Swedish professor Olaf Diegel's work dominates our rundown of the most amazing 3D-printed guitars, and with good reason: the sheer intricacy and ingenuity of his designs is unparalleled. Who better, then, to develop the world's first 3D-printed aluminium guitar?
Appropriately monikered Heavy Metal (or not, depending on how important metal density is to you), the guitar is "purposefully complex to really push the limits of metal additive manufacturing", and features a diamond tread-plate T-type body with barbed wire and roses within the frame - Diegel is keen to point out that "the barbed wire spikes [are] kept well away from the player", though. Phewph.
The actual guitar parts comprise a maple inner core, Warmoth custom neck, Seymour Duncan pickups, Schaller bridge and Gotoh 510 mini locking tuners (full specs below); the aluminium body, meanwhile, is a single piece printed using an EOS M400 metal additive manufacturing system. Gotta get us one of those.
Once the body's frame was printed, the bulk of the time was spent filling and sanding the finish - four days according to Diegel - and the proper guitar aspects (CNC machining the wooden inner core, assembling, wiring up, setup) only took a day.
There's no word on whether this model will be put up for sale, but given Diegel's guitars with intricate air-brushed paint jobs cost $4,000 at ODD Guitars, we'd wager it would be around the £4-5k mark at the very least. Still, that's the price you pay for a world-first.
- Neck: Warmoth Pro Telecaster maple neck with maple fret board, 22 frets, 25 1/2″ scale, 42.86mm (1 11/16″) width GraphTech White TUSQ, 6150 sized jumbo frets, 10-16″ compound radius fret board, black inlay dots
- Body: 3D printed Aluminium shot-peened to a smooth satin finish
- Bridge: Schaller 475, 6 String Flat Mount Bridge, Chrome
- Pickups: Neck: Hot-rodded Seymour Duncan Jazz SH2, Bridge: Seymour Duncan JB model SH4
- Tuning heads: Gotoh Mini 510 Locking Tuners, Chrome
- Controls: 5 position Pickup select switch, 1 x Volume knob, 1 x Tone knob
- Other: Schaller Strap Locks, D'Addario strings, low-cost hardcase for safe shipping
- Weight: 3.7kg