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Nathan Rigney

Nathan Rigney

When did you start building?

I started in 2016. 

Do you build as a hobby or professionally?


Nathan Rigney - Cocobolo Telecaster
Nathan Rigney: Cocobolo Telecaster

How did you learn to build guitars?

At the time, I was ending my run as a touring musician, so I had a lot of van time.  I watched hundreds – maybe thousands – of hours of youtube videos during this time.  I was always into woodworking and thought this would be a perfect way to combine my two passions.

What’s your favorite part of guitar building?

My favorite part is carving the neck.  I saw a woodworking meme, once, that basically said, “Cut away everything that doesn’t look like a guitar,” and that is literally what you are doing when carving a neck.

What’s your least favorite part?

The fact that there isn’t more time during the day to do more guitar building!

Is there a guitar-building skill you want to improve?

I am still working on my skill with hand planes.  I would love to eventually get to a point where I can build a guitar exclusively out of hand tools.

What was your most recent build?

I am currently working on a telecaster that is partly made out of a Napa wine barrel that I dismantled.

What are you planning to build next?

A hollow-body Jazzmaster.

Favorite tools?

The Shinto Saw Rasp.  That thing is just a beast.

Nathan Rigney - Kauri & Bog Oak Parlor
Nathan Rigney: Kauri & Bog Oak Parlor

What Potvin templates do you use?

Telecaster, Parlor, Mustang, Jazzmaster – Basically all of the guitars I always wanted to own but never could buy.

What was your building experience like before using Potvin Templates?

Was there a time before Potvin templates? Actually, I have only built one guitar without a Potvin template.

How have Potvin Templates helped you in your builds?

In my previous woodworking, I never used templates for anything, so I didn’t even think about it.  In my first build, I used a to-scale printout and glued it to the wood.  It worked well enough, but then I discovered templates and I doubt I’ll ever do it differently again.

Are you a better builder or player?

Probably player, but I’m working on the building.

What’s your favorite band, or style of music?

I listen to a wide variety of music but currently I’m on a funk kick – Sly, Parliament, Herbie Hancock.

Nathan Rigney - Mustang
Nathan Rigney: Mustang

Got any non-guitar hobbies?

I recently started a music blog/monthly playlist email blast. I was bored of listening to the same things all the time and I made it a priority to find new music from all genres, from all around the world.  I started making a 20 song monthly playlist of things I was listening to – new (to me) and old – and it has kind of bloomed into this project called unsolicitedpretentiousmusicadvice.pizza.  No desire to monetize at all, I just want to contribute to the music experience.

Anything else you want us to know?

I am honored to have caught the attention of Mike.  He’s out there taking requests and making our lives easier!

Where can people find you?

Instagram @natefrogguitars for guitars (more like a photo journal of what I’ve built), @upmadvice.pizza for music; Twitter @upmadvice; unsolicitedpretentiousmusicadvice.pizza

Potvin Customer Build Video - YouTube

See some of Nathan’s work in this video where I feature his and other customers’ awesome guitars!

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