AGP #436 - “Antique Als Antiquity”
3 String Tooth Pick Fretted Vintage Type Guitar
Scale:600mm/23⅝ inches
Tuned: G D g
After seeing the pic of the Shane Speal “Do Toothpick Frets Work?” post, featured on the Cigar Box Nation Home Page for the last month or so, it finally got the better of me, and I had to do a similar type build, using what materials I had on hand, whilst incorporating some of my own building style & ideas.
To answer the question posed in the original post, yes!, Toothpick Frets do work!, But!, they are a pain in the arse to do, as was the building of the same style of Bridge!
The Box is composed of glued together pieces of 8mm thick Norway Spruce Pine, sourced from my trusty old recycled Piano from many years back, as is the Spruce Pine Neck and the Beech Bridge, the Fretboard is a piece of treated Radiata Pine Fence Pale, the Nut is a piece of ‘Shish Kebab’ skewer, and the Frets are Bamboo Tooth Picks, the Tuner Pins are also from that same Piano.
As all the Timber was of a very light coloured nature, the problem was how to age it, so ended up going through a few of the recommended methods, ie; applying a Black Tea mix, then the Steel Wool in Vinegar Iron Oxide mix, then a Black Coffee mix, then one coat of Shellac, with some sanding in between and after.
A rare “No Pickup Build” for me, but for an $8 Build, I’m more than happy with the way it turned out. :-)

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Comment by AGP # on August 4, 2021 at 10:22pm

"Thanks UJ", I also tried them once before a few years back, but that lot ended up being scrapped and put in the Too Hard Bin, this time I cut a shallow groove and used PVA glue, which was very messy, if there is going to be a next time for Toothpick Frets, I would probably use a different glue, something like "Fast Drying Selleys Tarzans Grip Glue".

It was originally going to be a 4 String Tenor Build, but decided on 3 Strings so that it did have more of a chance of becoming a much played Old Git by this "Old Git"  ;-D


Comment by AGP # on August 4, 2021 at 10:10pm

"Thanks Keith', nice of you to comment!, muchly appreciated!  :-)

Comment by Uncle John on August 4, 2021 at 9:09am
Good info on the tooth pics. I tried them once and agree. This looks like a much played and much loved old git. I like.
Comment by Keith Rearick on August 3, 2021 at 2:31pm

Very nice build.

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