Journeyman Program

Two Months (320 hours)

The Journeyman Program can be viewed as a standalone program covering Level One guitar construction and repairs, or as the foundation for the Technician, Master and Graduate programs. You will focus on the most relevant issues you will encounter on a daily basis and the custom builds are electives so you can best-lay the foundation for your career.

Guitar Repair Classes

To ensure your success you will need to generate a positive cash flow. One of the fastest ways to do so is through repairs and restorations. My repair session covers the most requested and best money making topics.

Repairs: Session One

Fretting – 8 hrs First you’ll focus on fretting techniques and be introduced to the fret jig. This valuable tool simulates string tension on an unstrung guitar to allow for faster, more accurate fretwork.

Topics covered: truss rod designs flattening fret boards re-fretting compression fretting hammer-in fretting gluing in frets routing fret slots dressing frets adjusting truss rods repairing loose frets fretwire selection

Repairs: Session Two

Finishing Techniques – 2 hrs In repair work, it’s important to be able to refinish both electrics and acoustics. You’ll learn the finishing techniques used by the manufacturers plus the necessary woodworking skills to restore damaged guitars.

Topics covered: repairing dents – finish sanding – applying wood fillers – spraying custom colors – spraying sunburst – metal flake finishes – wet sanding – buffing

Repairs: Session Three

Acoustic Repairs – 10 hrs Many repair people acquired their skills on electrics, but neglected the acoustic market because acoustic repairs are more advanced. Here, we will focus in-depth on acoustic guitars and their unique problems.

Topics covered: neck resets – bridge re-glues – repairing cracks – humidity issues – re-gluing loose braces – repairing bridge plates

Repairs: Session Four

Setup and Maintenance – 10 hrs Two of the most useful and challenging subjects of the program. Every repair job requires some amount of setup to enhance or maintain top performance.

Topics covered: trouble shooting before set up – neck evaluation – adjusting action – making bone nuts – back filing nuts and bridges – setting pickup height and intonation- replacing intonation saddles – identifying fretboard radius – floating tremolos – locking nuts – proper string gauge – fitting bridge pins – making/replacing bridge saddles – compensated saddles

Guitar Making: Primer

These lessons cover the most important everyday topics that will come across your workbench. Along with basic electronics, assembly and set-up skills, you will get your first introduction to spraying, wet sanding and buffing guitar-style finishes.

Primer: Option One

Electric Guitar

Level One guitar making is formatted around the most successful electric guitar of all time: the bolt-on neck design. Along with general guitar making skills, you will focus on advanced topics to lay the foundation of your training.

Electric Guitar Body – 8 hrs

Wood choice and body design play a large part in the tone of an electric guitar. We’ll look at the different woods used to make electric guitars and the effect of different body styles on tone and sustain.

Topics covered: body styles - wood choices - neck joints - fitting - finish sanding - installing spray hangers 

Electric Guitar Neck – 8 hrs

Just as wood affects the body, when making a neck you have to pay attention to wood choice in order to have a good sounding guitar. You’ll learn what makes a neck sound and play great.

Topics covered: wood choice - scale lengths - fretboard radius - tuner installation - truss rods - finish sanding - installing neck hangers

Finishing  - 24 hrs You’ll finish your electric guitar with the same methods used by guitar companies in the 50’s and 60’s — techniques that have stood the test of time and are recognized as the best sounding finishes used on guitars. You will also work with colors, tints and application methods to get the look that you desire.

Topics covered: body wood stains - spraying techniques - custom colors - sunburst - metal flakes - clear coats - wet sanding - buffing

Electronics – 10 hrs Now that you’ve assembled a great guitar, you’ll have to learn what makes them tick on the inside. These are topics every Luthier needs to know and tools you’ll use every day throughout your career.

Topics covered: pickguards - grounding plates - pickup installation - volume pots - tone pots - switches - output jacks - bridge grounding

Final Assembly – 30 hrs

Learn how to assemble and setup an electric guitar to factory specs. Our methods make the job much easier, which will cut your setup time in half. Many of these were developed by Bryan through years of production along with industry standards every tech needs to know.

Topics covered: pickguard placement - bridge placement - setting necks - tuner installation - installing strap buttons - fret dressing - bone nut - bridge set up - action - string trees - pickup setup - intonation - final buff and polish

Tone Wood Upgrades

For the Electric Primer, as with all of our Galloup School class projects, we offer premium tone wood upgrades upon request. Please call for availability and pricing.    

Primer: Option Two

Electric Bass

Level One guitarmaking is formatted around the most successful electric bass of all time: the bolt-on-neck design. In almost any music store, these basses outnumber other styles five-to-one. Along with general guitar making skills, you will focus on advanced topics to lay the foundation of your training.

Body – 8 hrs

Wood choice and body design play a large part in the tone of an electric bass. If you play electric solid body basses unamplified, you’ll notice distinct differences between various wood types. A solid body that sounds good acoustically will absolutely sound good amplified. We’ll look at the different woods used to make electric basses and the effect of different body styles on tone and sustain.

Topics covered: body styles - wood choices - neck joints - finish sanding - installing body hangers 

Neck – 8 hrs

Just as wood affects the body, when making a neck you have to pay attention to wood choice in order to have a good sounding bass. You’ll learn what makes a neck sound and play great.

Topics covered: wood choice - scale lengths - fretboard radius - tuner installation - truss rods - finish sanding - installing neck hangers

Finishing – 24 hrs You’ll finish your electric bass with the same methods used by guitar companies in the 50’s and 60’s — techniques that have stood the test of time and are recognized as the best sounding finishes used on guitars. You will also work with colors, tints and application methods to get the look you desire.

Topics covered: body wood stains - spraying techniques - custom colors - sunburst - metal flakes - clear coats - wet sanding - buffing

Electronics – 10 hrs Now that you’ve assembled a great bass, you’ll have to learn what makes them tick on the inside. These are topics every Luthier needs to know and tools you’ll use every day throughout your career.

Topics covered: pickguard types - grounding issues - pickup installation - volume pots- tone pots -  grounding switches - output jacks - bridge and string

Final Assembly – 30 hrs

Learn how to assemble and setup an electric bass to factory specs. Our methods make the job much easier that will cut your setup time in half. Many of these were developed by Bryan through years of production, along with industry standards every tech needs to know.

Topics covered: pickguard placement - bridge placement - setting neck - tuner installation - strap button placement - fret dressing - bone nut - bridge setup - action - string trees - pickup height - intonation - final buff and polish

Tone Wood Upgrades

For the HD30 Electric Primer as with all of our Galloup School class projects, we offer premium tone wood upgrades upon request. Please call for availability and pricing. 


Business and Marketing

Business: Session One – 2 hrs Many luthiers are great in a shop, but handling the basics of everyday business is not on their radar. For this reason, Bryan developed three classes which parallel the Journeyman, Technician and Master Programs to assist students in making the transition.   

Guitar Making: Level One

It’s time to decide what area of guitar building best fits your business plan. To achieve this, two “ground up” build options are offered. The acoustic guitar teaches students what it takes to make a quality instrument and what the modern acoustic guitar market is looking for. The electric guitar uses an easy template system, custom designed for the small-production shop. Once completed, you will have the ability to setup small production runs, making it possible to start your own line of guitars.

Level One: Option One

Steel String Acoustic


We will lead you step-by-step through the building process to give you a real understanding of acoustic guitar design. Upon completion, you’ll have hand-built a flat top acoustic guitar that serves as an excellent way to introduce yourself to potential employers and customers.

Acoustic Guitar Body – 80 hrs
The heart of the acoustic guitar is the body. The tonal quality of the finished instrument reflects wood choices, bracing patterns and body styles. All of these elements will affect clarity, balance, projection, warmth and overall tonal character.

Topics covered: Layout and design - wood selection - top sets - back and sides - plat joining - thickness sanding - bending sides - cutting rosette - cutting sound hole - fitting to mold - parabolic sanding - fitting kerfing - side braces - scalloping back braces - scalloping top braces - assembling body - binding and perflings

Acoustic Neck – 40 hrs

Players are very particular about the neck styles they play. In many cases, the neck's feel and contour are the first thing players consider when purchasing a guitar. We’ll look at how the neck affects the tone, feel, and playability of the guitar.

Topics covered: scale lengths - making a fretboard - peghead designs - overlays - tuner layout - truss rod installation - gluing on fretboard - carving necks - setting necks - fretboard markers - leveling fretboards - fretting - side markers - peghead inlays - heel cap

Acoustic Finish – 40 hrs

Bryan has spent years perfecting acoustic guitar finishes. The methods taught at the Galloup School are systematically perfected operations that will deliver a finish that gives the best tone without sacrificing wood protection.

Topics covered: finish sanding - masking techniques - spray gun operations - wash coats - fillers - clear coats - wet sanding - buffing

Acoustic Setup and Assembly – 40 hrs Final setup and assembly are the means to well-balanced tone and great playability. Most people consider these to be the most challenging aspects of the course.

Topics covered: final neck set - bridge layout - gluing bridges - tuner installation - fitting bridge pins - leveling fretboards - fretting - fret dressing - bone nut - bone saddle - final setup - final buff and polish.

Tone Wood Upgrades

For the Level one Acoustic, as with all of our Galloup School class projects, we offer premium tone wood upgrades upon request. Please call for availability and pricing.    


Level One: Option Two

Electric Guitar


Bryan designed a template method of building electric guitars that is ideal for small shop production on a tight budget. Using high quality materials, you’ll scratch-build a guitar that reflects the classic lines of some of the finest electrics ever made. 

Level One Electric Body – 60 hrs

As a continuation of  Level One Electric Guitar Making, we will further evaluate the importance of quality material and how they play a part in the tone of the guitar. Unlike the Level One Electric, Your Level Two Electric has a bookmatched flame maple cap that further adds to the complexity your material options have on the tone of the instrument.

Topics covered: body styles - wood choice - joining flame maple tops - joining beck sections - pre-routing for electronics - gluing body blanks - locating holes - using template system - control cavities - pick cavities - neck joint - shaping body

Level One Electric Neck – 50 hours

For the neck on your Level Two Electric, you will make your neck from quarter sawn, high-grade maple. This style of neck making is the most popular electric guitar neck for it’s incredible stability and great tone.

Topics covered: wood choice - gluing neck blanks - truss rod installation - neck joint - scale lengths - fretboard radius - making fretboards - peghead overlay - tuner layout - gluing on fretboard - shaping neck 

Level One Electric Finishing – 60 Hrs As a continuation from your Level One Electric, you will choose a color scheme that suits your preferences. We have a wide selection of colors and shaping options so you can personalize your Level Two Electric.

Topics covered: final shaping of neck - final shaping of body - final shaping of neck - masking techniques - staining body - spraying custom colors - spraying clear coats - wet sanding - buffing

Level One Electric Electronics – 20 hour

Now that you’ve built a custom guitar, you’ll choose the wiring and pickups, giving you more control over the tone of your guitar.

Topics covered:  pickup installation - volume pots - tone pots - switches - output jacks - bridge grounding- soldering

Level One Electric Final Assembly – 40 hrs

Learn how to assemble and setup an electric guitar to factory specs. Our methods make the job much easier, and cut your setup time in half – skills you’ll use every day.

Topics covered: bridge placement - tuner installation - strap button installation - fret dressing - bone nut - bridge set up - action - pick up set up - intonation - final buff

Tone Wood Upgrades

For the Level One Electric, as with all of our Galloup School class projects, we offer premium tone wood upgrades upon request. Please call for availability and pricing. 

 

Voicing: Level One

Principles of Instrument Design – 6 hrs What separates the Galloup School is the ability to teach instrument voicing and design unlike any other guitar making school in the world. The methods taught have been divided into Levels to assure each student has the ability to comprehend the topic as their luthier skills advance. Bryan’s system is easy to understand and easy to apply, putting you on the path to developing you own tone.    

Topics covered: how sound works – compressions and refraction -human hearing range – guitar body functions – physics of vibrations – fundamentals and harmonics – what are resonances – Helmholtz resonators – tap tones – material selections – bracing – brace voicing – body geometry – porting alterations – plate resonances

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If you have any questions, or would like more information about the Galloup School, please email school@galloupguitars.com