I appreciate the need for assembly line work, and for those who have the patience for it. But I learned this past week that it is not for me.
The annual Art Center Holiday Fair is around the corner and they asked that I once again participate, to the tune of displaying for sale, fifteen guitars.
Cruising around my shop and basement rec room, I discovered that I didn't have that many guitars that I wanted to part with. I've given a bunch away and sold others, so I had to get my butt moving.
I needed to build five guitars in one week, which under normal circumstances would take me about four weeks . . . design necks, headstocks, bodies . . . round up parts . . . measure, cut, slot fingerboards for frets, drill, sand, glue, sand more, apply finish, and install hardware . . . tune, and finally make sure they play well.
"How in hell am I going to do this", I asked myself? Myself said, "Well, I guess it's time to try the assembly line venture that so many of the guys I know are able to accomplish."
I scratched my head until it bled. This isn't how I do things. But, I don't have a choice, I spent too much time recently doing fun stuff, like building a case for Roger, carving six-string guitars, and playing with my new pickup winder.
Got my crap together, literally and figuratively, and away I went --- same neck designs; fret slots cut directly into the necks; same style frets and tuners; same design for nuts, saddles and bridges; similar style cigar boxes.
When the dust settled, I had created five really cool three-string guitars.
I'm happy with the results of the effort, and I will price them to sell at the art fair, because they really are cool.
But, the assembly line routine is not for me. I don't have the desire nor patience for stuffing round pegs in square holes. And, I cannot, for the life of me, come to understand how the other guys do it. But, I've seen some of the 'fast track' creations and they're not what I will ever turn out of my shed.