The guitar is an incredibly versatile instrument in its standard form. Even routine requests for hardware and pickup swaps produce an endless range in the tone and playability of an instrument.
On occasion, folks want something decidedly non-standard such as adding extra pick ups or cutting off parts of the guitar body to make it look like an oud. Even within the range of non-standard projects, most players never question the 12 tone scale. This scale is the one we're most familiar with in Western music. Recently a customer came in with such a request.
Chris brought in an Epiphone, left to him after a friend passed away, to see if we could change the scale to a 19 tone equal temperament.
The 19 tone equal temperament tuning breaks the octave into 19 parts, each equal on a logarithmic scale. Of course his guitar was fretted for a 12 tone scale, which breaks the octave into 12 parts. I am no expert on the theory behind this, but I do know how to solve guitar problems, so here’s what we came up with.
To do this, Tomm used the Plek to plane off the old fingerboard then glued on a new board. After that he trued it to the neck shaft and touched up the finish on the edge. When it was finished, you couldn’t tell the fingerboard had been replaced.