Jungle Guitars - Guitar Building School in Goa, India
- Nov 14, 2010
- in Guitar Kit Builder - Acoustic Guitars
If you've checked out the "Classes & Events" section of Guitar Kit Builder you may have noticed a school called Jungle Guitars located in Goa, India. Goa is located in southwestern India on the coast of the Arabian sea. It is renowned for its beaches and is visited by large numbers of tourists each year.
The workshop is a 3-minute walk from Baga beach and is set in a jungle surrounding. The workshop is conducted outdoors in a shaded setting with occasional sea breezes coming through, making it a great setting to combine a vacation with a guitar-building class Jungle Guitar's workshops run for 15 to 20 days to build your own classical or steel string guitar. You'll work on your guitar for 5 or six hours a day, leaving plenty of time to relax and enjoy the white sand beaches.
The workshop is given October through April, closing down for the monsoon season of June through August. The cost is 55,000 Indian Rupees which is about $1200, and includes all materials, strings, tuning machines and a guitar case.
The workshops are run by Chris Horton, an English wood artist, who teaches how to build guitars. He built the workshop in his backyard under mango trees and even teaches people with two "left hands" how to build their own design guitar. Chis' attitude is "If you have the time – there is time, take it easy, there is no need to cry, if we mess up – we start again...simple." There is a kind of minimalist approach to the way the workshop operates. This has a lot to do with the nature of the place. India is a country full of craftsmen and the beauty and precision of what they can create with little more than a Chisel has been an inspiration for many. Because of this, most tools used are simple hand tools. This helps to create a truly individual guitar, which imparts the character of the builder through direct transformation of energy into the wood. There are also power tools available for use such as belt sanders, jigsaws and routers.
Here's a video overview of the program:
The schedule involves two main aspects of the guitar building process being completed each day – from bending sides to designing your own rosette. Being in India it makes sense to use wood of Indian origin & seeing as Indian rosewood is one of the most sought after tonewoods for guitars, it is this used for the back and sides, fingerboards and bridges. All backs and sides are book matched and thinned to approximate thickness. Sound boards use bookmatched spruce, pine or cedar imported usually from Europe or Canada. Some himachal pine (Himalayan)is also available. Necks are made from mahogany. Check out the Jungle Guitar website for more details and to see some of the student reviews, such as: