So I'm working on four builds this week--all for friends and family--when it came to me that I should be recording the date and build number on the CBG's.  I've created labels on my printer that has the following information...

Eric's Cigar Box Guitars

Build Date:_______

Build Number:_______

I used Avery address labels for the tags, and I plan on applying them to the inside of the box for historical purposes.  While I was at it, I also printed more labels for the back of the box, which has the standard tuning and scale length...

Eric's Cigar Box Guitars

Tuning: G, D, G

25" Scale (from Nut to Bridge)

I figured it would be a good reference for anyone who needed to change strings or adjust the bridge.

Has anyone here also done much the same for their builds.  If so what was your solution?

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I just stamp a serial number on the top the headstock with steel number punches and write it down in my records, with a brief description of the box, pickup etc. I don't note a date, simply the year in which they are made.

I figure the month and year for the date will be good.  Build number would be, I think, important.

Be warned that Avery labels fall off after a year or so.. The glues dry up and crystalize...

That said, a friend drew up a CBG on a napkin, and that has become my official logo. I laser print a label with room for me to add my signature. That label gets glued to the back of the box with hide glue ( it does not wrinkle the paper). I then write on it with a pen, and cover it with either lacquer or wipe on poly. The finishes soak into the label, making it more durable. Someday, when I do this seriously, I will get them printed on fabric.
If you look inside old instruments you'll see something of a tradition to add the city you're from eg

Dave Smith
New York City, USA

Labels can peel off, it might be a good idea to lacquer over them. I prefer to write directly on the wood so you can read it through a sound hole.
Just a note on how easy it is to confuse instead of instruct with information, if Wayfinder's CBG label was sent to England, the Date in his post above would read as the 16th of January, ??17 (year). So maybe putting down your locality can help others see the world more like the maker's point of view. From this one addition, future historians can more accurately pinpoint you and your gits in the correct historical context.
All the best from Bill. :D

Or write out the whole year...

"Build Date:  1/2016"

Since it takes me more than one day to build, there doesn't seem a need to include the day.

Bufo Bill makes a valid point,in this increasingly small world,it can lead to confusion,to me 9/11 would be meaningless, if not for the shear weight of reference to the event,i'd be inclined to consider it 2 days before our remembrance day,11/11

This was the final nudge I needed to make a label, I am pretty happy with it - some sort of name, year and model, in this case first uke of 2015.  Have to see what it looks like thru the sound hole.


I always sign mine and include a month/year date.  I wish I would have given each a number - I'm way way over a thousand and more closer to 2.  I really have no idea - and that might be difficult for future CBG historians in the future when they write my bio (HAAA). 

Number yours!  

and sign/date

(signed and put a check mark on a couple thousand pickups, too, wish I knew that number)

I also use the steel stamps back of the headstock and also on the heel.  No particular reason.  Then I sign and date inside so it can be seen through the sound hole.  I write directly on the wood.  I give a receipt with the tuning.written on it.  I should put in the scale length too.  .  

I think it is a good idea doing what you mention.   I usually sign the git and often put the tuning on a piece of paper on the back.   I have not kept track of my number of builds.   It seems to be over 50.  I may be best off  not knowing.


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