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Tortoloid Pickguard Material

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Tortoloid Pickguard Material Antique tortoise

Antique tortoise

Item # 2093
In stock, ready to ship!

$31.40

3 or more $26.69
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Tortoloid Pickguard Material Red swirl

Red swirl

Item # 2096
In stock, ready to ship!

$31.40

3 or more $26.69
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Tortoloid Pickguard Material Amber tigerstripe

Amber tigerstripe

Item # 2097
In stock, ready to ship!

$31.40

3 or more $26.69
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Tortoloid Pickguard Material Red tigerstripe

Red tigerstripe

Item # 2098
In stock, ready to ship!

$31.40

3 or more $26.69
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Tortoloid Pickguard Material Red swirl, oversized

Red swirl, oversized

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

$39.25

3 or more $33.36
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Tortoloid Pickguard Material Amber tigerstripe, oversized

Amber tigerstripe, oversized

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

$39.25

3 or more $33.36
+
Tortoloid Pickguard Material Red tigerstripe, oversized

Red tigerstripe, oversized

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

$39.25

3 or more $33.36
+
 
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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.


More Tortoloid Pickguard Material

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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.

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4.0
  • 3.96 average rating from 46 reviews
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4.0

Great product.

By

Verified Buyer


Looks fantastic once applied. Very brittle though. Would not recommend cutting it with a scissors as suggested. Hard lessons learned. Worked great the second try.

5.0

A real problem solver...

By

Verified Buyer


Followed the directions on the video and it worked like a charm. I used this to cover a repair to a Dobro where the previous owner had attempted to cut a hole for a pickup and made a real mess of it. After installing a filler plate in the hole I darkened it with a few coats of tinted shellac and then covered it with the tortoloid.

5.0

Beautiful material

By

Verified Buyer


It is so hard to find quality, vintage style pick guard material. This is excellent! I chose a material that is reddish brown and was totally pleased with not only the look being authentic, but the ease of cutting and application. I now have a source at a very reasonable price. Thanks Stew Mac once again!

1.0

Inconsistent quality for the price

By

Verified Buyer


I really want to like this material. I've tried it several times with mixed results. When you can shape it withou scratching or chipping it, when it lays flat and the glue doesn't show through, then it's fine. For me, the final straw is having to apply the lousy adhesive sheet to it before installing. Supply it with self stick backing and it might be worth it, but as is - no way

5.0

My vintage martin looks awesome

By

Verified Buyer


Had it 2 years now and really, really happy. It is thin and a little difficult to work with, but, it turned out really nice. It looks really old which is what I wanted with the Antique Tortoise. I used my HD heat gun. Big mistake. Hot water would probably be better but it is a bit brittle and likes to warp. I will use it again because it looks great. I should have lightly rounded the edges on top more than I did. It did bubble when I used the sheet adhesive but it worked out. Got a bit sweaty for a minute or two.

4.0

Great product. . . . but beware!!

By

Verified Buyer


Just used this material to repair a used Lowden guitar recently. Final result was awesome. . . . . but be careful when 'heating' to cut as suggested. I used a measly small hair dryer and my tortoloid totally warped! I then took a scrap piece that was also warped and tried using a clothes iron set on a moderate heat, and sandwiched my piece between fairly thick printer paper to protect surface. Bingo! Worked like a charm! The stuff is rather fragile when heated.
Scrapping with an edged razor blade and fine sandpaper worked fine!

5.0

Pick guard material

By

Verified Buyer


First order I've placed. Ordered tortoloid pick-guard material. It came faster than projected and is exactly what was advertised. I'll order from these guys again.

5.0

lapsteel Headstock

By

Verified Buyer


I'm using it on the front side of a headstock for my newest 8 string lap steel build. I spray painted the front of the headstock white before adding the red Swirl T-loid as an experiment and the result was what I had hoped- the pattern really popped with white background dramatically highlighting the red swirl pattern.
BE careful though in cutting (warm it up as previously said) AND-VERY IMPORTANT-
as soon as possible, cover with painters tape to prevent scratches while working with it.
I didn't cover with tape on the first piece I ordered and, while one can get close to the original polish with micro sanding, I was never able to get the original sheen back but the scratches can be removed- no prob, at least.
I imagine a couple quick laquer coats will get you to that final sheen in a pinch.
Love the stuff!
Sleep easy-Save a turtle! uh...Tortol? ( Loyd the Lawyer Turtle?)

I probably should sleep more.

4.0

Amber firestripe pickguard material

By

Verified Buyer


Don't bother trying to heat it up as it just starts to warp the material and it still wants to shatter when its cut anyway. The material sands super great on a belt sander so just cut out your tracing and put it where you want it on the material and go for it. As for how it looks, its the closest I could find out there but not quite like the old Gibson stuff, good enough though. Kind of pricey too so if ya screw it up it would be costly, so take my advice and sand it. It sands quickly/easily and doesn't heat up or want to warp when doing so.

4.0

Looks good, but take your time

By

Verified Buyer


This stuff looks great in is nice and thin, so won't dampen the vibration of your top as much as a heavier material. That said, it can be a bit of a challenge to cut and then shape. You have to warm it up in hot water and then, when it cools down, make sure it's flat. Don't use a hairdryer, as it can cause it to deform quite easily, which will leave air pockets under the pickguard. I had to remove my first attempt. Also, the edges require a lot of care to sand down. Overall, I am happy with it and will probably apply it to my custom-built guitar, which should be here in the spring.

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