Musician Builds Electric Guitar Without a Body to Determine Where a Guitar’s Tone Comes From

Nashville musician Jim Lill decided that he wanted to learn more about where the tone comes from in an electric guitar. In order to determine this origin, Lill spoke with other musicians to learn what they thought, compared several guitars of his own, and switched out the necks, pickups, and headstocks from certain guitars, mixing and matching the parts.

Lill also built two instruments of his own design, a self-described 2×4 Guitar and a bodiless “air guitar”. The latter consists of strings stretched across a bench and a worktable, attached by a headstock on one end and a steel saddle with pickup on the other. He then compared the “air guitar to his Anderson Telecaster.

Here are the things that the Anderson and the air guitar had in common: tuning, strings, scale length , pickup, pickup distance to strings , pickup position along the strings, pickup slant angle, and effective volume pop value