This course is supplementary to the nine-day Musical Instrument Making course, held in the spring. It enables students to have time to design and make the moulds and jigs necessary for making their chosen instrument. Also to select and prepare some of the woods required. It may also be used to finish and set up instruments made on a previous course.
What you should achieve:
(1) Starting a guitar or ukulele
An understanding of the process of making their chosen instrument.
The correct use and sharpening of hand tools.
The preparation of templates, moulds and work-boards.
The selection and preparation of suitable tonewoods.
(2) Finishing your instrument
An understanding of different types of finishes and their application.
Preparation and application of a French polish or oil finish to your instrument.
Cutting and fitting a bone nut and saddle.
Setting up strings.
Teaching is generally on a one-to-one basis catering for the student’s individual needs, and dictated by ability, previous experience and knowledge. There will be group demonstrations where appropriate. As the course takes place in the main workshop, adjacent to the other courses in this series, you will also gain knowledge by interaction with fellow students and other tutors. Those starting certain instruments have information packs provided by the tutors. Health and safety is dealt with as an integral part of the course.
Please note: humidity levels in the workshop are variable to dry; whilst the College has addressed this, as some factors are beyond our control, instruments are brought at your own risk.
Arrival Day - this is the first date listed above
Courses start early evening. Residential students to arrive from 4pm, non-residential students to arrive by 6.45pm.
6.45pm: Welcome, followed by dinner (included).
8 - 9pm: First teaching session, attendance is essential.
Classes 9.15 - 5pm, lunch is included.
From 6.30pm: Dinner (included for residential students).
Evening working - students may have access to workshops, but only with their tutor's permission and provided any health and safety guidelines are observed.
Classes 9.15am - 3pm, lunch is included.
Residential students are to vacate their rooms by 10am please.
(This timetable is for courses of more than one day in length. The tutor may make slight variations)
Peter Barton studied musical instrument making under the direction of Roger Rose on the full time course at West dean.
Since 1986 he has been working as a professional luthier making classical and acoustic guitars.
He has also taught guitar making as a part time lecturer at Leeds College of Music and West Dean College.