The First 3D Printed Hollow-Body Electric Guitar from Olaf Diegel

Semi-acoustic or hollow-body guitars are known for their clean, warm tones – the sorts of tones you hear from old jazz songs maybe fast-picking country players. 3D printing’s own personal guitar hero, Olaf Diegel, has brought this classic sound into the 21st Century by designing the first 3D printed semi-acoustic guitar, titled The American Graffiti.

The American Graffiti, as you might guess, is inspired by the Ron Howard flick, paying tribute to early rock’n’roll with iconic rock symbols and a fiery paint job from New Zealand air bush artist Ron van Dam.  Throughout this work of art are a number of cars of days bygone, including 50’s hot rods, as well as Mel’s Diner, microphones, a jukebox, moving dice, Ray Ban sunglasses, among other pieces from the era. And, around the body of the guitar, you’ll read Neil Young’s famous lyrics from “Hey Hey, My My (Into the Black)”: “My my, hey hey Rock and roll is here to stay It’s better to burn out Than to fade away.”

Like all of Diegel’s instruments – which now include everything from keyboards to drum sets – the American Graffiti is 3D printed by 3D Systems with selective laser sintering. Made from strong Duraform PA nylon, the print has layer thicknesses of just .1mm.  In addition to the printed portions, there is a wooden hollow box comprising the inner core, connecting the neck and the bridge.  For the complete specifications and many more close-ups of Olaf’s beautiful semi-acoustic guitar, visit the instrument maker’s website here. … (read more)