Current Instrument Line-Up

Current Instrument Line-Up
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  • That is a mighty fine answer and not too lengthy considering all the information you conveyed.  

    First off, check out the pics and videos from Dave Lynas here on CBN.  Dave died a couple of years ago, but was kind of one of the many hearts of CBN.  He was an artist, musician, folky and kind, good human.  He also taught art in Duluth, Minnesota.  He did pen, paint, ceramic and thrown on the wheel art.  He made a lot of slides which we here on CBN bought.  Generally, he would ship the slides with his iconic folk/music art on the package.

    I am a fan of the Kington trio age and can play a six string guitar to a near mediocre level!  (Some days).  But I have a love of FOUR strings as did one of the Mommas and Poppas and more from that era.  I like Chicago tuning DGBE like the four small strings on a standard six and a open G with GDGB.  

    I am also a Martin fan, but always feel a bit unworthy of having a Martin due to my mediocre skills on a six.  And I am four years older than your current seventy, so (in my case) my skills are not getting better.   I have a Martin X000 that is just what I think a factory six should look like and plays well and sounds great.

    I am of an open mic skill level and like to give those 20% that are actually listening a variety of string counts: Four, six and ONE.  (I have a nice Hudson Terraplane (one string) diddley bow.  

    Thanks for telling me that little six is a guitarlele.    And cheers on the little Martin.  I have all the inster-munts I need (16 at a quick count in my den/music room), but sometimes covet a little Martin in mahogany or koa.

  • Hi Uncle John,

    Ha, ha!! So glad you asked, I wondered when somebody was gonna notice! I'll try to make this explanation as abbreviated as possible but I've never been accused of being brief!

    From left-to-right: that actually is a Martin 000X1 that I bought back in 2007. Some years later, I had a little disposable income and since I'm an old folkie from the late 50's/early60's, I wanted a distinctive pickguard treatment on my main instrument so I had a luthier friend take off the old rounded guard and glue on one that represented my life and interests. That pickguard design accomplishes three things. I'm a retired Art History prof from a local college and loved the modern art movement of the 60's and the asymetrical shape harkens back to the biomorphic sculptural forrms of Henry Moore and Barb Hepworth of the mid-20th century. Second, it makes the guitar reminiscent of the old Gibson F-25 acoustics which were specifically designed for the Popular Folk Movement of the 50's and 60's. And thirdly, it really does protect the top from the slashing and gouging that is produced by my furious strumming patterns. My first foray into music was with the Kinston Trio and the New Christy Minstrels. So yeah, that's the story on the first one.

    Next in line is a 6-string mini-banjo that I had my luthier friend make from a concert-sized Kmise "banjolele" that I purchased from Amazon. I've tried and tried to get my fingers to cooperate with the number and spacing of strings on a uke but have failed miserably. So figuring that at 70 years old, I had more life behind me than in front, I was gonna get a playable 6-string banjolele or die trying! I asked my luthier to remove the original neck and using the 8" Kmise banjo head, construct a shortened guitar neck and peghead out of a mahogany plank. He did and embedded his own abalone inlay logo in the headstock. I strung it up with nylon strings and it's almost as loud as a full-sized model. This happened over the COVID-19 pandemic so when people ask me what I spent my government stimulus check on, I show 'em my banjolele!

    Then there is the Goldtone GT-750 full-sized 6-string banjo. I've since replaced the 5th and 6th strings with 0.20 and 0.16 gauge to give it a more authentic banjo sound when I do pick rolls on it. Next, the ukulele is a Gretsch G-9126 6-string model that's affectionately called a "guitalele". I jokingly tell folks that everything I own has 6-strings, even my toothbrush! (LOL) And finally, my newest acquisition, a Little Martin LXK2, HPL top, back and sides. It's a tiny bit smaller than a parlor guitar but it really plays wonderfully. After having the saddle and nut replaced with bone and a K & K pickup installed, it sounds heavenly through an acoustic amp.

    Well my friend, there you have it and I've done it again. Trying to be brief, I've probably overstayed my welcome. But when somebody wants to talk stringed instruments I just can't help myself!

    Have a great day,
    J.D. Woods

  • Here is a link to CBG 101.

  • Nice line up.  Unusual pick guard on the big git that looks like a Martin.  What is that little uke sized six?   Good wishes on your CBG build.  I would say start out fretless for an easier build - getting frets straight and well intoned is hard.  GDG 3s at the most classic.  Check out (google) a video on playing fretless 3s - knotlenny's CBG 101.

  • Hi everybody,

    I'm from Warsaw, Indiana and since I'm new, thought I'd introduce myself. I've played, practiced and performed with the guitar for over 50 years and this is my current 6-string instrument line-up. Everything I play has 6 strings (even my toothbrush!) Ok, I'm kidding!But when I discovered Cigar Box Nation, it sparked my interest like nothing else has in recent years. I've watched tons of Cigar Box videos on YouTube and I'm really hooked.

    I'm not exactly new to building primative stringed instruments. While I was working on my Masters in Art Education at Indiana University during the 70's, I took a class called Special Projects. I made a harp, dulcimer and a square box guitar along with some rhythm and percussion pieces. But back then, I had a completely outfitted wood shop at my disposal with table saw, band saw, drill press, lathe and a planer/joiner.

    Right after I finished school, I started doing period folk music for the Indiana State Park Cultural Arts Division and I needed a banjo. I bought a junk Kay guitar for $5 and was given a laminated drum shell that was roughly 11" in diameter. I had a carpenter friend rout the top to accommodate an 11" Mylar banjo head and I was in business. So when I found this site, these many years later, I'm committed to trying a ukulele and if that works, I'm gonna make 3-string cigar box guitar with a magnetic pick-up.

    I'm a better performer than a meticulous craftsman in wood but will keep you posted on my progress!

    J.D. Woods
    Warsaw, IN

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