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#1
alright ive decided to make a guitar, and ive got a questions: would two pieces of nice 1/2 inch plywood, glued together, make a good body? im trying to do this on a budget, so im trying to make do with what i have.
#2
Plywood Sucks!

EDIT: really. plywood is not a good material to build a decent guitar
#3
it would sound terrible... guitar bodies are a lot more important/complex than they are made out to be... i would recomend looking up tone woods and figure out witch one fits what you want to do... hope that helps some
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#5
i dont know this for sure
but most people thin agathis sucks for making guitars
but i never really understanded how wood afects the tone in a electric instrument beacause pickups capt the vibrations of the string not the sound
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#6
the sound resonates through the body the heavier the wood the more sustain ^
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#9
Quote by rancidryan
the sound resonates through the body the heavier the wood the more sustain ^


i know the sound will resonate in the body but does the pickups "pick" the sound of the wood? as far as i know they only "pick" the vibration of the strings
sorry for mym ignorance but i really want to understand about woods

also i read an article a a very well know luthier some time ago saying that a good construction is way more important than the wood used
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#11
i know the sound will resonate in the body but does the pickups "pick" the sound of the wood? as far as i know they only "pick" the vibration of the strings
sorry for mym ignorance but i really want to understand about woods

also i read an article a a very well know luthier some time ago saying that a good construction is way more important than the wood used[/QUOTE

the pickups get the vibration of the strings but the body changes the tone/ sustain of it if you use a light wood it was sound more rhythmy and vise versa
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#12
you would need 3--- 1/2inch pieces. it would sound deferent,not bad.if you brush wood hardner on it befor you paint it,that will help alot.i have done this myself and it
sounded good.
#13
alright thanks for the info. im still gonna use the plywood, cuz we have plenty of it so if i screw up cuttin it out or something, i could just start over. besides, this isnt going to be like a $2000 guitar, so its not so important as to what wood i use, as it is to make sure the damn thing works
after i get better at it, i might order some good body blanks and make some decent guitars.
#15
yea i know...i bought a cheap guitar over the internet and the neck is bending way out of wack on it
main reason why im buildin a guitar
#16
The wood isn't the most expensive part of a guitar. You're cutting the wrong corners.

In any case, this sounds like a bad idea. I'm going to assume you don't have the proper tools for this...and if you're considering plywood, that you don't have the money for all the hardware you need for a guitar, either, or the electronics. Or the materials needed to properly finish a guitar.

I wouldn't try this. Save up, buy a decent guitar. Used MIM Fender Strats go for around 350 dollars. Great guitars.

You'll easily spend that on this project - don't make a mistake here, buy a nice playable guitar.
#17
Quote by swanson93
alright ive decided to make a guitar, and ive got a questions: would two pieces of nice 1/2 inch plywood, glued together, make a good body? im trying to do this on a budget, so im trying to make do with what i have.


it may not have the tone of a nice solid mahogany block but it never did danelectro any harm. most of the tone comes from the strings and pickups anyway. i say go for it. even if it doesnt work out its still good practice.
Thank you please.
#18
Quote by forsaknazrael
The wood isn't the most expensive part of a guitar. You're cutting the wrong corners.

In any case, this sounds like a bad idea. I'm going to assume you don't have the proper tools for this...and if you're considering plywood, that you don't have the money for all the hardware you need for a guitar, either, or the electronics. Or the materials needed to properly finish a guitar.


its not that i dont have the tools or the money to make a guitar, its the fact that there isnt any guitar shops nearby that sell what i need. to go get the pickups, necks, pots, etc. etc. i would need to drive nearly 2 and half hours. and i really dont trust online purchasing, due to what happened to first guitar i bought over the internet. so the more i can make at home without needing to order, the better. its not a problem of money or skill, its more of a problem of availability.

EDIT: also, i dont want to spend a good chunk of money on nice necks and bodies and stuff, in case i mess up on it. this is my first guitar...i know im going to screw up somewhere on it.
Last edited by swanson93 at May 20, 2008,
#19
Quote by WattsyBoy97
yea if your on a budget its gonna be pretty high probably 400-600 dollars


Phail! You can build on a budget for like $250 dollars!


edit: You'll have a ****ty guitar.... but you can do it.


Yeah if you're on a budget so tight you want to use plywood, don't build a guitar!
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#21
^ this man speaks the truth.

You sound like a friend of mine... he doesn't trust online stores and wants me to get all kinds of stuff for him on my credit card... uhm no hahaha.

So what happened with your first guitar? If you buy from a reputable place... not much can go wrong. If there is a record of the purchase, and your shipping is ensured... you win.
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#22
my first guitar didnt have a truss rod, so its neck started to bend, then it snapped. i did go to a store and buy one that so far has worked out pretty well for me.

i have found one website that seems reliable:http://stewmac.com/

has anyone bought from this site, and if so, are their products good quality?
#24
Stewmac is fine, you can also use: Warmoth and/or Allparts.
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#25
You pick the strings to start the vibration and the pickup converts that to a signal. but after the initial pick, the body of the guitar starts vibrating with it, further vibrating the string. The amount that the body vibrates affects sustain, and the way it vibrates affects the tone. In all honesty, the type of wood is mostly preference, but...stay away from plywood for guitar bodies.

Think of it this way, if your building a guitar, a lot of time is going into it, far more time than money. If your gonna build it, build it right.
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#26
Stewmac.com is a VERY good website. In my opinion it is the best place online to buy guitar building supplies. The quality of their parts is good their customer service is good and the website is amazing. Warmoth and Allparts never seemed as appealing to which is why I've never ordered from them. You can get anything and everything you'll need for your guitarbuilding from Stewmac.
#27
a neck made from plywood would snap im quite sure of this
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#28
Quote by swanson93
my first guitar didnt have a truss rod, so its neck started to bend, then it snapped. i did go to a store and buy one that so far has worked out pretty well for me.

i have found one website that seems reliable:http://stewmac.com/

has anyone bought from this site, and if so, are their products good quality?


Yep that's what happens when you spend $10 on a guitar.

Stewmac are rather good. The "golden age" pickups are supposed to be amazing value for money.
EH


"Show me war; show me pestilence; show me the blood-red hands of retribution..."
#29
Okay okay okay!

While I think people look too deeply into woods, and I don't think the wood makes THAT much of a difference in your sound, even I wouldn't build with plywood.

It's just....an icky wood that should be left to decks and house building.

*sigh

If you're so afraid of screwing up...may I suggest that you PRACTICE buliding the body and neck out of the plywood, THEN once you've got your bearings and are confident, order the nicer 'guitar' woods and complete your guitar. Find a lumber yard if you can, locally, much cheaper to buy from them than online.

That's the better route to go. IMO.

Your attempt to achieve a better guitar by building out of cheap products is advancing you in the same direction as that cheap guitar you said you bought on the internet.

Ironic.

Anywho, good luck with whatever you decide to do.

Cheers!
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#30
Quote by RazzRocket

It's just....an icky wood that should be left to decks and house building.


i would just like to point out that it isn't a particular species of wood. Everyone always seems to suggest it is. Just a way of making it. It's also useful for building speaker cabinets. The lack of resonance can lend itself very well to bass speaker cabinet building.
EH


"Show me war; show me pestilence; show me the blood-red hands of retribution..."
#31
^

I realize its not a particular species of wood. My refering to it as a single type is merely out of habit.

As for my statment on how it should be left to decks and houses, examples. I'm well aware its used for more, my grandfather is a carpenter. There are alot of useful things in the guitar world made out of plywood, guitar not one of them.

Cheers!
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#32
Quote by RazzRocket
Okay okay okay!
If you're so afraid of screwing up...may I suggest that you PRACTICE buliding the body and neck out of the plywood, THEN once you've got your bearings and are confident, order the nicer 'guitar' woods and complete your guitar. Find a lumber yard if you can, locally, much cheaper to buy from them than online.

That's the better route to go. IMO.


thats a better idea, actually. thanks

Quote by eddiehimself
Yep that's what happens when you spend $10 on a guitar.


stupid thing was $110...biggest waste of money ever. really pissed me off.
come to think of it, i still have the body to that guitar...i could take off the pickups etc to that. the guitar was a single peice, so when the neck snapped, it damaged the body. but everything else on it still works fine, i think.

Problem solved for some parts, just need a neck now
#33
Quote by litus
i know the sound will resonate in the body but does the pickups "pick" the sound of the wood? as far as i know they only "pick" the vibration of the strings
sorry for mym ignorance but i really want to understand about woods

also i read an article a a very well know luthier some time ago saying that a good construction is way more important than the wood used


the body wood changes the way in which the strings vibrate making them sound different
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#34
Quote by litus

also i read an article a a very well know luthier some time ago saying that a good construction is way more important than the wood used


that is very true. To demonstrate this, martin guitars built a guitar out of the pallets that the forklifts used to transport the boxes containing their usual woods around. Apparently it sounded pretty good. They put an inlay of a forklift truck on it.
EH


"Show me war; show me pestilence; show me the blood-red hands of retribution..."
#36
Quote by shinhoman
the body wood changes the way in which the strings vibrate making them sound different


Wrong.

the body RESONATES differently, depending on the density of the wood. the wood has no effect on the string vibration pattern, unless you can somehow magnetize wood.

pickups, on the other hand, can. hence, the fernandez sustainer.
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#37
Beck and the Rolling Stones used Sears Silvertone guitars that are made mainly from masonite and Dano made bodies mostly from plywood and vintage guitars from both brands are incredibly desirable now. The main reason being - the necks are beautiful to play and were the most expensive part to make on the guitars. So in short, get a good neck and you should be good to go no matter what the body is made from. Just my two cents, so don't flame me.
#38
Please dont use ply wood for the final guitar, a luthier somewhere will die.

I'm sure you can find wood dry enough in your local area, even online woods not that expensive in America.




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#39
my guitar teacher built a V out of plywood. it sounds decent, not as good as his 60's strat, but it was playable in a live scenario.
#40
im buildin a guitar this summer for $240. its all mahogany with a rosewood fretboard. do NOT cut corners on wood.....guitarfetish.com sells EVERYTHING dirt cheap. except body/neck wood. and its not like its THAT bad, the hardware is actually decent, the pickups may not be the best, but everythings fine other than that.
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