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Does the left brain plate tuning method work for completed guitars?

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Does the left brain plate tuning method work for completed guitars?

Postby Kevin Bryden » Wed Feb 08, 2012 3:18 pm

I am interested in buying this book. It's on amazon uk for £137 :shock: Although I won't be having it if I can't get it cheaper.

Thanks
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Re: Does the left brain plate tuning method work for completed guitars?

Postby Alan Carruth » Wed Feb 08, 2012 3:33 pm

If you're talking about Dave Hurd's 'Left Brain Lutherie', I suspect it does. I've never tried it myself, since I use another method that seems to do substantially the same thing, but the fact that both of us end up at the same place indicates that either method will work.

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Re: Does the left brain plate tuning method work for completed guitars?

Postby Bob Gramann » Wed Feb 08, 2012 3:46 pm

You can buy the book directly from David for quite a bit less (ukuleles.com).
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Re: Does the left brain plate tuning method work for completed guitars?

Postby Kevin Bryden » Wed Feb 08, 2012 4:49 pm

Thanks for the replies. Are there any printed guides to the method you use Alan? And, can that method be employed post build? I read some of David's book on google books and he talks about test the top prior to gluing the bridge on.

Thanks again.
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Re: Does the left brain plate tuning method work for completed guitars?

Postby Alan Carruth » Thu Feb 09, 2012 2:55 pm

I wrote a series of articles in 'American Lutherie' magazine 'way back on 'free' plate tuning; they're in the first 'Big Red Book', iirc. As the name implies, this is a method you use on the top and back when they're 'free' of the body, before assembly of the box. You can learn some things by looking at the assembed modes, but less than you do from the free plates. Basically, any reasonable facsimile of a guitar will have pretty much the same resonant mode shapes when it's assembled. The frequencies vary some, of course, but less than you might think over a pretty wide range of quality. Thus the assembled modes don't tell you as much as the 'free' plates. Dave's deflection measurements are actually better in that regard than mode shape data.

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Re: Does the left brain plate tuning method work for completed guitars?

Postby Jason Rodgers » Thu Feb 09, 2012 4:11 pm

I have the book, and it's good stuff. Yes, you can do the deflection testing on completed instruments. Actually, this is how Hurd went about establishing deflection targets for his own instruments: he measured the best instruments he could get his hands on and shot for those numbers. Obviously, you could do this on a glued-up box, before finishing, and then fine-tune. As with Al's method, I guess the trick is figuring out where to shave and sand to allow more deflection in specific areas, and then figure out what to do when you go too far!
-Ruining perfectly good wood, one day at a time.
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