Martin Guitar factory tour - Part A
Nazareth, PA
October 20, 2005

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After leaving Lancaster county we started home by way of Nazareth, PA.
Martin Guitar has a large factory in Nazareth. This is one of the few factory tours which allow cameras. We toured all parts of the manufacturing process. There is a lot of manual effort put into the assembly and finishing of the guitars.

The tour starts by viewing various displays. Here are displays of the various parts and the different wood types used to make the guitars.

This machine cuts out the backs and fronts.

One of the many displays on the factory floor.
This one shows the braces used on the different guitar types.

A stack of fixtures which are ready to have the tops and bottoms attached.

The guitar sides are made of two formed parts which are glued together by their ends. Then the light colored ribbing and strengthening blocks are glued on the inside. It is then placed in the fixture shown to accept the top and bottom.

The brace across the center, which holds the sides against the frame, is removed through the hole in the top after the glue dries.

The tops and bottoms have been added and the fixture is now in a press waiting for the glue to dry.

Everywhere you looked there were racks of guitar parts.
Here are the two major subassemblies, the bases and the necks. They are waiting one more finish coating and polishing before assembling the necks to the bases.

A robot polishing machine.
The finishing process varies depending on the guitar. Most have 3 to 4 coats of poly after staining. Each coat is sanded using hand sanders with varing grit before it ends up on this polishing machine. Necks are not attached to the base yet.

Guitars waiting strings.
These guitars have gone through all phases of finishing and passed quality inspections.
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