From joeba–(at)–up.hp.com Fri May 29 12:46:34 CDT 1998
Article: 207859 of rec.music.makers.guitar
From: joeba–(at)–up.hp.com (Joe Bac)
Subject: My visit to Suhr Guitars
Date: 29 May 1998 17:15:26 GMT
Organization: Hewlett Packard Cupertino Site
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First of all, I want to thank John, Steve, Kenny, and Kevin for a great
day during my visit there. I had a blast hanging out for the day and I
feel like a lot was accomplished during that time. I really do appreciate
the hospitality, conversation, chuckling, playing, work, and professionalism
of these guys. Also the ride to/from the airport – thanks Steve. I did
make the flight back just my a minute or two – it was close.
Anyway – the production techniques at Suhr Guitars is top notch, state of
the art. John does the design work on his PC, Steve programs the CNC
router, Kevin does the hand sanding, Kenny does the assembly, fret work,
etc. John also does a lot of the production work. They make their own
pickups – which sound fab.
The reason for my visit was to digitize the dimensions of my ’56 so that
they can build me a replacement. Utilizing a robotic arm connected to
John’s PC, he collected the necessary data points that models the guitar.
Next, Steve will program the CNC to cut the wood to these dimensions. I
watched Steve run a block of swamp ash thru the router to cut a body. It
takes only 20 minutes before it’s ready for Kevin to sand. After about
an hour or so of Kevin’s time, it’s ready for the paint shop. The paint
is beautiful. I saw lots of standard start colors that we all are
accustom to as well as just-about-anything-goes.
Each piece of raw wood is weighed and labeled. Steve has a chart that
tells him what each starting weight will yield after it is cut. So, if
you want a specific end weight, they can do it. They can chamber a piece
if wood if need be. I saw some and they’re cool.
John and Kenny were finalizing a black body / rosewood neck guitar that has
his latest 60’s style strat pickups in them. It sounded great. There was
some minor detail about the middle pickup that Kenny noticed and between
the two of them, they diagnosed it to one specific magnet. A quick change
and presto – mo betta. I got to play this guitar and it ROCKS. Hey
STARTQUEEN – is this one yours? If so, you’re gonna love “lil’queenie”.
John finishes the final digitizing of my strat, we close shop, and head
out to the local burger joint to cop some lunch. I had the sourdough
greese burg. It was pretty good even though John doesn’t recommend the
burgers there. Tacos and burritos are the call.
Back from lunch, we finalize all the details for my guitar. I popped in a
tape of my band for a listen. Kenny likes our bass player – I agree
our Ken rocks and has great tone.
A few quick digital pictures of my guitar for the record books before we
rush me back to the airport for a 5:30 flight home.
What a great bunch of guys – I had a blast. I’m really looking forward
to getting my guitar. This is as good as it gets folks!!!
THANKS A MILLION AGAIN GUYS!!!
| Joseph G. Bac Phone: 408 447-7190 |
| Hewlett-Packard Co.Fax: 408 447-4668 |
| 19091 Pruneridge Ave. MS 46LR Email: joeba–(at)–up.hp.com |
| Cupertino, CA 95014 or Joe_Ba–(at)–p.com |