Building my first guitar for my daughter.

Construction and repair of Classical Guitar and related instruments
Anthony DeMers
Posts: 50
Joined: Thu Jan 11, 2018 11:51 pm

Building my first guitar for my daughter.

Post by Anthony DeMers » Sun Jan 14, 2018 5:18 pm

Early November I caught the guitar building bug and started building my 5 year old daughter a classical guitar. The hope is to finish it before her 6th birthday in June.

I’m using plans for a short scale Torres that I picked up on LMI and the Cumpiano book. At an estate sale I picked up a few hand tools and clamps and friends and family have since helped me acquire most of what I need so far.

I’m using my phone to capture time-laps footage of the process. Here is a video of the highlights of the first 100hrs. The unedited version is about an hour. This is just over 5min.
[media]https://youtu.be/Y4ykA5JoqY0[/media]

Since the video I’ve spent another 40 hours working on the rosette and the bracing. I’m almost ready to start bending the sides.

I would like to keep updating this post as I progress and look forward to any and all feedback.

Anthony
Last edited by Anthony DeMers on Fri Feb 02, 2018 3:22 am, edited 1 time in total.

printer2
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Location: Winnipeg

Re: Building my first guitar for my daughter.

Post by printer2 » Sun Jan 14, 2018 5:50 pm

I think my head is spinning now. Looks like you are really moving along.
Fred

MessyTendon
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Re: Building my first guitar for my daughter.

Post by MessyTendon » Sun Jan 14, 2018 6:04 pm

Your pretty good...heck now I don't feel so bad about butchering my first build :)

Did you sharpen the planes or was that factory sharp, if so you are lucky...i've got a dozen or so old planes that need tuning up.

Anthony DeMers
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Joined: Thu Jan 11, 2018 11:51 pm

Re: Building my first guitar for my daughter.

Post by Anthony DeMers » Sun Jan 14, 2018 6:14 pm

printer2 wrote:
Sun Jan 14, 2018 5:50 pm
I think my head is spinning now. Looks like you are really moving along.
The time-lapse can be really nauseating.

Anthony DeMers
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Joined: Thu Jan 11, 2018 11:51 pm

Re: Building my first guitar for my daughter.

Post by Anthony DeMers » Sun Jan 14, 2018 6:18 pm

MessyTendon wrote:
Sun Jan 14, 2018 6:04 pm
Your pretty good...heck now I don't feel so bad about butchering my first build :)

Did you sharpen the planes or was that factory sharp, if so you are lucky...i've got a dozen or so old planes that need tuning up.
Learning how to sharpen the planes, chisels, and scrapers has really taken a good chunk of my time. I sharpen the plane blades on large plate of tempered glass. I have various grits of sand paper and a honing guide.

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Doug Ingram
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Location: Lorette, Manitoba, Canada

Re: Building my first guitar for my daughter.

Post by Doug Ingram » Sun Jan 14, 2018 8:12 pm

The Torres SE117 is an awesome little guitar. I've built three so far.

Anthony DeMers
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Re: Building my first guitar for my daughter.

Post by Anthony DeMers » Mon Jan 15, 2018 4:20 am

Doug Ingram wrote:
Sun Jan 14, 2018 8:12 pm
The Torres SE117 is an awesome little guitar. I've built three so far.
That’s awesome. I’d love to see a picture or two if you have one. I’m at least making two. My son will get number two. At this rate I’ll be lucky to finish under 300 hours for the first one. Hope to cut that time significantly for the second.

vesa
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Location: Sulva, Finland

Re: Building my first guitar for my daughter.

Post by vesa » Mon Jan 15, 2018 7:47 am

Thanks Anthony.
Great vid.
Good idea to speed it all up, even it gets me close to migraine.
You do very well with only few tools, this is very good for a newbe or a tool-a-holic to see
(we have had several threads about which tools are needed):
2 planes (nr 4 and nr 5 ?), spokeshave, cabinet scraper, tenon saw, coping saw, 2 chisels,
straight edge, vernier gauge, a long (1 m) and a short (30 cm) ruler, hammer,
LMI tunerhole jig and a drill bit, cordless drill, 2 sharpening stones, 8-12 clamps???
A carpenters saw for solera making and a band saw to make wedges.
Did I miss something?
Vesa Kuokkanen

Antonio Marin nr. 813 1995 (Bouchet)
Vesa Kuokkanen 2016

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Michael.N.
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Location: UK

Re: Building my first guitar for my daughter.

Post by Michael.N. » Mon Jan 15, 2018 11:14 am

Bandsaw might be nice to have but it's certainly not necessary. Little block plane is useful. Even a cheap Stanley 102 is perfectly fine if the blade is sharpened well. You can get away with just a number 5 or 5.5 plane, do both jointing and thickness with it.
Files will be needed, for fret ends and top nut. You can use a fine round needle file for the nut or a three square file will work too. Some sort of fret wire cutter too. I picked up an end cutter from a local tool shop that works rather well.
Historicalguitars.

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Doug Ingram
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Re: Building my first guitar for my daughter.

Post by Doug Ingram » Mon Jan 15, 2018 2:11 pm

Anthony DeMers wrote:
Mon Jan 15, 2018 4:20 am
Doug Ingram wrote:
Sun Jan 14, 2018 8:12 pm
The Torres SE117 is an awesome little guitar. I've built three so far.
That’s awesome. I’d love to see a picture or two if you have one. I’m at least making two. My son will get number two. At this rate I’ll be lucky to finish under 300 hours for the first one. Hope to cut that time significantly for the second.
Anthony. I posted them to this forum (shockingly to me!)8 years ago. You can see them here. viewtopic.php?f=11&t=46984&hilit=Doug+ingram+se117

The SE117 produces a nice sounding small guitar that is still a viable guitar regardless of whether the player is a child or an adult. These are great for younger players to learn on as they suit their size, but they are NOT child guitars the same way that a fractional size violin is a child's violin.

I built one each for my two daughters hoping that they would grow up playing. They were both very involved in music, however, guitar did not take with them. I have lent one to my 13 year old nephew who is taking guitar in school. Guitar is getting traction with him.

You will be able to cut your time investment down on the second guitar as so much time is devoted to research and basic skills acquisition. Don't worry about the hours, just enjoy the entire process. Also, don't think about the time required to do the entire project, just break it down into component tasks and let those accumulate to an entire guitar.

Anthony DeMers
Posts: 50
Joined: Thu Jan 11, 2018 11:51 pm

Re: Building my first guitar for my daughter.

Post by Anthony DeMers » Tue Jan 16, 2018 6:56 am

Doug Ingram wrote:
Mon Jan 15, 2018 2:11 pm
Anthony DeMers wrote:
Mon Jan 15, 2018 4:20 am
Doug Ingram wrote:
Sun Jan 14, 2018 8:12 pm
The Torres SE117 is an awesome little guitar. I've built three so far.
That’s awesome. I’d love to see a picture or two if you have one. I’m at least making two. My son will get number two. At this rate I’ll be lucky to finish under 300 hours for the first one. Hope to cut that time significantly for the second.
Anthony. I posted them to this forum (shockingly to me!)8 years ago. You can see them here. viewtopic.php?f=11&t=46984&hilit=Doug+ingram+se117

The SE117 produces a nice sounding small guitar that is still a viable guitar regardless of whether the player is a child or an adult. These are great for younger players to learn on as they suit their size, but they are NOT child guitars the same way that a fractional size violin is a child's violin.

I built one each for my two daughters hoping that they would grow up playing. They were both very involved in music, however, guitar did not take with them. I have lent one to my 13 year old nephew who is taking guitar in school. Guitar is getting traction with him.

You will be able to cut your time investment down on the second guitar as so much time is devoted to research and basic skills acquisition. Don't worry about the hours, just enjoy the entire process. Also, don't think about the time required to do the entire project, just break it down into component tasks and let those accumulate to an entire guitar.
Doug,
Very impressive work. I showed my daughter and she is a little more exited about the build. She stopped asking me daily if it was done yet about two weeks after I started.

Great point about time. I’m going to stop worrying about how long it may take to finish and just enjoy the journey.

Anthony DeMers
Posts: 50
Joined: Thu Jan 11, 2018 11:51 pm

Re: Building my first guitar for my daughter.

Post by Anthony DeMers » Thu Jan 18, 2018 6:23 am



Still working out the kinks when it comes to sharing media on this forum. I wouldn't mind some basic best practices if anyone can help with that.

This is the installation of the rosette. My channel was very rough especially the inside ring. Kenny Hill helped me with an simple solution to fix it. I cut out the rough segment along the grain line and then matched it to the scraps from the top. I love the clean cut from the popsicle stick and razor blade circle cutter, but I don't like how hard it was to get a uniform depth. I can see paying for a specialty tool from LMI.

Anthony :D
Last edited by Anthony DeMers on Fri Feb 02, 2018 3:24 am, edited 1 time in total.

Anthony DeMers
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Joined: Thu Jan 11, 2018 11:51 pm

Re: Building my first guitar for my daughter.

Post by Anthony DeMers » Sun Jan 21, 2018 9:05 am

I’ve just finished with the bracing. What’s the best way for me to store the braced soundboard. Now that it is not flat I’m not sure if it is okay to simply lay it down.
Anthony

vesa
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Joined: Tue Mar 01, 2016 12:52 pm
Location: Sulva, Finland

Re: Building my first guitar for my daughter.

Post by vesa » Sun Jan 21, 2018 1:26 pm

I store mine fastened in solera as this protects the top from get dented.
The other thing is to keep the humidity level even otherwise the top might get very awkward shape.
Vesa Kuokkanen

Antonio Marin nr. 813 1995 (Bouchet)
Vesa Kuokkanen 2016

Anthony DeMers
Posts: 50
Joined: Thu Jan 11, 2018 11:51 pm

Re: Building my first guitar for my daughter.

Post by Anthony DeMers » Sun Jan 21, 2018 5:59 pm

vesa wrote:
Sun Jan 21, 2018 1:26 pm
I store mine fastened in solera as this protects the top from get dented.
The other thing is to keep the humidity level even otherwise the top might get very awkward shape.
Thank you. I’ll see what I can do about humidity. I live on the coast and it seems to always be between 55 and 70.

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