Cigar Box Guitar kit coming soon

Not for me, but for one of my sons who has his birthday this month.  He was interested in the cigar box guitar kits and so I’ve ordered one of the Litterbug kits from Crimson Guitars.  He already knows about it, so I’m not spoiling the surprise; what he doesn’t yet know is which of the three wood selections I picked – maple and purpleheart, meranti and ebony or purpleheart and rosewood.

I don’t know whether they have the kits in stock or if we have to wait for them to make it so I don’t yet have a delivery date.  We are going to build it together, which will also be good practice for my guitar building course later this year, and we will probably make a few videos about the process.

More news will come in a week or two, with a bit of luck, which might include an unboxing video.  Stay tuned! 🙂

Some of the components of the kit
Some of the components of the kit

Spotlight on Luthiers: Chris Larkin

As a companion to my page on UK Luthiers, I will occasionally highlight one of them in these news posts.  I don’t know most of these luthiers myself, and so I’m just looking through some of their websites and picking out luthiers who seem to make interesting or beautiful instruments.

Today’s luthier is Chris Larkin, who holds the distinction of being the only non-UK luthier on my list since he resides in Eire (which I also decided to include, and I’d like to have more Irish luthiers there if you know any).  He uses mostly local woods and he makes a variety of instruments, which can be seen on his website, Chris Larkin Guitars.  It’s well worth a visit if you’re looking for a custom guitar or bass, or just to browse his instrument gallery.

Here’s an example of one of his more garish guitars!

Chris Larkin Rio ASAD
Chris Larkin Rio ASAD

Crimson Guitars cigar box build competition

Today, Crimson Guitars is publishing a series of videos showing a competition between four of their luthiers.  Each of them will build a cigar box from one of their kits, and they will be judged by an independent expert at the end of the day.  Here is the first video in the series – I hope you will enjoy them; I’m sure I will!

They also published an introductory video a week ago which explains the competition.

Unboxing parts for my Crimson guitar build

This morning I got a parcel with the first components for my forthcoming Crimson guitars build at the end of October.  I made an unboxing video to show the bridge and tuners, and have put it on a new article where I will link to all of the unboxing / preparation videos.

Planning my guitar build – unboxing videos

Crimson Guitars – The 12-Hour Build

Crimson Guitars is where I will be going at the end of October to follow a week’s course in guitar building, and I will build my own guitar (see the articles beginning “Planning my Guitar Build part 1“).  They do a lot of instructional videos on luthiery skills, and recently Ben Crowe, the Master Luthier, attempted to build a guitar in 12 hours.

The whole build was filmed and made available in all of it’s 12-hour glory on YouTube, and I’m afraid to say that, apart from skipping through some of the sanding, I watched the whole lot.  Thanks to Ben’s commentary and the interest of watching the whole process of making a guitar, it was actually rather interesting!

Below you will find the first episode, “Preparing for the 12 Hour Guitar Build”, which preceded the 24 half-hour episodes.  They are also going to produce an hour-long highlights version, but for those with the stamina, the full 12 hours are worth the watch.

Ben is obviously certifiably mad and I’m looking forward to meeting him!

PRS Periscope Guitar Wood Selection Videos

I’m a big fan of PRS guitars, and over the last few months they have released several videos on Periscope where they pick out the woods and design a private stock guitar, guided by voting from the live Periscope users.  One of the regular types of post on this site will be interesting videos that I’ve found on YouTube, whether old or new, and I’m kicking that off by linking to all of these Periscope wood selection videos so far.

I found these videos fascinating, to see the private stock wood library and the actual pieces of wood that they turn into beautiful and incredibly expensive guitars!

The original (unfortunately they committed the cardinal sin of holding the phone upright rather than on its side).  This is a Custom 24, and right now it’s actually up for sale secondhand at World Guitars for £7995.  More pictures can be found on the PRS Guitars blog entry about this guitar.

Number two, a semi-hollow McCarty – again, they made a blog entry for this one:

Number Three – this one is a Paul’s Guitar:

An interesting nugget of information from this video: most curly Maple trees don’t grow big enough to make one-piece tops.

Numbers 4 & 5 – they started to do them two at a time.  Interestingly, they show the finished second Periscope guitar at the start, and a fine instrument it looks too!  Here they did two Tremonti guitars.

Six and seven were done together again.  Fortunately, by now they’d figured out how to hold the camera the right way up!

And the latest one was eight and nine:

I’ll try to keep an eye out for more pictures of the finished guitars – some of them probably haven’t been finished yet, and PRS has only blogged about the first two, as I linked above.

Enjoy these videos!