Good morning,

I am an newbie in the CBG world but when I saw all your creation, I can say only : wonderfull !!!

I need some help to begin.

Could you help me to have a good Toolbox, please ? What tools I need ? It would be nice if I have a list before to go in tools shop.

Thank you very much and sorry for my poor english.


Views: 509

Reply to This

Replies to This Discussion

This article has instructions on how to build basic cigar box guitar and also a list of tools:

I would also add a Phillips screwdriver to the list.

Thank you very much. :-)

I am new, too, but I have already found that a small chisel comes in handy, as does a Japanese pull saw, coping saw, a good pencil,  Swanson yardstick, ruler, small T-square, punch or awl, scribe, some collected saw dust to use with super glue to hide any nicks or divits in the wood or to repair a nut, all the electrical components to electrify a CBG, a Dremel tool with sanding drums and various cut-off wheels, a fret scale marker of different sizes and just about anything that you can add to make the CBG unique in appearance on the soundboard and such. A wood buring tool is also neat to have for design work. You can likely get by without all of these items, but each serves a purpose and is certainly useful as you learn how to use them all. I found that the initial cost of making a CBG is higher than any other time, as your putting together a shop of tools to make it all easier. If you have any of this stuff, then all the better, but most of the above I had to go out an purchase, as I had long since gotten rid of most of my shop tools. Believe me, most of these items are only a start to what you may end up adding over time, depending upon how deep you get into making these things. Check out local swap meets, thrift stores and pawn shops for various tools and items that can be of use to you. Get onto YouTube and check out the various methods shared there for a CBG build. Visit the sites linked here and purchase a video or book on CBG builds. I enjoy Gittyman's video, myself as far as a basic how to video book. Lots of them out there to choose from though. There are never enough tools in a shop, I believe, even the ones I swore I'd never use ended up being the very ones that have com ein handy so far for my CBG build.  There are likely many tools I left out and some are very likely so overly simplistic that I just tend to gloss over them. Good luck in what you add to your toolbox.

Thank you very much, James. It's nice to have your opinion. ;-)

Harbor Freight's $8 pull saw is the exact thickness you need for fret slots, does a nice job, and is much cheaper than a fret saw.

Your English is better than most.  Keep up the good work!

I'm not sure you know what you are getting into as I have been collecting my tools for over 40 years.  Solid woodworking skills and knowing your way around a shop are an absolute must to produce an over-the-top piece of work.  I suggest you buy the book "Handmade Musical Instruments" by Mike Orr as it is an excellent reference guide.

The following is what I use most.

10" Table Saw with a fine tooth blade and a sanding disk

Small Drill Press

Power Drill

Drill Set 1/16" to 3/8"

Sanding Block

Sand Paper 80, 100, 220, 320 grits

Screw Drivers, slot, #6 & #8 Robertson

Screw Drivers, Philips (real) small, medium & large

Set Square

Center Punch


Small Hammer 

Small Block Plane

Jig Saw


Good Luck with your 1st build.

King's X.... No one mentioned a vise. I use mine all the time and for a ton of other projects besides just the CBG.



Thank you. I keep all yours advices. :-)

I started off with a few of my Dad's old hand tools and a few of my own, after I started building to sell some important machine tools became necessary..!


for cutting and dressing the neck:

electric band saw

home made thickness gauges and templates, glue spreader

hack saw

set square

electric drill also used mounted on upright drill stand

6mm and 3mm drill bits

forstner bit

small hammer

rat tail file

round file

sanding block with medium and  wet and dry paper

electric sander

electric linisher with upright sanding wheel

electric file

flat and half round hand files


sharp pencil

tape measure

bench vice


for fretting:

fret position template

plastic hammer

junior hacksaw

sharp pencil

set square

wire cutters

large flat file with handle removed from tang

flat needle file


for the box:

hot glue gun

home made measuring blocks/ templates

22mm hole cutter

fret saw


soldering irons

9mm drill bit

1.5mm drill bit

dremel sanding wheel

Phillips screw driver


string winder




What they said

I love my Nobex Proman Miter Saw

and a hand held router makes short work of notching out necks saves wear and tear on the old joints

did a few with chisel and rasp, like the router better

I'm just glad to see you no longer have any stools in your box...>:-E

Nobody has mentioned a can of Fabreeze to remove the odor of those stools in that tool box, either.  :-)


The Essential Pages

New to Cigar Box Nation? How to Play Cigar Box GuitarsFree Plans & How to Build Cigar Box GuitarsCigar Box Guitar Building BasicsCigar Box Guitar Parts Store

Site Sponsor

Recommended Links & Resources



Started by Mitchell Cutsinger in Performances, How to Play, Lessons, Concerts. Last reply by BrianQ. 3 hours ago. 4 Replies

First build

Started by Lark Leazar in Building Secrets, Tips, Advice, Discussion. Last reply by Taffy Evans yesterday. 35 Replies

Headless Guitar Project - a $100 eBay kit & Gitty pickups

Started by Cigar Box Nation in Feature Articles. Last reply by Poorness Studios on Thursday. 5 Replies

Cigar Box Amp Mods

Started by Cigar Box Nation in Feature Articles. Last reply by RTZGUITARS Sep 17. 14 Replies

Blog Posts

Prototyping with a big ol' wine box

Posted by Ben on September 23, 2021 at 4:00pm 0 Comments

Mr. Bells

Posted by Stephen Cohen on September 4, 2021 at 12:30pm 0 Comments

Bookie's Poor Man's Dobro

Posted by Steve Bookout on July 18, 2021 at 2:04pm 7 Comments

Get your groove on for free

Posted by François on July 13, 2021 at 3:05pm 1 Comment

Latest Activity

Uncle John commented on A.D.EKER's video

i could have loved you A. D. Eker 2021

"That is a great sound.  New tuning to me also.  Nice vocals and song. …"
36 minutes ago
Uncle John commented on Doug Thorsvik's video
39 minutes ago
AGP # liked Cigar Box Blues's photo
2 hours ago
AGP # liked Poorness Studios's photo
2 hours ago
AGP # commented on A.D.EKER's video

i could have loved you A. D. Eker 2021

"I've seen a lot of different tunings pop up on Cigar Box Nation over the years, but I…"
2 hours ago
AGP # liked A.D.EKER's video
2 hours ago
AGP # liked Poorness Studios's video
2 hours ago
AGP # liked Doug Thorsvik's video
2 hours ago
AGP # commented on AGP #'s video

AGP #441 ''Stuffup Steamer Basket'' - Dave Lynas Tribute

""Thanks Poorness, Randy, UJ, Doug & A.D., I think all of the tributes to Dave I have seen,…"
2 hours ago
Doug Thorsvik commented on A.D.EKER's video

i could have loved you A. D. Eker 2021

"You definitely achieved that old timey vibe A.D.! Outstanding pickin’ to show case it."
2 hours ago
AGP # commented on AGP #'s photo

AGP #442 - ''Neck Stuffup''

""THANX PICK"  :-)"
2 hours ago
Doug Thorsvik commented on Doug Thorsvik's video

Pontoon: 3-String (G1G2D3) Cigar Box Guitar

"I’m not sure what kind of music this is A.D.!  It’s a new one for me too…"
3 hours ago


© 2021   Created by Ben "C. B. Gitty" Baker.   Powered by

Badges  |  Report an Issue  |  Terms of Service

\uastyle>\ud/** Scrollup **/\ud.scrollup {\ud background: url("") no-repeat scroll 0 0 transparent;\ud bottom: 25px;\ud display: inline !important;\ud height: 40px;\ud opacity: 0.3 !important;\ud position: fixed;\ud right: 30px;\ud text-indent: -9999px;\ud width: 40px;\ud z-index: 999;\ud}\ud.scrollup:hover {\ud opacity:0.99!important;\ud}\ud \uascript type="text/javascript">\ud x$(document).ready(function(){\ud x$(window).scroll(function(){\ud if (x$(this).scrollTop() > 100) {\ud x$('.scrollup').fadeIn();\ud } else {\ud x$('.scrollup').fadeOut();\ud }\ud });\ud x$('.scrollup').click(function(){\ud x$("html, body").animate({ scrollTop: 0 }, 600);\ud return false;\ud });\ud });\ud \ua!-- End Scroll Up -->