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Building a Puerto Rican Cuatro
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Author:  WilbPorter [ Thu Jan 08, 2015 1:21 pm ]
Post subject:  Building a Puerto Rican Cuatro

I am intending to build a Puerto Rican cuatro. The plans for the instrument, and in fact the traditional way of doing it, calls for a piece of wood as thick as the sides, Then the instrument is sawn out of, or hollowed out of the wood, including, it seems, the neck. However, I would like to build one with bent sides, and would appreciate any information anyone could provide. Thanks.

Author:  unkabob [ Mon Jan 12, 2015 12:13 am ]
Post subject:  Re: Building a Puerto Rican Cuatro

Try The Guild of American Luthiers web site. They might have plans available.

Just my gut instinct.

Bob :ugeek:

Author:  cphanna [ Mon Jan 12, 2015 10:26 am ]
Post subject:  Re: Building a Puerto Rican Cuatro

I'm glad you posted this question. I've never seen one of these instruments but I've heard OF them, and I once met a performer from Trinidad who told me he played one.

Your post suggests that you have a set of plans for the traditional method. It seems as though you should be able to derive your own bent side plan from that. You could improvise a way of bending and attaching the "c" bouts by reading up on violin making methods. I did an image search just now and discovered that plenty of builders are using an attached neck--very similar to guitar construction.

You've probably seen this video slideshow, too, but I'll attach a link. Some of the table saw techniques in the video look very dangerous to me, but there are safe ways to do those operations. The guy in the slide show is shown building a separate neck. Pretty interesting. Second link is to a page you might already have seen. It includes PDFs of construction procedures and its own link to a plan.

Author:  turkswork [ Tue Jan 13, 2015 9:34 am ]
Post subject:  Re: Building a Puerto Rican Cuatro

You might also try contacting William Cumpiano. I believe he is quite the expert and should be able to steer you in the right direction.

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