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Advanced Cigar Box Guitar Construction by Josh Gayou

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  • Hey David, thanks for the information, looks like the CBG community lost a hugh asset, maybe he will come back and add his experienced voice and not get suck back in on the selling side. Friends say I should put my stuff on eBay or Etsy, no I want to keep this as a hobby.....
  • There is still the website
    A couple of years back there was a message on the above site from Josh saying that on top of his regular job (90+hour weeks in the aviation industry) and due to the increase in demand for his guitars, the number he needed to build to a set time limit resulted in him losing the enjoyment in his hobby. It had become extra work and so to address the work/life balance he was reducing how much time he put into CBGs.
  • What has happen to Josh and Smokehouse Guitars, anyone know?
  • I'm not sure if you check back here anymore Josh, but I've recently read through your excellent book again and had a question: is there any advantage to shaping and gluing the fret board to the neck before marking and cutting the frets? I have always done this by simply cutting the fretboard while it is still 'square' and doing the taper afterwards... just seems a lot easier to do with a standard 90 degree square rather than a bevel gauge.  

  • Hey, guys.  Here is a lineup of shows that I'll be attending.  The shows are in Southern California in the Temecula wine country.  If you'd like to come out and see me and my guitars grab yourself a ticket and come on by.


  • I'm very happy to hear how helpful you are all finding this :)  Makes all the effort of writing it worth it.
  • Josh,
    It is this kind of effort at sharing that makes this hobby possible for many of us.
    After I built my first cbg I read your advanced building guide series and followed your suggestions about learning to tune and sharpen tools. It made building the next one both a lot easier and a lot more fun. Likewise, I took what I learned from your fret work post and ripped the wire frets off the first one and installed real frets. Each one gets better. I'm about to finish the 6th, but now I'm reading your book with that same sense of doors opening - a feeling of "wow, I can learn to do that!" I think the 7th build will again see a big jump in both fun and ability, thanks to how much you've shared.
  • Josh:  Thanks for sharing your recent book.  I find it very informative and useful.  I am inspired by the beautiful instruments you create, and I hope you don't mind if I 'borrow' a couple of your ideas when crafting my own guitars.  Kind regards, Jess Allred
  • Thanks for the sentiment but I'm not so worried about money.  Just make something cool and send me a picture.
  • Josh, Thank you! your earlier series started me off in a great way and made much of the huge difference between my first and second builds. I just gave away #'s 2 through 5 at Xmas and have to build another 4 string, just started, now I'm eagerly waiting for the book to download so I can see what else I can learn from you to apply on this next one.
    Oh, and I was all ready to PAY for your book. You might want to try publishing.
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Why You Shouldn't Listen Too Closely to the "Experts"

One of my friends on the nation recently brought this to my attention.  We all had a good laugh over it at the time but this has been bugging me more and more the longer I’ve thought about it.   As I have always told you: make your authorities prove their credentials to you.  Don’t just accept what someone tells you as hard evidence.  Make someone earn your respect before you give them the keys to your knowledge and understanding.   As I have also said before: don’t even listen to the stuff…

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