Page 1 of 2
EDIT: I MADE MODIFICATIONS. NOW THIS METHOD OF MAKING TEMPLATES THAT WORKS FOR EVERYONE

Lots of people pay for guitar plans and templates but i make them for free. I'm going to show you how i make them.

Get a GOOD photo from the front (not angled) of the guitar. The picture must show some frets. The picture must be big so that you can enlarge it and it doesnt get blury.

In this case this is a charvel star. I got a great picture. Its big and it shows the front well and not in angle. Open the picture with Microsoft picture manager or other image program. Put the zoom on 100%.

Then go to stewmac's website and go to the frett calculator.

Print the image. You just need to print part of the fretboard. The body doesn't matter yet. Next measure the distance between 2 frets of your choise. In my case i chosed the 9th and the 22nd.

Next calculate the zoom.

99.93mm (distance from the frets you chosed on the printed fretboard) is to 100% zoom then 199.38mm (distance from the frets you chosed from a real size guitar seen on stewmac's fret calculator) is to X. X=100x199.38/99.93=199.24 that is 199 because you cant enter numbers with coma on the image program.
Enter 199 (on my case).

Now the body is fullsize. Open the body image with paint and erase some of the black so that the print is more economic.
EDIT: I recomend you to print the body using the program paint.
After you printed all the papers, cut the white parts using a ruller and a xacto knife. Use the ruller to guide the xacto knife while cuting. Next glue the parts on a card paper.

Cut the straight lines using a ruller and xacto knife.

Now you have a perfect real size template. I don't recoment using this method to know where the bridge is because it isnt accurate enough.
Last edited by superbadboy2 at Jul 8, 2008,
Very clever indeed....

I've been trying to measure guitar dimensions from pictures in magazines...I could only do flying V's, cos they're mainly straight lines...strats were hard.
I also made a strat template some time ago. Just cut using scisors. ZZounds has great big frontal pictures from strats.
wow, that's very interesting and will definitely come in handy. thank you for this.
A man said to the universe:
"Sir, I exist!"
"However," replied the universe,
"The fact has not created in me
A sense of obligation."

calculating the zoom and the entire thing about measuring the frets and the scale thing
u put like 625 for scale in the site?
oh mm.. but i still dont get the measuring part and calculating
when i tried to print it, it didnt come out on several pieces of paper like in the example you gave, even though i put in the zoom level i needed....
maybe you printed using a program that resized the image to on one paper. I used paint to print.

yeah thats probably it.
i used the photo manager to try to print it.
I also failed the first atempt. The image got bigger than what i wanted but then i used paint and it worked.
Ok. First let me say, that is a genius way to make templates. But The one thing I dont understand is on the calculating the zoom or scale. When you say;
99.93mm is to 100% zoom then 199.38mm is to X. X=100x199.38/99.93=199.24

I understand what you are doing here, but I dont understand where the "199.38mm" is coming from. Can you explain this further?
Also, if you have a more advanced image editing program, you can just print out the outline of the body shape and where everything goes, which will save you a LOT of ink. After sending it to Paint, of course
Then there's this band called Slice The Cake...

Bunch of faggots putting random riffs together and calling it "progressive" deathcore.
Stupid name.
Probably picked "for teh lulz"

Mod in UG's Official Gain Whores
Quote by LuthierofTexas
Ok. First let me say, that is a genius way to make templates. But The one thing I dont understand is on the calculating the zoom or scale. When you say;

I understand what you are doing here, but I dont understand where the "199.38mm" is coming from. Can you explain this further?

i think the 199.38mm is the distance on the actual fret board, where the 99.xx mm was the distance on the computer screen at 100% zoom. so the formula figures out what zoom on the image program you need to put in to get an actual size image.

correct me if im wrong, but thats how i took it
could you make a design from scratch using this? I mean I've had a shape in mind that resembles a strat, could I use a strat and make the appropriate changes?
in theory you could, if your drawing is to scale, then you figure out the spacing between frets then use that to size the image. also i imagine you could use the width of the neck at the bottom and do it that way. anything you know the size of you can use to rescale your drawing.
Clever. The logic is good, but the execution is unfortunately flawed. You're close, but you simply cannot do this :

A lot of people have trouble understanding this. The size of what you see on a computer screen (any computer screen) doesn't mean anything, not the way you measured it. There's no relation between the size of an image as displayed on a screen, and the size that it'll be printed at.

[Edited to add : try it! print the image of that guitar at 100%, and put the sheet over your screen. It won't match]

What matters is the number of dots (or pixels) between the frets you measured, and how many of those dots per inch you need to print to have it on paper at full scale. This is called dots per inch, or DPI.

Most image manipulation/viewer programs have a selection tool, that allows you to draw a rectangle, and the dimensions in pixels are displayed somewhere in a toolbar or status bar. For the guitar above, draw a rectangle between the 9th and 22nd frets (put that caliper away, you don't need it!), and see what the dimensions of that rectangle are. It should be in pixels. Say you get 270 pixels between the frets, and the actual measurement form the Stewmac calculator is, say 7.155 inches.

270 pixels divided by 7.155" = 37.74 DPI, so you would print the image at 38 DPI to get your print to scale.
Last edited by Joel Rainville at Jul 6, 2008,
^or print the image first and then measure the printout with a ruler
Quote by Joel Rainville
Clever. The logic is good, but the execution is unfortunately flawed. You're close, but you simply cannot do this :

A lot of people have trouble understanding this. The size of what you see on a computer screen (any computer screen) doesn't mean anything, not the way you measured it. There's no relation between the size of an image as displayed on a screen, and the size that it'll be printed at.

[Edited to add : try it! print the image of that guitar at 100%, and put the sheet over your screen. It won't match]

What matters is the number of dots (or pixels) between the frets you measured, and how many of those dots per inch you need to print to have it on paper at full scale. This is called dots per inch, or DPI.

Most image manipulation/viewer programs have a selection tool, that allows you to draw a rectangle, and the dimensions in pixels are displayed somewhere in a toolbar or status bar. For the guitar above, draw a rectangle between the 9th and 22nd frets (put that caliper away, you don't need it!), and see what the dimensions of that rectangle are. It should be in pixels. Say you get 270 pixels between the frets, and the actual measurement form the Stewmac calculator is, say 7.155 inches.

270 pixels divided by 7.155" = 37.74 DPI, so you would print the image at 38 DPI to get your print to scale.

good point. you'd have to measure from the program, or that DPI conversion.
Quote by Joel Rainville
Clever. The logic is good, but the execution is unfortunately flawed. You're close, but you simply cannot do this :

A lot of people have trouble understanding this. The size of what you see on a computer screen (any computer screen) doesn't mean anything, not the way you measured it. There's no relation between the size of an image as displayed on a screen, and the size that it'll be printed at.

[Edited to add : try it! print the image of that guitar at 100%, and put the sheet over your screen. It won't match]

What matters is the number of dots (or pixels) between the frets you measured, and how many of those dots per inch you need to print to have it on paper at full scale. This is called dots per inch, or DPI.

Most image manipulation/viewer programs have a selection tool, that allows you to draw a rectangle, and the dimensions in pixels are displayed somewhere in a toolbar or status bar. For the guitar above, draw a rectangle between the 9th and 22nd frets (put that caliper away, you don't need it!), and see what the dimensions of that rectangle are. It should be in pixels. Say you get 270 pixels between the frets, and the actual measurement form the Stewmac calculator is, say 7.155 inches.

270 pixels divided by 7.155" = 37.74 DPI, so you would print the image at 38 DPI to get your print to scale.

I can use the caliper on the screen because the image is on real size (zoom 100%).

With this method you can have everything from cars to guitars to people. Just let your imagination run wild...
^ i'd like to clone charlize theron. k thnx.

Timpson Guitars and TDM Pickups rock ;D

I make guitars and pickups. I also make sh*t that'll blow you the f*k up as well as things that will rebuild you - I have the technology
^Just find a big picture

Quote by 6-string-yay
oh mm.. but i still dont get the measuring part and calculating

Its a basic maths proportion. You know that the frets distance (measured on the screen) is to 100% zoom then you know the distance from those frets from the guitar on real size. You just need to calculate the zoom.
Last edited by superbadboy2 at Jul 7, 2008,
Quote by LuthierofTexas
Ok. First let me say, that is a genius way to make templates. But The one thing I dont understand is on the calculating the zoom or scale. When you say;

I understand what you are doing here, but I dont understand where the "199.38mm" is coming from. Can you explain this further?

199.38 is the distance from the frets on a real size 25''(635mm) scale guitar. That distance is from the 9th fret to the 22nd fret i think and i got that distance from stewmac's fret calculator.
dude where do you live? i reeli want a full size cutout of a telecaster but i cant get to grips with your thing, no doubt i understand it in concept but i can get it to work
do what jimbleton said

^ i did something good!!

Quote by tjhome28
This.

^ to something i said!

☭UG Socialist Party ☭
199.38 is the distance from the frets on a real size 25''(635mm) scale guitar. That distance is from the 9th fret to the 22nd fret i think and i got that distance from stewmac's fret calculator.

Beautiful. Thanks for that explanation. You sir are a genius!
I usually use a projector at work and a big piece of paper. same measurement method, though.

Timpson Guitars and TDM Pickups rock ;D

I make guitars and pickups. I also make sh*t that'll blow you the f*k up as well as things that will rebuild you - I have the technology
I can use the caliper on the screen because the image is on real size (zoom 100%).

Again :

A lot of people have trouble understanding this. The size of what you see on a computer screen (any computer screen) doesn't mean anything, not the way you measured it. There's no relation between the size of an image as displayed on a screen, and the size that it'll be printed at.

The 100% zoom doesn't mean the item displayed is at its true to life size, it only means 100% of the pixels in that image are displayed, i.e. the image isn't scaled up or down.

In your example above, it happens to almost work (your frets don't exactly line up, near your index finger... if you printed the whole fingerboard, you'd probably be off 1/4" to 3/8") because your screen resolution just happens to be close to your printer's resolution.

To sum it up, it's gonna work pretty good on your computer, but others will not get satisfying results, especially those with older CRT monitors, running at different resolutions...
Really good method, but I was just wondering where you get the pics?
I cant find any pics that big...
BTW, Im looking for a Jackson Kelly...
Quote by Joel Rainville
Again :

A lot of people have trouble understanding this. The size of what you see on a computer screen (any computer screen) doesn't mean anything, not the way you measured it. There's no relation between the size of an image as displayed on a screen, and the size that it'll be printed at.

The 100% zoom doesn't mean the item displayed is at its true to life size, it only means 100% of the pixels in that image are displayed, i.e. the image isn't scaled up or down.

In your example above, it happens to almost work (your frets don't exactly line up, near your index finger... if you printed the whole fingerboard, you'd probably be off 1/4" to 3/8") because your screen resolution just happens to be close to your printer's resolution.

To sum it up, it's gonna work pretty good on your computer, but others will not get satisfying results, especially those with older CRT monitors, running at different resolutions...

As i said this method is not good to know where frets are or where is the bridge. It is not that perfect because small measuring errors can happen when measuring the screen because frets are large. (they are not clear thin lines so the distance varies a bit) Another small error happened when i rounded the number 199.24 to 199 to put on zoom because i can't put numbers with comas. Do you understand? This erros are irrelevant. The body will be on the same proportion as the neck. You have a point when you say that my screen resolution is the same as my printer resolution. This might not happen with other screens.

EDIT: You can see on this picture that the screen size is the same as real size. Im puting a paper above the "paper" on the screen and they match exactly. The zoom is on 100% and the program is Microsoft Word.

If you have a CRT monitor (not flat) it might be better to print just some of the fretboard and measure the distance.
Last edited by superbadboy2 at Jul 7, 2008,
It is not that perfect because small measuring errors can happen when measuring the screen because frets are large. (they are not clear thin lines so the distance varies a bit) Another small error happened when i rounded the number 199.24 to 199 to put on zoom because i can't put numbers with comas. This erros are irrelevant.

Provided you do your best to measure from center to center of the frets' width, you're right, these "errors" are irrelevant. It's when you scale up the image and print it that you are in error.

The body will be on the same proportion as the neck.

No it won't, unless the word "proportion" means something else to you than it does to me. The body will only be proportional to the neck on your screen, not the actual neck that you're gonna build or buy, whose measurements aren't based off the scaling you did with the image, but actual hard, fixed numbers.

You have a point when you say that my screen resolution is the same as my printer resolution. This might not happen with other screens.

I said it was close. But not close enough to use your method instead of properly calculating DPI, which isn't any harder than your method, and provides a much more accurate body shape and size.

Computer screens show images anywhere between 66 to 101 DPI. I had to look this up here http://www.scantips.com/no72dpi.html#1. I didn't know that 5 minutes ago. When you are printing an image you downloaded off the web or took with your digital camera, it's usually at 72 DPI, unless you or your software change that. So the size of what you print (72 DPI) is close to the *apparent* size on the screen (66 to 101 DPI), but it's not a reliable way to print images to life size.
Im puting a paper above the "paper" on the screen and they match exactly. The zoom is on 100% and the program is Microsoft Word.

No they don't. Close, but not exactly. But even if they did, it would only be true on *your* screen. the program you are using doesn't matter at all...

If you have a CRT monitor (not flat) it might be better to print just some of the fretboard and measure the distance.

Print & measure, which is what Fuzzycows suggested above, is a very accurate way of getting it right, no matter the kind of screen you have. Even *you* would get better results.

I was hoping I could convince you to *never* ever put a caliper or any measuring device up to your screen to measure something up, but I think I failed at that so far, and I can't stay in front of the screen all day! Feel free to PM me if you need more calrification.
Ha! There, you just provided me with the ultimate argument. I can't convince you, because your screen is displaying images very close to 72 DPI, but everyone else reading this, try it :

- Open up Microsoft Word. You should be looking at a blank page right now.

- Set the zoom at 100% so that the "paper" is shown at its "real size" ( )

- Take a piece of paper from your printer and bring it up to your screen.

Is the piece of paper you're holding the same width as the one on the screen?

On my screen, the piece of paper I'm holding is a whole 3/8" wider than what is displayed on my screen. this means that if I used the method described in the first post, my body templates would be too wide once printed on paper by as much as 1/2", maybe a bit more.

It's not that bad actually, especially for crazier or lesser known shapes that we don't see everyday. But a Strat, Tele or Les Paul off by as much as 1/2" would be very noticeable to a trained eye (that includes 99% of us on this forum).

Last edited by Joel Rainville at Jul 7, 2008,
Quote by nuthinbuttrubl8
I usually use a projector at work and a big piece of paper. same measurement method, though.

That is sheer genius.
Look. What does it matter about the size of the monitor, or what program someone is using? The idea is to use it as a template for making a rough design of the body outline. Anyone who uses a picture off the internet to figure out where hardware and such go is an idiot to being with and doesnt really need to be building a guitar. With bodies as common as Strats and Les Pauls, as long as the builder knows that the width at the widest parts are around 13" and the overall length of the body is around 14" then thats all they need.

He said in the title that its a thread about making templates. Body templates are not meant to be exact replicas but more like a guide line. So stop bitching and whining.
We are not bitching and whining. We are just discussing that measuring the monitor doesnt work for everybody.