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61 Nickel Guitars

Hi there! 

My name is Glen Henderson and I build Cigar Box Guitars and other interesting musical things.  I am located on beautiful Vancouver Island, Canada and I have a passion for art, music, and woodworking.  

I am 61 Nickel Guitars.

And now for the story behind the name….

One rainy afternoon on the West Coast of Vancouver Island, I was scrolling through the depths of the “inter web” and discovered a site featuring homemade cigar box guitars.  

Now I was interested…

I soon realized the simplicity of the way they were built appeared to be well within the reaches of my skillset.  All that I needed was a cigar box, a length of hardwood, some strings and tuners, and an assortment of odds and ends that could be found in almost any home workshop or junk drawer. 

Now I was intrigued…

With my limited knowledge of music from campfire style sing alongs, I knew just enough about guitars to be dangerous.  I have always practised multiple styles of woodworking including making toys, building furniture, and wood carving.  I have also been blessed with a creative and artsy gene or two passed down through generations in our family.  I thought this could be a clever way to combine my love of art, music, and woodworking into one passion.

Now I was prepared…

I set out to build my very first cigar box guitar (pictured below).  It was actually a pretty decent little instrument and I learned a massive amount about intonation, scale length, action, and other luthier type terms that evaded me through life until this point.  Once I made one guitar, nothing would stop me from making another, and then another, and then….well, you get the picture.  

Now I was hooked…

Since that day, I have made over 200 guitars and other interesting musical instruments and objects.  Each and every guitar has a 1961 Canadian nickel proudly displayed somewhere on the instrument.  It’s my “thing” and just so happens to be my birth year (coincidence….I think not).  In addition to my own original works of art, I have had the privilege of being asked to create guitars specific to a customer’s wishes, often utilizing objects that reflect their own personality or that may have deep meaning to them.  These creations are very unique and extremely special not only to the recipient but also this builder.

Now I am grateful…