The Big Red Book of American Lutherie Series

The Big Red Books of American Lutherie are compilations of our respected journal American Lutherie. Each volume of over 500 pages, contains the contents of three years (twelve issues) of American Lutherie, and features articles on a wide variety of topics related to the art, science, and history of lutherie. Meet famous makers, learn to build tools, get detailed insight into building instruments, find info on woods, glues, and finishes, explore the mysteries of acoustical physics, and much more. Every volume in the Big Red Book series also contains many product and book reviews, and dozens of short how-to pieces. Articles are indexed by topic and by author.

Note: The articles by Robert Lundberg on lute construction and history which appeared in American Lutherie #12-38 do not appear in the Big Red Book series, but were revised and expanded to create Lundberg’s definitive book Historical Lute Construction

All volumes in the Big Red Book series share the same quality sewn binding in gold-stamped hard covers, plus topic and author indexes. These books are built to last and built to be used; they will lie open on a workbench.

Big Red Book Volume Seven cover

Volume Seven Topic Index (PDF)

The Big Red Book of American Lutherie
Volume Seven, 2003-2005

From American Lutherie #73–84. Highlights include: Step-by-step archtop mandolin making with MacRostie, Elliott's 1888 Tarrega Torres restoration, Ford & Erlewine through-the-soundhole repair techniques, Klein on guitar design, violin soundhole placement, Fox binding method, access panels, Carlson's unique approach to design, Fleishman on inlay, Brune's concerns of highly successful guitar makers, Greven on decorative guitar heel carving, Doolin's shopmade side bender, Kauffman on carbon fiber, Byers on rosette marquetry, Manuel Reyes, Adirondack spruce, Calkin's shop tips, (including making bridge blanks and lacquer details) classic guitar assembly jig, adjustable saddles, neck duplicating carver, laminated wood use, guitar plate doming geometry, audio spectroscopy, low cost CAD/CNC, lightweight electric bass, Helmholtz resonance, fitting flamenco pegs, domed plates, and adjustable necks for classic guitars. Plus reduced plans of 1888 Torres guitar, 2003 Reyes flamenco guitar, Columbian tiple, hurdy-gurdy, Savart-style upright bass, and 7-string Russian guitar. Meet makers Frank Ford, Steve Grimes, John Greven, Dake Traphagen, Charles Beare, George Morris, Jeffrey Yong, Sue & Ray Mooers of Dusty Strings, Lester DeVoe, Bob Jones, Kathy Matsushita, Jay Hargreaves, and others. Extensive shop tips, product and book reviews, and more.

Hardcover, 568 pages, B&W photos and drawings.
Members $50, Nonmembers $55

Select Price:

Big Red Book of American Lutherie Volume Six Cover

Volume Six Topic Index (PDF)

The Big Red Book of American Lutherie
Volume Six, 2000-2002

From American Lutherie #61–72. Highlights include: flattop voicing with Dana Bourgeois; Monteleone on archtop sound; 19th-century guitars with Gary Southwell; violin making with Paul Schuback; classic peghead V joint with Géza Burghardt; classic guitar panel with Elliott, Byers, Clark, and Southwell; finish prep with Fred Campbell; alternative woods with John Calkin; 1976 Rodríguez Jr. guitar plan; 1869 González Restoration and plan; small shop production with Ralph Novak; step-by-step Spanish rosette with Eugene Clark; Greven’s inlay; and meet David Freeman, Masaru Kohno, Eugene Clark, Rick Turner, Harry Fleishman, Bob Benedetto, Ralph Novak, and others. Plus reviews, dozens of short how-to pieces, and more.

Hardcover, 568 pages, B&W photos and drawings.
Members $50, Nonmembers $55

Select Price:

Top of Page

Big Red Book of American Lutherie Volume Five Cover

Volume Five Topic Index (PDF)

The Big Red Book of American Lutherie
Volume Five, 1997-1999

From American Lutherie #49-60. Highlights include: building sound in classic guitars with Jeffrey Elliott; Jimmy D'Aquisto's archtop guitar design evolution; Joseph Curtin updates the viola; French polishing with Eugene Clark; making compensated saddles; resetting a neck with Jeff Traugott; violin scroll carving with Guy Rabut; using hide glue; modern mandolin family; Frank Ford's fretting process; restoration of Barrios' Simplicio guitar; wood identification; detailed step-by-step guitar making tutorials with Charles Fox (flattop), Boaz Elkayam (Kasha/Schneider style), Rene Baarslag (classical), and Tom Ribbecke (archtop); detailed drawings of Martin uke, Barbero flamenco guitar, concert zither, and travel guitar; Michael Darnton's Violin Q&A series; and meet Augie LoPrinzi, Bonnie Carol, David "Kawika" Hurd, David Gusset, Fred Carlson, Gary Southwell, Grit Laskin, Judy Threet, Hermann Hauser III, Joseph Curtin, Paul Jacobson, Joshia de Jonge, Kent Everett, Linda Manzer, Michael Hornick, Paul McGill, Huss&Dalton, R.E. Brune, Shelley Park, and Steve Kauffman.

Hardcover, 524 pages, B&W photos and drawings.
Members $45, Nonmembers $50.

Select Price:

Top of Page


Big Red Book of American Lutherie Volume Four Cover

Volume Four Topic Index (PDF)

The Big Red Book of American Lutherie
Volume Four, 1994-1996

From American Lutherie #37-48. Highlights include Jimmy D'Aquisto’s archtop guitar construction; Bryan Galloup resets a neck; Robert Ruck on tailoring classic guitar sound; Dan Erlewine on vintage Fender finishing; hammered dulcimer making; Felix Manzanero's antique guitar collection; Guy Rabut's innovative violin design; flattop guitar manufacturers' forum with Collings, Ferguson, Hoover, Larrivee, and Taylor; Making Baroque guitars with Lawrence K. Brown; Neapolitan mandolin by Robert Lundberg; lattice bracing; classic guitar intonation; flattop guitar brace shaving; detailed drawings of Martin tiple, Segovia’s 1912 Ramirez, Hammered dulcimer, and English treble gamba; Michael Darnton's Violin Q&A series; Rick Turner’s Electronic Answer Man column; and meet makers Nick Kukich, Eric Meyer, Bishop Cochran, Henry Strobel, Leo Fender and Doc Kaufman, Jim Williams, Jess Wells, Manuel Velazquez, Michael Gurian, Saul Koll, Geoff Stelling, Marc Silber, and John Mello.

Hardcover, 524 pages, B&W photos and drawings.
Members $45, Nonmembers $50.

Select Price:

Top of Page


Big Red Book of American Lutherie Volume Three Cover

Volume Three Topic Index (PDF)

The Big Red Book of American Lutherie
Volume Three, 1991-1993

From American Lutherie #25-36. Highlights include Jean Larrivee on steel string guitars; Carruth on free-plate tuning; Warmoth guitar factory tour; Al Stancel on violin pegbox repair; organizing work space with Elliott, Somogyi, Brune, Brandt, Schneider, and Wilson; Taylor factory tour; Selmer guitars; harp guitars, old and new; graphite guitars; North American softwoods; Gibson factory tour; Brune restores a Torres guitar; Geary Baese on the finish of the Rawlins Strad guitar; Jeffrey Elliott replaces a guitar top; Michael Darnton on violin setup; alternative lutherie woods; finishing to hide repair work by Dan Erlewine; guitar dynamics and design by Somogyi; Hardanger fiddle by David Golber; detailed drawings of 1973 Romanillos guitar, prima gusli, Dyer harp guitar, Segovia’s 1937 Hauser, Klein harp guitar, kabosy, and 1816 Martinez guitar; and meet makers Dan Erlewine, George Gorodnitsky, Donald Warnock, Herb David, Hideo Kamimoto, Michael Darnton, Maurice Dupont, Richard Schneider, Ren Ferguson, H.E. Huttig, Guy Rabut, Michael Sanden, Tom Ribbecke, and Ervin Somogyi.

Hardcover, 524 pages, B&W photos and drawings.
Members $45, Nonmembers $50.

Select Price:
 

Top of Page


Big Red Book of American Lutherie Volume Two Cover

Volume Two Topic Index (PDF)

The Big Red Book of American Lutherie
Volume Two, 1988-1990

From American Lutherie #13-24. Highlights include voicing the steel string guitar by Dana Bourgeois; making mandolins with Steve Andersen; W.D. Allen on air resonance; Larrivee factory tour; Al Stancel on violin cracks; French polishing with Burton, Byers, Steinegger, and Vineyard; string bass design by Fred Lyman; pickup design by Tim Shaw; lute making by Lawrence D. Brown; small-shop lutherie in Japan; fretted dulcimer design by Bonnie Carol; guitar acoustics by Tom Rossing; the Strad mystique; violin varnish by Geary Baese; new classical guitar family; mandolin orchestra history; folk harp design by R.L. Robinson; D’Addarrio strings tour; a new mandolin family; violin varnish by Michael Darnton; American patent zithers; detailed drawings of D’Angelico New Yorker, prima balalaika, Loar F-5 mandolin, hammered dulcimer, Baroque guitar, low-cost double bass, and Irish bouzouki; and meet makers Manuel Davila, Robert Lundberg, Hammond Ashley, H.E. Huttig, Hermann Hauser II, Victor Gardener, Fred Lyman, Les Paul, Frank "Andy" Johnson, Ralph Rabin, Stewart Pollens, Dana Bourgeois, Hartley Peavey, and Ivo Pires.

Hardcover, 524 pages, B&W photos and drawings.
Members $45, Nonmembers $50.

Select Price:

Top of Page

Big Red Book of American Lutherie Volume One Cover

Volume One Topic Index (PDF)

The Big Red Book of American Lutherie
Volume One, 1985-1987

From American Lutherie #1-12. Includes the Hauser tradition by Jeffrey Elliott; violin sound physics by Carleen Hutchins; pearl inlay by David Nichols; air resonance by W.D. Allen; tuning violin plates by Keith Hill; the business of lutherie with Gruhn, Klein, Lundberg, Krimmel, Brune, Meltz, Grimes, Davis, and Umanov; guitar sound physics by Caldersmith; rosewoods by John Jordan; Ramirez workshop by William Tapia; the Dobro by Bobby Wolfe; guitar frets by Roger Sadowsky; violin acoustics by George Bissinger; Paisley Tele by Dave Schneider; epoxy by Paul Jacobson; vihuela and viola da mano by John Rollins; evolution of the hammered dulcimer by Sam Rizzetta; temperaments by Edward Kottick; bracing and guitar resonance by J. and O. Jovicic; thoughts on new guitar designs by Steve Klein, Gila Eban, and Fred Carlson; flattop bass design thoughts by Harry Fleishman, Tim Olsen, Richard Ennis, Bill McCaw, and David Freeman; detailed drawings of 1918 Martin 1-18, 1932 Martin C-3, Kamanche, Kasha guitar soundboard, 1943 Hauser Sr. classical guitar, flattop bass, tar, modified F-3 mandolin, and sami-sen; and meet makers C.F. Martin III, C.F. Martin IV, Manuel Velazquez, William Del Pilar, John Monteleone, Paul Schuback, Harvey Thomas, Jeffrey Elliott, and Robert Steinegger.

Hardcover, 524 pages, B&W photos and drawings.
Members $45, Nonmembers $50.

Select Price:
 

Top of Page