Building Electric Guitars, Book and plan

  • 7 Reviews
  • Write a review
Add 1-year StewMAX Membership to my cart for $39.95

Building Electric Guitars, Book and plan

Item # 5501
In stock, ready to ship!

List Price $48.20
Your Price $42.90

*StewMAX Members receive 50% off the price of all books, plans and DVDs for the life of their membership. Members also get a special offer each month that may include tools, parts or supplies.
**StewMAX Members receive FREE standard shipping on all orders for the life of their membership.
LEARN MORE about StewMAX Membership Benefits
Scroll to Top

Building Electric Guitars, Book and plan

About This Item

By Martin Koch
A comprehensive photo-illustrated manual for building a solidbody or semi-acoustic electric gutar or bass.

A great way to start!
Everything from design to finishing and final setup is covered step-by-step. The companion full-scale plan details a solidbody guitar with tremolo, two humbuckers and a bolt-on neck.

Building Electric Guitars Book: Featuring nearly 700 photos and illustrations, luthier Martin Koch details the complete building process. You'll find valuable information on wood selection, pickup winding and active electronics, too. 236 pages, softcover.

Book contents
Introduction: parts of an electric guitar • string frequencies • popular body styles

Wood: sound characteristics • drying

Hardware: tuners, nuts, pickguards, fretwire, bridges, tremolos, strings and more

Electronics: making your own pickups • passive and active circuits • shielding

Designing the guitar: scale length • calculating fret positions • truss rod choices • guitar layout • making templates

Workshop and tools: routers, planes, scrapers, saws, sanding, sharpening and safety

Making the body: making a solidbody from a blank • hollowbody construction and binding • semi-acoustic body construction

Making the neck: preparing the neck blank • angled and bolt-on necks • making and installing a truss rod • preparing and installing the fingerboard • fretting • preparing the peghead • neck shaping and fitting

Preparing the body: positioning the bridge • installing a tremolo • routing body cavities

Assembly and wiring: mounting the hardware • installing and shielding the electronics

Finishing: sanding • staining • grain-filling • finishing options and application • polishing

Setup: fret dressing • neck relief • setting the string action • tuning • pickup height • intonation

Neck-through-body construction: making a headless bass

Solidbody Guitar Plan: The 34" x 24" full-scale plan includes a helpful fret placement chart, materials list and wiring diagram. Dimensions are displayed in inches and millimeters for convenience.

Customer Reviews

  • Excellent
  • Good
  • Average
  • Fair
  • Poor
Write a review
  • 4.57 average rating from 7 reviews
Sort by

A great starter set for those interested in learning the basics


Verified Buyer

I have enough skills that I might have built a playable instrument without this package, but, after some reading, I am certain that my first build with the book will be much better than the 3rd or 4th build without the book.


good to have useful information..


Verified Buyer

I just started to get around to look at it thanks....


A good reference.  Not eaxactly a How-To.


Verified Buyer

This book is a wealth of information that demystifies things like neck shaping, fretting, and set ups. Likewise with making pickups. However, for a first time builder like myself, it was lacking in the how-to area for building a guitar start to finish. There are many pitfalls to avoid along the way and I had hoped that this book would call those out as you move through the process.


the knowlegde


lots of knowledge went into this book. it is perfect for the beginner like me.


Great expanse of information.


Verified Buyer

I'm a first time builder planning my first guitar build, and this book has already helped tremendously. It goes into much further detail than I imagined for a variety of options, many of which I didn't know existed despite manyyyy hours of internet research. I would highly recommend this book to anyone.




Mostly good plan with some small details missing or vague. The overall design including shapes, the zero fret and hardware selection may not be for everyone. Good for a guide and for anyone interested in looking at plans.


Lots of great ideas!


This book is great! It shows a lot of really good jigs to get around having lots of machines and shows a wide variety of construction techniques.

StewMac PDF Catalog, page 98 See Building Electric Guitars, Book and plan
on page 98 of our StewMac Digital Catalog