My latest, most simple electric diddley build ever. It’s a found object slide guitar…
29 1/2 inches long, very light but solid metal, a total of 4 parts, plus pic and slide:
Most comfy played in my lap like a pedal or lap steel guitar. And she sounds NICE.
For those not in the know, diddley bows are 1 string slide guitars usually made with a stick, broom handle or a 1 x 2 piece of wood through a cigarbox or cookie tin for a body, some sort of bridge and nut (wood or 1/4 inch bolt or carriage bolt). Sometimes there is no tuner, just a guitar string or bit of wire tied up to nails or screws on both ends of the neck.
On occasion, they are as simple as a 2 x 4 with nails on either end and a bottle or two, or chunk of wood on one or both ends functioning as a bridge and nut, no tuner.
You pluck the string with your fingers or a guitar pick (I favor old credit or gas cards chopped up) or bang on it with a stick or dowel, but you don’t press the string down on the “neck”. In fact you set it up so the string is about 1/3 or more above the neck, and run a small bottle or piece of copper or other metal pipe up and down the string to sound the pitch(es) you want. There are no frets, but you might mark a few spots on the neck to keep straight where you are in terms of pitch or a song melody. VERY simple and free or nearly free instrument.
I do love them, both building, playing and hearing them.
Today I finally used it with a semi-retired wound acoustic D guitar string (tuned to Db -that’s D flat -or- C# -C sharp if you like), had a little turnbuckle laying around and affixed a portable piezo pickup on ‘er. HA! NICE. “When the Saints Go Marchin’ In” sounded out real sweet via my little Honeytone or Pignose Amp.
It IS a disease, but I sure enjoy it!
As always, thanks for stopping by. -Glenn