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Find a book or two about guitar building on Amazon (https://www.amazon.com/Make-Your-Own-Electric-Guitar/dp/0953104907 this one is pretty excellent) and read it. The book will not only tell you every step of building an instrument, but it will also list every tool and material you will need to complete the project.
The first step to take, though, is to learn basic woodworking skills. Without them (and without good hands-on guidance from a skilled woodworker), you will not build an instrument worth playing.
The kindest, most all-encompassing advice I can give you:
Try reading a book. This one is pretty rad. (Like, extremely rad.) It will tell you a lot of what you need to know.
www.stewmac.com and www.warmoth.com are probably the simplest sources of quality parts for somebody who doesn't really know what they're looking for. Yes, an electronics dealer would be cheaper, but it would also be harder to find what you need. These two companies limit themselves to guitar building, so you're less likely to accidentally purchase the wrong stuff.
Did this about 12 years ago. Bought most stuff from StewMac.com I would heavily suggest buying their premade neck-fretboards. I did, and it turned out pretty awesome. I bought the maple neck/ebony fretboard for through neck type construction, an alder body blank, bridge, pickups, wiring, and paint all from them. Cut out the body sides and use them as clamping cauls when you glue the sides to the neck. I bought the book "Build Your Own Electric Guitar" and it was a great help. TAKE YOUR TIME!!! DO IT THE RIGHT WAY!!!
Dan Erlewine's Guitar Player Repair Guide has been around for years and covers a lot of ground. I bought my copy when I was 16, over 20 years ago. The newest edition also comes with a DVD too. You can get it at StewMac here, although it's available from Amazon and most book sellers. No one book can cover every single little thing, but it's a good reference to keep around; I still check mine from time to time.
Anymore, it's easy to find most of this information freely available online. Someone already mentioned frets.com, which is an awesome site. There are tons of great Youtube channels too (Freddys Frets, StewMac, Crimson Custom Guitars, Sully Guitars, Dave's World of Fun Stuff, Blues Creek Guitars, O'Brien Guitars, and dozens more I can't remember offhand.) I think it's easier to learn certain things by watching videos, so I'd suggest picking one book as a main source, then look up videos for anything that's not entirely clear to you. I didn't have the benefit of Youtube or the internet when I started working on them, so take advantage of it!
I'd also recommend getting at least one book on building guitars, because it can give you quite a bit of insight about how different instruments are constructed. I've had Melvyn Hiscock's Make Your Own Electric Guitar for years too and it's a great book, but it's currently out of print. Keep an eye out for a used copy, or look into the ones that are currently available. StewMac has a good selection of books, but again you can find most of them from any book seller.
Finally, don't get too overwhelmed. Guitars are not particularly complicated things and it's not rocket science, even if it looks like it sometimes. There really aren't that many repairs that I'd consider too difficult for the average person, as long as you're willing to put in a little time to learn how to do them. Even refretting isn't that hard (although it's tedious and takes all friggin' day.) Learn how different types of guitars are built, because all a repair is is repeating a particular part of the build process to fix a problem. Watching "factory tour" videos on Youtube of various manufacturers can give you a surprising amount of information on how a particular builder tackles certain aspects of the instrument. There's almost always multiple ways to achieve a repair, it's just a matter of figuring out what works best for a particular instrument or situation or just how you prefer to work.
It's been a long time since I've looked through them, but I believe one or both of the books linked below cover neck through builds:
I bought and read through this book, it was quite helpful. Though I don't remember paying $48 for it.
I also used a lot of internet research, but this was my main basis.
i may have a copy of this OP. its yours if i can find it. pm me.
The Melvin Hiscock book is a standard jumping off point that will walk you through the entire process and, I believe, even comes with full-size plans (can anyone else confirm? My copy is stashed away).
I think I may have read it and enjoyed it, but I do see Martin Koch's book recommended a lot as well.
As I classify my style of building more as a series of repairs, I cannot stress enough how helpful and informative Dan Erlewine's Guitar Player Repair Guide is. I reference this regularly.
There's a metric ton of videos on YouTube of various boutique builders for you to enjoy. Dan Erlewine also did a bunch of videos in the 80s and 90s on building, fretwork, finishing, etc. that are absolutely invaluable if you can get your hands on them.
I suggest buying this book and read it cover to cover.
I responded to your post in /r/luthier about buying tools. From what i remember you have access to the school wood shop but for limited amounts of time. I’m going to try and take you through some of the major steps in building a guitar and what tools you could use.
Alright this isn’t a comprehensive list but I’m running out of steam. And some of these are out of order I was too lazy to fix it. As you can see a router would do a lot for you. I know you were thinking of hand tools only but if you could find a way to make the router work it would be the best bang for your buck. I recommend reading this book and figuing out what tools you can buy and use in your situation. There are also look at stuff on Youtube to get ideas.
Many of us started with this book:
Nothing you can't find on the internet, but this is one of those areas where there's just too much information out there.
I've had one before.
I recommend taking it to a luthier if you're not experienced with the technical side.
Option 2 - learn that shit, save money.
Buy that, read that.
While I'm a few years out of building my own, here's the thread that documented basically everything I did for mine: Link. I'd also highly recommend purchasing this book - there are some invaluable tips and hints scattered throughout it.
Overall mine was probably about $1000, but the main costs came from the pickups and components I used -- as a side note, good wood can be found for cheap if you do some thorough research. Additionally, I contracted out the fretboard to a local man who built guitars as a hobby, and that cost a few hundred IIRC.
As everyone else is saying, StewMac and the internet will be your best friends if you decide to move forward with building one. There are dozens of particle board/acrylic templates online that can be purchased and printed off. A good guitar can be built for only a few hundred dollars if you are patient and learn from your mistakes as you go. If you have any questions, feel free to PM me.
Pretty much the standard references for this sort of thing:
Make Your Own Electric Guitar
The Guitar Repair Guide
I did exactly what you're explaining with my dad. The process takes a long time. I'd recommend starting with designing the body. If you want to design your own body, sketch it out, and GIVE VERY EXACT MEASUREMENTS ON THE STENCIL.
This includes the center line. EVERYTHING ON THE GUITAR IS BASED ON THAT CENTER LINE. The neck, pickups, and bridge all have to be exactly on that line.
Also you have to factor the scale of the neck you're planning to get. I got my neck from Warmoth. It's a great neck and I can't be happier with it, but a finished neck is around $250.
Back to the body: What wood do you want to use? Are you going to book end the wood if you're going to use a translucent finish (burst, dye, etc.) or are you going to just paint it? I dyed my guitar and used layers upon layers of laquer (~15 to be exact of museum quality finish).
Hardware is something else to consider. Stewart-MacDonald is a great site for that. Think pots, switches, tuners, bridges (stopbar too if you're doing a Gibson-style bridge), pickup rings if you're not using a pickguard, pickguard, neck plate for bolting the guitar on, etc.
Basically, there's a lot to consider when building a guitar. It's not easy at all, but if you have fun with it, you can build a hell of a guitar. I recommend buying a couple books on guitar building. This is one of the books I got. It's really good and I highly recommend it.