Portfolio: Bowlback Lap Steel Guitar | “Lady Steel” | #5-200

Bowlback Lap Steel Guitar | “Lady Steel” | #5-200

All mahogany (same wood as 21-171); bookmatched Camatillo rosewood fingerboard; hand-cut boxwood & ebony checkered binding, cut & fit one piece at a time; ebony bridge; hand-cut abalone fingerboard inlay

The vision for this instrument was the checkered binding as ribbons in her hair. I carved the peghead first & tried to have it not look like Dustin Hoffman – only a slip of the chisel away. It’s my bowlback lap steel design, which is eleven ribs, which extend all the way up to the peghead. It’s flat at the widest part of the lower bout, so that it won’t roll off your lap. About halfway up, it’s about a half-circle, and at the peghead it’s narrower than it is deep. The ribs bend two ways and twist in order to accomplish this. The whole instrument is glued together with hide glue. The peghead has only tung oil finish on it, and the body is lacquered.