#1
Hello!

I was wondering if it would be reasonable to build a guitar with mostly hand tools (the only power tools I would be able to use are a jigsaw and a cordless drill.) Could I make the body 2 layers, fully cutting the pickup and electronic pockets on the top half and solid on the bottom? And I will be using a pre-made neck. Assume that I own most types of hand tools out there, I don't want to list them all.
#2
No problem at all, I would say. - I've only built lap steels, but I wouldn't have any qualms about biulding an electric using only hand tools if I was buying a neck. Even a neck shouldn't be a big deal for a decent woodworker, which I am not.

I built this for my jigsaw, it has been very useful for making pickguards, and it would be OK for bodies with a longer blade:



Stradivarius and Torres did OK, and they didn't even have electricity.
#3
Tony Done, do you know any decent way to route the electronic pockets without a router? Thanks for reply btw
#4
You can use a drill and chisels to route for the electronics, but it will be sloppy. Just find a tool library that will let you rent or borrow a router.
#5
Quote by jpnyc
You can use a drill and chisels to route for the electronics, but it will be sloppy. Just find a tool library that will let you rent or borrow a router.


Or buy a pre-routed one from Warmoth? (takes the fun away but ). I'd still be painting it and installing the electronics.
Last edited by ItsPoshJosh at Jan 3, 2016,
#6
I think your two-layer idea is good. I have modified pickup and electronics cavities with a good sharp chisel. - Sharpening is something I do well. - But I've never needed to do a whole cavity. I set the depth by drilling a lot of holes with a stopped bit. It is also worth remembering that the pickguard covers a multitude of cavity sins (some of mine are very rough), so I take pains to get them looking nice.
#7
Quote by Tony Done
I think your two-layer idea is good. I have modified pickup and electronics cavities with a good sharp chisel. - Sharpening is something I do well. - But I've never needed to do a whole cavity. I set the depth by drilling a lot of holes with a stopped bit. It is also worth remembering that the pickguard covers a multitude of cavity sins (some of mine are very rough), so I take pains to get them looking nice.


I like your thinking about the pickguard. So I would just glue some wood together to make 2 identical layers, cut out the cavities of one layer, glue them together, then cut out the shape of my guitar? Or what?
#8
I would rough out the two guitar shapes first, using my jig saw bench with a long blade, then cut the cavities, also with the jig saw, then glue them together.

The jig saw bench can also be used as a nibbler to get up close to marked lines, running the work at right angles to the blade. Easier than a file or sanding block.
#9
Quote by Tony Done
I would rough out the two guitar shapes first, using my jig saw bench with a long blade, then cut the cavities, also with the jig saw, then glue them together.

The jig saw bench can also be used as a nibbler to get up close to marked lines, running the work at right angles to the blade. Easier than a file or sanding block.



Sounds good, thanks!
#10
Quote by ItsPoshJosh
Or buy a pre-routed one from Warmoth? (takes the fun away but ). I'd still be painting it and installing the electronics.


At Warmoth’s prices you might as well just buy your own router. You’re not starting a contracting business, so you can get buy with a $60 or $75 unit from Home Depot. And again, look for a tool library. The one in my city is $25 a year and a router would be $5 a day.
#12
Go for it.

I built three electrics that way, with the same tools you have. They remain my favourite guitars to this day - out of my collection of 14 - and I play them almost daily.

That includes the electronics cavity. Sharp hand tools can do the job just fine as long as you have the patience and basic skills.
#13
Quote by jpnyc
At Warmoth’s prices you might as well just buy your own router. You’re not starting a contracting business, so you can get buy with a $60 or $75 unit from Home Depot. And again, look for a tool library. The one in my city is $25 a year and a router would be $5 a day.


Sounds good, thanks. More input would be fine