Thursday, September 27, 2007

Starting to build a guitar made entirely out of wood framing studs from my house.

We are currently adding on to our house. Our house was built in 1956. So, I had this crazy idea to use the discarded framing studs from the demolition. My contractor brought it to my attention that the studs were from a 100 year old tree..in '56. The wood is stamped D.Fir., which I assume is douglas fir. From just one cross section of 2x4, you can count at least 78 tight growth rings. Roy (contractor) said that these studs were made from slow growth trees and that this practice no longer exists in todays construction industry.

So, since I've read why old 1940's, 50's and 60's Fender guitars were so good was due to the wood used. I've read about the wood is better because of slower growth lumber, less contaminant (growth in cleaner air, less smog), and being very well dried out. When finished, this should sound very warm without any shrill high end. The whole guitar wood will be made using only the 100+ year old studs.

I'm toying with the idea of making another with todays modern wood studs....which usually have about 12 growth rings to one stud. That way I could do a comparison of the two guitars.

This guitar will be lightly sealed to prevent choking the resonance. I'll keep you posted.

Monday, September 24, 2007

Slacktone: Just before the end of Summer.

This is my buddy Dave Wronski (fiesta red Jaguar guitar and sunglasses). Dave's band is called Slacktone. By day, Dave assembles guitars at the Fender factory in Corona. Dave is a madman and is the master of surf guitar. Check the Slacktone website for future dates. Dusty Watson is his drummer, who sometimes helps out Dick Dale tours. Enjoy. Coffin CloserTidal Wave.

Saturday, September 22, 2007

Libby scored 2 goals today!

Man what a little powerhouse. It was pouring down rain and she still made two goals. Libby is #8 (with pigtails). Libby comes into frame right when the green player falls down and Libby comes out of nowhere and kicks the ball into the net. I was not quick enough to catch that shot.

The StewMade "Longboard" surfboard guitar.

I finally finished this guitar about 3 months ago. Great sustain and a nice feel. It's hollow inside like a Thinline but no f hole (holes that you see on violins). Features are:
- Sperzel tuners (locking)
- Bone nut
- Callaham bridge
- Lollar "Blackface/Special" pickups (neck and middle: Blackface, bridge: Special)
- Hollow alder body with contour heel as well as body comfort contours
- 1 11/16" wide neck
- Small "C" shaped neck with indian rosewood fingerboard and abalone inlays
- Custom engraved neckplate.
- 6 lbs

Thursday, September 20, 2007

Stew's Influence Spotlight: Larry Carlton

Larry has been a great influence on my playing as far as how to approach music. Here he is in Tokyo this year with Robben Ford. I've seen Larry play live twice and met him once at the Riverside Auditorium around 1993. Great guy.

Wednesday, September 19, 2007

These Are My People (???)



Yeah so you'll find many like these at any local Scottish Games/Highland Gatherings. These "gatherings" consist of many Scottish activities, like the caber toss (throwing a large telephone pole across a field), highland dancing, mass pipe bands (about 10 full bagpipe bands playing Amazing Grace in sync), bagpiper competition, fiddling competition, pipe drum major competitions and border collie demostrations. There are also many Scottish imported goods you can purchase as well as "bangers" (large sausage grilled with onions and placed in a hot dot bun), meat pies (a very bland pot pie), and plenty of New Castle Ale. Only problem is they serve the ale cold....American style. The proper Scottish way is at room temerature.

I was involved in the bagpipe competition in 1983. I was being judged by the real deal from various Scottish Regiments buy men named Ian, Angus, and Nigel. Out of 12 in my age catagory, I placed 6th. Not bad for only playing one year at that time.

Costa Mesa has their annual Scottish Games at the Costa Mesa Fairgrounds every Memorial Day weekend (Saturday and Sunday only). They have church service on Sundays with a full pipe band. It's awesome.

Tuesday, September 18, 2007

Soccer Season Begins!

Libby is starting her 5th season in soccer. So far their team has won 2 out of 2 games.


Libby about to turn the ball around.

Saturday, September 15, 2007

Allison has started playing guitar.

We bought her a guitar 3 years ago for Christmas. She sort of played it a little. I started showing her about 4 chords and she got bored really fast. Now she's interested in Taylor Swift and decided to start learning on her own. She now looks up tablature and guitar music so she knows like 5 songs including 2 she has written herself already. It's been 3 weeks now and she can also sing along.

Being a musician myself, I've never really pushed her into music. Only because once she started everyone would think that I had put her up to playing. But no, she's doing this all on her own and now I just occasionally get asked about certain chord finger placement. I'm such a proud Dad.

Friday, September 14, 2007

Welcome to Stew's Clues!

I'm finally stepping up into blogdom. More clues to come.