While studying my the last of my medical licensing exams I had an idea to make a miniature version of my guitars. Something I could just sit on the couch and strum on. This is basically the end result. I had a really nice piece of koa but it was only 13×10 in which isn’t enough for a full guitar top. So I sized down the body of one of my shapes to fit.
So when I brought the koa to the shop I didn’t realize how wet the wood was. I live in Vegas and it’s extremely dry here. After jointing and resawing a top from the block both pieces began to buckle and shrink right in front of me. I glued the top to the mahogany body quickly and clamped it down for the night. The rest I weighed down in my storage cubby.
I was working nights and only had moments in the shop but I had this itch I couldn’t scratch till this project was done. I went back to the shop after a long shift to find that the top had fractured all the way through to the body wood and had checked and shrunk all over. I was two steps from throwing it all into the bandsaw when Paul and Tim from the woodshop suggested I try stabilizing it with epoxy. They mentioned the Japanese art of kintsukuroi which is fixing pottery with golden lacquer. The philosophy being that the piece is more beautiful now because it was once broken. I loved the idea and figured if I could salvage this at all I’d do it and keep it for myself instead of selling it.
The results were much better than I’d hoped. Unfortunately I was a bit cocky and didnt try out this new BWB binding before this build. I should have sanded the sides to finish ready status before gluing the binding because I sanded through a bit in one or two areas. To add insult to injury my drill bit slipped while drilling the routing channels for the wires and I gouged a bit of the top near the bridge pickup cavity. I experienced instant humility. I will be keeping this model as a reminder to never rush and to always respect the process.
This little guy is just under 24 inches long, weighs about 8 lbs which is dense as hell. It’s a ton of fun to play on and sounds pretty amazing if I do say so myself.
Wild Figured Koa Top
African Mahogany Body
Indian Rosewood Fretboard and Headcap
Roasted Birdseye Maple Neck
Jescar frets, Hipshot hardware with string saver saddles, Bourne’s pots
DiMarzio Vintage MiniBuckers
Finished with Odie’s Oil and Waxes
(…Damn it, WordPress uploaded everything in reverse. Start from the bottom and work your way up. I’m too lazy to do this again)