#1
Me and my friends are getting into the whole guitar tech thing and are gonna start making guitars for ourselves. I've found a few helpful websites and my friends girlfriend works at the local library so she'll hook us up with some books too.

Anyways, I got a few questions.
It's gonna be two of us doing the work, so about how long would it take us to build a guitar? (total work time not including time you wait for glue and paint to dry out, etc)

I know making our own guitar would be way cheaper than buying one. So, around how much money would we need per guitar? We're looking for good quality stuff, but definately won't be getting all the most expensive stuff.

And, if we make a guitar that's worth, say, 400 bucks to make, how much would it's market value be? (for ex, a Les Paul Studio costs around 1000 dollars, but what would the cost of the materials be?)
#2
Quote by TheSound
I know making our own guitar would be way cheaper than buying one.
Not really. Manufacturers can by parts and materials much cheaper than you can. By the time you add the cost of your labour, you're WAY over the cost that a manufacturer charges for a similar guitar in the mid-priced market.

What you do get is a guitar that's exactly as you want it, not something made to cookie-cutter specs.

Quote by TheSound
And, if we make a guitar that's worth, say, 400 bucks to make, how much would it's market value be?
Could be thousands, could be about a fifty bucks. It really depends on how good you become at this.
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#3
well, with gibsons and the like youre basically buying the name, not necessarily the quality. you can find guitars of the same if not better for cheaper than that. so, as for worth afterward, really depends on how much you put into it and how well you can haggle (if you plan to sell).

either way, good luck to ya, its quite a project.
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#4
I heard Ornsby say once that his guitars normally take between 40 and 100 hours to make completely from start to finish. Really the only benefit I can see from 2 people working is that you can have 2-4 guitars being made at once, but if you are both beginners, chances are that they wont be superbly amazing guitars. But I may be wrong.
#5
Well, yeah, that's pretty much why people buy clones and shit. I'd like to start off by making an Ibanez clone for me and a LP for my friend. I've seen recommendations of buying pre-made necks and fingerboards, so that would increase the cost a bit rather than making our own necks and stuff, right?
Anyways, if we get good at this, we might start making guitars for people, maybe just for the cost of the materials and a bit more for the labor.

I have absolutely no experience with this whatsoever. My friend though is good with the guitar electronics and he's good doing setups and stuff, so I guess that's a little headstart. And his neighbor does work with custom guitar making so he could probably help us out a bit.
#6
what I would do (and actually plan on doing in the weeks to come) is buy a crappy bolt-on guitar, and build a new body for it. Then if that goes well, build a neck, then change the pups, then the tuners, etc,etc
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#7
The first guitar is going to cost a lot just getting all the tools.
Unless you happen to have a luthier workshop in your garage, or are really good at making your own jigs, templates, and makeshift tools.
#8
Well, again, my friends neighbor works with guitar building so he'll most likely let us borrow his stuff. I'm gonna take some carpentry classes at college to get good with working with wood and cutting and all that. Probably if they give us a free term final project I could build a guitar body or a full guitar for it. Also this guy in my class is actually into building stuff and told me if I wanted to help I could, so I'll hang around with him just to watch and learn a little.
#9
IMO, you've got two bad ideas to start with. First, I don't think you really need to me concerned wit how long it's going to take you to build a guitar. Would you rather do it fast, or do it well? That is usually the tradeoff. Also, you really can't compare how long it takes someone else to build a guitar to an estimate of how long it's going to take you. People work at different rates, use different tools and techniques, and honestly some guys put more care into their work. Second, I don't think you need to come out of the gate wanting to start a guitar building business. Why don't you take on a project yourself and see if that is something that you want to do. You're going to have to get some experience before you're going to build anything that is sellable. I will tell you from personal experience, it is not as easy as it looks on those projectguitar.com tutorials. You may build your first guitar and absolutely hate it and not be very good at it, who knows? I'm not knocking you at all, but I really encourage you to do some research as far as parts, tools, wood, prices, etc., and really learn what you're getting into before you get in over your head.
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#10
Well, it's something I've really been into for some time. I just started putting it to action now cause my friend and I discovered we both had the same ideas, so the cost would be split up in two instead of myself having to pay for everything by myself. I also recently moved to the US, to my dad's house, where I have much more time for my personal activities and I can get materials for this easier. The time isn't much of a concern, I just wanted to know about the estimate of time, cause I need to put time aside for this project.
#11
Be careful with the "friend/business partner" relationship... it can and in all likelihood will come back to bite you in the ass. My buddy and I did that in high school with automotive tools. It actually ended up working out ok in the end, but putting money and a business idea between friends always adds extra friction to the relationship, especially if it doesn't work out as planned.

Other than that, I agree with pretty much all that has been said here. To get every tool I want for a fairly basic shop, I figured it was going to be just under or right about a grand and that is with pretty mid grade power tools from Craigslist, so just know that you're going to have a bit of shelling out to do for this first one.

Another thing to consider is that you implied that you haven't ever actually worked with wood. Basic knowledge of how to properly use and maintain power and hand tools is almost an art in and of itself, let alone doing it all and having a decent guitar come out in the end.

My advice is to take it slow and don't have any expectations. If you set out with the idea that you're going to make a ton of money then that is almost setting yourself up for failure. Just try to have fun with it, because that's what guitars and music should be.
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#12
My main goal on making guitars is just to make them for myself, not to sell them. Of course if I get good at it I'd do some favors for a few friends, but noting of making a business. It's just so we can make good guitars the way we want them.