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Carved/stippled headstock, new guitar underway   You are logged in as Guest
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Andy Culpepper

Posts: 2951
Joined: Mar. 30 2009
From: NY, USA

Carved/stippled headstock, new guita... 

Coronavirus has decimated my order book so I've had a lot of time to work on new ideas and my own projects. I've started a special flamenco guitar (possibly "especial" model?) that will be sort of an accentuation and elaboration of some of my favorite design elements, and some that I have never done before. Plus fancy purflings, etc. It will also be inspired by the story of the gitanos/Roma migration from India, through the Middle East into Europe.
The first thing I ever did when I sat down to design my first flamenco guitar was to draw this headstock design. It will also appear in a couple of other places on the guitar. For this guitar I decided to try this recessed carving and stippling technique.




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Andy Culpepper, luthier
http://www.andyculpepper.com
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Apr. 26 2020 15:37:04
 
Echi

 

Posts: 932
Joined: Jan. 11 2013
 

RE: Carved/stippled headstock, new g... (in reply to Andy Culpepper

Very nice, Andy.
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Apr. 27 2020 12:26:26
 
JasonM

Posts: 1682
Joined: Dec. 8 2005
From: Baltimore

RE: Carved/stippled headstock, new g... (in reply to Andy Culpepper

Nice indeed. It looks like it would be fun to do a relief carving. I think the carving was one of the more enjoyable parts of building for me.
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Apr. 27 2020 15:08:42
 
Argaith

Posts: 467
Joined: May 6 2009
From: Iran (living in London)

RE: Carved/stippled headstock, new g... (in reply to Andy Culpepper

Very beautiful Andy.
A

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  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Apr. 27 2020 15:20:39
 
gerundino63

Posts: 1612
Joined: Jul. 11 2003
From: The Netherlands

RE: Carved/stippled headstock, new g... (in reply to Andy Culpepper

Very nice Andy!

It looks indeed indian with a sniff of arabic.
I made a lot of sculptues in the past and the technique You use looks a lot like bucharderen, buchardage, (bush hammering?) in stone.

A joy for the eyes. The love for your craftmanship is shining trough.

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  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Apr. 27 2020 17:12:24
 
Andy Culpepper

Posts: 2951
Joined: Mar. 30 2009
From: NY, USA

RE: Carved/stippled headstock, new g... (in reply to Andy Culpepper

Thanks, gents. More pictures coming soon.
Jason, it would be fun to attempt some relief carving a la Peña Fernadez. Reminds me of the piano I had growing up.
gerundino, that's interesting. I looked it up and found it under "bouchardage". Stippling wood is quite enjoyable. I think the main application for it is to provide texture on gun stocks/handles. There are a variety of tools you can use but just a light hammer and a nail will get it done!

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Andy Culpepper, luthier
http://www.andyculpepper.com
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Apr. 27 2020 23:07:28
 
JasonM

Posts: 1682
Joined: Dec. 8 2005
From: Baltimore

RE: Carved/stippled headstock, new g... (in reply to Andy Culpepper

You gonna pore fill that
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Apr. 27 2020 23:54:14
 
Andy Culpepper

Posts: 2951
Joined: Mar. 30 2009
From: NY, USA

RE: Carved/stippled headstock, new g... (in reply to JasonM

quote:

You gonna pore fill that


Not if I can help it...

Not much progress yet on this guitar but at least the shop smells like Cypress again. I worked up a complex new rosette, even got the tiles done but decided I just wasn't in love with the design I made, so I'm starting over. I'm tackling a somewhat mind-bending idea that I've been contemplating for years. Nothing but time to experiment...



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Andy Culpepper, luthier
http://www.andyculpepper.com
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Apr. 29 2020 0:51:52
 
Tom Blackshear

 

Posts: 2242
Joined: Apr. 15 2008
 

RE: Carved/stippled headstock, new g... (in reply to Andy Culpepper

Andy, your patch-work rosette design was beyond mind bending; brilliant concept with perfect balance.

Please don't get too brilliant :-)

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Tom Blackshear Guitar maker
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Apr. 30 2020 0:22:53
 
etta

 

Posts: 313
Joined: Jan. 20 2010
 

RE: Carved/stippled headstock, new g... (in reply to Andy Culpepper

I had a 1959 Hernandez y Aguado blanca that had their standard stippled head stock; very fine guitar; wish I still had it. You can see that head stock design also on their more numerous classical guitars. Very beautiful work, Andy.
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Apr. 30 2020 18:22:51
 
ernandez R

Posts: 482
Joined: Mar. 25 2019
From: Alaska USA

RE: Carved/stippled headstock, new g... (in reply to Andy Culpepper

Oh come on Andy, be brave! Show us this rosette you find a failure. I believe we can learn more from our mistakes.

To tell you the truth I'm stuck here not able to work in the shop so I'm living vicariously through all the online build threads.

When first saw your stippled headstock I didn't like the flat bottom and it's 90 degree corners of the stippled area. Purely personal though, but looking at it again as a foundation for the Arabic/Indian roofline contours of the end of the head stock of course it made sense. Keep,in mind this from the beginning luthier who has yet to dare more then a plan flat square edged headstock.

I find I need to revisit these creative touches after a month before I can see if they are out of proportion or whatever. I tend to fall in love with my ideas whence firstborn but not so much that I can't objectively discover my idea was totally wrong; its part of the creative process.

I see your stippled headstock growing more grand because that is what it is, it is that flourish that says this is mine, sure a product of these stay at home times but I'm assuming you dreamed of having this time for creative expression. Don't we all?

HR

_____________________________

I prefer my flamenco guitar spicy,
doesn't have to be fast,
should have some meat on the bones,
can be raw or well done,
as long as it doesn't sound like it's turning green on an elevator floor.

www.instagram.com/threeriversguitars
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Apr. 30 2020 18:55:45
 
Andy Culpepper

Posts: 2951
Joined: Mar. 30 2009
From: NY, USA

RE: Carved/stippled headstock, new g... (in reply to Andy Culpepper

Tom and etta, thanks for the kind words.

HR, since you challenged me... here is the design that turned out to be just "blah" IMO (first picture), followed by what I'm going to end up using on this guitar. The al-Quds star is an ancient symbol that is very prominent in Arabic architecture and in Andalucía thanks to the Moorish influence. It's a simple but beautiful shape and I never really liked any of the designs I drew up to use it in a traditional end-grain mosaic. These tiles are all side-grain and I think will stand out really nicely on the guitar. The tiles are pretty large at 18 mm high.







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Andy Culpepper, luthier
http://www.andyculpepper.com
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date May 1 2020 21:43:17
 
Tom Blackshear

 

Posts: 2242
Joined: Apr. 15 2008
 

RE: Carved/stippled headstock, new g... (in reply to Andy Culpepper

Andy, have you ever thought about becoming a rosette maker?

Some of the things you make look delicious.

Man, you should cultivate that talent.

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Tom Blackshear Guitar maker
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date May 2 2020 4:10:21
 
orsonw

Posts: 1473
Joined: Jul. 4 2009
From: London

RE: Carved/stippled headstock, new g... (in reply to Andy Culpepper

The al-Quds star design looks like it's going to be a good one. I look forward to seeing it finished. For my eyes you make some of the best rosettes.
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date May 2 2020 8:31:37
 
Andy Culpepper

Posts: 2951
Joined: Mar. 30 2009
From: NY, USA

RE: Carved/stippled headstock, new g... (in reply to Andy Culpepper

Tom, I appreciate that very much, but I think I get enough rosette making in the course of my normal guitar production. I'm pretty inefficient when I make rosettes so I would have to figure out how scale up my production...no way I could compete with the Russian ones, LMI, etc.

Thanks, Orson! I can't wait to get this one inlaid.

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Andy Culpepper, luthier
http://www.andyculpepper.com
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date May 2 2020 16:06:26
 
Richard Jernigan

Posts: 3122
Joined: Jan. 20 2004
From: Austin, Texas USA

RE: Carved/stippled headstock, new g... (in reply to Andy Culpepper

Very nice. Must be the side grain that makes them glow. There are other al-Quds star rosettes--Miguel Rodriguez, for example--but I think I'm going to like this one the best.

RNJ
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date May 3 2020 0:58:37
 
Andy Culpepper

Posts: 2951
Joined: Mar. 30 2009
From: NY, USA

RE: Carved/stippled headstock, new g... (in reply to Andy Culpepper

Thanks, Richard. That Rodriguez rosette is one of my favorites. It reads a bit more as "flowers" to me, but it is in the same family.

If you want a little more reading on this symbol there is a fascinating article written by Siddhartha Mukherjee here: https://farbound.net/najmat-al-quds-star-of-jerusalem-humayuns-mausoleum-nizzamuddin-east/

Variations of it were used by Hindus, Christians (Byzantine), Arabs, even Hebrews (my people )

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Andy Culpepper, luthier
http://www.andyculpepper.com
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date May 3 2020 1:58:25
 
Andy Culpepper

Posts: 2951
Joined: Mar. 30 2009
From: NY, USA

RE: Carved/stippled headstock, new g... (in reply to Andy Culpepper

Here is the finished rosette. I think it came out well for a first stab at this design. I would like to try it again, maybe with slightly smaller tiles and natural woods instead of veneer: flame Maple, Ebony, Spanish Cedar.





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Andy Culpepper, luthier
http://www.andyculpepper.com
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date May 5 2020 17:53:17
 
Tom Blackshear

 

Posts: 2242
Joined: Apr. 15 2008
 

RE: Carved/stippled headstock, new g... (in reply to Andy Culpepper

Yikes, you have done it again, very impressive and regal.

The only thing I would suggest is make it a little brighter in color, if this is for a flamenco............my opinion only.
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date May 5 2020 22:26:37
 
Andy Culpepper

Posts: 2951
Joined: Mar. 30 2009
From: NY, USA

RE: Carved/stippled headstock, new g... (in reply to Andy Culpepper

Tom, thanks! I agree it could be brighter. I actually intended the tiles to be smaller so there wouldn't be so much black.

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Andy Culpepper, luthier
http://www.andyculpepper.com
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date May 5 2020 23:49:19
 
Tom Blackshear

 

Posts: 2242
Joined: Apr. 15 2008
 

RE: Carved/stippled headstock, new g... (in reply to Andy Culpepper

You've got such an eye for color combination and separation, that I don't know why I even mentioned it. :-)

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Tom Blackshear Guitar maker
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date May 6 2020 2:07:22
 
Andy Culpepper

Posts: 2951
Joined: Mar. 30 2009
From: NY, USA

RE: Carved/stippled headstock, new g... (in reply to Andy Culpepper

Here's the bridge I made



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Andy Culpepper, luthier
http://www.andyculpepper.com
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date May 6 2020 17:17:24
 
ernandez R

Posts: 482
Joined: Mar. 25 2019
From: Alaska USA

RE: Carved/stippled headstock, new g... (in reply to Andy Culpepper

Wow, taking her to the limet!

I wanted to add a matching rosette tile to each wing of the bridge on my last two but I never made it happen. Many examples of larger MOP dots on bridges of Torres etc so there is a historical precedent. Just saying.

Go big or go home! Oh wait, we are all stuck at home already ;)

Cant wait to see your rosette with a full layer of French polish!

HR


O/T: Dealing with some exception post surgery pain but when I can play for about an hour and it all goes away but what's really torturing me is not being able to work in the shop.

_____________________________

I prefer my flamenco guitar spicy,
doesn't have to be fast,
should have some meat on the bones,
can be raw or well done,
as long as it doesn't sound like it's turning green on an elevator floor.

www.instagram.com/threeriversguitars
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date May 6 2020 18:25:27
 
Tom Blackshear

 

Posts: 2242
Joined: Apr. 15 2008
 

RE: Carved/stippled headstock, new g... (in reply to ernandez R

quote:

but what's really torturing me is not being able to work in the shop.


Boy!! isn't that the truth........get well soon.

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Tom Blackshear Guitar maker
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date May 6 2020 18:52:21
 
RobF

Posts: 1112
Joined: Aug. 24 2017
 

RE: Carved/stippled headstock, new g... (in reply to Andy Culpepper

Cool idea to follow the head design onto the bridge wings. I know a maker who has Rodgers tuners custom made to match her head design, I wonder if that’s something to consider inquiring about for this instrument. Might be pretty pricey, however.
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date May 7 2020 2:44:34
 
Andy Culpepper

Posts: 2951
Joined: Mar. 30 2009
From: NY, USA

RE: Carved/stippled headstock, new g... (in reply to Andy Culpepper

HR, thanks. I had the same thought about the bridge wings actually. I wish I had inlaid them before I rounded the wings but I suppose I could still do it. Hope you feel better soon!

Thanks, Rob. That would be really cool to have the custom tuners. Tough to bite the bullet on that price tag though since this is not a commission.

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Andy Culpepper, luthier
http://www.andyculpepper.com
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date May 7 2020 17:57:53
 
ernandez R

Posts: 482
Joined: Mar. 25 2019
From: Alaska USA

RE: Carved/stippled headstock, new g... (in reply to Andy Culpepper

About a year ago I had a couple inquiries about converting my peg heads to mechanical tuners. My guitars have a non standard headstock thickness of around 3/8” so I figured I would make my own. I bought a couple sets of the cheapest tuners and took them apart so I could use the gears and I melted off the plastic knobs and fabricated a few wooden ones to get an idea about what I like. I know I wanted/needed to use a thinner string barrel of 1/4” for more precision in tuning and my narrow headstock. Plan is aluminum side plates and gear posts. I have over thirty years of aircraft structural experience so I’m familiar with working the material. Engraving will be the challenge but I have a couple ideas to get around my shaking hands.

I’ve got a few finish ideas like anodizing the formed plates then engraving for contrast. Black would be basic cool but Andalusia green sounds appealing.

So shortly after you posted your stippled headstock I was already envisioning costume HR tuners mimicking your headstock detail one the one end and the point on the other. Once you posted the rosette my mind said a fine line two square al-Quds star engraved between each tuner gear.

Don’t get too excited though I’ve a hundred other ideas rolling around in my head... and dog knows when I’ll ever get to them ;)

HR

_____________________________

I prefer my flamenco guitar spicy,
doesn't have to be fast,
should have some meat on the bones,
can be raw or well done,
as long as it doesn't sound like it's turning green on an elevator floor.

www.instagram.com/threeriversguitars
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date May 7 2020 18:51:25
 
Andy Culpepper

Posts: 2951
Joined: Mar. 30 2009
From: NY, USA

RE: Carved/stippled headstock, new g... (in reply to Andy Culpepper

This guitar has a tattoo! Anyone recognize it?



Images are resized automatically to a maximum width of 800px

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Andy Culpepper, luthier
http://www.andyculpepper.com
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date May 13 2020 17:51:04
 
mark indigo

 

Posts: 3308
Joined: Dec. 5 2007
 

RE: Carved/stippled headstock, new g... (in reply to Andy Culpepper

quote:

This guitar has a tattoo! Anyone recognize it?

Camarón?

What is it? Is it a design cut into the side to reveal a piece of dark wood underneath? or a sound hole/port?

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  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date May 13 2020 20:02:52
 
Tom Blackshear

 

Posts: 2242
Joined: Apr. 15 2008
 

RE: Carved/stippled headstock, new g... (in reply to Andy Culpepper

It's a Magen David with an Arabic crescent moon.

The Magen David or “shield of David” has only been considered a Jewish symbol from about the 16th Century. before that, the 7 branch Menorah, which still holds its present place in Judaism.

The crescent moon, with its own star, Helal motazaid, has 5 points on its star, not 6 like the Magen David, and generally means Today, that the crescent moon and star symbol is universally recognized as a symbol of Islam, and for that reason, it appears on the flag of many countries where Islam is a state religion or which has a largely Muslim population.

I assume that you are building this with Camarón de la Isla in mind, as he had love for everybody in the Art of flamenco, which came from these groups of people.

When Man ponders his past, he is made aware of the many influences that have shaped his destiny. In a similar way, the country of Spain has developed amid romanticism, war and religion. Cultural influences as diverse as Hebraic chant, Christian devoutness, and Islamic architecture have become embedded over many centuries in the Spanish culture and have forged Spain's proud tradition. Unique among its many remarkable masterpieces is the Spanish guitar. This instrument has truly stirred the very depths of emotion.

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Tom Blackshear Guitar maker
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date May 13 2020 20:44:13
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