We were extremely excited to be involved with such an innovative concept as 3D printing a guitar. This project was brought to us by guitar enthusiast and 3D designer Neil Hewitson, who wanted to provide a new, ergonomic design in which the curved back of his prototype guitar moulds to the body of the musician. Traditionally, guitars are made from a block of solid wood in what is a rather lengthy process.
The classic Gibson Les Paul uses mahogany with a layer of maple which has to be kiln dried for 7 to 45 days to reach the desired moisture content. The 3D process moves away from this subtractive manufacturing method towards additive manufacturing, which brings numerous benefits. The incorporation of 3D scanning, a service we provide using our Creaform Handyscan 3D gives potential for personalisation with custom-shaped guitars specifically made to suit an individual.
As a relatively fast means of manufacture, it also provides the opportunity for mass production, and in the evolution of guitars and the changing nature of sound production in which pick ups, pedals and effects are used extensively, there is more room than ever for experimentation with the material of the guitar’s body. Watch the video or read our blog to find out more about Neil’s prototyping journey.