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About Soundboard Bracing




Sometimes people ask me what soundboard bracing system I use.  They seem to have the idea that the sound of the guitar depends on the layout of the soundboard bracing. I want to clarify that it is not so much the bracing pattern--that is, the general layout of the fan braces--that matters.

For each bracing system or pattern, there are infinitely many ways to modify the soundboard which can have a big effect on the sound: There is the thickness of the soundboard itself and how it varies from one area to another. Then there are the cross sections of the braces--their shape and dimensions--and how they vary within a single brace and from one brace to another on a soundboard, including how the ends are scalloped and how much of the ends are scalloped.

Many bracing systems can produce great guitars.  What matters is how a luthier uses or applies a particular system.  For classical guitars, I happen to use what is basically the original system developed by Don Antonio de Torres, but I treat each of the factors mentioned above in my own way and depending on the materials at hand and the desired sound.

In 2011 I was commissioned to build "an exact copy of a 1960s Arcángel Fernández flamenco guitar."  In doing so, I used the bracing layout that Fernández used, and the results were so good that I am continuing to use this layout (shown below) for flamenco guitars.

 

Home | Classical Guitars | Flamenco Guitars
Rosettes and Bridges | Recently Completed Guitars | Currently On Hand
About Wood for Backs and Sides | About Soundboard Bracing
Jason McGuire Cutaway Flamenco Guitar  | Abalone Shell Rosette
Biography | Mario Amaya, Flamenco Guitarist | Contact Me