Hello, and welcome to Randy Arnold’s Amateur American Luthier blog. Here I hope to share my explorations in instrument building. My primary interest is the banjo.
I began building banjos in late 2005, in the wood shop that my grandfather built in the 1940’s. He used this shop until the 1970’s. My father, a talented furniture maker, used the shop until the early 1980’s. The shop lay dormant until two years ago, when I began to clean it out and recondition the tools. I have added some of my own tools to my father’s and grandfather’s tools.
My first woodworking project was a banjo. It took me about nine months to build the first one, and a little over a month to build my second, working in the afternoons and on weekends. The whole process is a journey. I’m learning (slowly) what it means to be a craftsman, and how to think simply and efficiently.
And it’s getting to know my grandfather. To use his tools, to feel the bite of the wood in my hand the same as he felt in his. And to know the meaning of “God is in the details.”
Anyway, enough of that. Feel free to look around, ask questions if you want. There’s drinks in the fridge.
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