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Artist Corner – Guitar Solo! – David Snell

The finished guitar, No. 1, just off the conveyor belt

Earlier this year, after selling my picture framing business to Alan and Amanda James, I began working on my guitar building hobby in my converted garage workshop. Newly retired I had all the time in the world to do just that.

As the months went by, my dream slowly came into fruition and I’ve based my first guitar around the classic Fender Telecaster shape that many will recognise.

Using the best materials I could to attain the best result, with the goal to create the perfect guitar for me, I finished the guitar in early November, strung it and hesitantly plugged it in. I certainly wasn’t expecting it to sound so good! Better still it played well with a very comfortable neck. I was pleasantly delighted!

There were a few things I knew straight away I’d have to change and I asked two accomplished guitar players round to appraise it. They both gave it the thumbs up and interestingly gave me some pointers of things to improve.

Going forward I’ll be applying what I’ve learned to the next build, a guitar for my son who’s drawing up the spec. I heard a quote recently that “you can’t build guitars until you’ve built a guitar”. Truer words were never spoken.

All of the photos show my completed guitar from different angles and you can see how the beauty of the wood with its flaws, enhances the look, something I’ll certainly be looking out for rather than the perfect piece of wood. The unique difference in design is what makes each guitar special.

I’ve also been experimenting with different woods for the scratch plate. Above’s a photo with an alternative American black, walnut scratch plate with a maple layer that I made.

I’ve played it live a couple of times and all in all I’m very happy. I can’t wait to start the next one, only the future holds what design I’ll make next!

Cost of materials for this build was approximately £450
Dave Snell:

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