In 1984 I began playing guitar on a Harmony acoustic guitar which cost just ten cents. Needless to say the guitar was as far from optimal as possible while still being somewhat usable. Eventually after demonstrating a focus and determination the instruments got better and it wasn't long before I started playing in bands. It was during these early years I began taking guitars apart, swapping parts, stripping paint, cutting away wood and tinkering with anything I could think of to make my guitars "better". Eventually I got the opportunity to tech for live bands all of which planted the seed for what would later become my career.
In 1994 my career in luthiery began after attending the guitar program at Red Wing Technical college. Upon graduation I handled repair work for several music stores in and around the St. Croix River Valley while continuing to play in bands, perform live and record in studios. There were various opportunities to tech and provide back-line gear at larger events and venues as well.
In 2000 I returned to the guitar program in Red Wing guitar as an instructor beginning with electric guitar construction and adding additional courses for several years while continuing to repair instruments.
By 2004 I wanted to learn as much about wood finishing as possible so I enrolled in the Wood Finishing Technology program at Dakota County Technical College in Rosemount Minnesota. It was here I learned about new wood finishing, refinishing, touch-up as well as conservation and restoration techniques of wood coatings. I continued to teach and repair instruments during this time. I was also lucky enough to be accepted into the five-day"Conservation of Transparent Coatings" workshop held in collaboration with the Smithsonian Institute in the summer of 2004.
Since 2005 I have been teaching full time in the guitar program in Red Wing Minnesota while also repairing, restoring and building guitars.
By 2010 it became nearly impossible to continue working on customer repair work as teaching and building instruments was the focus. I still repair and restore instruments but now they are guitars, pedals and amplifiers I purchase, work on and at some point offer up for sale. Many times they find a new home before I can list them for sale but in time more will become available.
In the fall of 2013 I had the opportunity to take a sabbatical from teaching to immerse myself in learning once again. I had casually studied tube amplifier design for more than 20 years but finally was able to dedicate myself to a deeper understanding of guitar amplifiers and tube amp electronics. Each week during my sabbatical I also studied computer aided design for guitars which then led to work with CNC machines (computer numerical controlled).
Currently I have a shop full of projects that will keep me busy for quite some time. This includes instrument projects that will end up for sale, restorations of instruments as well as many tube amplifiers with a variety of "issues". Upcoming projects are featured "The Queue" section of the website and will be sold through my storefront on Reverb.com.