A luthier is somebody who makes or repairs stringed instruments (See http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Luthier).
There are a number of stringed instrument projects happening at the Hackspace as well as occasional Luthier skill-sharing sessions sessions to which everybody is welcome to attend. We have a number of very good tools for the making and maintenance of instruments at the space including a beautifully fine Japanese pull saw with a built in depth gauge.
We are learning, by observation and most importantly by experimentation, to work with different traditional and modern materials.
The Ukulele Orchestra of Hackspace has inspired quite a lot of this activity and it is our goal to one day form a band from all hand-hacked instruments!
Cutting frets is a stressful time for the luthier! We would like to build a jig for cutting frets, e.g. http://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/Luthier-Tool-PRECISION-FINGERBOARD-SLOTTING-JIG-/171023141236?pt=UK_Guitar_Accessories&var=&hash=item27d1c60974 , however these are limited to a single scale length. If we can be sure of the accuracy of a laser cutter or CNC mill then we could make the scale length jigs guides on a per-project basis.
- tuning pegs
- nut blanks
Bear in mind that we are hackers, not professional luthiers, and so we will typically: -
- A: use what's to hand
- the plentiful resources of the hackspace
- innovative repurposing of scrap items
- B: buy it in
- do loads of online research and get the best we can afford
- get the cheapest item on ebay!
- buy something on prospect that might do the trick!
Do not underestimate the value of learning through trying (and sometimes failing) and running as many prototypes as it takes.