Robert Filippi
  • Male
  • Blacksburg, VA 24060
  • United States
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Robert Filippi's Friends

  • Pierre-Antoine Roiron
  • Paul Hostetter
  • Bob Webster
  • Jerry Mercer
  • Russell Vance
  • Michael Tulloch

Robert Filippi's Discussions

What to Build with an 18" set of Brazilian Rosewood
16 Replies

Started this discussion. Last reply by Chris Andrada Mar 28, 2021.

Need finish advice for Fender 1979 Jazz Bass
9 Replies

Started this discussion. Last reply by Robert Filippi Apr 9, 2010.

Pickguard Restoration

Started Mar 20, 2009


Robert Filippi's Page

Comment Wall (4 comments)

At 9:35am on January 23, 2009, Bob Webster said…
Hi, Robert. Thanks so muuch for the very kind words. I'm enjoying the forum tremendously and I gladly accept your invitation. What sort of guitars are you building these days?

Best regards,
At 4:01pm on January 23, 2009, Bob Webster said…
I've got a copy of an Antonio Marin classical guitar in East Asian rosewood/Italian spruce just about into finish right now. The Marin top bracing is extremely similar to a Bouchet bracing. Also about halfway through a cocobolo/Italian spruce classical on a Hauser plantilla but with a Ruck 9-fan bracing scheme.

Overholtzer? That's a blast from the past. I still have his book and it is certainly the benchmark for explicitness of detail. From what I'm told, he was quite an interesting character with a machinist's background (as his methods show). What made you decide to use that bracing?

I haven't made a steel string guitar since about 1986. Way too damned fiddley in setting up the neck right, the action movement after stringing, etc. I do miss dressing them up, though. The classical community is so conservative with regard to aesthetics. Besides, I'm finding it quite enough challenge to wring out the best tone I can out of a classical guitar. It's a study unto itself. I am in awe of anyone who can really get great sound out of a dreadnaught, then turn around and do it again with a 00 or a parlor guitar.

At 10:33am on January 29, 2009, Bob Webster said…
Hi, Robert. Sorry to be so slow getting back to you. It took some digging to find my old Overholtzer book to refresh my memory about the bracing because I did remember that there was something pretty funky about it. It's a melding of Romanillos/Torres from the lower harmonic bar to the neck with kind of a reverse Bouchet in the lower bout. God help us. Luthiers are so creative. The utility of the cantilevers is a real mystery and who knows what was going through Art's mind.

I'm very interested to hear how this guitar turns out. I would only caution that Overholtzer gave guidelines for top thickness that were pretty broad, 1/16" to 3/32" (1.6 to 2,4mm). It was Bouchet's practice, and now Marin's, to leave the top at 2.2mm for the same sort of 5-fan arrangement and make adjustments internally after assembly and stringing up.

The second caution regards the bridge. It is absolutely MASSIVE. Way out of bounds relative to anything any other builder has ever put on a classical guitar and a real cause for concern. Gotta remember that 1.) Art was a machinist by training and 2.) he was German, which means "more massive" = "more durable", but not necessarily better acoustically and he built during a time when there was far less information readily available and far less communication among luthiers. Ergo, no tempering of the imagination. The wings of the bridge are 50% thicker that the thickest I've seen, the length is 30mm longer than the longest, and the string spacing is another 5.5 mm wider than the usual 58mm (he had very big hands). If you're interested, I can provide you with dimensions for a Marin bridge. It's dimensionally at the outer bounds for mainstream luthiers but still petite by comparison.

Please let me know how it goes with this one.

At 12:42pm on September 19, 2010, Michael Tulloch said…
Your detailed explanation of the truss rod, specific to my inquiry and needs was and is greatly appreciated. Thank you for taking the time. I owe you one.


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