MARTHA’S GUITARS

handcrafted ~ recycled ~ different

  • 2016/12/14

    As you may remember, the main wood that I chose was pine. While the body blank is already glued I decided to make a switch. Recently I aquired a pile of very old and very well preserved spruce. The thickness of the planks is nearly perfect for solid body so while the width of each of them is about half of what I need, the body will be glued out of two pieces. That's different from the pine one because that one was glued out of four pieces. The spruce is reclaimed. We're - and it will take a few months more - doing a major makover of our flat and we had to cut some holes (for doors) in

  • 2016/11/14

    Last time I published a photo of a soon-to-be neck of my diy guitar it looked more like a twisted shovel rather than a proper neck. A few days later and some hours more with my trusty rasp file, a lot has changed. There's not much to write about this time. Currently the neck already has a shape that you would expect from it and the headstock is nearly done. The idea was to make a nice, "sculpted" two-sided (3+3) headstock but due to the size of a maple blank that I ordered I had to review my goal. After all, I decided to go for a Fender-ish shape and I must say I'm pretty pleased with how it came

  • 2016/11/8

    As I said previously, I didn't have any wood for the neck of my diy guitar. Finally it arrived so I started working on the neck. The first attempt went surprisingly well. I ordered two solid blocks of maple. They arrived pretty fast and turned out to be in much better condition than I expected. One block is over a meter long and quite thick so I already made some plans, measured it and marked so I could cut out two solid necks from it. This is for later though - the next build or just in case anything went wrong with this one. The second block was a little over 70 centimeters long, around 75 milimeters wide and 30

  • 2016/11/3

    Wood's certainly not everything. For any electric guitar some additional parts are needed so I finally went shopping :) "Went shopping" is obviously an exaggeration because I bought everything online but to my surprise - searching for the parts was much more fun than I expected. There's more to be bought but some basic stuff is already here. So far I got Wilkinson P90 pickups (which I'll write about in a separate post), 500k pots for volume and tone, a Gibson-style three way switch with a nice ivory-colored switch plate, some wires and self-adhesive copper tape for pickups' and electronics' cavity shielding and those famous 0,022µF Orange Drops (Orange capacitors). Not that Orange Caps are better than regular ones. They

  • 2016/10/25

    They say "measure twice, cut once". I should have known that but was too excited, I think. All in all, the first "body blank" didn't work. The second one is on it's way though. Luckily, I have enough wood not only to start over (except material for neck but it's already ordered and should be delivered soon) but to build a few more bodies. That's a good part. Even better is that due to the failed first attempt I had to use another piece of wood that's a bit thicker than previously planned. The guitar body will still be rather thin, most likely around 5-8 milimeters thinner than standard Telecaster body but the piece I used now looks much more

  • DIY electric guitar. Build Diary [Martha - "Pinecaster(ish) build"]
    2016/10/17

    Enough dreaming. Time to go from words to deeds :) Knowing (and only I know that) how many years it took me to really make that first and most important step, I'm more than happy to announce that I finally started. First cuts has been made! Recently I apologized myself for the delay and not starting when I was going to start. However, a full bottle of glue is already here. A brand new jigsaw, some nice rasp files, a bunch of clamps of different sizes, a good'ol hand sanding block and a good supply of a sanding paper (40-320 grit so far) are here as well. What you see at the pictures is the wood that I was talking

  • 2016/09/20

    The pine wood is not really considered a „tone wood”. It's been said many times that it's not hard and dense enough to be used for guitar bodies. Yet, „Martha” will be made mostly out of pine. Read on… There's a common belief that the body of an electric guitar should be made of so called „hard wood” and it's mostly due to the resonance and stability. While the latter is indeed important the former is partially a myth. Why? Because most of the tone does not come from wood (as opposite to acoustic and classic guitars) but from pickups. Electric guitar pickup doesn't work by picking up the vibrations of the guitar body but by transferring changes in an

  • 2016/09/19

    The headstock turned out to be the most difficult part to design. Finally though, here it is. But wait, is it a headstock or a head? While I imagined body shape of my guitar a long time ago, I was not able to come up with any headstock design that would satisfy me. I tried different options and even though a few times I was close to say "hey, that's it", something was holding me in place. Apparently, it's good sometimes to tell somebody else what you think and feel and then just leave it to that person. So, here's the first - but defnitely approved - sketch of the headstock my first diy guitar:     That's just a

  • 2016/09/12

    It's been some time since I last posted here. Summer was hot (it still is actually), we welcomed a lot of guests and  did some travelling. But now vacation are over so it's time to get back to workshop and start some cutting. We (me and my Better Part) attended WorldCamp Europe and it was an unforgettable experience. I can't wait for next year's meeting in Paris. Some friends visited us in our home and we also travelled a bit around Poland, had great fun at wedding party in Maidstone, UK and started refitting our appartment. All in all, it was busy but great time. Now fall's knocking at our door and I feel it's time to get back to