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Handmade Music Factory Paperback – 7 Mar 2012


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Product details

  • Paperback: 160 pages
  • Publisher: Fox Chapel (7 Mar. 2012)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1565235592
  • ISBN-13: 978-1565235595
  • Product Dimensions: 21.7 x 1.5 x 27.6 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (15 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 169,772 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

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Product Description

Review

This book is different from the usual fare reviewed here, but its premise is instantly intriguing. Handmade Music Factory offers step-by-step directions for making a wide variety of musical instruments from ordinary and quirky components-including a license plate, an antique metal cigar box, or a hubcap. Most of the instruments discussed are either plucked-string instruments or percussive instruments (as wind and bowed-string instruments are less forgiving of imprecise components). The directions are detailed and well-illustrated. For any handmade instruments which require or have an option for electronic amplification, detailed directions are given, accompanied by well-photographed examples. An appendix gives detailed illustrations and patterns for proper fretboard spacing. One note for Kindle readers: Every page of the book is illustrated, with text overlaying the graphics. Since the book would be of little value without the graphics, the Kindle edition offers each page in graphic format. Since this would result in impossibly tiny text in portrait mode, the pages are flipped 90 into landscape mode, and split into two sections. This can make following text on two-column pages complicated, requiring flipping forward, back, then forward again to complete the page. Also, many can comfortably hold a six-inch Kindle in a single hand in the normal (portrait) orientation; Kindles are surprisingly awkward when held sideways (landscape!) One final Kindle-specific note. This is likely not an issue on the larger 9-inch Kindle, but on the standard 6-inch model, even in landscape mode, the text is uncomfortably small. All factors considered, if this is a book you plan to purchase, skip the ebook version and go with a physical copy. This book has much of value to a Christian homeschooling audience, but would require several edits. Two handmade guitars involving bedpans as resonators are given names playing off of words not used in polite company. Each name is mentioned two or three times. There is also a (positive) reference to "mojo," and a reference to those who make their own instruments as "subversive." With those caveats duly noted, the remainder of the book would provide a homeschooler who is both musically inclined and has decent craftsmanship skills with hours of fascinating and invigorating challenges. This book came so close to a perfect Biblical Bookshelf rating, but ultimately fell a few words short. It receives three stars.

About the Author

Mike Orr is a professional carpenter and owner of Built2Last Guitars. He has designed, built and sold hundreds of instruments. The highlight of his career was when guitar legend Robert Randolph played one of his guitars in front of a live audience. When he is not in the shop, Mike can usually be found touring the music festival circuit in his VW van.

Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By S Shield on 5 Jun. 2013
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This book is well thought out with great illustrations everything you need to start building your own classic home made instruments. The quality of your build is up to you but even the most basic will sound good because it is different and unique.
A great read as well as very practical with many references and links to a world of music that anyone can attain to in a few hours with a bit of ingenuity.
The full scale fret board pages that can be photocopied for setting out your guitar neck are particularly helpful.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By A D. Pate on 15 July 2012
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Of all of the books that I've read about the topic (quite a few), this one is by far the best. If you want to begin making your own instruments, then this is by far the best place to start. I bought it so I could learn how to make a decent cigar box guitar and the book explains how to do that with easy to follow instructions and detailed colour photographs. It also instructs you on how to make many other instruments, from a simple stomp box to a make shift double bass. Great book.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By zulu094simon on 2 Feb. 2013
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If you purchase and use this book in the spirit that Mike Orr wrote it, to enjoy both creating and playing cheap / enjoyable musical instruments then your money will be well spent. You don't have to be a expert luthier, or one at all, to benefit from this book, its all very simple, very well explained and user friendly etc.

It proves you can have as much fun from instruments made from off cuts and junk as you can from a £1,000 plus one from a shop (albeit the sound will not be as good!!!).

It's worth remembering, many of the original great `blues' players started on similar instruments. I already made a good selection of cbg's and been thrilled with them all.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By snerper on 16 Feb. 2014
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This book is my guitar making bible. The information is top drawer stuff and everything is pure knowledge for the learner. Can't recommend it enough!
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By norman warner on 6 May 2014
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Great book ! Already made a stomp box, I am now getting parts together to build my first cigar box project.. the way the book is layed out , and the simple way things are explained makes all the projects seem very do.able
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I had already made a couple of CBG's before I bought this book. Making the first one from a kit and very helpful DVD from EBay gave me the courage to build some more recognisable electric guitars.
However, this book had rekindled my enthusiasm for CBG's and other slide instruments. I am already obsessed with junk shops looking for raw materials.
Mike's instructions for all kinds of CBG's are excellent, but there are also many photographs of instruments which can't help to turn anyone with a slight interest into a fanatic. BEWARE................ I will start a UK chapter of CBG Builders Anonymous.
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By Midge on 29 Mar. 2013
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So glad I bought this book it is packed from cover to cover with inspiration. Since I received it a couple of weeks ago I have been collecting the component parts for my first cigar box guitar and can't wait to get started. I'm going to start with a 3 string fretless version as these seem to be the way to go for beginners like me with little or zero woodwork skills. Plenty of how to's on building and playing these instruments on You Tube which in turn led me to a whole community of Cigar Box Guitar makers and players. INSPIRATIONAL.
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By Atlas on 18 Mar. 2013
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I am very glad I bought this book. It gives good descriptions of how to build various instruments with lots of photo illustrations of the processes involved. After buying this book, I built a cigar box ukulele, and will be building other instruments including a stomp box with confidence. Good details given re how to wire up your instrument to make it electric and enable you to plug the instrument in to a guitar amp. All round excellent book and money well spent.
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