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Marty Lanham takes a lot of pride in his work, and generally does most every operation with a minimum of tooling. He believes he has more control of the building process by concentrating on hand work and on the details of each guitar as an individual.

Having heard a number of his instruments, I'd say his approach is working nicely.

I asked him to show off some of his favorite tools, and he immediately reached for this collection of precision layout equipment:

Marty really likes fine measuring tools; he's particularly fond of the Bridge City Tool Works. Layout, and measurement is especially important for a hand builder who wants to make a changing variety of instruments, says Marty.

In the not-so-precision department, Marty has a collection of modified tools, such as this bent chisel for bridge plate removal:

In another room, he has a fine little old South Bend lathe for those tricky tooling jobs:

Here are a couple of banjo necks in progress:

Hmm, that's a familiar name on the upper one. . .

As a parting shot, Marty reached into his spray area to show another Brazilian rosewood guitar body in progress:

A fine piece of Adirondack spruce on the top:

Marty builds in a strictly traditional manner, including the dovetail neck joint.

Visit Marty Lanham's Nashville Guitar Company website!


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