Classical Guitars PLUS

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Can Electronics - Pickup, Built-In Microphone, Controls, Tuner - be fitted retrospectively to a Classical Guitar, and What is Involved?

Alhambra 9P Classical Guitar - cedar - Optional Fishman - controls.
Really the title of this article is asking a naive question: electronics are (almost) always fitted after the guitar is finished.

So what's involved?

Typically the electronics consists of several parts which are fitted as follows -

  • A thin pick up which fits under the saddle: to fit this the strings are removed, the saddle is taken out, a very small hole is drilled in the saddle slot through the bridge and the soundboard (taking care to avoid any struts underneath!)
  • A controller box and battery holder (which in better models has a condensor microphone attached on the inside) : To fit this a rectangular piece (about 8cms x 6cms) is cut out of one side of the guitar and the controller slotted in and tightened up so that the hole is air-tight.
  • A socket which doubles as a strap post. To fit this a hole has to be drilled through the base of the guitar
  • To complete the job the 3 parts are wired together and the cables tied together to stop them rattling or buzzing inside the body
Alhambra 9P Classical Guitar - cedar - Optional Fishman - socket.

The whole process is best done by the original maker but is not a complex job for any competent luthier or even for the guitar's owner if he or she is experienced in fine woodworking and a reasonable toolkit.

See also the article Does Drilling and Cutting a Classical Guitar to fit Electronics Spoil its Sound?

More Articles...

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31 May 2020