My new guitar by a luthier- part 1

Guitars! Let’s talk about guitars!

Some of you might wonder what I mean with Breathing life into a new guitar and what does it have to do with this tech blog?
Well… As a “musician” working in the music industry… as a developer, I thought it could make sense, in a way.

After 15 years of loyal service, I thought it was the right time to give some slack to my old guitar and start looking for a new one.
I am a modest guitar player, I have a decent enough level to have fun but I am quite far from being a pro…
It is partly the reason why I have waited for so long before deciding to buy a new guitar…
Am I good enough to have a beast? Is it worth the price? Will it not be wasted in my hands?

I came to the conclusion that… Hey! who cares?! This will probably be my last guitar, I might as well invest into a beauty and a beast :)
So here I went and checked websites, looked at custom guitars and called a few luthiers to see what they could offer…
My choice was based on three criteria :

  • The guitars they made (design, feeling and sound)
  • Were they actually guitarist and were they playing the same kind of music as I do?
  • The “live” contact over the phone. Did they understand what I wanted, were they proposing things, etc.

After much thought and a few phone calls, I decided to deal with Hugo Mermet (his official website).
I will write some more about him later in this post, but first things first… How should my -new guitar made by a luthier- be?

Why would I need a new guitar (eventhough I play like a horse)?

My current guitar is pretty much standart (E tuning), 6 strings, HSH… I wanted something different, with a lower tuning going from A to D with great precision, without the usual auto-detuning…
That way, I would play with 2 guitars, one for the standart E tuning and another one for everything going lower.
One thing to note is that I am not really into crazy solos, shredding etc, I’m rather a rythmic player (if I would dare say so).
I wanted the bass to be precise, tight and controlled. In order to achieve that at such tunings, I decided to go for a 27″ diapason, 7 strings with high density woods.
As any geek, I had done my research… :D

Guitar woods, which ones should I choose?

I chose a combination of :

Padouk wood is not the kind of wood you find often in a guitar

Padouk for the body. It’s high density helps keep the bass waves tight, which is good for a low tuned guitar.

Padouk close-up

Padouk close-up

Sycomore Table, which is good to have a warm and singing tone for your guitar. it is also quite beautiful

Sycomore for the table

Regarding the neck, I went for :
Padouk, Sycomore and Ebony keys…

Ebony Keys have a high density, and will bring the bass from your guitar's neck to the body fast and tight

Ebony Keys

The neck of the guitar

The neck

The neck of the guitar, from another angle

The neck (again)

one more picture of the guitar's neck

The neck (and again)

Here are the first drafts on the sycomore table…

The Sycomore Table of the guitar

The Sycomore Table

So far I should say that I have much appreciated all the communication I had with Hugo (the luthier). He is nice enough to go out of his way to send me pictures regularly to share with me the progress on the guitar (thing that most luthier don’t do). I am overjoyed about that, I really feel like seeing the baby taking shape, slowly but surely!
Also, seeing the woods, I can already say that this guitar will be a real piece of Art! Look at these!

The neck and wings of my futur guitar

The neck and wings

Share and Enjoy

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