Reclaimed Wooden Guitar

Maybe you’ll remember the junk pile at the edge of our property?  (Click here to see what I’m talking about) Well I pulled a bunch of wood from it a while ago and set it aside for later use. Old door jambs, window headers and such. It had such a cool chippy look to it I couldn’t let it go to waste.

I know, I know. You’re probably saying that’s all I talk about. Old wood, old things, blah blah blah. But when it’s 5 degrees outside there ain’t much else going on around the property, so I’m taking advantage of the time in the wood shop.


So, chippy wood. Isn’t it cool? Let me show you what I did with some of it.


This wood had been sitting in the dirt and weather for who knows how long. So before taking it through the planer I made sure to scrub it down with steel wool. Dirt and grime will dull your planer knives before you know it. I also pulled a grip of old nails  from each of the boards, making sure to look for anything broken and hidden underneath the paint.


I’m always amazed at what lies underneath the weathered surface of old wood. The elements and time have brought such character to this old pine, just waiting to be revealed!


I thought the grain pattern in these boards had such a lyrical motion to it that it would look pretty cool on an instrument. While I’m not a master guitar maker, I did think a guitar wall hanging might be neat. So that’s what I set out to make.

You can see in the pic above that I’ve chosen a few of the boards with the best grain and I’ve laid them out side by side. I’ve also drawn out the guitar “pattern” with a pencil, keeping the lines distinct but simple. Using my jig saw, I simply cut out the guitar shape. I tacked on a couple braces to keep the four boards from moving while I cut out the shape, one at the top and one at the bottom.


Once the shape was cut, I had four pieces that I edge glued together. I cut three small strips of wood, about 3″ wide, to use as cross pieces. I glued and then nailed these on the back of the guitar to hold everything together, one at the bottom, one in the middle and a smaller one right at the top. I sanded with 80 grit and then 120 grit, easing the edges so the wood wouldn’t splinter later on. After that, I wiped on some mineral spirits to clean up any dust and to open up the grain for the topcoat.


I applied two healthy coats of Tung Oil as a finish. This brought out the grain pattern and the distinct differences between each of the boards, adding dimension to the piece. It will also give a layer of protection so the wood doesn’t fade over time.


I though this old chain lock was a neat addition. I pulled it off one of the boards before running it through the planer.


So here’s the finished project. This one was pretty simple and only took me a few hours. I like how it turned out. If you have a musician in the family, this would certainly make for a great gift!

Thanks for checking in. Until next time…

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