My Servoelectric Guitar

By Keith Baxter


Photograph by Keith Baxter

image I live near Waukesha, Wis., the birthplace of Les Paul, a pioneer in the development of the electric guitar. Inspired by this fact, I decided to come up with a variation on this iconic instrument.

The fretboard was asking for re-imagining, given that chords and chord transitions are limited for a given tuning; fingers can only reach so far. I tried motors that ran rollers up and down a fretless neck (electronic “fingers”), but was discouraged by the distracting sounds the ...

Get Make: Technology on Your Time Volume 22 now with the O’Reilly learning platform.

O’Reilly members experience live online training, plus books, videos, and digital content from nearly 200 publishers.