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Tortoloid Pickguard Material

4.0
  • 36 Reviews
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Tortoloid Pickguard Material Antique tortoise

Antique tortoise

Item # 2093
In stock, ready to ship!

$29.90

3 or more $25.41
+
Tortoloid Pickguard Material Red swirl

Red swirl

Item # 2096
In stock, ready to ship!

$29.90

3 or more $25.41
+
Tortoloid Pickguard Material Amber tigerstripe

Amber tigerstripe

Item # 2097
In stock, ready to ship!

$29.90

3 or more $25.41
+
Tortoloid Pickguard Material Red tigerstripe

Red tigerstripe

Item # 2098
In stock, ready to ship!

$29.90

3 or more $25.41
+
Tortoloid Pickguard Material Red swirl, oversized

Red swirl, oversized

Item # 2096-L
In stock, ready to ship!

$37.38

3 or more $31.77
+
Tortoloid Pickguard Material Amber tigerstripe, oversized

Amber tigerstripe, oversized

Item # 2097-L
In stock, ready to ship!

$37.38

3 or more $31.77
+
Tortoloid Pickguard Material Red tigerstripe, oversized

Red tigerstripe, oversized

Item # 2098-L
In stock, ready to ship!

$37.38

3 or more $31.77
+
 
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Tortoloid Pickguard Material

About This Item

The look of vintage pickguards!
Make your own pickguards with the look of vintage tortoise shell.

Tortoloid is a handsome pickguard material developed and handmade by luthier Mario Proulx. Poured resins and dyes reproduce authentic tortoise shell patterns: tigerstripe, tortoise, and swirl. Tortoloid is a popular choice for making vintage-style guitars look even more vintage. Unhappy with modern "printed" pickguards? Tortoloid is a great alternative.

Each Tortoloid sheet is individually made.
Just like natural shell, no two have exactly the same pattern. The highly durable material is 0.025" thin, flexible, and resists shrinkage.

Antique tortoise
When the pickguard is installed on a typical spruce guitar top, the color and 3-dimensional depth closely match actual antique Hawksbill tortoise shell used by Martin in the '30s. (Antique guitar picks were used for sampling the colors). Semi-transparent amber areas intensify the color of the soundboard to complement your guitar's appearance. Antique tortoise is also available in vintage Dreadnought shape.

Red swirl
The look of early-1940s Martin celluloid pickguards, with red-browns replacing the amber.

Tigerstripe
Especially for Gibson acoustic guitars. Amber for soundboards with a light sunburst or natural finish, and red to complement typical darker sunbursts.

Tortoloid cuts easily with scissors, but to avoid chipping the edges, warm the material in hot water or with a hair dryer first. The cut edges can be sanded and polished, or beveled with a razor blade (work at room temperature for a sharp bevel, or warm the material for a rounded edge). Bending is easily corrected by placing the material on a flat surface and warming it.

Tortoloid cuts easily with scissors, but to avoid chipping the edges, warm the material in hot water or with a hair dryer first. The cut edges can be sanded and polished, or beveled with a razor blade (work at room temperature for a sharp bevel, or warm the material for a rounded edge). Bending is easily corrected by placing the material on a flat surface and warming it.

Two sizes:
4-3/4" x 7-1/2" x 0.025" (120.65mm x 190.50mm x 0.64mm)
Enough material for most traditional pickguard shapes.

4-15/16" x 10" x 0.025" (125.41mm x 254mm x 0.64mm)
Oversized is for larger pickguards, such as Gibson J45s and J50s.

Note: You may notice small abrasions on the underside of the material. These are from the manufacturing process and will become invisible after installation with our Pickguard Adhesive Sheet.


Video

Trade Secrets!

Trade Secrets!

A shrinking pickguard cracks the guitar top!

In Dan Erlewine's shop: This Martin D-35 has a cracked top due to the pull of a shrinking plastic pickguard. Dan fixes the problem and shows how to keep this happening from happening again.

Customer Reviews

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4.0
  • 3.89 average rating from 36 reviews
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3.0

A little pricey for what you get but looks good on the guitar.

By
(Customer's Reviews)


Recently refinished a Martin guitar with a sunburst finish and needed to replace the reddish pick guard with something browner. When I pulled the guard material out of the bag, it looked kind of like an ex-ray film but when it went on the wood it actually looked pretty darn good. Pretty easy to work with. Beveled the edge with a razor blade and a buffer. All in all pretty happy with the way it turned out.

5.0

Authentic, Accurate and Attractive

By
(Customer's Reviews)


I purchased this material to put a small teardrop pickguard on a parlor guitar and couldn't be happier with the result. It looks authentic and attractive. Could not be easier to work with and mount on a guitar. Highly recommended. And there's the added bonus of having a Stew-Mac video available to show you how . great product !

3.0

Very nice material but be careful of stripe direction you want

By
(Customer's Reviews)


I bought this to make a Gibson pickguard and the stripes of the polished side seem to be going the wrong direction - upwards from left to right compared to the vintage photos I could find that show downwards from left to right. I called customer service and they were very nice, said they understood the issue and exchanged the one I had for another - that ended up being exactly the same. If you don't mind these stripes pointing upwards then this is a great material but it looks really goofy on my guitar..... It is hard to turn it over and use it because the reverse side is scratched and would require extensive polishing. I love Stew-Mac but think something is amiss with this particular batch of material. Maybe a Gibson expert could chime in that this is the way it is supposed to be but to me it looks a lot better if the stripes would be pointing downwards when installed.

The pickguard material that arrived is exactly as pictured but I was not smart enough at the time to realize that for a "vertical" pickguard using the whole sheet it would orient the material in an odd way. If your use is to cut out a smaller horizontal pickguard then the material is great.

5.0

Pick guard material

By
(Customer's Reviews)


Just what I wanted. Thanks

1.0

Pickguard material - Meh...

By
(Customer's Reviews)


For the amount of money this material cost I would think it would be identical to stock Martin, Gibson or Taylor.... but it isn't even close. This is thin and cheap material that is not only nowhere near the original shell color, but is barely enough material for 1 D28 sized pickguard. Save your money.... very dissapointed......

5.0

Great pattern

By
(Customer's Reviews)


Bought this for new design for new guitar

5.0

Great!

By
(Customer's Reviews)


Beautiful looking material nice and thin easy to work with
A bit expensive but well worth it the new pickguard on my 63 j45 turned out great!

5.0

Amber Tiger Stripe Pick Guard Material

By
(Customer's Reviews)


Works well...take your time...heat it before cutting, otherwise your exact-o knife will slip ! heat a little, cut a little..use a template... i used the backing that came with the pick guard for my template....Pictured is my first custom cut/designed pick guard using this amber tiger stripe material, on a custom Black Walnut with Wudtone clear satin finish...be patient and it will turn out fine! I used a heat gun on low to heat it and then cut...heat and then cut, material cools fast,,but don't overheat it, it gets a little brittle if too much heat is used...Build On!...

4.0

Beautiful!

By
(Customer's Reviews)


The red swirl looks really nice on the top of the guitar. I didn't find any problem cutting it, I kept warming it up in a bowl of water like others say. It is a bit difficult to apply with the adhesive suggested by Stewmac, hard not to get bubbles, but it's not a problem of this product. It's either the adhesive or my ability to do it :) I got some bubbles but it still looks nice.

5.0

Beautiful!

By
(Customer's Reviews)


I had never cut a pickguard myself and was somewhat reluctant based on a few of the reviews here about the material breaking. But I cut a form with 1/4" plywood and then put the form and a wooden cutting board in my oven at 200 degrees (F) for about an hour. I sandwiched the pickguard sheet between the cutting board and the plywood form and cut around with an X-Acto knife. It cut easily and smoothly. I smoothed the edges with 1000, 1500, 2000, and 3000 grit sand paper and polished lightly. The result is GREAT. My one regret: be careful with the sandpaper-- you can buff and buff and buff but you'll never get the full polished look back. I wish I'd been more careful to avoid accidentally brushing the top of the pickguard with the sandpaper ever so slightly. Apart from that the result was near-perfect. And beautiful!

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StewMac PDF Catalog, page 39 See Tortoloid Pickguard Material
on page 39 of our StewMac Catalog PDF

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