Guitar Builders and Repair
The CT Guitar Society is proud to support local and regional luthiers and instrument repair professional members.
Jamie specializes in fretted instrument repair, restoration, guitar building and luthier classes on both classical and steel string acoustic guitars. Located in Milford ,Connecticut, his 1400 sq. ft. guitar repair studio and school has all of the equipment required for repair, guitar building and classes for up to four students at a time. Jamie has been playing guitar for over 45 years and is a member of the Connecticut Guitar Society, New England Guitar Society Branford Folk Music Society and he also hosts the Milford Folk Music Meet-up Group. A long time video producer, Jamie has produced over 12 DVDs on guitar building and repair, some of which are sold by Stewart-MacDonald and Luthiers mercantile. You can find additional information about Jamie’s repair shop and school by going to www.hotstringsguitar.com.
Nathan specializes in fretted instrument repair, restoration and construction. He has completed a variety of repairs on many different instruments. Guitars, basses, mandolin, banjos, dulcimers, autoharps, violins, cellos, and more. He has worked in several well known shops throughout Massachusetts, New Hampshire, and Connecticut. He currently handles all string repairs for Goldie and Libro Music center in North Haven, Connecticut, where he also teaches beginners guitar. He is also handling accounts in at Got Chops Music Center in Greenfield, Massachusetts, and completing restorations for customers in Manchester, New Hampshire. Nathan was vending at the Yale School of Music's Guitar Extravaganza and is currently building a working relationship with that fine establishment. He is currently based in Wallingford, Connecticut.
Savage Classical Guitar - Richard F. Sayage
Setups and Repairs of Classical and Acoustic Guitars, including French Polish & full instrument restorations, serving Long Island New York and the tri-state area. Restoration of Violins, Violas and Cellos as well.
My name is Richard Schile. I am a classic guitar designer and luthier in Ridgefield, CT which is about 1 ˝ hours drive north of Manhattan. I am also an engineer with a doctorate in mechanics from Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute. About four years ago I started a research program to investigate the possibility of improving the acoustic performance of the classical guitar to the point where it could be used effectively in concert work. This program involved a combination of theoretical analysis and testing of two experimental prototype instruments, built to verify the predicted performance and to identify areas of further improvement. Initially, five areas within the guitar structure were identified as needing design improvements. As the test program progressed, this number was later increased to eight.
The first prototype was of the traditional hourglass shape with the twelfth fret clear of the body and a centrally located sound hole. The design changes involved mostly changes in the internal structure needed to reduce energy losses. The acoustic performance of this instrument was outstanding after about a year. The interim period involved a slow relaxation of internal stresses. There was a high level of sustain and excellent sound reproduction over the entire range.
A second prototype was later built incorporating additional design improvements identified during testing of the first instrument. I recognized that the effective area of the soundboard could be increased substantially by relocating the sound hole from its central position at the end of the fret board to a new position alongside the fret board and eliminating the hourglass waist. This new instrument has a soundboard 40% larger than the traditional instrument without increasing the overall body size. The fifteenth fret was clear of the body.
The acoustic performance of this second instrument was astonishing. The sheer power and fidelity appear to be unprecedented. There was an enormous amount of sustain indicating a very low level of internal damping. The "play-in" period was less than one month and appears to be due to a heat treatment of the body structure which I carried out before attaching the back.
The very low damping exhibited by both of these instruments can cause some unanticipated problems. The high sustain can result in notes carrying on longer than required by the music and incidental clicks and squeaks that go unnoticed in a normal instrument are amplified along with the high overtones.
Indeed, while these guitars, designed with the application of engineering principles, are exceptional at producing clear, loud sound, they are somewhat unforgiving. A performer must play these guitars with extreme discipline because the smallest mistakes can be heard.
Playing a guitar which is loud all the time can be boring. To correct this, I have designed a mute having two levels of muting. With light muting, the highest overtones are attenuated more than the lower frequencies, resulting in a more "mellow" tone. In essence, the concert instrument is converted into a parlor guitar. Heavy muting results an a severely reduced acoustic output useful if one wishes to practice while someone else sleeps.
The two prototype instruments were intended to be used for data collection and are not for sale. However, the basic principles used in their design are now well understood and can be reproduced readily in production. I would encourage performers who are willing to come to Ridgefield to try out both of these. For an appointment, please contact me at Myardes@aol.com or leave a message on my voice mail at 203-438-4072.