The Secret is Out…

Last winter I tried an odd experiment: a website where players were encouraged to post their best tone secrets — the kinds of tricks and techniques that are almost too good to share. But in order to get, you had to give: The site was password-protected, and the password was only sent to […]

A Really Basic Pickup Install Tutorial

I always forget — which end is the hot part?

Somewhat embarrassingly, I never got around to changing one of my own pickups until I was knocking on senility’s door recently. I owe part of the inspiration to that fabulous DIY Fest known as the Maker Fair, where each year […]

A Cheap Archtop Upgrade!

Sounds like MONEY!

I’ve said it so many times, I feel like the parrot of pickups, but here goes again: These days the weakest links on inexpensive Asian and Mexican guitars are invariably the pickups. Upgrading them often yields a princely axe at a pauperly price.

A perfect example is the […]

How to Install Onboard Effects

UPDATE: I’ve added a page listing all the “How To” posts on this site. Just click the cleverly titled How-To Posts Are Here! box at upper-right of each page.

There’s got to be a better way!

Several readers asked for more specific tech advice on how to wire […]

Hello Kitty Strat: Not for Pussies!

Would this be anything less than awesome? I think not.

As I gloated last week, Jane Weidlin gave me her Hello Kitty Stratocaster — the most bitchin’ $99 guitar ever conceived! I finally had a chance to destroy/customize it yesterday, in what will no doubt be the first of many […]

DIY Guitar Picks?

Borders went bankrupt. Now what the heck am I supposed to do with this pretty red card?

Behold my latest gizmo acquisition: the mighty Pick Punch!

It may look like a humble office stapler, but it stamps out standard-sized guitar picks from any compatible material.

I made picks from an old […]

“Vintage” Les Paul Wiring: BS or BFD?

Which sounds better: modern or vintage wiring? The experts disagree!

There’s a wealth of information online about the relative merits of “vintage” vs. “modern” wiring in Les Pauls. And after reading page after page on the topic, I was more confused than when I started. So here’s an attempt to […]

“Nashville” Tele Wiring . . . in a Strat?!

What do you get when you cross . . .

I’ve been coveting one of those “Nashville-Style” Telecasters — you know, the hot-rodded, three-pickup versions popularized by Nashville session superhero Brent Mason, and now a regular Fender production model.

Then it dawned on me: Since some of Mongrel Strats […]

A Cool Alternative Tone Control for Bass

Looks vintage, but it ain't.

After auditioning so many different tone-control schemes over the course of the Mongrel Strat Project, I wound up with more tone circuits than I have Strats, so I figured I’d victimize a bass — specifically, a 1954 Fender P-Bass reissue with a Seymour Duncan […]

PRINT Your Own Guitar Parts?!

Yes, it's bad Photoshop. You can't REALLY print a guitar at home . . . not quite yet, anyway.

UPDATE: Check out the comments, where reader J links to videos of a 3D-printed guitar and violin.It’s cool and INTENSE.

Last weekend I got to enjoy one of my […]