I have a 17x6x5 box. My first build with a bunch of questions. Should the neck be set deeper in the box or the bridge moved toward the center. The strings, will they be too long if they are attached to the end of the box(cabinet hinge) or should they be fastened toward the center screwed into the neck! Soundholes, "f"holes or round, size, placement and number. I think it will have a mellow sound. It will have a fretted fretboard. Thanks for any help.

Views: 259

Replies to This Discussion

Will, you are asking some good questions, some of your questions are a function of personal preference.

since I’m new I will say that, for you to be happy, your guitar needs to be setup, with a scale in mind.  Meaning the distance between the nut and bridge, often 25” or 25.5”, in cbg’s.

Pit must be exciting to build your first Git, enjoy brother

If you can post a pick. 

Pic of big box I built, maybe help you.

Awesome build what are the box dimensions?




Banjo 26.5" scale

DeArmond vintage Mustache pup, 10K+ ohm.

Testarossa is a nasty girl!!


Gibson style tale piece and bridge. Bridge can be adjusted for height and each string for intonation. With the Mustache pup it is one of the best sounding axes in my studio.

There are multiple trade offs you have to balance...  

With a bigger box, you don’t want the bridge at the edge of the box as it reduces the number of playable frets on the neck.   At the same time, if you use a tailpiece at the end, if the bridge is too close to the middle of the box, your strings don’t have enough of a break angle (downward pressure on the bridge), and you end up with buzzing or low volume.

Personally, I like to put the bridge no further in than 1/3rd the box length,  the strings 2-3 inches back.. if the strings mount too close to the bridge, it can be a problem.

Some of these considerations are mitigated by the type of bridge.  Personally, I love a floating, banjo style bridge as you can set the intonation precisely.  I don’t care for the neck through design I generally make ‘neck to’ the end of the box design, then drill holes for string ferrules through the box...  (See my posted photos).

Take a look at the photo gallery, and see what others have done.   Lots of good folks here are happy to help, planning is the key to success, but don’t be too married to your plan as you discover problems, be ready to adapt,

Oh, make sure your fretboard is above the body.  A common mistake is not leaving yourself room to pick the strings as they are too close  to the lid.  This is fixed either  by raising the neck and fretboard, and/or angling the neck back a bit...


17” box   And a floating bridge, mentioned by John ( great Bridge)

John Sawyer's advice is very good. If you play sitting down especially, I think that approach sets you up for a comfortable playing position too. I have a similar sized box, intending to build it as a resonator with a layout pretty close to what he's describing.

Thank you everybody for the advice. I have an old pancake Turner that I'm thinking about using for a tailstock for the strings and finishing nails for frets. Also considering springs for reverb (acoustic) any thoughts?


The Essential Pages

New to Cigar Box Nation? How to Play Cigar Box GuitarsFree Plans & How to Build Cigar Box GuitarsCigar Box Guitar Building BasicsCigar Box Guitar Parts Store

Site Sponsor

Recommended Links & Resources

Discussion Forum

canjo building and tuning

Started by Brenda. Last reply by MadGomer on Sunday. 5 Replies

Minimum tools needed

Started by Wichita Sam. Last reply by Taffy Evans Nov 14. 21 Replies

High G problem

Started by Michael Myers. Last reply by Taffy Evans Nov 4. 4 Replies

Doubling the high string

Started by Robert Killen. Last reply by Paul Craig Oct 14. 23 Replies

Aluminum License Plate

Started by Larry Sobol. Last reply by Larry Sobol Oct 1. 6 Replies

C. B. Gifty three string fretless kits.

Started by jon neet. Last reply by Taffy Evans Aug 16. 6 Replies

Frettin' and stainin'

Started by Douglas Allen Laffin. Last reply by Order99 Aug 11. 4 Replies

Bolt on neck to a set neck body?

Started by Paul Craig. Last reply by Paul Craig Jul 17. 14 Replies


Started by Roy Smith. Last reply by the anonymous pick May 15. 2 Replies

Help please re Bento Box Uke "nut"

Started by Al Lobe. Last reply by BrianQ. May 11. 18 Replies

Clarification on pick ups

Started by Michael Myers. Last reply by Taffy Evans May 6. 5 Replies

Licence plate cbg

Started by Michael Myers. Last reply by Michael Myers May 2. 5 Replies

Builder's Tips

Started by Wichita Sam. Last reply by MadGomer Feb 23. 2 Replies

Tres Cubano Build

Started by Paul Craig. Last reply by Paul Craig Dec 9, 2021. 18 Replies

CB Gitty Country Roads Banjo kit

Started by Ken Hope. Last reply by Christopher G Daniels Nov 29, 2021. 4 Replies

Drawings or pictures on the box

Started by Martin. Last reply by Chad Taylor Oct 22, 2021. 6 Replies

Hard metal bridges

Started by Michael Myers. Last reply by Michael Fred Johnson Oct 22, 2021. 2 Replies

Getting the most sustain on a fretless CBG.

Started by Joe Plotts. Last reply by Taffy Evans Jun 30, 2021. 4 Replies

2nd Build Electronics Questions

Started by Steven Adler. Last reply by Steven Adler Apr 20, 2021. 4 Replies

Latest Activity

A.D.EKER commented on Lappy's video

“Leave It There” homemade resonator guitar

"Homemade Delight Lappy ! exelent !     Ton's of Work for Ton's of Joy !"
15 minutes ago
Keith Rearick liked bemuzic's video
2 hours ago
Keith Rearick liked Gary O'slide's video
2 hours ago
Keith Rearick liked Lappy's video
2 hours ago
Keith Rearick liked Chuck otto's photo
2 hours ago
Keith Rearick liked Uncle John's photo
2 hours ago
Keith Rearick liked Uncle John's photo
2 hours ago
John Applegate updated their profile
3 hours ago
Chuck otto liked Slowpaw Steve T's discussion CIGAR BOX NATION CHRISTMAS ALBUM 2022
3 hours ago
bemuzic posted a video

Busker Vs sound of Sainsbury’s shopping trollies! Winter Song - with 3 string Cigar Box Guitar

Busker Vs sound of Sainsbury’s shopping trollies!Winter Song - with 3 string Cigar Box Guitar and MacGyvered F# Irish whistleIt’s gone very chilly this week ...
5 hours ago
Engblom replied to Engblom's discussion Anyone with experience in 1-3-1 tuning?
"This sounds interesting, especially as it got the middle G string, which would fit my voice well if…"
9 hours ago
Chuck otto liked Uncle John's photo
9 hours ago


© 2022   Created by Ben "C. B. Gitty" Baker.   Powered by

Badges  |  Report an Issue  |  Terms of Service

\uastyle>\ud/** Scrollup **/\ud.scrollup {\ud background: url("https://storage.ning.com/topology/rest/1.0/file/get/963882636?profile=original") no-repeat scroll 0 0 transparent;\ud bottom: 25px;\ud display: inline !important;\ud height: 40px;\ud opacity: 0.3 !important;\ud position: fixed;\ud right: 30px;\ud text-indent: -9999px;\ud width: 40px;\ud z-index: 999;\ud}\ud.scrollup:hover {\ud opacity:0.99!important;\ud}\ud \uascript type="text/javascript">\ud x$(document).ready(function(){\ud x$(window).scroll(function(){\ud if (x$(this).scrollTop() > 100) {\ud x$('.scrollup').fadeIn();\ud } else {\ud x$('.scrollup').fadeOut();\ud }\ud });\ud x$('.scrollup').click(function(){\ud x$("html, body").animate({ scrollTop: 0 }, 600);\ud return false;\ud });\ud });\ud \ua!-- End Scroll Up -->