Parlour Guitar Build

This week I have started a parlour guitar build. The guitar will be ladder braced, and uses a very old and very stiff piece of cedar for the soundboard. I have left the top a little thicker than I would for an x-braced guitar, as this will minimise any bellying around the bridge. The bridge plate will also be a little oversized for this reason. The back is a 7-piece, made from flamed maple and mahogany, and has been kept a good thickness and is strongly braced with a 15ft radius/arch. It has been built to act as a reflector of the tops energy. The sides are african mahogany, about 2.5mm thick.

The bracestock I am using for the top is some extremely tight grained spruce. Very straight and definitely the strongest spruce I have worked with. This has been kept tall and thin and I am sure will give this little guitar a great sound. The back has some standard stiffness spruce bracing, although this is still kept tall and thin to help reflect the tops enegy.

The rosette for this parlour guitar is really cool - a ring of ambonya burl with delicate crows feet purfling around the outside edge. Even without any finish applied the burl is eye catching. The burl was a little tricky to rout out as it can be crumbly in places, so I gave it a bit of superglue to firm it up.

You can see the tight grains of the cedar top in the above image. It was great to plane down and very easy to get full width shavings. With the stiff bracing on it sounds like a piece of sheet metal. Great tap tone and very musical.

Next steps are to close the box and start on the neck blank. This will have a 628mm scale and a 12th fret neck joint, with a slotted headstock.

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