Before I began drawing, designing, or picking out wood, I knew that building a instrument was a far cry from anything I had ever done in the wood shop. The margin for error is almost nonexistent. When I began to research scale length, string spacing, & fret layout, I knew my shop math skills would be tested. Efficient lighting is paramount, despite 20/20 vision, with the minute measurements, and the fact these measurements have to be spot on, I’ve found the afternoon sunlight to be my best resource. As far as tools go, I wouldn’t think twice about spending $80 for a combination square, or any other premium measuring tool. Guitar making seems to bring together other techniques, depending on your methods. If you like using hand tools you will get some on the training for proper set up and care for your tools. I’ve always considered the wood carver to be a three dimensional thinker, able to visualize what has yet to be.
I’ve spent most of the last few months teaching myself neck construction. This has proven to be the biggest challenge for me. Granted there have been weeks gone by, and I’ve not been able to gain any ground. This is when impatience and frustration set in. This is also when I make the most critical of mistakes.