Mad respect for Shane. Many great tips that I have used. And I understand the goal of making and selling for income. Though I sometimes have two and possibly three projects going at a time, if I'm not careful, I risk building the same guitar over and over. For me, The less I make it a time the more original and one of a kind they turn out to be. Sort of like having kids one at a time instead of quintuplets. So I try to use different wood, sometimes drastically different boxes and shapes, headstock designs, varying amounts of strings, unique decorations, etc. I occasionally use templates but try to go free hand as much is possible. The risk is inconsistency. The reward is individuality. But different goals for different outcomes. All good.

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Comment by lawntrout guitars on November 14, 2016 at 3:31am

Since I'm in Michigan and my saws and sander are in the outside garage , I make a dozen or so necks while the weather is nice and then I have a stock to work through the winter. I always seem to run out in March and I'm out in the freezing garage cutting and sanding necks!

Comment by ChickenboneJohn on November 8, 2016 at 12:44am

Whether you batch build or go at it one at a time really depends on whether it's a hobby or a business. Either way, the knack is making sure you pay attention to what you are doing all the time, and taking care with each piece, irrespective of whether it's one guitar or fifty. You'll know when it's time to build in batches, demand for your instruments and the pressure to organise your time effectively will be the deciding factors. You still need to be creative: it runs through everything, from the aesthetics, through to organising your workflow, sourcing parts and selling the finished product.

Comment by Allen on November 5, 2016 at 5:22am

Reading all these comments is certainly inspiring . Just the diverse nature of the whole process speaks to what building CBG's is all about.This is not supposed to be assembly line work, it.s an ART FORM, it's SELF EXPRESSION. On that note, I have to say that everything I see is potential CBG decor. I spend a lot of time in the Salvation Army, Good Will, Flea markets and garage sales, this is part of the experience I enjoy, the hunt.I have got a nice collection of stuff . I have seven complete four in the works and about eight in planning, all shapes and sizes. HAVING A BALL. Happy building to all.

Comment by Fomhorach on November 4, 2016 at 4:15am

My builds are more of "wander over to the build and do something".

I honestly don't think ' this is what I should do next'.

My biggest thing is finishing the thing and starting another. When I'm in the middle of a build, no problems. It gathers speed and I take pleasure from guiding it to its conclusion. That bit in the middle (especially considering my fiscal position) just takes ages to gather momentum.

I believe that mass production kills the uniqueness of the instruments. Sorry if you do this it's just my opinion. There's also the fact that if I was building the same guitar over and over again(or even building the same guitar in a batch) I would be bored. It wouldn't seem like an adventure, it would have devolved into a job. That's just a no no to me. Where's the fun and excitement in evolving my skills if I know I can produce something x10?

I want to reach beyond my capabilities in every build I do because that's where the fun is for me.

Comment by Mark C on November 4, 2016 at 3:01am
I don't know that there is a wrong way to build CBGs. It's all a matter why you are doing it in the first place. I'm less worried about speed and output more about the process. Each of my builds is a story, and even though I might plan to sell one, it's more of an experience than a thing. So for me, fewer builds at a time makes the process better, richer. I was interviewed yesterday by a local paper and the reporter asked me what in my 59 years what would I offer as advice. I had only two words. "Have fun". Good thoughts and conversation.
Comment by John Sawyer on November 3, 2016 at 6:21pm

I rarely build the same box at a time, but at some level necks are necks.  I mostly use maple, and will process 10 scarf joints at once... saves a bunch of time.  Fretboards I buy from a flooring supplier in 1/4" pieces that are 8-10" wide, and 4-6' long.  THose get cut to size in bulk.   Then I will fret-slot 15-20 at a time, mark them all for inlay dots and drill.  

The necks later get engaged to a box, and then I'll mark and dado the necks,  shape them.  Fretboards get inlay, trimmed, and glued to the neck, then they all get sanded smooth.  The individuality then sets in and I work on 1-2 at a time... fretting, notching boxes, mounting, etc.   

Uke Fretboards...

To me the individuality comes in sound hole placement, making a floating bridge, and setting the intonation...

For as much building as Shane does, I'm surprised he cuts C-Notes and F-Notes... I find that takes a long time.  It is certainly beautiful, but scroll saw work is slow...

Comment by Mark C on November 3, 2016 at 8:29am

Thanks for the comments.

Comment by Rick Alexander on November 3, 2016 at 7:36am

I have the same philosophy. I also have a way of pacing myself so I take my time with certain parts of the build. I will sometimes start with a box, and get sound holes in it before I order parts or start the neck. I take my time with stuff like fretboards and soundholes when I don't have all the parts to finish the build, otherwise I won't stop working until it's got wet finish on it or it's done. I have pulled many an all nighter building these things.

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