JSA Cigar Box Guitar S3 – Homemade, Space-saving 1/4″ Output Jack for Guitar

Recently, I ran into a problem with one of my builds. I was working on a three-stringed guitar that I call “The Stick.” It was a 1×2 maple neck/body that wasn’t going to be attached to anything—just the stick with a 1/4″x2″ oak cover plate over the back of the electronics.

On this build, placement of the 1/4″ output jack required a bit more consideration than usual. The endpin jack that I usually use didn’t work with the thickness of the maple neck/body and if located at the end of guitar, it would reduce the stability of the tuning machines by a factor of one center screw.

A store bought 1/4″ jack requires about 5/8″ to 3/4″ of interior space then necessitates that one find something small enough to fit within the confines of the neck/body and cover plate, but large enough to cover the hole.

With these parameters in mind, I decided to make my own 1/4″ output jack. After making and testing a prototype made from spare parts on my bench, I found that a workable 1/4″ jack can be made from a 5/16″ tee nut, a picture hanger and some electrical tape (preferably 1/2″).

For step-by-step instructions regarding how to build the more compact, homemade 1/4″ jack, follow this link:

https://wp.me/P3WRqw-PP

For photos and build notes related to the subject guitar build, follow this link:

https://wp.me/P3WRqw-PK

Here is a quick and dirty video that demonstrates the homemade 1/4″ guitar jack in action:

Thanks,

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“The Stick” Streamlined Electric Guitar

No box, no plate, no bowl, no cap—only the stick. I wanted to deliver a project with a purely minimalistic design and using a neck stick without the fanfare of having something to attach it to seemed like the way to go.

Due to the dimensions of this guitar, a traditional 1/4″ output jack was not an option; therefore, I constructed a smaller 1/4″ jack from hardware store parts.

For photos and build notes related to the subject guitar build, follow this link:

https://wp.me/P3WRqw-PK

For step-by-step instructions regarding how to build the more compact, homemade 1/4″ jack, follow this link:

https://wp.me/P3WRqw-PK

For a quick and dirty video, follow this link:

Thanks,

No Parking—6 Foot Signpost Resonator Guitar

There an interesting origin for this instrument; the idea actually came to me while I was playing Bowmasters with my son. Bowmasters is an app where opponents try to strike or impale each other with various items. One of the characters throws a sign as seen below:

For some reason this struck me as an excellent idea for a guitar so…I made a six-foot guitar. This resonator guitar has two selectable pickups, one that has a clean sound and another that transfers the grit from the sign.

Follow this link to the official project page for additional photos and build notes:

https://wp.me/P3WRqw-Mz

Thanks,

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“TSA Certified” SlipStick Carry-on Electric Steel Guitar

Well…this steel guitar is not actually TSA Certified, but at a length of 20-3/4 inches it does fit diagonally in a carry-on suitcase. I had built the first incarnation of this steel guitar a few years back when I had to go on a business trip and wanted an instrument to take along. I was only taking a carry-on so it had to be small enough to fit inside—it turned out to be a perfect fit.

Follow this link to the official project page for additional photos and build notes:

https://wp.me/P3WRqw-NH

Thanks,

JSA S2 – Produce Better Sounding Guitar Videos Using Your Phone

JSA S2 – Better Video Demonstrations – Audio Clarity with Less Noise

Understandably, this is not technically a “building” suggestion, but presentation quality is just as important as build quality. You can build the most awesome sounding guitar ever, no one will ever know if you can’t properly represent the audio.

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Currently, I’m using the iRig Recorder app along with the iRig Guitar Interface from IK Multimedia. The cost comes in under $20 for both items and each is readily available at the App Store and on eBay respectively.

Here’s a video that I recorded using iRig Recorder. Please excuse the sloppy playing, but notice the clean signal to noise ratio. It’s not a bad audio recording for being recorded with an app on an iPhone. Enjoy!

Click on this link for a full tutorial on how to set up and use this iRig app and interface:

https://wp.me/P3WRqw-IY

Thanks,

junkshopaudio.com

 

Duct Tape Hardshell Coffin Guitar Case

A couple of years ago I built an acoustic guitar case, constructed entirely of cardboard and duct tape. Since completing that project, I have wanted to make a new case for transporting my parlor-sized guitars.

I didn’t want to complete that exact same project, so I drew inspiration from my favorite case from the 90’s, The Coffin Case, which had a red interior and black exterior much like my previous duct tape acoustic guitar case.

My version of the coffin case is constructed similar to the previous case but has interior dimensions made to house a parlor guitar. This case is a bit smaller than the previous case, so it only required six rolls of duct tape, one large 2-ply box, and a length of chain.

Follow the link below for more images and descriptions:

https://junkshopaudio.com/duct-tape-coffin-case-for-parlor-guitars/

Thanks,

Better Bolt Bridges – Left-handed Thread Rod

Better Bolt Bridges – Left-handed Thread Rod

I had been struggling with keeping my floating bolt bridges in place for proper intonation. I would set the bridge perfectly, as pictured below:

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However, over time, the vibration of the strings would eventually turn the bolt, thus throwing my guitar out of tune, as pictured below:

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If you look at the first picture, you can see that the orientation of the string is strained as it fights to stay in one of the thread slots. The force that the string places on the bolt naturally moves the bolt into a position where the string sits comfortably within a thread slot.

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Even bolt bridges that are mounted into a slot suffer difficulties. However, since the bolt can not turn to orientate the threads with the strings, they are more prone to slipping into another thread slot, which leads to intonation and string spacing problems. Plus, a string sitting on top of threads allows less usable surface area than a string seated within a thread slot.

The solution showed up on my doorstep yesterday morning. I had been trying the figure this out when I recalled that, in my warehouse days, contractors would request left-handed thread rod for certain jobs. I looked around and found 3/8 left-handed steel rod at Fastenal for $26.87, plus shipping, which seems pricey, but I can cut about 36 2″ floating/fixed bridges for $1.08 each.

This is the direct link to the rod that I purchased:   https://www.fastenal.com/products/details/47304

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Here is the result. As you can see in the image below, the floating bolt bridge is once again in tune; however, this time the strings will not cause the bolt to turn because the strings are now seated comfortably within the thread slots.

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Tragedy averted—now I just have to find some left-handed brass rod.

Thanks,

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https://www.junkshopaudio.com