Travel guitar-- what would you design, if you built one for yourself?

Construction and repair of Classical Guitar and related instruments
mlau
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Joined: Thu Jan 14, 2016 5:42 pm

Travel guitar-- what would you design, if you built one for yourself?

Post by mlau » Mon May 14, 2018 5:14 am

Hey Delcampers,

Two weeks ago, I was doing some advanced training in Denver from two of the best dentists in the country.
While I was inspired and excited, a part of me died.

I've sorta resigned to the fact that to get *really, really good* at something, you need to sacrifice something else.
My vision is to get really, really good at dentistry...and I've resigned myself to the fact that I'll be sacrificing guitar building for that.

Anyways, there's only a few reasons what I haven't completely given up on building guitars:
1. I promised instruments to some friends, and need to complete them.
2. Sometimes there's stuff that nobody makes on the market.

One of the things that's not on the market are *good* travel guitars.

If you guys had to design a travel guitar for yourself, what would you guys do?
Would it be a Romantic era guitar? Or a removable neck instrument?

After I finish my build list, I'm very tempted to quite building guitars altogether.
I may reuse some wood from a botched build to make a smaller bodied travel guitar or requinto.

Would love to hear your thoughts.

-Matt

ps. I've already put money on an Angella (which he was very gracious to sell to me).

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Michael.N.
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Re: Travel guitar-- what would you design, if you built one for yourself?

Post by Michael.N. » Mon May 14, 2018 5:43 am

It's small. 50 cm string length. Fits in baritone uke sized foam case (deliberately!), very light. Terz guitars are probably in the 'travel size' although still much larger than this. As you've mentioned the alternative is a take down guitar.
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Historicalguitars.

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chrispeppler
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Location: Lonehill, Gauteng, RSA

Re: Travel guitar-- what would you design, if you built one for yourself?

Post by chrispeppler » Mon May 14, 2018 10:26 am

You probably know of these, but here are four nylon string travel guitars currently on the market:
Yamaha SLG200NW
Cordoba mini M travel
Traveler guitar ultra-light
Anygig travel practics classical backpacker

printer2
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Location: Winnipeg

Re: Travel guitar-- what would you design, if you built one for yourself?

Post by printer2 » Mon May 14, 2018 1:15 pm

chrispeppler wrote:
Mon May 14, 2018 10:26 am
You probably know of these, but here are four nylon string travel guitars currently on the market:
Yamaha SLG200NW
Cordoba mini M travel
Traveler guitar ultra-light
Anygig travel practics classical backpacker
Aww come on, where is your sense of adventure?

Lately I have been thinking of instruments I want to make and finding cases for them. I drew out a small size body which I wanted to build a kid's guitar with. To fit a baritone case I think 30" is the total length, so practically that means a string length of 20" or less. Body length 13 1/2", lower bout width 10 1/2", upper bout 3 5/8", waist 3", soundhole 2 3/4", depth 3 1/2" and 3", 19" sale length. Looked up the Cordoba M, 30 1/2" length, I'll go for that and change my scale length to 20" also. It has a depth of 2.9", I may have to check what depth I can get away with in a case. The Cordoba saddle string spacing is 2 1/2" and nut width of 1.96", I was planning a little narrower for kids.
Fred

Dmitrypey
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Location: Kirkland, WA

Re: Travel guitar-- what would you design, if you built one for yourself?

Post by Dmitrypey » Mon May 14, 2018 1:39 pm

Can’t beat Soloette / Aria Sinsonido.
It can fit into any suitcase or a carry on.
Can connect it to headphones or a speaker, or even a bluetooth speaker with a special transmitter.
They play great.

Yamaha silent is also great, but the headstock adds lenth.

The problem with acoustic travel guitars, is that the truly compact ones at such a small size don’t tend to sound like classical guitars anymore, but more like banjo.
1974 Teruaki Nakade

SteveL123
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Re: Travel guitar-- what would you design, if you built one for yourself?

Post by SteveL123 » Mon May 14, 2018 2:18 pm

I have a neck removed from an old nylon string folk guitar which I plan to build a fold-able silent travel guitar with. It won't have much of a resonator sound box to speak of and will rely on a piezo mic pick-up with a built in amplifier, maybe even a built in FM transmitter if I do not want to use ear/ head phones.

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eno
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Re: Travel guitar-- what would you design, if you built one for yourself?

Post by eno » Mon May 14, 2018 3:28 pm

I'm quite happy with my Yamaha silent
Paulino Bernabe 'India' 2001
Takamine C136S 1976
Masaru Kohno No.6 1967

mlau
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Re: Travel guitar-- what would you design, if you built one for yourself?

Post by mlau » Mon May 14, 2018 3:57 pm

chrispeppler wrote:
Mon May 14, 2018 10:26 am
You probably know of these, but here are four nylon string travel guitars currently on the market:
Yamaha SLG200NW
Cordoba mini M travel
Traveler guitar ultra-light
Anygig travel practics classical backpacker
I was looking hard and close to them last night.

The thing is, I have a weird relationship with materials. I have guitar #2, which was a sloppy failure....I felt like I really let down the nice Camatillo back and sides that I forced into a strange Franken-guitar shape (Fleta, Rodriguez, and Hauser joined in an unholy alliance). I'd like to reuse the wood in something worthy.

#2-- I don't think I'd be satisfied with anything less than an handmade guitar...and I have the skills to make something nicer than those...as well as most of the materials for it.



Anyways, I have a bad patient to deal with. He's a Moroccan guy that's trying all sorts of dirty play to get a free denture.

Imagine your glorious, french polished master guitar being used to paddle down a river of sewage...that's how I feel right now.

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chrispeppler
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Re: Travel guitar-- what would you design, if you built one for yourself?

Post by chrispeppler » Mon May 14, 2018 4:03 pm

He he... I can imagine. Anyway, just thought you might get some ideas from the travel guitars on the market. All the best with your project.

mlau
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Re: Travel guitar-- what would you design, if you built one for yourself?

Post by mlau » Mon May 14, 2018 4:07 pm

I'm thinking of a smallish full sized guitar, and making a bolt on removable neck (sorta like some Aussie guitars I've seen).
Currently, Clay Schaeffer is building me a "travel guitar" that I'll shamelessly copy (with his express permission).

Been thinking of maybe the Torres SE117 or the Panormo Fecit.

As for my future builds, I'm seriously thinking of having them all be removable necks.
Since I know that I'll never be as good as the vast majority of luthiers here, I might as well make something extremely different.
Sort of like making the world's best utility blade holder instead of the world's best pocket knife.

But yeah, I'm thinking of not renewing my wood stash once I'm done...it sorta sucks to realize my limitations.

mlau
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Re: Travel guitar-- what would you design, if you built one for yourself?

Post by mlau » Mon May 14, 2018 4:09 pm

Another possible one is the Martinez guitar from the GAL plans:

http://www.luth.org/plans/instrument_plans.html

mlau
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Re: Travel guitar-- what would you design, if you built one for yourself?

Post by mlau » Mon May 14, 2018 4:18 pm

Michael.N. wrote:
Mon May 14, 2018 5:43 am
It's small. 50 cm string length. Fits in baritone uke sized foam case (deliberately!), very light. Terz guitars are probably in the 'travel size' although still much larger than this. As you've mentioned the alternative is a take down guitar.
Oh, and Michael. Nice, clean, elegant work.

printer2
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Re: Travel guitar-- what would you design, if you built one for yourself?

Post by printer2 » Tue May 15, 2018 3:42 am

I forgot all about this one, 18" scale length, overall 29". I needed the tuners for another build so I have not heard it yet. Not expecting a lot with the size of the box but it was built to be compact. It has finish on it now and the frets are in. Just waiting for tuners to come in the mail.

Image

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Fred

mlau
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Re: Travel guitar-- what would you design, if you built one for yourself?

Post by mlau » Tue May 15, 2018 3:38 pm

That's really tasty execution with the centerseam.

Uuurgh! This makes me want to close up for a month and build something nice! But I can't afford to.

printer2
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Location: Winnipeg

Re: Travel guitar-- what would you design, if you built one for yourself?

Post by printer2 » Wed May 16, 2018 2:01 am

mlau wrote:
Tue May 15, 2018 3:38 pm
That's really tasty execution with the centerseam.

Uuurgh! This makes me want to close up for a month and build something nice! But I can't afford to.
Well if it helps any, the B&S's are oak from a tree that the neighbor cut down, same with the fretboard and bridge. The neck is a straight grained and knot free section of a 2"x4" construction stud. I think the top was a pine board that I got from Home Depot that I baked. If the cheap tuners that I ordered from China ever get here, maybe $25-30. Bending the sides and carving the neck took the most time, fitted the sides well and saved doing binding. No rosette but a ring around the hole, walnut I think. Such a small thing that you can do a little work, toss in the corner till you get time to do a little more. Before you know it you need to throw some strings on it. Sometimes simple just looks right.

Image

Image
Fred

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