Introduction: Transformable Headless Travel Semi-Acoustic Guitar

About: I am a physicist. I am a developer. I like to build musical instruments.

I have created a few guitars and other musical instruments. Because of that, some people ask me to create an instrument. I have done a couple of regular projects.

As for me, the real instructable story might be about something unique. And, I think, this story bout that.

One man writes to me "I saw you make nice guitars. Can you create for me one? I want acoustic travel guitar which I can plug into an amplifier. About form, make everything you want."

It was really tricky task. I like guitars with long scale length and asymmetric courageous form. Travel guitar is a small thing without the form.

But, not for me.

Step 1: Generate the Idea

The idea came from the gaming mise Rat. These mice can adjust the form for different hands.

What if the guitar can make it too. Creating a guitar with small movable parts was to difficult. But, a transformable guitar was wary possible.

To make guitar smaller with the long scale I decided to create headless guitar.

Step 2: Tools and Materials

Materials were like always any hardwood from reсycle bin. Even fretboard was pice of an old yacht. And carbon fiber truss rods.

Side wings made with plywood which I found somewhere near reсycle bin.

some frets. Inductive pick-up - maxtone single. Rear, piezoelectric pick-up - "avzhezh music", for someone is noname.

The most interesting thing of all guitar is the rear bridge. It is real peace of engineering art.


jointer, drill, sandpaper, and other tools for wood.

Hemostatic clamp - for placing electronics inside the guitar.

10 batteries for craft shielding paint.

Step 3: Body Creation

I made the neck, the frame of the resonator, and glue those together.

To make the sound of resonator lauder its high cover I made from beech and low from oak. This has to make

interference because of the different speeds of sound in different wood.

Side wings I made from plywood. The blueprints glue on the wood and cut it with a hand router. If you want to do some like that, I mean the thing with elegant design, better to use solid wood, not plywood.

To make guitar stronger I use carbon fiber truss rods. With hand router made the groove and glue carbon rods with epoxy.

For quick mount of side wings, I make up a hook on it and box lock on its and.

Step 4: Shielding From Used Batteries

I understand that I will have wire in the resonator and this might have electromagnetic shielding. I could use a metal ducktape. But, most of them have resin-based glue. And with time resin-based glue can dry. This means with time a lot of metal tape inside the box wich makes bogging rattling and noise.

So, I started looking to shielding paint. When I saw its prise in that moment I finished look at that.

I started the search of replacing shielding paint and find the video, which shows how to make shielding paint with graphite lubricant and water-soluble varnish.

But, or I don't want to search inside the DIY store, or maybe I am lazy cow, this no one knows, I make up how to make the shield paint with old salt battery.

Salt battery have anode made from carbon. Graphite is one of the states of carbon. So, I disassembled the old battery. I gut all carbon from it. I dry and grinned carbon. After I sift dry and grinned carbon.

Finally, I mixed carbon with varnish and paint with it inside the resonator and low cover.

Step 5: Non-invasive Guitar Surgery

Another Interesting task waits for me "connect all electronics inside the box".

So I made a big hole, after surgery, I will cover it with plugin cover. I mount all wire, reostats, and switch out of the guitar. And, after, place through the hole with the hemostatic clamp.

Step 6: Finish and Souncheck


I painted side wings with black varnish. It was the hardest and most boring process, with failures.

The guitar I varnished with oil-wax.

As a result. It was an interesting project with difficult challenges.

And now I want to build some 8-string multiscale transformable headless travel guitar to play in any point of the world.

Audio Challenge 2020

Participated in the
Audio Challenge 2020