Trevor Gore Course- Principles of Modal Tuning

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woodrat
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Trevor Gore Course- Principles of Modal Tuning

Post by woodrat » Mon Jan 23, 2012 10:27 pm

This weekend I attended Trevor Gore's course called Principles of Modal Tuning with 5 other guitar makers. Trevor's course is based on the Design book part of the Contemporary Acoustic Guitar Design and Build set that he co authored with Gerard Gilet. The course was hosted by Strato Anagnostis and held at the Australian Guitarmaking School at Toronto in NSW.
The course was held over three days and we looked at aspects such design such as analyzing the frequency response curves of guitars and being able to interpret this information to be able to place the main resonances of the guitar with the objective of being able to take the guitar from "as built" to "as designed".
Some of the things that were covered were - Vibration of Strings
- Visualising and understanding modes of vibration
- Relating modes of vibration to the guitars frequency response curves
- Measuring frequency response curves
- Introduction to the theory of Modal Tuning
- Targeting the "right" modal frequencies and avoiding the wrong ones
- Requirements of a guitar as a static and dynamic structure
- Measuring material properties of your tonewood
- Bracing schemes for tops and backs
- Practical tuning of guitar modes to bring your guitar to specification

I felt that the course benefited me a lot as I felt that it helped me to understand the things that I had read and done at home to a more deeper level. There were many times over the three days where where I felt that a penny had dropped after a practical demonstration or discussion on one of the many things that I had read in the book over the previous months but perhaps not fully grasped. Trevors ability to explain his concepts succinctly in practical terms helped us all to a deeper understanding of the subject.
At the end of the three days it seemed that we were all pretty tired from the effort that we had all put in but the mood was still very cheerful as I feel that we had all benefited greatly and were eager to implement what we had learned into our future builds.
So I can without hesitation recommend Trevor's course as we all had a great time learning things that will help us make better instruments.
Thank You Trevor for your generosity and enthusiasm in helping us to become better builders of this fascinating but sometimes frustrating instrument. Thank You too Strato for your hospitality as our host for the three days.
For those who may be interested Trevor will be running courses from time to time as determined by the demand. For more information contact Trevor by email or PM.

John the WoodRat






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Attachments
Gore Course 1.jpg
Trevor tapping a Buckham Journeyman to record its frequency response curve
Gore Course 2.jpg
Trevor tapping the "Shed" guitar
Gore Course 3.jpg
Chladni testing of a Roberts Spruce and Blackwood OOO
Gore Course 4.jpg
Cross Di Pole on Roberts OOO made by Warren Adams
Gore Course 5.jpg
Chladni testing Jeff Highlands Flamenco guitar
Gore Course 6.jpg
Setting Stuarts Wave guitar for Chladni
testing
Gore Course 8.jpg
Gore Course 9.jpg
Bridge rotation test on Buckham Journeyman Blackwood OM
Gore Course 10.jpg
Measuring the bridge position relative to the datum before the string tension is dumped
Gore Course 11.jpg
Bridge rotation test on Jeffs Baritone
Gore Course 12.jpg
Deflection testing panels to determine values for flexural rigidity
Gore Course 13.jpg
Having a chat during a break
Gore Course 14.jpg
Strato playing a Highland Flamenco
Gore Course 15.jpg
Design Fail !!!!
Gore Course 16.jpg
Trevor playing Warren Adams beautiful Blackwood OOO
Gore Course 17.jpg
The Group...from left to right...Trevor Gore,Luke Leeaners,Paul Lambert, Jeff Highland,Stuart Newman, John Buckham and Warren Adams
"It's never too late to be what you might have been " - George Eliot

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Re: Trevor Gore Course- Principles of Modal Tuning

Post by jeffhigh » Tue Jan 24, 2012 6:59 am

I have to agree with John, what a Great 3 days.

My brain is still in overload from all that was learned and done, but I can see the modal tuning principles as THE most important step forward for an individual luthier wanting to differentiate his instruments from factory guitars by performance.

I've had the books for about 6 months now and put a lot of effort into exploring them so a lot of the material was already quite familiar, but the experiencial aspects of the weekend workshop, the opportunity to test a variety of instruments, and interact with Trevor and the other participants made it so worthwhile.

Big thanks to Trevor for the huge effort he put in with preparation and talking to us from dawn to nightfall and beyond and for being so open with us about things he has spent years developing.
And to John for being the impetus in getting this particular weekend happening.

If you don't have the books yet, my advice is to get it and explore it, don't expect to understand everything, but chip away and you will be finding gems.

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Re: Trevor Gore Course- Principles of Modal Tuning

Post by kiwigeo » Tue Jan 24, 2012 8:08 am

Mad Scientists at work!!!

Thanks for the post John.....
Martin

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Re: Trevor Gore Course- Principles of Modal Tuning

Post by woodrat » Tue Jan 24, 2012 8:32 am

jeffhigh wrote:I have to agree with John, what a Great 3 days.

My brain is still in overload from all that was learned and done, but I can see the modal tuning principles as THE most important step forward for an individual luthier wanting to differentiate his instruments from factory guitars by performance.

I've had the books for about 6 months now and put a lot of effort into exploring them so a lot of the material was already quite familiar, but the experiencial aspects of the weekend workshop, the opportunity to test a variety of instruments, and interact with Trevor and the other participants made it so worthwhile.

Big thanks to Trevor for the huge effort he put in with preparation and talking to us from dawn to nightfall and beyond and for being so open with us about things he has spent years developing.
And to John for being the impetus in getting this particular weekend happening.

If you don't have the books yet, my advice is to get it and explore it, don't expect to understand everything, but chip away and you will be finding gems.
Jeff, it was great to meet you and be at the course with you. I agree 100% with your post, especially the opening sentence:) My brain was very tired at the end of 3 days but happy to process the information over the next months and years!

John
"It's never too late to be what you might have been " - George Eliot

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Re: Trevor Gore Course- Principles of Modal Tuning

Post by Dominic » Tue Jan 24, 2012 8:46 am

I was booked to attend this course but had car trouble on the way to Sydney and didn't make it. Shame I didn't get to meet you guys. I intend to take the course as soon as I can. Your pics and comments make me even more determined.
Thanks
Dom
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but you can't bomb the world to peace!

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Re: Trevor Gore Course- Principles of Modal Tuning

Post by Kim » Tue Jan 24, 2012 8:49 am

Great post thanks John.

It looks to be a brilliant weekend for the lucky few. The omission of any secret squirrel handshakes from the brotherhood is nice to see :wink:

Trevor and Girard's book set is a stand-out in our craft. They do not allude to things and then leave them unexplained through what I perceive is a lack of expertise of knowing how to do so. For a big part, the two volumes of Contemporary Acoustic Guitar 'are' the expertise to do so, dot point by dot point. I imagine those few precious days spent in good company would have linked many of those dots nicely to give a much clearer picture for you lucky bastards. :wink:

Cheers

Kim

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Re: Trevor Gore Course- Principles of Modal Tuning

Post by jeffhigh » Tue Jan 24, 2012 8:58 am

kiwigeo wrote:Mad Scientists at work!!!

.....
Indeed.....Mad as they come

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Re: Trevor Gore Course- Principles of Modal Tuning

Post by jeffhigh » Tue Jan 24, 2012 9:02 am

My one disppointment was that Dom could not make it due to car trouble. I had been looking forward to meeting him.

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Re: Trevor Gore Course- Principles of Modal Tuning

Post by kiwigeo » Tue Jan 24, 2012 9:31 am

Time for me to do "The Course" :mrgreen:
Martin

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Re: Trevor Gore Course- Principles of Modal Tuning

Post by Kamusur » Tue Jan 24, 2012 1:38 pm

Whoah jealous now, talk about us mere mortals missing out.
If anyone gets the chance to see/hear Warren Adams he is a great player and a really nice bloke to boot as well.

Steve

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Re: Trevor Gore Course- Principles of Modal Tuning

Post by auscab » Tue Jan 24, 2012 2:41 pm

Great thread John and Jeff,
I hope to one day understand just what it is you guys are doing in those pictures, more , a lot more than I do now.

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Re: Trevor Gore Course- Principles of Modal Tuning

Post by ozwood » Tue Jan 24, 2012 4:42 pm

I must say I was really impressed with the profesionalism and generosity that Trevor delivered his course with, he managed to communicate a very complex subject in a fashion that was understandable and repeatable , Trevor explained his concept's , proved his concept's with hard data, maths and fact's then Demonstrated them in a Practical fashion that left no doubt as too the validity of his concepts , for the numerically challenged ( ME ) I got most of my light bulb moments during the practical hands on demo's , I was a lIttle perplexed and even indimidated by some parts of the Black Book before I did the course , not because it's not well written , more to do with me being more right brained than left ( not so great at maths) but the course deafinatly solidiified all the concepts for me and I'm the richer for it .
We had a great time , good company and some stunning instruments and musicians , thanks to John ( AKA the Wood Rat ) for organizing the course , and to Strato of the Australian Guitar making School for his hospitality and Kicking me off down the path of Lutherie , also the other attendees for their truly great Company , thanks Jeff for helping me through some of the challenging Stuff .
If you don't have the book and have not done the Course , come out of the Dark , do yourself a favour and do both .

Cheers,

Paul.
Paul .

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Re: Trevor Gore Course- Principles of Modal Tuning

Post by 68matts » Tue Jan 24, 2012 6:16 pm

If anyone gets the chance to see/hear Warren Adams he is a great player and a really nice bloke to boot as well.
I was down at Warren's workshop this afternoon sanding up some uke set's. I haven't heard him play yet but he is a really nice guy, very generous with his time and equipment and from what I've seen a very good builder as well.
Matt

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Re: Trevor Gore Course- Principles of Modal Tuning

Post by ozwood » Tue Jan 24, 2012 6:34 pm

I was down at Warren's workshop this afternoon sanding up some uke set's. I haven't heard him play yet but he is a really nice guy, very generous with his time and equipment and from what I've seen a very good builder as well.
:D

I'll Second That Vote Matt , he showed us his Latest Accoustic Build , a Blackwood 000, truly Stunning ,understated , but very very Classy , not only that, It sounded suberb.
I am Thinking of getting the LMI deluxe bender , warren has Just taken deliverry of One and he invited me down to Inspect one in the flesh and In action before I buy one .
He can play too , made some the Guitars at the course really sing .

Cheers,

Paul.
Last edited by ozwood on Tue Jan 24, 2012 6:38 pm, edited 1 time in total.
Paul .

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Re: Trevor Gore Course- Principles of Modal Tuning

Post by Dominic » Tue Jan 24, 2012 6:36 pm

jeffhigh wrote:My one disppointment was that Dom could not make it due to car trouble. I had been looking forward to meeting him.
I was looking forward to meeting up with you and John as well Jeff. At least you got to do the course while I was stuck here with a busted car. I'm sure we will get a chance to meet up sometime. John is coming to Canberra in April for the folk festival, any chance you will come down for that? I missed it last year because I had to work.

There is a critical mass to get the course going so we just got organised with people in the area and asked Trevor. John did most of the organising, so thanks John.

We are very lucky to have Trevor here, even better for those of us around Sydney. I plan on doing the course as soon as I can.
Cheers
Dom
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Re: Trevor Gore Course- Principles of Modal Tuning

Post by Tod Gilding » Tue Jan 24, 2012 6:38 pm

Kamusur wrote:Whoah jealous now, talk about us mere mortals missing out.
Yeah with you, Steve :(

Any chance that one of the attendee's could explain that design Failure with the C C ( I won't mention the Brand name, Brad may not like that :D )
Tod



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Re: Trevor Gore Course- Principles of Modal Tuning

Post by ozwood » Tue Jan 24, 2012 6:56 pm

Any chance that one of the attendee's could explain that design Failure with the C C ( I won't mention the Brand name, Brad may not like that :D )
I Did a Guitar making Course with Strato , so I know the Story well , It's a tale of Alchohol , loud music a lounge and a wayward arse , thats what destroyed it at least , the Design failure happened long before that , the Arse just put it out of it Misery ! :lol:

Cheers,
Paul .

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Re: Trevor Gore Course- Principles of Modal Tuning

Post by J.F. Custom » Tue Jan 24, 2012 8:42 pm

Yep, jealous indeed. :cry:

Congrats on those who attended and also organized the meet/course.

Looks like a very informative weekend, not to mention enjoyable one. With all the technical detail of the books, it really can be 'grounding' to have the theory put into practice - especially by the mind behind the science.

I wonder how your guitars fared when put through the paces? Always room for improvement I'm sure but were you pleased? Do you feel empowered to address their weaknesses? How did Trevor's guitars sound by comparison and in person (without gushing too much :mrgreen: ) ?

Would have loved to be there and will surely attend one in future - invaluable experience.

Thanks for the post.

Jeremy.

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Re: Trevor Gore Course- Principles of Modal Tuning

Post by jeffhigh » Tue Jan 24, 2012 9:05 pm

Well I personally took a guitar that I was a little disappointed with the volume on so I was ready for it to be criticised. The test methods and tuning principles gave me a diagnosis and a plan for remedial action.
There is a lot of emphasis on not accepting "As Built" but moving it towards "As designed" or "As it should have been designed" in terms of sonic performance.

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Re: Trevor Gore Course- Principles of Modal Tuning

Post by woodrat » Wed Jan 25, 2012 8:54 am

Tod Gilding wrote:
Kamusur wrote:Whoah jealous now, talk about us mere mortals missing out.
Yeah with you, Steve :(

Any chance that one of the attendee's could explain that design Failure with the C C ( I won't mention the Brand name, Brad may not like that :D )
Hi Tod, what I meant by that caption was this....if you want to improve the Monopole Mobility of a guitar you would not stick a great lump of Ali right there. Just one of the things that were made clear to us on the weekend:)

+1 for Warren being a great chap and very generous.

John
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Re: Trevor Gore Course- Principles of Modal Tuning

Post by jjh » Tue Dec 03, 2019 2:59 am

Anyone tries Trevor's online course at O'Brien Gutiars?

https://obrienguitars.com/courses/analysis

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Re: Trevor Gore Course- Principles of Modal Tuning

Post by WJ Guitars » Tue Dec 03, 2019 12:28 pm

Anyone tries Trevor's online course at O'Brien Gutiars?


I recently purchased the online video series from Robbie O'Brien and found them was very helpful explaining some of the setup aspects related to modular tuning and VA setup requirements after reading the Gore / Gilet books.

Wayne
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Re: Trevor Gore Course- Principles of Modal Tuning

Post by blackalex1952 » Tue Dec 03, 2019 8:19 pm

I wish I was flash enough to attend one of Trevors courses. I have questions!
Looking at the first pic' it seems from the sketches on the blackboard that Trevor also re designed the Sydney Harbour Bridge! With his skills, I wouldn't put it past him! LOL!
There is a pic there with three bottles of wine on the shelf in the background. Wondering if that was enough given the number of attendees?
But seriously, though folks, I have never had accurate results with the iphone bridge rotation method, I prefer the formula in the books and the way I set things up is to use double sided tape to stick two upright scraps of wood to the tail of the guitar and next to the neck. A beam is then sat on these uprights (double sided tape again) for measuring the string load deflection using the DS tape to locate the block of wood with the piece of wire in it on to the bridge. I think it's quick and because the beam is mounted onto the guitar itself it eliminates a potential variable rather than measuring using a beam as shown in one of the photos. Then I can measure down from the beam to arrive at the rotation. But one question I always have in mind when I adjust the rotation of the bridge, is where to remove wood from the braces? I usually work the height of the X along with the height of the bracing in the upper bout. Comments please?
Cheers! -Ross




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