Started my first guitar today. I will post pics of my progress along the way. hopefully I wont embarrass myself too much.

The photo shows the parts to the box that I cut with my laser cutter today. (I agree that not using a real cigar box kinda takes away from the spirit of CBGs)... but here I go.

My first will be an acoustic, 3 string, fretless unit.  I haven't decided the scale yet... but probably 25.5.

The box has cigar box design that I designed myself (there is no such thing as Bone Daddy Stogies). The box will measure 11 x 8 x 3.

Any recommendations will be greatly appreciated!!!

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First, not using a real Cigar box is not in the rulebook... a lot of guys in the UK don't have a reliable source for boxes...  I wish I had a laser cutter!  (maybe for another discussion?)  

Anyway, enjoy your first build, let us know where you have questions... we've all been there... besides, you look like you're off to a great start!

So... Slide?  Fretted?  The box sounds like a good size...  Neck wood?  I like Maple, but Poplar, ash, birch, oak, and most hardwoods will work just fine!

Looking forward to the build pics.  I'm working on #46...

Thanks John...  No frets on this one.  I will build this one as a slider.  A few weeks ago, I got a nasty table saw cut on my fretting index finger (5 stitches) so it will be a while before I can fret again with than finger.  So for now, I will build sliders.

The neck on this one will be poplar... But I will experiment with different hardwood for future builds.

I will definitely have questions along the way so I will be firing them out.  Congrats on #46... I hope to be there some day.



Sorry about the finger, glad it was only 5 stitches!  Lately, I have been going back to slide guitars, they're a lot of fun!

You might want to think abut some reinforcements on the inside, but it looks like an A+ so far!  

Here's one I did with a particularly thin box. 

Thanks Greg... I probably should reinforce it a bit. I'll work on that now.  Thanks for the tip!!!

BTW... great looking young man!!!


Thanks, he's my tester! Good luck and don't hesitate to ask questions. This is a great board with lots of generous people willing to share their experience.  

I love the JFR box, they sound great!

I found that JFR box worked real well with the neck glued to the top, and glued closed... sounds wonderful!

I'll have to try it if I find another JFR box. Thanks for the tip! 

As I look at it again, it looks like you are planning a large heel on the neck... Just FYI: a solid 1x2 neck dado'd to just clear the top of the box (I do about 3/8") that runs the full length of the box will hold just fine.  Any additional heel really stiffens it up.

From the box bits, it looks like you're not doing a neck-through, but a neck to the end of the box...  Are you planning a tailpiece, or mounting the strings to the neck?

Here is how I do it... but a tailpiece works just fine, too..

If you go this route, make sure your string mounts are protected (pop rivets work well), and are 1.5" or more from your bridge... if you get it too close, it's a pain...

John... you are correct.  I will not run the neck all the way through the body... and yes it will have a rather large heel. I have not yet completely decided on how I will mount the strings.  I know I must decide very soon before I build much more.  I am considering some type of hinged tailpiece... or the Mandolin/CBG Tailpiece.  I am going to glue all components of the box together so there will be no way to open it.  So I wont be running the strings through the top of the box. Since this will be an acoustic only instrument I am hoping that will be OK.

I like your Cohiba guitar.  What did you use for the bridge and nut?

Everything I build assumes the box is not strong enough to hold up to 75lbs of pull, over time. So I almost always build neck-through, or neck to end... That way the box is not part of the overall structural components. In the cohiba, the neck goes to the end of the Box, the neck is glued to the top.


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