We can talk all day about how we make our instruments and the technology behind and on our guitars.
We do this here: it’s time for some Tech Talk.

Tech talk - our passion

We could talk endlessly about our passion, building guitars. But describing what you hear and what you see is more difficult for us than building these important properties into a guitar.

On this page we especially want to give an impression of the properties of guitars built by us.

The 'Treeline'-effect

More to come about The ‘Treeline’-effect

Blind Fretslots

We don’t saw our fingerboards all the way though but we stop at 2 mm from the sides. This way you can’t see the end of the fret-tangs. This is however not just purely an aesthetic feature: this way fingerboards are a lot stiffer. Rigidity in necks improves directness and responsiveness in your tone. It also keeps the fret tang from popping out of the side of the fretboard and cutting up your hands while playing.


For the Lignator guitars we use three different types of fretwire: nickel-silver, EVO gold and stainless steel. They all have their pros and cons and for that reason there is nog good or wrong. It depends on you as a player what works.

Nickel Silver is the most common fretwire on guitars in general. It’s a tried and true material that will work perfectly fine for most players. There are two different types, 12% and 18% nickel. We only use 18% nickel, which is way more durable and fitting for an electric guitar than the softer 12% nickel.

EVO gold is the middle of the road between nickel silver and stainless steel. It is harder, more durable and smoother than nickel silver, but it is softer and less hard on our tools than stainless steel. Additional advantages are the absence of nickel, which makes it a great choice for people with a nickel allergy, and the gold color.

Stainless steel is the hardest and most durable option of the three. It will (almost) last forever and the feel when bending is very smooth and easy. They do add a little more brightness/sharpness to your sound. Under high gain and with down tuned instruments the difference is very suttle and for some even favorable, however especially when playing clean some people don’t like the brightness. A big disadvantage of stainless steel is how hard it is on our tools and elbows, it really takes some effort but can be well worth it!


A very important part of an electric guitar are the pickups. They of course are necessary for translating the vibrations of the strings to sound combing out of an amplifier but they also give you the ability to color the sound of the guitar the way you like it. For example combining a bright sounding pickup with darker sounding woods.

We tend to prefer handwound pickups. Winding a pickup by hand creates a scatter wound coil. This means that the wire is not laid down perfectly and consistent, but with imperfections. These imperfections cause more air in the coil and this eventually creates a pickup that has more tonal complexity.

For the Lignator guitars we have chosen Bare Knuckle Pickups as our main and go to option. They offer a great range of pickups and the distinct voicings give you the opportunity to really personalize the tone of your instrument.

Luminlay Side dots

All Lignator guitars are equipped with Luminlay or custom glow in the dark side dots. On a modern day road worthy guitar you should not have the problem of playing in a dark venue and having difficulties finding your place on the fretboard. All it takes to make them shine is a quick charge with a flashlight (preverably blue) or some daylight!


We always use sturdy and reliable parts and materials. For that reason we choose CTS pots, Schaller or Switchcraft switches and Switchcraft output jacks.


A guitar with a multiscale design combines different scale lenghts. Generally speaking a longer scale length for the bass strings and shorter for the treble strings. The longer length gives more tension, which makes it possible to tune lower, keep a tight and defined sound and keep the string in better pitch. The shorter scale for the treble strings make them a bit looser and therfore not to shrill sounding and easier to play leads on.

Besides the string tension ergonomics is a really important benefit of multiscale. Your hand naturally moves in a arc, it follows the fan of the frets on a mutliscale. There always is one straight fret, the perpendiculair fret. The position of this fret determines how big the angle at the bridge and nut is.

We currently have two standard multiscale options: 25.5″ to 26.5″ for 6 string and 25.5″ to 27″ for 7 string. We have choosen the 7th fret as perpendiculair postion. This keeps the angle at the nut less extreme and therefore relatively familiar and easier to play bar chords on.


All Lignator guitars come standard with Hipshot locking tuners and bridges. Hipshot has been a popular option for years and they have proven themselves to deliver stable and reliable high quality parts. Besides that their range of bridges to accommodate all different kinds of multiscale configurations is amazing!

Round Neck Joint

More to come about round neckjoint…

Neck Profiles

The neck profile of a guitar is extremely important for the overall feel and playability. Since the Lignator guitars are mainly aimed at the modern/progressive metal players we choose to go with a comfortable thin D-shaped neck profile. The D-shape gives you a bit of a flatter surface on the back of the neck, which is ideal when playing with your thumb behind the neck (classical position). On a very round surface your thumb keeps searching for the perpendicular postition. The flatter surface creates a restful postion for your thumb.

Nut Material

A good nut is extremely important for the playability, tone and performance of your guitar. We spend a lot of time on crafting our nuts as well as possible and only use high quality materials. Our preferred materials are bone, bell brass and Lignum Vitae.

Bone has been one of the main nut materials on instruments and for a good reason! It’s a hard and dense material with good tonal properties, resonance, fine tuning reliability and is fairly durable.

When you want to add a bit more bite to your open strings bell brass is a very good option. A brass nut makes your open notes sound close to your fretted notes. Besides this brass is a very durable and wear resistant material.

Something special we started using on our instruments is Lignum Vitae. A wood that has a very heigh density and is self-lubricating. This wood is also used to make bearings for windmills… if that doesn’t say enough!

Neck Wood Combinations

We love using multi-laminate necks for our guitars. Not only because of the very pleasant visual apperance, but also for the structural advantages. Using multiple pieces of wood makes the neck more stable and stiff, reduces the risk of warping or twisting, can reduce the chance of having dead notes and makes it possible to create more tone evennes or color your tone the way you like it.

Quartersawn Necks

For our necks we always prefer to use quartersawn woods. Quartersawn is a term that describes a specific methode of milling wood. As seen in the picture, this methode provides you with a vertical grain direction. This straight grain makes for an extra stable and stiff neck. When making a multi-laminate neck we also make sure to mirror the pieces of quartersawn wood, making it even more stable!

Ready to Chop

We do our best to always have some Lignator guitars ready to buy or try out in our shop in Groningen. Take a look at our current in stock instruments!