Bowling Pin guitar

That's right. You read it right. I made this for a charity auction a few years ago that was a similar idea to the event a friend of mine runs every year but with skateboards. Here's a guitar I made for that event.


When I got asked to do the event I wasn't sure if i could even make a guitar out of a bowling pin. It's not something that I'd spent a lot of time thinking about.

I knew they were made of timber but didn't really know what they were coated with or if they were hollow or solid ....... Turns out they are made of very hard maple and have "tone chambers" in them. The coating is some sort of thick plastic coating that stinks when you cut it.

The shape gave me the idea of making it like a Uke but like an electric guitar.


  


Once it was cut length ways it all started coming together. I "recessed" the headstock like  Fender and drilled the tuner holes in a circle around the top. The nut was cut into this recess and then I fretted straight into the pin itself. Because it was hard maple the frets took really well like a Maple neck guitar. The dots were put in and then I routed the "body" for a pickup and electronics.

The output jack comes straight out the bottom with no volume or tone control.The bowling ball scratchplate was to cover the electronics and hide the "tone chambers" and give me something to mount the pickup to.


  


While the idea for this, like the skateboard guitar was to make a playable guitar there were always going to be limitations. The scale length is very short but with the hard tail style Fender bridge it intonates and plays in tune with a good action.

It did well in the auction (got the highest bid I think) and raised some money for charity. It was bought by a local guy who wanted a Tym guitar and figured this was a good way of getting something unique. Yeah, I'm full of stupid ideas .........

Aug 10 2013 Written By: Tim Brennan