What is the guitar aid?
The Guitar Aid is a mountable tool for your guitar that enables people who have trouble gripping the right frets on the guitar, likely due to decreased motor function in the non-strumming/picking hand.
Gripping a chord on a guitar requires quite a bit of strength and agility in the fingers which not all of us are fortunate enough to have. Therefore this rig was designed to make it easier to grip a bar chord on a guitar with some custom tuning, much like a capo but movable. There's also an interchangeable bit that allows the player to play slide guitar.
Can I make one for myself?
This instructable will show you how you can make you own guitar aid with the use of a 3D printer, some freely available ordered parts and how you might use CAD software (Siemens NX) to optionally adjust it for your own and other's specific needs.
Why did we do this?
We are a group of Industrial Design Engineering students from Belgium. For our Computer Aided Design (level 4) course we had to adjust a design project from an older graduate Industrial Design student for an assignment themed 'Design For Everyone'. Our task was to
- Make the design parametric enabling some options of different guitars, different play styles and different impairments.
- Make it easier for this product to be made by everyone who has access to some simple tools and an FDM 3D printer.
- And some other stuff...
If you have any questions or suggestions on how to improve our design, please let us know in comments below Have fun building it!
Step 1: Gather All the Parts
First you'll need to find or buy a bunch of parts, it's quite a long list:
To glide the capo along the guitar neck, you'll need a rail. Ours consisted of an extrusion profile and some small guide carts. Which we ordered here:
To fit all the parts together you'll need:
- 8x M3 Lens head screws (ISO 7380)
- 2x 5mm semi-tubular rivets with internal thread: https://nl.aliexpress.com/item/5-25-30pcs-cross-r...
- A small round rod with thickness 5mm diameter and thread on both ends (you could tap this manually, but if you're using an existing screw is much easier.
You can find these at your local hardware shop and if you have your own M3 screws laying around at home but they're too long, you can easily file them to length with a small iron file.
To make the strap to mount it on the guitar neck, you'll need the following parts:
- a 90mm strap and a 310mm strap with a loop
- 2x 8mm eyelets
- a 25mm ladder buckle
- 2 M4 flange nuts
- An M4 knurled nut
- A 100mm M4 threaded rod
- An 8mm and a 10mm cover
For the support of the guitar neck you'll also need a
- M10x30 adjustable foot
- 1 small 30mm suction cup
For the handle:
- A foam ball (pet shop) or a tennis ball (you can also make a custom handle without the ball).
And then also
Step 2: 3D Print All the 8 Other Parts With FDM Or...
- The rail support at the end of the neck
- The rail support with the suction cup (on the body of the guitar)
- The clamp:
- The handle:
- The slider:
- The sliding plate:
- 2 buffers (this is optional, it'll work without so these are mostly aesthetics):
- The support foot (you don't need to print this one, a simple block of wood walso works (again it's mostly an aesthetic choice)
To connect the handle and the clamp, you'll need to tap some thread (M10) so you can connect the pieces with a small 12mm M10 rod.
Step 3: 3D Print Them Using SLS (selective Laser Sintering)
This type of 3d Printer is more expensive and thus less common. The advantage here is that all parts are ready for use when printed, and also look clean. The precision also allows the threading to be printed directly into the parts (for the connection between the clamp and the handle, so no insert is needed.