Chi 1 & 2, '10 - Buffalo, NYC 1 & 2, '11 - TO 1 & 2, Hamilton, '13 - Buffalo, Brooklyn 1 & 2, '15 - Global Citizen, '16 - TO 1 & 2, Chi 2

    EV
    Toronto Film Festival 9/11/2007, '08 - Toronto 1 & 2, '09 - Albany 1, '11 - Chicago 1
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