Just in time to ring in the New Year, the mermaid banjo was strung and ready to play.
The all-wood rim produces a warm, yet crisp sound with lots of depth.
She’s surprisingly resonant, with just the balance of tone with percussion we’d hoped for. Bluegrass banjos, with their hard resonators and snare-drum-tight heads, tend to be brash and sharp; old-time banjos tend to err in the opposite direction, with large pots and loose heads to create a sound that’s more thump than tone. Amber had chosen this pot in the hopes of a goldilocks-like compromise between the two that would suit her light, melodic clawhammer style. Continue Reading →
Grand concert no 3 went to a very good home.
I’m delighted to say that grand concert no 3 has gone to wonderful home.
The very best thing about building guitars is making good guitar/player matches, and I think this player has found a lifelong friend in this guitar. He wrote me a few days after he picked up the guitar, asking, “What’s the opposite of buyer’s remorse?” The answer is the grin on this guitar builder’s face, of course!
While working on a repair a couple of weeks ago that required some hand planing, I realized that I couldn’t stand using my overlarge, rickety bench for another day. Maybe not even another hour. I’d been planning to replace my workbench with something better suited to how I work now, and the urge was suddenly implacable. So I tore it down and threw myself into finishing the new bench.
I tried to make most of the chance to re-imagine my workspace. A stout top and new storage topped the list.
It sounds strange to complain your bench is too large, but it dominated my small shop space, and it was large enough that there were areas I never worked on. Those areas accumulated a jumble of offcuts, often-used tools, and bending forms. And then, when I did need a guitar-sized space to work, there wasn’t one. Continue Reading →