Journeyman Program

Two Months (320 hours)

The Journeyman Program can be viewed as a stand alone program that in one two month setting, covers not only basic guitar construction but also the most common repair and lutherie topics. It also serves as the foundation for the Technician, Master and Graduate programs.

In this two month intensive, you will focus on the most common repair issues and make two custom guitars that are yours to take home, case included. The repair section is divided into four different topics, each designed to cover the relevant issues you will encounter on a daily basis. 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 1 – Fretting and Fret Dressing – 8 hrs
First you’ll focus on fretting techniques where you’ll 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 fretboards
  • Re-fretting bound fretboards
  • Compression fretting
  • Hammer-in fretting
  • Gluing in frets
  • Routing fret slots
  • Dressing frets
  • Adjusting truss rods
  • Repairing loose frets
  • Selecting fret wire

REPAIRS 2 – 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 a sunburst
  • Spraying metalflake finishes
  • Wet sanding
  • Buffing finishes

REPAIRS 3 – Acoustic Repairs – 10 hrs
Many repair people today acquired their skills on electrics, but unfortunately have neglected the acoustic market because acoustic repairs are usually 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 problems
  • Re-gluing loose braces
  • Repairing bridge plates

REPAIRS 4 – Guitar 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:

Electrics

  • Troubleshooting before setup
  • Neck evaluation
  • Truss rod designs
  • Making bone nuts
  • Back-filing nuts and bridges
  • Fitting and replacing intonation saddles
  • Identifying fretboard radius
  • Setting up tremolos and locking nuts
  • Choosing proper string gauge

Acoustics

  • Troubleshooting before setup
  • Fitting bridge pins
  • Replacing and refitting bridge saddles
  • Making compensated saddles
  • Making bone nuts
  • Identifying fretboard radius
  • Choosing proper string gauge

Guitar Making: Primer

The HD30 electric guitar and S22 electric bass were both specifically designed for teaching the Electric Guitar Making Level One session. The lessons covered are some of the most important everyday topics that will come across your workbench. Topics such as basic electronics, assembly and set-up plus, you will get your first introduction to spraying, wet sanding and buffing finishes.

Guitar Making: Level One/Building an Electric Guitar

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

CLASS: ELECTRIC 1 – Body – 8 hrs

Wood choice and body design play a large part in the tone of an electric guitar. If you play electric solid body guitars unamplified and 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 guitars and the effect of different body styles on tone and sustain.

Topics covered:

  • Body styles
  • Wood choice
  • Neck joints
  • Fitting neck to body
  • Finish sanding
  • Installing body hangers for spraying



CLASS: ELECTRIC 2 – 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 for finishing



CLASS: ELECTRIC 3 – 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 you are looking for.

Topics covered:

  • Body wood stains
  • Spraying techniques
  • Custom colors
  • Sunburst
  • Metalflake
  • Clear coats
  • Wet sanding
  • Buffing



CLASS: ELECTRIC 4 – 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 used ever day throughout your carrier.

Topics covered:

  • Pick guard types
  • Grounding plates
  • Pickup installation
  • Wiring volume pots
  • Wiring tone pots
  • Wiring switches
  • Wiring output jack
  • Bridge and string grounding



CLASS: ELECTRIC 5 – Final Assembly – 30 hrs

Learn how to assemble and set up an electric guitar to factory specs. Our methods make the job much easier that will cut your set-up 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:

  • Pick guard placement
  • Bridge placement
  • Setting neck
  • Tuner installation
  • Installing strap bottoms
  • Fret dress
  • Nut
  • Bridge set up
  • Action
  • String tree placement
  • Pickup height
  • Intonation
  • Final buff and polish

Guitar Making: Level One/Building an Electric Bass

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

CLASS: ELECTRIC 1 – 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 and 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 choice
  • Neck joints
  • Fitting neck to body
  • Finish sanding
  • Installing body hangers for spraying



CLASS: ELECTRIC 2 – 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 for finishing



CLASS: ELECTRIC 3 – 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 are looking for.

Topics covered:

  • Body wood stains
  • Spraying techniques
  • Custom colors
  • Sunburst
  • Metalflake
  • Clear coats
  • Wet sanding
  • Buffing



CLASS: ELECTRIC 4 – 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 used ever day throughout your career.

Topics covered:

  • Pick guard types
  • Grounding plates
  • Pickup installation
  • Wiring volume pots
  • Wiring tone pots
  • Wiring switches
  • Wiring output jack
  • Bridge and string grounding



CLASS: ELECTRIC 5 – Final Assembly – 30 hrs

Learn how to assemble and set up an electric bass to factory specs. Our methods make the job much easier that will cut your set-up 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:

  • Pick guard placement
  • Bridge placement
  • Setting neck
  • Tuner installation
  • Installing strap bottoms
  • Fret dress
  • Nut
  • Bridge set up
  • Action
  • String tree placement
  • Pickup height
  • Intonation
  • Final buff and polish

Business: Level One – 2 Hours

Many students are great with their hands and good 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.   

Business Plan Level One is designed to teach students that the basics are just not that difficult. For many, getting started is the hardest part in running a business and even if you intend to work for someone else, understanding basic business principles is a must. 

Guitar Making: Level One

Now is the time to choose the area of focus that best fits your business plan. To achieve this Bryan offers two from scratch, ground up building options; a steel string acoustic or a set neck electric.

The acoustic steel string is a monarch style guitar designed by Bryan to teach his students not only what it takes to make a quality instrument but also what makes it tick, what to look out for and what the modern acoustic guitar market is looking for. Once completed you will have an edge on the market no matter if you choose to build for a living or go into repairs full time.

The set neck electric was designed to give students the skills to do a ground up build with a quick and easy template system custom designed for the small production shop. Once completed you will have the ability to set up small production runs making it possible to start your own line of guitars.

Guitar Making Level Two: Building an Acoustic Steel String

Whether you want to build or repair guitars, it’s important that you know how they’re assembled. We will lead you step-by-step through the building process to give you a real understanding of acoustic guitar design. We’ll cover only the most beneficial information and repeat as few procedures as possible. Upon completion, you’ll have hand-built a flattop acoustic guitar that’s excellent way to introduce yourself to potential employers and customers.

CLASS: ACOUSTIC 1 – 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:

  • Guitar layout and design
  • Selecting wood
  • Matching top sets
  • Matching back and side
  • Joining tops and backs
  • Thickness sanding
  • Bending sides
  • Cutting rosettes and soundhole
  • Fitting sides to mold
  • Parabolic sanding
  • Gluing in head and end blocks
  • Fitting kerfing
  • Shaping side braces
  • Scalloping back braces
  • Scalloping top bracing
  • Assembling body
  • Binding and purfling



CLASS: ACOUSTIC 2 – Neck – 40 hrs

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

Topics covered:

  • Scale length
  • Making the fretboard
  • Binding fret boards
  • Peg head designs
  • Peg head overlays
  • Tuner layout and fitting
  • Truss rod installation
  • Gluing fret boards
  • Shaping necks and heels
  • Neck sets
  • Fretboard markers
  • Leveling fret boards
  • Fretting
  • Side markers
  • Peg head inlay
  • Heel cap
  • Inlay



CLASS: ACOUSTIC 3 – Finish Work – 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



CLASS: ACOUSTIC 4 – 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 sets
  • Bridge layouts
  • Finish removal
  • Gluing bridges
  • Installing tuners
  • Fitting bridge pins
  • Leveling fret boards using neck jig
  • Fretting
  • Dressing frets
  • Making nuts
  • Making saddles
  • Final setup
  • Final buff and polish

Guitar Making Level Two; Electric Guitar Making

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. In addition, we’ve added pickup winding putting you one step closer to building an entirely scratch-built instrument.

CLASS: 1 ELECTRIC – Electric Body – 60 hrs

As a continuation of your 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 book matched 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 back sections
  • Pre-routing for electronics
  • Gluing up body blanks
  • Drilling locating holes
  • Jigs and template systems
  • Routing control cavities
  • Routing pickup cavities
  • Routing neck joints
  • Shaping body style
  • Binding



CLASS 2: ELECTRIC – Electric Neck – 50 hours For the neck on your Level Two Electric you will make you 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 up neck blanks
  • Truss rod installation
  • Cutting neck joint
  • Scale lengths
  • Fret board radius
  • Making fret board
  • Shaping inlay
  • Custom inlay
  • Drilling tuner holes
  • Gluing on fret boards
  • Neck carving



CLASS 3: ELECTRIC – Assembly – 40 hrs There are several popular neck joints with all having their place depending on the builds style and purpose. For your Level Two Electric you will use a mortis and tendon set neck method for a great clean simple and solid neck joint.

Topics covered:

  • Setting neck to body
  • Fitting neck joint
  • Final neck set angle
  • Final shaping of neck, heel and body
  • Finish sanding
  • Masking
  • Prepping for finishing



CLASS 4: 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:

  • Masking bindings
  • Body wood stains
  • Spraying techniques
  • Spraying sun burst
  • Clear coats
  • Wet sanding
  • Buffing



CLASS 5: ELECTRIC – Electronics – 20 hour Now that you’ve built a custom guitar, you’ll choose the wiring and pickups – pickups that you’ll wind yourself, giving you more control over the tone of your guitar.

Topics covered:

  • Pick up winding
  • Pickup installation
  • Wiring volume pots
  • Wiring tone pots
  • Wiring switches
  • Wiring output jack
  • Bridge and string grounding



CLASS 6: ELECTRIC – Final Assembly – 40 hrs Learn how to assemble and set up 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
  • Installing strap buttonsFret dress
  • Nut
  • Bridge set up
  • Action
  • Pick up height
  • Intonation
  • Final buff and polish

Voicing: Level One – The physics of sound as applied to acoustic guitars.

Advanced Principles of Instrument Design and Construction – 6 hrs

What separates the Galloup School from the rest of the pack is the ability to teach instrument voicing and design unlike any other guitar making school in the world. The methods taught in the voicing classes were developed by the Galloup Team and are being adopted by major manufacturers as well as some of the most influential boutique builders in todays market.

Voicing has been separated Level One (Journeyman Program), Level Two (Technician Program) and Level Three (Master Program). Breaking it down into three levels assures each student has the ability to comprehend the topic as they progress through their builds and as their luthier skills advance. The Galloup team’s system for teaching voicing classes makes it easy to understand and easy to apply putting you on the path to developing you own tone.    

Topics covered in Level One:

  • What is sound and how does it function
  • Compressions and rarefactions (the slinky model)
  • Human hearing range
  • How the guitar body works to create sound
  • The physics of a vibrating string
  • Fundamentals and harmonics
  • What is resonance
  • The Helmholtz Resonator, complex oscillator
  • Understanding and using tap tones
  • Selecting materials: density and strength-to-weight
  • Bracing: its function and various approaches
  • Voicing the braces
  • The effects of body geometry
  • How volume and porting alter air resonance
  • How changes in plate size affect plate resonance

Free Housing

Technician, Journeyman and Master students rest easy – you’ve got a great place to stay. Click here for more information about Free Housing.

Financial Options

Click here for more information about Financial Assistance for qualifying veterans and other payment options.

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