Welcome to Cigar Box Nation! A letter from C. B. Gitty...

If this is your first time visiting Cigar Box Nation, you may be a little overwhelmed by the great amount of information in here.  Let me give you the nickel tour...

Building a Cigar Box Guitar

We have a variety of cigar box instrument plans that are free for you to download.  Some are new and others are more than 100 years old.  If you're new to woodworking or are looking to start with something simple, I suggest the following:

How to Build a 3-String Cigar Box Guitar  -  This new 8-page set of plans walks you through building a simple but fully playable 3-string cigar box guitar from scratch. These present well-illustrated, up-to-date how-to info in an easy to understand method that will enable young and old to build their first cigar box guitar with minimal effort.

If you want something more challenging, then dive head-first into our vast selection of instrument plans!

You will probably have some questions along the way.  That's what makes Cigar Box Nation so great!  We have forums, discussions and even a live chat room on the front page just waiting for your questions. 

How to Play a Cigar Box Guitar

We have lessons in Video, TAB and other formats for every level of player.  You can see them all here.

Where do I get the parts needed to make a cigar box guitar?

Cigar Box Nation is run by C. B. Gitty, the cigar box guitar superstore.  We have kits, parts and great building ideas just waiting for you.  Visit us at www.CBGitty.com.

Join the Community!

Now that you have the basics, I encourage you to create your own Cigar Box Nation profile and really dig in to all the conversations and photos. 

Thank you for visiting Cigar Box Nation. 

Ben "C. B. Gitty" Baker 

(visit my own Cigar Box Nation profile here!)

P. S.  If you want to know more about this whole Cigar Box Guitar movement, check out the Cigar Box Guitar Manifesto.

 

Comment

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Join Cigar Box Nation

Comment by William Janelle on October 4, 2022 at 5:20pm

I've just finished this cbg. Great box, a Don Carlos anniversary addition.

Comment by BrianQ. on September 22, 2022 at 8:46pm

I send this to all new members, so they know?

Comment by Taffy Evans on September 22, 2022 at 6:44pm

Hi, I just came across this welcoming page, good stuff.

I was looking for information, permanently posted, on the forum about the cliches that will be encountered by new members, and thought this would be the place to find it.

But sadly no.

I thought that a welcome email could be generated that automatically sends how NOT to post. Something like: Welcome DO NOT USE VISUAL MODE.

Just a thought. There's probably a technical reason against that which I do not understand.
Cheers Taff

Comment by BrianQ. on August 17, 2022 at 10:54am

Hey Clement, don’t worry about the youth, we’re all old here  :)

Comment by Clement Firks Bentley on August 17, 2022 at 8:29am

Hi all going to see where I end up I want an old school look go with my face looking to use resourced parts 2nd hand shop’s charity shops something goes back into society made, flutes play the harp looking forward to the build you guys have made some beautiful tidy players will take longer than the younger crew health dictate’s my pace, glad to be here from old Jersey Channel Islands.

Comment by Doug Sherman on February 18, 2022 at 10:08pm
Howdy from concrete wa! Starting to learn more about. Cbgs. I have 2 3 string ones I've built and a country roads tenor banjo I built from c.b.gitty. I tuned the banjo to irish tenor tuning gdae.very fun to play! Will post picks soon thanks Doug
Comment by BrianQ. on January 24, 2022 at 11:59am

There are 2 links to instrument plans on this page? One in the second paragraph & another in the third paragraph? Also you can use the “Search” function at the very top of the page?

Comment by Anthony adams on January 24, 2022 at 9:54am

I am looking for plans to make a dulcimer. How do I find the plans?

Comment by Rope Walker Country Star on September 4, 2021 at 6:36pm

Heck, Devon, I think it’s spectacular that you’re at a festival last week and this week you’re all in! Good on ya! Hope you have a blast buildin’ and learnin’ and playin’ and tweakin’.

Comment by Greg Geracioti on September 4, 2021 at 6:23pm

The scale is the distance from the nut to the bridge. Which kit did you buy? It may have the scale in the description or instructions.

Comment by Devon on September 4, 2021 at 5:38pm

Greg, what do you mean by scale? This is the first stringed instrument I've ever fooled with let alone built. I'm still learning the jargon. 

Comment by Devon on September 4, 2021 at 5:37pm

Greg, what do you mean by scale? This is the first stringed instrument I've ever fooled with let alone built. I'm still learning the jargon. 

Comment by Greg Geracioti on September 4, 2021 at 5:01pm

Determine the scale length then measure from the nut. For example, if your scale lenght is 24” then you measure from the nut 24” down and that’s where your bridge goes.

You may have to tweak to get the right sound. My first build is off, but I messed around until I got the right sound. I use the fret markers as a guide since there not accurate.

Comment by Devon on September 4, 2021 at 4:43pm

Got the kit and my very first guitar box guitar is almost all together! I'm missing the ribbed nut that goes at the top of the neck. Not too worried about that. I can rummage around in the barn for something that might work.

What worries me is WHERE DO I PUT THE BRIDGE? There's supposed to be a line. But I just stained everything and I can't find any line. 

Any advice???

Comment by Tim Pannabecker on September 3, 2021 at 10:46am


Samantha Fish is my Fav

Comment by Devon on September 3, 2021 at 10:44am

So I've only ever been to one CBG festival & I noticed a thing. Of all the acts, there was only ONE female guitarist. 

Where are all the ladies?

Comment by Chuck Bouwens on September 2, 2021 at 5:01pm

Hey Devon, I wish I had started building CBG's when I was 54. Maybe my fingers would be limber enough to learn to play. I'm 71 ( 72 next month ) I started building about 2 years ago as a hobby to keep me busy in my retirement. I've built over 50 instruments including two CBG amps, four ukulele's, and two 6 string cigar box guitars. The rest are all 3 string. I've given half away to my kids and grandkids. That reminds me I've also built some 1 string canjo's for the little kids. They love to pluck the string. Almost forgot, I also built a lap steel guitar. 

Comment by Tim Pannabecker on September 2, 2021 at 12:01pm

Devon,

A three string GDg tuned guitar has three less strings, you will do fine. There are many instructional videos from Shane Spiel and many others. This site has everything you will need and the people here are amazing. They are very kind and patient. We love the instrument, the unique sound it makes, the history and this community. I have been treated very well here, I’m sure you will too.

Tim

Comment by Devon on September 2, 2021 at 9:50am

Hiya! I'm new in this neck of the woods. I haven't built one yet. Still waiting for the kit to come in the mail. ( maybe tomorrow)

I'm starting to think I bit off more than I can chew. I'm 54 and NEVER played any stringed instrument before. I've got a lot to learn. So be patient with me. 

Comment by Devon on September 2, 2021 at 9:49am

Hiya! I'm new in this neck of the woods. I haven't built one yet. Still waiting for the kit to come in the mail. ( maybe tomorrow)

I'm starting to think I bit off more than I can chew. I'm 54 and NEVER played any stringed instrument before. I've got a lot to learn. So be patient with me. 

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

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