American Lutherie #98 cover shows a claassic guitar by Cyndy Burton
American Lutherie #98
Summer 2009

This issue’s cover shows a cutaway classical guitar by Cyndy Burton.
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Steve Grimes archtop guitar soundboard The Archtop Guitar: Perspectives on the Present and Future
from their 2008 GAL Convention panel discussion
by Steve Grimes, Ted Megas, Tom Ribbecke and moderator Jeffrey Elliott

So the American archtop guitar is well over a century old, and we are two or three decades into the great archtop revival. In this panel discussion, three leading makers eschew the past and talk about what they are doing now, why they do it that way, and where they will go from here.

Cyndy Burton Meet The Maker: Cyndy Burton by Tim Olsen
As a guitar maker, an author, a meeting organizer, a presenter at GAL Conventions, and a long-time editor for American Lutherie magazine, Cyndy Burton has had a significant impact on the Lutherie Boom generation. Get the details on her story and her opinions in this issue. That’s her high-school yearbook photo from the ‘70s. Click to see her today.

Erick Coleman and Elliot John-Conry showing how to do a fret job Electric Guitar Setup from their 2006 GAL Convention workshop
by Erick Coleman and Elliot John-Conry

Erick and Elliot show us how to take an electric guitar fret job and action setup to a new level of refinement. Tips and tricks to get it just right.

Fred Lyman restores a American bass fiddle Restoring a “Church Bass” by Frederick C. Lyman
Long-time GAL member and author Fred Lyman restored an early American bass fiddle some years ago. It now resides at Yale University. Fred briefly describes the process, from basket case to museum piece.

James Buckland Meet the Maker: James Buckland by John Calkin
As a Canadian teenager, Jim Buckland was into shredding fusion rock in the basement with his brother and another kid. As he moved through college and post-grad work, his focus moved to making and performing on the 19th-century preclassical guitar. We hear the story of that journey in this issue, plus get a lot of information on guitar history.

Morin Huur by Thomas Johnson Two Tuvan Instruments by Thomas Johnson
Maybe you have seen Tuvan throat singers on PBS, and wondered what was up with those big crazy two-string fiddles they were sawing on. Here’s your answer. We present drawings and brief descriptions of the igil and the morin khuur. We are pleased to offer it as GAL Instrument Plan #60.

CNC macine cutting blind-end slots Fretboard Slotting with a CNC Router by John Svizzero and
R.M. Mottola

In the future, luthiers will have small, affordable robots to accurately slot fretbords and do cool stuff like stop the slot short of the edge to give a self-bound effect. Well, the future is today.

Mountain dulcimers with their tops bound Dulcimer 101 by John Calkin
If you are of the geezerly generation, your first instrument project may well have been a mountain dulcimer. If not, you may never have bothered. Veteran guitar maker John Calkin takes a new look at making the old standby with his characteristically blunt approach, hoping to make it a fun, straightforward, and profitable was to develop guitar-making skills.

The cover of Irving Sloane's book "Classic Guitar Construction" A Survey of Guitar Making Books by Graham McDonald
From the bottom of the globe comes an overview of lutherie how-to texts from Australian maker Graham McDonald. He compares and contrasts the many volumes as he reviews them in chronological order.

Andrew Mowry reviews a spoon plane by Woodcraft Product Reviews by Andrew Mowry
Andrew Mowry loves his cheap little spoon plane. He explains why and tells you where to get it.

Kenny Hill retrofitting a finished guitar with soundports Patrick Fanning tries out the design of a "wedgie" guitar It Worked for Me by Kenny Hill and Patrick Fanning
Kenny Hill drills soundports into beautifully finished guitars. That’s the fun way. Patrick Fanning tries out the design of a “wedgie” guitar in 3D paper before cutting any wood. Prudent.

Bruce Hammond finds some Bohmann Instruments Questions edited by R.M. Mottola
I found some things like cast iron pancake griddles, but they are shaped like guitars. What are they? How hot should side wood be when you bend it? If I make a guitar and donate it to charity, can I take the market value off my taxes?

Lance McCollum memoriam In Memoriam: Lance McCollum by Harvey Leach
Guitar maker Lance McCollum passed away suddenly. His friend Harvey Leach remembers a fine builder and a great guy. Read his memoriam.

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