Everything Cigar Box Guitar – How to Build, How to Play, News & More


“Who says you need to buy a guitar?” – Jack White

Just in time for the weekend, we bring you, perhaps, one of the easiest instruments you can make in a short time.

In the following clip from the 2008 documentary “It Might Get Loud”by Davis Guggenheim, Jack builds a one-string Diddley Bow in a little over a minute. With just a few nails, a coke bottle, and a single coil pickup, Jack illustrates very nicely what those of us in the know have said all along:

“Who says you need to buy a guitar?”

Cigar Box Uke Video Lesson: “I Still Miss Someone” by Johnny Cash – by One-Hand Dan Russell

Need a quick-reference for Ukulele? Check out this poster available at C. B. Gitty!

Written and recorded by Johnny Cash in 1958, “I Still Miss Someone” is a tune about longing and heartache.

One-Hand Dan Russell brings a how-to video, with included chord diagrams, on how you can play this on your Cigar Box Ukulele!

Click here for the Video Lesson from One-Hand Dan!

Hawaiian Lap Steel Guitar plans from 1965

Click the image above to see the kit by C. B. Gitty Crafter Supply!

Lap steels have seen a bit of a new life among Cigar Box Guitar and homemade music enthusiasts. C. B. Gitty has put out an affordable, easy-to-build kit that can be built in an afternoon, out of a scrap piece of 2×4 timber!

But what if you have already built one of these fine instruments from the kit above, and are looking for a little bit more of a challenge?

Sent in to us in 2016 by “Hubcap John” Hayward, these plans were originally printed in Practical Wireless Magazine, a UK-based Amateur Radio Magazine back in 1965.

These schematics lay out the ground work from dimensions to wiring diagrams, that you can follow to build an electric Hawaiian-Style Lap Steel Guitar!

Click the image below to download these FREE PDF Plans!

Twelve Bar Blues – Tablature for Open G GDG Cigar Box Guitars

Presented by the Southbound String Company. Strings specifically voiced for your Cigar Box Guitar!

The Twelve-Bar Blues is an important chord progression that has served as the basic melody for thousands of Rock and Blues songs over the years.

When considering where to begin with learning the basics for blues on your Cigar Box Guitar, one of the best places to start is learning this chord progression.

It can even be adapted for other open-chord tunings!

Click here for a free PDF Tab download and a bonus how-to play companion video by Ben “Gitty” Baker.

“Hallelujah” – 3-String Open G GDG – Cigar Box Guitar Tab

Click here for Southbound String’s most popular set for tuning to GDG

Friday is finally here and the weekend is only a short work day away. Why not celebrate by starting a new song to practice over the weekend?

Soutbound Strings brings tablature for “Hallelujah” by Leonard Cohen arranged for a 3-string, Open G (GDG) Cigar Box Guitar. A timeless and powerful classic, it’s hard not to close your eyes and get lost in the music.

Click here for the FREE PDF with a bonus instructional video!

Grounding your Cigar Box Guitar pickup without a Metal Bridge

One of the most common ways to eliminate the frustrating buzz and hum in your electric Cigar Box Guitar, is including the strings in the pickup circuit by grounding to the bridge.

But what do you do if you aren’t using a metal bridge?

Glenn Watt brings you an excellent article that explains how you can do just that.

Click the picture of a bewildered looking Glenn below to learn how you can ground without a metal bridge!

How-to Video: Installing a Pre-Wired Magnetic Pickup Harness

Click here to see the broad range of pre-wired harnesses offered by C. B. Gitty Crafter Supply!

A pre-wired magnetic pickup harness are a great way to electrify your next Cigar Box Guitar. They are easy to install and can really add a great touch to your build.

In this how-to video, Craftsman Glenn Watt brings you step-by-step instructions on how to install one of these harnesses, specifically the “Florentine Screamer” by C. B. Gitty.

The instructions can even be adapted to install other pickups as well!

Eliminating the Buzz and Hum on your Electric Cigar Box Guitar

Click here to see some of C. B. Gitty’s handy pre-wired Pickup Harnesses!

A  frustrating problem to run into while building an Electric Cigar Box Guitar, is the dreaded Hum or Buzz when you first plug the guitar into an amp. It can be discouraging to new and experienced builders when trying to diagnose and fix the issue.

Enter this informative article by Ben “Gitty” Baker that can help to speed up the troubleshooting process. He presents some of the common sources that can cause the buzz and some tips and tricks that can help mitigate if not solve the issue altogether.

Click here to learn Ben’s tips on diagnosing the Hum and Buzz in your Electric Cigar Box Guitar!

Voodoo Child for Open G -GDG- Cigar Box Guitars by Glenn Watt

What better way to shake off the Monday blues than learning a new song?

Glenn Watt arranged an excellent cover of “Voodoo Child” one of Jimi Hendrix’s most notable tunes. Here he provides a video showing how it can be played on your Open G Cigar Box Guitar and provides tablature so that you can play along.

Click the still above to watch the video and get the FREE downloadable PDF Tablature!

How to Play, Tune and Read Tablature for Canjos

Click the image above to see the American Canjo Company’s line of affordable one and two string canjos!

The third part of Ben “Gitty” Baker’s introduction to Canjo’s jumps right into the basics of tuning your canjo, how to read tablature and demonstrates by teaching you how to play two well-known Songs: “Camptown Races” and “When the Saints Go Marching In”.

Click here to learn how easy it is to pick up and play a canjo!

Anatomy of a Canjo

C. B. Gitty and the American Canjo Company offer fully fretted diatonic necks, perfect for making your own canjo or dulcimer. Click above to find out more and how you can get one for your next project.

Part two of a four part video series, Ben “Gitty” Baker dives into the details of what parts make up a canjo, American Canjo Company’s Diatonic fretting, the “Blue note” and more!

Click here to learn more about the composition of these instruments!