As with many other technological developments, the advent of the PC offers the guitarmaker new and useful tools.
It might seem odd to define the PC a ‘new’ technology, yet it has to be considered in the perspective of our profession. We normally work like any maker could have at least 60 or 70 years ago, and we should actually be able to complete our instruments in the same exact fashion as they did centuries ago: without the use of electricity, fabricating most of our tools and so on. It’s actually quite liberating having these abilities and it’s one of the important teachings of good professional schools.
But we do work in our own times and we’re conditioned by it in the way we think and what we take for granted; all of it impacts irremediably the outcome of our work. So why then limit ourselves in the tools and techniques we use? Often that position is just an excuse to justify our inability to adapt; i tend to do it myself very often.
Probably the most useful use of the PC for my work is CAD; i had the good fortune to have it available since the very beginning of the technology as a kid in the 80’s and not being allowed videogames i used it as such on my father’s PC’s. For my work, it enables things in the design and analysis of instruments that would basically be impossible or extremely impractical without it.
Even if not everybody’s cup of tea, i keep stressing every apprentice to at least learn the basics of it as it helps them get a deeper understanding of guitar’s design and the ability to apply it creatively on their own work.