Some time ago my wife purchased a voucher from my local guitar shop which entitled me to a tune-up of my guitar. So, as painful as it was to be parted from my beloved Epiphone Les Paul, I dropped it into the guitar shop one Saturday afternoon and was told I could pick it up the following week. Now the anxiety of leaving my guitar in another man’s hands made me determined to take on some of the more simple guitar repair tasks for myself. To that end I scoured the book shops for the best guitar repair guide and I think I have found a pretty good one.
For those of you who are curious when I actually picked up my guitar the following week the difference was amazing. It was like I was handed a completely different guitar, it was so much easier to play and sounded a hell of a lot better. The bridge had been properly set-up, the action had been sorted and the fretboard had been cleaned up. I have to say it was well worth the money, unfortunately it wasn’t cheap and it is not something I can afford to do on a regular basis. But it just goes to show what can be done with a guitar when you know what you are doing.
Now I had a quick chat with the guy who had worked on my guitar and he said that much of what he had done could be carried out quite easily as long as you had the right tools and knew what you were doing. In fact he said that I should grab a good guitar repair guide and give it a go. However, he did suggest that I didn’t attempt to learn the basics of guitar luthering on an expensive guitar but instead look to get a cheap budget guitar and practice on that instead. He actually recommended getting a build it yourself guitar kit as you would have to learn some of the basic skills to put the kit together. So that is what I have done and you can find out more details on my guitar building adventures by reading my article on build your own guitar kits.
This leads me onto the topic of this article – finding a good guitar repair guide.
If you look on Amazon there are a whole host of books on guitar repair but after reading a few reviews I decided on the Guitar Player Repair Guide by Dan Erlewine. So why did I chose this guitar repair guide over the others? Essentially it look to be the most comprehensive and had the most positive reviews.
So what is so good about the Guitar Player Repair Guide and what qualifies Dan Erlewine as an expert on guitar repair?
Well lets start with the author. Dan Erlewine is a widely respected guitar repairman and builder who has earned a huge number of accolades from professional guitarists and fellow guitar luthers. He has repaired and built guitars for some of the worlds greatest guitarists for example he built “Lucy” for blues guitarist Albert King. So you could argue that he probably knows a thing or two about the art of guitar repair and is perhaps qualified to write a book on the subject.
But what about the guitar repair guide that he has written, is it any good?
The simple answer is yes, this is a comprehensive guitar repair guide containing, as it does, pretty much all you would need to know on the subject of guitar repair. The book breaks the guitar up into sections so you have chapters on basic guitar set-up, neck evaluation and adjustment, fret and fretboard repair, guitar electronics and how to set-up and repair a guitar bridge. It details the basics but also covers topics in more depth so that if, for example, you want to build your own guitar there is sufficient information and detail to allow you to do so. I particularly appreciated the chapters on care of the guitar body and paintwork repairs. There are detailed chapters on guitar electronics with wiring diagrams for just about any guitar pick-up and switching combination you could imagine. Dan even includes a comprehensive section on how to wind your own pick-ups should you chose to do so. The book is written in a very chatty style and there are great interviews and tips with guitar players and other guitar luthers that Dan has worked with throughout his career. The version I purchased also included a DVD which covers topics such as evaluating a guitar before you buy it and how to set your own intonation. All in all this is a great and extremely comprehensive guitar repair guide. I think that it would be a welcome addition to the library of those who are just wanting to find out a bit more about how to look after their guitar through to the more experienced guitar luther.
To find out more about this great guitar repair guide and find the best price click on the link below.