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Posts made in August, 2009

String Lock Explained

Posted by on Aug 28, 2009 in Articles & Tutorials, Instructions and FAQs

I feel that some additional explanation on the string lock is in order. First, the design goals for all hardware that I develop are (not necessarily in order of importance): Modular, i.e. ability to build with any number of strings and use compound scale lengths Low weight – for ergonomics, but also for efficient energy transfer into the tone wood Easy to use Easy to manufacture, including minimizing the number of parts that need to be manufactured especially Durability A minimum of energy transfer points, i.e. strive for direct contact with the wood Aesthetically pleasing Not all goals can be met in every design of course, but they are at least goals. In this design, the modularity is apparent. In addition to being able to use it with any number of strings, you may also choose whatever string spacing is suitable. Low weight comes from using extremely hard and durable 7075 aluminum. Ease of use is not optimal – I would prefer a solution that did not require a tool. Nevertheless, allen keys are part of most guitarists’ arsenal and widely accepted. This design is not the easiest to manufacture, but with the right machinery it can be done with no more manual operations than any at the face...

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Hit the Road, Jack

Posted by on Aug 22, 2009 in Articles & Tutorials, Instructions and FAQs

Back in March last year (!), Mats over at eLutherie.org raised the question of where to place the output jack in the EGS design. Since then, I have been so focused on hardware that I have not really thought about it. That is until I was contacted recently by someone who wanted to pioneer actually building the first instance of it. One of the questions that was raised immediately was the one with the output jack. I played around with it a little bit, and have come up with two alternate placements that will both work well. Placement 1 is at an angle in the cutaway for the tuners, similar to that of an Ibanez JEM. This could, however, theoretically obstruct the tuners. It could also interfere with placing the guitar in a stand or on a surface. But it gets the cable out of the player’s way. The second position is at an angle at the back of the body, and I think this is my favorite. It works well both seated and standing up, in the anticipated playing positions as described in an earlier...

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New and Improved – String Lock

Posted by on Aug 13, 2009 in Articles & Tutorials

Seeing as I am sold out currently, I am planning on introducing a few design changes in the up-coming batch. Here’s one – a new string lock – that can still be changed if you’re quick to comment! By varying the staggering, you achieve any string spacing desired. Use with either a zero-fret or a regular nut. The method for locking the string is the same as the old...

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Customer Update – Michael Spalt

Posted by on Aug 10, 2009 in Articles & Tutorials, Customer Projects, Product Images

I have had the privilege of supplying a custom colored bridge to amazing luthier Michael Spalt. Michael himself is a bit pre-occupied with relocation plans and website overhaul, but until something more extensive can be arranged, here are a few pictures for your viewing pleasure! Oh, and did I mention that the complete instrument weighs 1,9 kgs (4 lbs 4...

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Patent vs. Open Source vs. Copyright

Posted by on Aug 9, 2009 in Articles & Tutorials

I have ideas. I have quite a few ideas, and one of the biggest challenges for me is determining what to do with my ideas. As Ludwig Wittgenstein put it: The difference between a good and a poor architect is that the poor architect succumbs to every temptation and the good one resists it. I started this blogging effort to document the work I was doing, and that work started out being very personal, a one-off effort to build the ultimate ergonomic guitar. It has snow-balled and diverted into becoming a small business developing and selling lightweight hardware for headless guitars. It is giving me a lot of pleasure, and seeing a finished instrument with my hardware is a great feeling. My thoughts and design process are documented here, and I even publish the drawings for the bridges I develop. They are all licensed under a particular version of Creative Commons that means that you are free to use my ideas as long as you yourself publish and license them under the same conditions, and, most importantly to me, that you attribute the ideas to me. If you use anything that I came up with, you need to make known that the idea came from me and link to...

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Posted by on Aug 6, 2009 in Articles & Tutorials

I spent a few days last week enjoying the hospitality of Rick Toone. We have been collaborating and exchanging e-mails for a long time and with timings, schedules and planets all aligned, I travelled to Frenchtown, NJ to meet and work face to face. We had a great time! Thursday, we started by hanging out in Rick’s new home-based shop, and saw each other’s work for the first time. I got to see Dove and Cupid which are both fantastic instruments and work in progress. I had brought some representative samples of my own as well. Friday, we hooked up with Rick’s friends John (middle) and Ken (right) for some laughs, lunch and prep for a meeting with Townsend Machine in Chesterfield, NJ. In the image above, Bart and Bill appear with Rick and myself in front of one of Townsend’s sophisticated 5-axis CNC machines. Townsend have done some exceptional quality work for Rick and we got a factory tour that left us very impressed. Saturday was spent in the shop brainstorming and prototyping some bridge concepts that we have been collaborating on in the Design and Technology Exchange over at elutherie.org. Stay tuned to this space for more information to come about the concepts we played around with....

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