Dickey Guitars
In the handmade tradition. One at a time.  Just for you.
Visit the Shop
Jigs and Tools / Luthier, click here.
Other Links Below.
Click on images to enlarge.
The workshop is the craftsman's most important asset.  Equipment
to do the various jobs efficiently allow more work to be done in
shorter amount of time, and more accurately.  Bandsaws, routers,
and sanders of all types have found their way into the modern
guitarmaker's workshop.  
Please take a walk through the shop
with me and allow me to show you some of my work and, of course,
the workshop.
The central workbench sees many different operations in the small shop.  Left - Here a D96 Scaled Dred Not!
gets it's tail wedge trim.  This particular guitar is a high quality set of Western Big Leaf Maple from Vancouver,
British Columbia, Canada.  Woods for guitars are sourced from all around the world.  
To the left, on the floor
is a simple
wood bending form which incorporates two heating sources, incandescent lamps internally and a
space-age silicone heating blanket in near direct contact with the guitar side as temperatures range close to
300 degrees F.
Right above - On the workbench, a guitar body with newly installed bindings and purfling trim for both
protection of the edges and for decoration to the instrument.  The neck is shaped with a trial run of the tuners.  
Soon after it is completely sanded, this guitar will begin to go through a detailed process to provide a quality
durable finish.
Left - Hand operations such as
tapering brace ends, are fun
and fast.  A chisel sharpened
to a polished reflective surface
trims spruce with ease.  
Shaping braces, while fun, is
actually very important to the
final sound of the instrument.  
Nothing is more important than
a well planned and tuned set of
top braces.
Left - Here a new side bender
begins to heat a premium set of
Indian Rosewood sides.  Building
many jigs and forms are just part
of the guitarmaker's job.  They are
available commercially, but many
prefer to build their own.  Silicone
heat blankets, plus as you see in
this picture, two 200 watt bulbs
internally quickly bring the fine
wood to temp for bending.
Left - Okay, my shop is in a
heavy industrialized area
laden with smog.  Nah, just
kidding.  Outside are the
great Ozark Foothills.  The
shop is tacked on a hillside
overlooking the valley
below.  Dogwoods dot the
landscape and squirrels
and birds are frequent
visitors.
Left - A really nice bandsaw can be found in
many guitarmaker's shop.  They are used for
resawing timbers into thin tonewoods which
are further thinned by either drum sanders or
widebelt sanders to reach close tolerances.  The
drum sander seen in this photo, thins sides,
backs and tops for the guitar.  It is also quite
handy at other jobs like abrasive planing neck
blanks, sizing bracestock, and for me, I edge my
backgraft at an angle using a jig which can sand
enough for six guitars at once.
Left - Many builders have constructed their
own shops.  I did too.  I hired a good friend and
my oldest son to work one summer framing this
small shop.  We hand dug, formed, and poured
the foundation.  We toted 400 concrete blocks
down a macheted path to the site, below my
home on the hillside.  We carried 125 bags of
cement and masonry mix and mixed it all in a
small electric mixer.  It's finished now, the hot,
sweaty summer a distant memory.  Now I get to
enjoy the heated and air-conditioned comfort of
my workshop.
Left - Storage, is there ever
enough?  I saw Jim Olson's
shelf like this one in my shop.  
He had twenty-seven bodies
lining his shelf.  Not near that
many here.  Well, thanks for
taking the tour.  There is
more, finishing, my big old
buffer, the spray booth.  That
will have to come along a little
later.  
Copyright 2004 - 2011 Dickey Guitars
All Rights Reserved
Jigs and Tools of the Luthier
Bi-Flex Linings for Rims
Chisels for Luthiers
Home
Side Bender
Finishing Buffer
Shop Electrical Requirements
Florentine Cutaway Gluing Jig
X-Brace Slotting Jig
Planing with a Router
Template for Brace Placement
Luthier's Prayer