Guitar Body Construction
Bending and purfling the frame
Synopsis: William “Grit” Laskin says making a guitar body is simple and straightforward, though it may seem like half woodworking and half magic. Here, he offers a brief look at how an instrumentmaker relates to the structural, visual, and eventually auditory beauty that is a guitar. He explains the most convenient way to bend guitar sides, patiently pressing the wood around a bending iron. He discusses frame assembly, tapering the sides, binding and purfling the decorative strips, and winding rope around the body to clamp during assembly. Side information by Wad4e Hampton Miller talks about using an electric blanket to bend wood.
A guitar body is a hollow box that epitomizes balance: The precise symmetry of the curves, the compromises between strength and lightness, the artful fitting of minimal glue joints; all these elements combine in what at first glance seems to be half woodworking and half magic. Yet,…