In my upcoming book, Poor Man's Guitar, I explore the building techniques and history behind many antique homemade guitars in my collection.  One very interesting instrument in the book is a syrup can guitar (circa. 1930's, Portland OR) that has copper wire frets. 

I never got to explore the frets in the book, so I've re-created them this week for Cigar Box Nation. In this example, I built a one-string cigar box guitar using barn wood for the neck and an antique cigar box for the body.

The first video shows all the materials needed and how to set up the frets.  Scroll down for the second video which features a full demo + a lesson on how to play one-string diddley bow like blues legend, Lonnie Pitchford.

Demo video of completed instrument: 

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Hey Shane, when twisting the wire, keep the twist kinda neat and about 3/8" long, then small drill hole adjacent to where the wire twist, needle nose pliers the twist into a "U' facing into the hole start it in the hole with the pliers and tap it in with the hammer, absolutely no sharp edges, and the hole is hardly even detectable.

Yub as I explained in the video on one of my latest builds:

And before using the copper wire it is advisable to straighten the wire by turning it (between a clamp and a drill) Here's the video of the build with the explanation on the wire fretting: Hope this explains a bit more.

Wire Coat-hangers if you've got them laying around and a set of good sturdy pliers (Dollar store specials aren't going to hold up) and strong wrists will give you this and a nice bronze color.

Steel wire frets: 

oh i like this. very nice

tie wire frets , much the same method as yours Shaneblood donor 002


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