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Make Your Own Electric Guitar Paperback – Mar 1 2003
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About the Author
Dr. Brian May, founding member of Queen, has a PhD in Astronomy and is the co-author of Bang! The Complete History of the Universe and The Cosmic Tourist
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Top Customer Reviews
In my own project I had a strong doubt about neck angle, since I was using a TOM bridge, but this book helped me clear all that.
Filled with black and white illustrations all along, the book deals with designing a body, cutting it, binding it, building a neck from scratch, gluing or bolting it and dealing with electronics, to finally achieving high gloss finish. There is also a very useful set of templates for pickup routing of guitars and basses. In all, with this book and supported by the guitar maker's forums on the net, I was able to build my first guitar. Check my website for pics of my project.
What I really like about this book is that it does not describe the making of just one electric guitar. The author will lead you through 3 guitar designs, a Gibson style guitar and a Fender style guitar. The big difference between the two is how the neck is attached to the body, glued versus bold on. Also Hiscock explains the making of a through-neck 8 string bass guitar. This will give you the knowledge of starting to experiment on your own and you will be able to truly make a guitar to your own likings.
This is in my opinion the best book if you would like to make your own electric guitar. However the "relaxed" style of writing can be a little annoying sometimes. For those of you who never seen the TV series Catweasel (broadcasted in Great Britain in the 70ties), and few have in the US, a title like Electrickery will not be understood. If you know that you can not buy elephant tusk in the USA unless it was imported before (I believe) 1970, then a picture of a elephant to show that tusk looks better on a elephant than on a guitar is just plain weird. But let's blame it on the famous British humor. And if I may nitpick, the font used for the paragraphs is ill chosen.Read more ›
I like the way Melvyn discusses a variety of approaches for each task in design and building. You are encouraged to understand and think creatively rather than follow a strict plan. If that sounds a bit fuzzy, and the lack of detailed plans puts you off (there are none in this book) I can try to reassure that all you need is here. Despite having next to no woodworking experience myself I'm now most of the way through my first instrument and already planning the next couple. It also gave me the confidence to front up to a local luthiery (Gilet Guitars in Sydney, Australia), choose my materials and ask some reasonably intelligent questions.
One really nice aspect of the book is that Melvyn shares anecdotes about his own mistakes over the years so that you can anticipate problems - or at least not feel too bad when you make a few mistakes of your own along the way.
So, in summary - buy this book and be inspired.
The book does assume that you have some basic skills in woodworking and electronics; it would be unreasonable to expect the author to teach you this also. Yet, the author does provide valuable and appreciated tips and pointers in these areas regardless. He pretty much covers it all. Over and over again I found myself thinking "thank you!" to the author for the information - buy this book, you won't regret it.
With the negative out of the way... This book is great. It will take you through the construction of three guitars. A solid-body attached neck PRS style guitar, a bolt-on neck Tele style and a neck-through style bass. Mr. Hiscock then goes on to show the limitless possibilities for combining the styles.
His reasoning for not putting in an "blueprints" for a guitar were simple. #1, a custom made guitar is like a fingerprint. It is unique and personal to you. You make what is comfortable and good for you. If he gave you blueprints, you'd just be recreating a Melvyn Hiscock guitar. #2 (not mentioned, but implied) Copyright reasons. He can't go around telling you how to make a Fender Strat... That would just be bad news for him if Fender ever found out.
Anyway, 4-1/2 stars... but I can't do that here, so 5.
Most recent customer reviews
Avery good book - it gives the would be builder a lot to work with.Published 8 months ago by Keith Kleinsteuber
very satisfied exactly what we were searching for thank youPublished on Nov. 29 2013 by Jacqueline Villeneuve
if you have never built a guitar before, do not get this book. this book does not tell you how to build a guitar, it is just a book of tips on building a guitar. Read morePublished on Jan. 29 2004
for any budding lutier. But what you really want to do after you get this book is buy Dan Elewine's video from Stewart-McDonald on how to build a solid body electric guitar. Read morePublished on Sept. 11 2003 by S. R.
The book in terms of organization and information is good. One of the biggest shortcoming of the book is that there are no dimensioned drawings or sketches. Read morePublished on Nov. 20 2002 by honestreviewer