Luminous Guitars is a one person operation in Portland, Oregon. That’s me on the right there. I have been repairing and customizing guitars since I was 16 and got my second electric guitar. It was a MIJ 50’s Strat with some tuning issues and a tone that left me wanting more. So I got under the hood! In the 20-some years since, I have been an avid student of the creation and improvement of the guitar. My core value is bringing the best out in every instrument that comes through my shop. This is what has motivated me to become a luthier.
Each Luminous instrument, while made to exacting specifications, is a unique piece. It expresses my desire to craft a superior product. It also reflects the individual journey that instrument took to completion. When your instrument is finally in your hands, it is the embodiment of our work together to make it.
How I Do It
I embrace traditions of woodworking while incorporating modern practices in my guitar making. I do not now and may never use CNC machines or any other automated means of production. My hand planes, chisels, band saw, router, drill press, and sanding blocks are the essentials of each build.
Hell, I still haven’t gotten the hang of graphics software! I designed the Barton Hall with a sketch pad and a pencil.
What I Use
My materials are many and varied. Exotic and domestic woods are at the core of the work I do. However, I make the most of the possibilities of metal, plastics and resin as builds demand. I’m always thrilled to experiment.
I currently work with all sorts of finishing mediums. As time carries on, however, I am becoming more inclined to honor the environment and neighborhood that supports my work. To this end, I encourage my clients to use water based finishes. I continue to work with local wood vendors to stay informed about the sustainable harvesting of the woods I use. So much of the wood traditionally used in luthiery comes from beleaguered parts of the world!
You tell me! I’m always thrilled to talk guitars and woodworking.
I am ever indebted to my two helpers. My beautiful fiancee helps with the website in the common occasion that my skills run out. The cat, Moose, is my despotic time management assistant, as his feeding time coincides with my shop schedule. The cat is less than protective of his identity, so enjoy this photo of him trying to be cute when I’m trying to take product portraits.
Finally, I am ever grateful to you, the players who make my life a dream. Thank you.