Luthier Shop Design
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Hands-On Acoustic Guitar Making
Hands-On Electric Guitar and Bass Making
Contemporary Guitar Making
Setup, Maintenance & Basic Repair

Hands-On Guitar Repair



Class length: 5 days

Format: Seminar in designing your own best work space, with tours of professional lutherie shops.

Tuition: $1200

CFox Shop


tsiorba lutherieI can’t guess the number of times I’ve been asked about setting up a shop for lutherie. Everyone who entersthe craft needs a place to do the work, and planning that space presents an important set of early decisions for a luthier to make. Or, not to make. Many early luthiers work in spaces that are not at all the result of conscious design based on thoughtful analysis. For lack of an informed plan, one’s shop can become a surrounding of random disorder in which we struggle to produce our best possible work in spite of our work environment, instead of creating in a space that’s optimized to facilitate our best possible work.



john greven workshopEveryone begins this craft reasonably unaware of the full nature of the work. Eventually one has the depth of experience to know exactly what one needs from one’s work space, but why wait for that? LUTHERIE SHOP DESIGN will help you plan the most ideal lutherie shop right now for the space and budget that’s available to you. We’ll brainstorm as a group on the best possibilities for each individual’s needs and resources. We’ll look at the five departments of lutherie - parts, assembly, trim, finish, and setup – and make sure their particular needs are all covered. We’ll study work patterns that minimize wasted space and energy. We’ll consider how your workshop can develop over time around an original core of basic tools and a simple layout.

repairing guitarsWe’ll emphasize ways to maximize the versatility of these basic tools and modest space. I recommend visiting full time luthiers’ shops whenever you have the opportunity. You’re bound to see something there that you wouldn’t otherwise have seen nor thought of on your own. That’s because every professional lutherie shop reflects the unique personal thinking and working styles of its tenant.

For inspiration, we've lined up a number of full time professional luthiers who’ll open their shops to us and discuss their work and their work environments, and how that all fits together for them. We'll visit builders Saul Koll (, John Greven (, Mark Roberts (, Kerry Char ( ), David King (, Peter Tsiorba (

mark roberts


If you personally recognize the relevance of this 5-day seminar, and its potential impact on the quality of your work, I hope you’ll take advantage of this opportunity and join us.