Guitarmaker Issue 44

issue 44 cover thumbnail

You must be signed in to view the PDF

Three OME banjos by Chuck Ogsbury

Chuck Ogsbury

Cover photo: Three OME banjos by Chuck Ogsbury.



Larry Robinson, Neil Harrel, Mike Dotson

Larry Robinson weighs in on the dangers of shell dust. Neil Harrel comments on the cost of recent ASIA symposia and the regularity of Guitarmaker. Mike Dotson mentions the Arizona League of Lutherie.

safety; shell dust; Guitarmaker; symposium; event; club

Guitarmaker's Workbench

Rick Davis

ASIA requests more member participation in article contributions, ideas about projects and direction, and all aspects of ASIA. Instrument sales drop a whopping 35% after September 11, but independent builders not hit yet. ASIA CD project has been shelved.

sales; ASIA; Guitarmaker

The Banjo Family

Chuck Ogsbury

A history of the banjo in its many forms, from the fretless African banjar, to open-back five-strings, 4-string jazz banjos, resonator banjos, and bluegrass banjos. Mentions many renowned players and their banjos. With 13 photos and 3 illustrations.

banjo, 5-string; banjo, minstrel; banjo, bluegrass; banjo, jazz; banjo history

Setting Up an Old-Time Banjo

James deCava

Discusses general principles in banjo setup, such as neck stiffness, heel fit, skin materials, and head materials.

banjo setup

Pot Life: Banjos & Me

Geoff Stelling

Mr. Stelling talks about how he became interested in banjos and formed his own company. Considerable discussion of construciton methods and materials used in banjos. With 1 photo and 1 drawing.

banjo setup; banjo construction; banjo history; biography

Learning Lutherie: L'ecole de Lutherie

Marc Lupien

Focuses on the only remaining school of lutherie in Quebec, Canada. Run by Andre Brunet, training includes guitar building theory as well as building experience.The article shows a wide variety of work by seven students, including the author. With 18 photos.


The Bouzouki — A Closer View

Ernst Pozar

Ernst Pozar spends a week in the Greek shop of the Tsonidis brothers. He discusses their approach to building traditional Greek instruments. With 12 photos.


Greek Traditional Instruments: Measurements and Specifications

Ernst Pozar

Table giving dimensions, tunings, and nodes for 9 Greek instruments.

bozouki; baglama; tamboura; laouto; outi

Banjo Gallery

Jim Bollman, Ed Britt

Collection/collage of about 3 dozen captioned photos and drawings--of banjos.


Shop-built Wide Belt Sander

Richard Heeres

A brief article on design and construction of Richrd Heeres' thickness sander. With 4 photos and 1 drawing.

tools, power; tools, shop-built

Band-aid Crack Repair

Rich Mermer

How to fix a soundbox crack you can't reach. With 2 photos.


Swinging Bridges

Judy Threet

Template and jig for drilling bridge pin holes in an arc. With 4 photos.

tools, jig; bridge

Strobe Tuners — History

John Norris

History of the strobe tuner from Conn's mechanical Stroboconn to the Peterson's VS-1.


Strobe Tuners — Peterson VS-1

John Norris

Discusses the features of the Peterson VS-1 virtual strobe tuner (an electronic version of the mechanical strobe tuner). With 1 photo.


Strobe Tuners — VS-1 Review

Rick Davis

Rick Davis takes the Peterson VS-1 virtual strobe tuner for a spin. He discovers a highly accurate portable tuner, but taking advantage of all of its features requires some learning. With 1 photo.


Body Radius Sander

Shiraz Balolia

Even the owner of Grizzly Industrial has to make his own tools for his guitar making hobby. Here is his body radius sander build to use dished workboards from Luthiers Mercantile International and Stewart MacDonald. With 5 photos and 2 drawings.

tools, power; tools, shop-built

Wiping Varnish

R.M. Motolla, Jack Read

The authors pool their experience and explain how they finish musical instruments with wiping varnish. With 3 photos.


“ASIA is an organization where you not only grow your skills, but grow your extended family. I have met so many wonderful, knowledgeable people through this organization.” ~Michael Dickinson, Martin Guitar