Jonas Guitars Boulder, Co.

My Process for My Cherrywood Acoustic Guitar

by on Feb.26, 2009, under Acoustic Guitar Builders, Handmade Acoustic Guitars

Sven's Cherrywood GuitarThere are so many steps in building a guitar from scratch it blows me away every time I look at my work. It is a very humbling process that has to be broken into small doable pieces. This has been such a bonding experience for the two of us. He has guided me through every twist and turn.

I wanted to build a guitar from a tree that was grown in the US. There are so many woods from all over the world that are perfect for their sound quality, but I have a huge passion for things done as locally as possible. We decided that a cherry wood guitar would suit me well, so we got big block and cut out my main pieces. Once they were the right dimension we put them on the thickness sander. My back was glued from two pieces like the pages of an open book. My sides were shaped on the bending jig after been soaked and heated. I put this all together with bracing on my back to give it strength. During this time I also cut and shaped my neck.

The last few times I have focused on my top. After book matching this also, I put in my Rosette. This was one of the finest most careful wood work I have ever done. I wanted something simple yet elegant and unique. I decided I would incorporate wood into the pattern by tying it all back together with the fret board. I choose king wood for my fret board because it looks so amazing and there isn’t many local options for wood dense enough. So my Rosette would also incorporate a small piece of king wood that would flow into the rest of it. I was quite amazed at my final product. It looks so neat and has my own characteristic style.

This week I worked on making braces. This process of “voicing” my guitar is one of the most exciting. If this is done well, all my hard work will come to a beautiful finale. My dad just kept saying, “Sven think sound”, if I had the feeling and intention of unbeatable sound that is what I would get. Once my braces were cut and shaped, I glued them all on with a large jig designed specifically for this process. I bent dowels and used that tension to hold the braces in place.

It is an amazingly intuitive process. This has been one of the most challenging aspects for me. I am a really thinker and planner. With this project I have had to let go of my constraining ideas and logical thoughts to open up for feeling the entire guitar and wood that is in front of me. By using this creative technique I can tell the difference it has made. Flowing with the process and paying attention to the slightest detail, is what will make all the difference in the end.

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2 Comments for this entry

  • Dan Pirrallo

    I would like to speak to you about the posibility of restoring a 1950’s Epiphone Regent

    please call me at 303-998-3800

  • Dan Pirrallo

    I would like to speak to you about the posibility of restoring a 1950\’s Epiphone Regent

    please call me at 303-998-3800

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