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Build Your Own Guitar

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If you would like to build your own guitar, try building a lap steel guitar. A lap steel guitar has strings raised by using a nut. This guitar is placed in your lap and played with a small bar of steel. If you prefer standing then the lap guitar can be played by hanging it around your neck with long straps. It can even be mounted on a stand. These lap guitars usually have a square neck but any guitar can be played like a steel lap guitar. Lap guitars are often set to an open tuning, such as open G or open E.

When you decide to build your own guitar, you will need to know which parts you will need. The neck for your lap steel guitar will need to be square, making your job much easier as you will not need to round out the neck. Lap steel guitars do not need fretboards. If you'd like, you can add fret marks with paint. If you do decide to add a fretboard, you can leave this flat. Necks on the steel lap guitar can also be left flat. There is no need to round out these parts since you will not be holding it.

These guitars offer a special sound making frets unnecessary. Using a slide will help you achieve the special sound that steel lap guitars offer. When the strings are help up by a nut, they will not touch the fretboard. When you build your own guitar the strings should be 10mm thick and run at least 13/32" above the fretboard. What is known as "fret buzzes" will not happen with a lap steel guitar. To set the intonation on a lap steel guitar you will set the string saddles further back on the bridge. This is a great way to start out learning to build your own guitar. Once you've built a lap steel guitar, you will be on your way to all types of guitar building.

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