Terry’s Methodologies and Philosophies

Every McInturff is Built from Raw Lumber through Shipping in My Own Shop

I do not job-out any woodwork, finish work, fretwork, assembly, or setup. If one intends to build world-class guitars, one must have world-class skills in every aspect of the build, and to have the type of quality control that can only come from producing in-house. I am answerable for every aspect of the McInturff guitar.

Build Your Sound™

The way that I see it, my primary job is to "build a sound". Of course, the guitar is a tool with which to make music... There are quite a few physical attributes to be perfected to that end. But it is all for naught if the sound of the instrument is not what the artist needs… Your sound!

The Acoustical Nature of the Unplugged Electric Guitar is Vitally Important

By copying the traditional designs, one can indeed build a working instrument, but the tonal result of that guitar can vary widely, just like the originals. A careful study of many multiples of the same design will reveal the fact that the best sounding examples have an excellent and appropriate "acoustical signature".

The acoustical nature of the electric guitar places true limits upon what will be available to amplify. No matter what electronics are involved, if a certain frequency is weak or absent in the acoustical character, it cannot be amplified..no matter what we do. Zero times 10,000 is still zero.

Wood Species A, plus Wood Species B, plus Electronics Set C does NOT guarantee Amplified Result D

Because this is true, a pre-determined acoustical nature must be built right into the guitar. My job is to combine the appropriate examples of the various woods and hardware which will produce the desired acoustical nature, which will then "feed" the electronics exactly what the artist and I need. It is a rather complex process that I thoroughly enjoy. Once a desired sound is determined, some of the hard work is done; I can sort through potential materials and get to work.

The Guitar is a Tool for Making Music

The guitar should aid in the creation of sound while being as unobtrusive as possible. Nothing about the layout of controls, the neck profile, the fretwork, and the rest should draw undue attention to itself during the creative moment. To this end, I offer a variety of optional control placements, neck profiles, and more.

The guitar has to have an extremely stable, reliable neck, which will also perform it's vital role as an appropriate tone filter. It is unusual to achieve both of these goals.

The McInturff neck (which I designed in 1982 and finessed through 2006) has established an industry reputation as being perhaps the most stable, accurate wooden neck in the business. There are more than 3600 McInturff necks out there and as of this writing there has not been a single reported problem, and I am proud of this record. What this means is that the neck seldom needs it's truss rod adjusted, the guitar will stay in tune like a rock, and that the guitar can be relied upon to tour the world reliably… So Tour with Confidence, my friends!

Achieving extreme accuracy and stability is one thing; doing that without compromising the tonal nature of the neck is quite another thing. It took me 24 years to get it all correct. Been there since 2006.

Obviously, every other component needs to meet this level of reliability too, and so I use only the finest hardware and electronic components. We live in a great time for this, since it seems like new and better components come to market regularly these days. I try to stay abreast of all the new goodies, and am always testing new products. Every component needs to be sturdy, tour-able, great sounding, and even at times mil-spec.


The highest quality luthiery... 5 stars overall

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