Author Options:

Can you change an acoustic guitars sound by drilling holes in it? Answered

I love my acoustic, it's a Kona K-2 lefty. but I was recently modifying my sisters old bass to make it left handed and I was moving the knobs so my hand wouldn't brush across them, getting rid of the need for the piece of metal that held them where they were. I liked the look of the piece and decided i wanted to put it on my acoustic.

As you'll see in the picture, their are holes in the piece of metal where the knobs go, I was wandering of drilling where those holes are would modify the sound of the guitar significantly and if it could be beneficial?



Best Answer 7 years ago

Changing the guitar in any way will change the tone -- whether good or bad who knows at this point. Resonating to create a certain tone in that cavity requires the wood be a specific density, shape, etc, with specific holes. Adding that metal may stiffen the wood, and putting the holes/screw may (will) change the way the wood reacts to the sound. How is anybodys guess.

My mind was totally blown by that video.

rather try experimenting with sticking cardboard bafflers and chambers inside the box and duct tape patches on the outside to alter vibration if you wish to modify the sound ,that way you can play to your hearts content without screwing the guitar up.

You'll have already modified it when you've attached the metal. I would expect that alone to alter the sound noticeably. If you don't care much for it's sound quality or value go ahead, otherwise leave it alone.


Well, I attached it and it didn't change the sound quality much at all, I probably won't drill extra sound holes though.

If you have the itch to fool with guitar building, you should look at building yourself a CIGARBOX guitar. or.. a GASCAN banjo. This man on youtube called "rpeek" is amazing check him out at this link : http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xJq04V2IoHk
he makes gascan banjo's and cigar box banjo's. he has about 1000 videos on youtube.

Don't do anything like that to your guitar. If it would sound better with holes in it some guitar mfg. would have already done it.

When you get tired of the in a week or two you'll have to have the whole thing refinished to fix the holes and it'll have to be painted now cause the patches won't match.

As soon as you drill the first hole you lose ANY resale value. It becomes a junker guitar.

If you really want to try something like this go out and buy one of those $59 guitars. That way you only lose $59.

Well I wouldn't get tired of it, when I do something I do it for the long term. Plus the guitar was only $120 and I'm getting a 12 string or an ovation when I have the money in hand.

I would never sell this guitar, it's the first guitar that I bought with my own money so the sentimental value outweighs the existing value by a long shot.

But I really want to attempt a custom look and sound on it. The metal is going on the side where the pick up is and is right along the edge of the upper left hand side. so what ever change in sound, I don't think it would be intensely different, it would just be like giving a normal guitar a cutaway, the change in sound is extremely minimal.