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Echoes of Time

A truly sculptural -Étude Piece- , Echoes of Time features both a hidden Internal soundboard, and a truly acoustic horn element at column (on bass side). 

Echoes-of-Time, Harp guitar by Thierry André-Andre Instruments

Studio photos: La Chambre Noire

Echoes of Time - Andre Instruments no.114 - 2022. Recent work on the multi-string theme. 
Echoes of Time explores the expressive possibilities that the guitar still beholds ; From its distant origins - all the way to its current standard & cultural icon status. 

Echoes-of-Time, Harp guitar by Thierry André-Andre Instruments

Visual & sound aspects are equally cared for in its design ; Both characteristics are worked in tandem, for to create a cohesive and balanced instrument.

Made according to a very naive preliminary sketch, -Echoes- is primarily based on visual expression - this to consciously encourage the development of new technical ways in its making - all looks aside:

1-Its active soundboard is internal, and set mid-depth into its soundbox. Just like a car engine is hidden by its hood, here, the visible relief-carved -top- of the guitar is truly a reflective cover. 


This cover is a continuation of the guitar’s back - ultimately forming its acoustic soundbox.

2- This 3 element configuration (cover, soundboard, back) comes to a focused meeting point at the guitar’s (harp) column:

The acoustic horn thus created becomes the main sound port for this guitar, bringing its own share of vibration to the whole.

" Mon Dieu!!!!!!!  Echoes of Time will be the most beautiful instrument in my entire collection!!!!!! Well worth the wait! You are a true master Thierry!!!  I can’t wait to see her in person!!! " JT

Echoes-of-Time, Harp guitar by Thierry André-Andre Instruments

As we can hear in the demo video above, -Echoes of Time- manages to have its very own acoustic voice.
Its sound is surround-like, diffused more at its side-port area (around its electronic compartment, below) and greatly focused at its column-horn.

Echoes-of-Time, Harp guitar by Thierry André-Andre Instruments
Echoes-of-Time, Harp guitar by Thierry André-Andre Instruments

On this page will be shown the step-by-step making of the Echoes of Time instrument:

- Certainly a marker in my guitar making practice - Its design brought-up some interesting ideas, that can later be applied to more conventional forms of guitar making.


1- Its 3-layer construction (cover, internal soundboard, back) does bring a -warm-, surround-like tone to the instrument.


2- Its acoustic horn gives a highly -compressed- tone, reminiscent of the -Wah- pedal used with electric guitars.

3- Its integral neck (or neck-through soundbox) anchors the instrument's internal tailpiece, This supported connection permits both soundbox and sound board to be made very light an sensitive

4- Its bridge is tied directly to its internal archtop sound board, emerging through the relief-carved -cover- element.

The bridge total height permits its pronounced back-and-forth pulsating motion under string movement, while  its -playable height- is archtop standard when all elements are in place (cover, soundboard, back).



Echoes-of-Time, Harp guitar by Thierry André-Andre Instruments
Echoes-of-Time, Harp guitar by Thierry André-Andre Instruments

I hope you like Echoes of time and its making as shown in details below.

Aside from the usual top & back, the internal arched-top soundboard sets this baritone harp-guitar apart from any other.


Numerous days of design where necessary to visualize and draw each part of this instrument.


To skip the -Making of - part and go back to Instruments, click here.

Echoes-of-Time, Harp guitar by Thierry André-Andre Instruments

To skip the -Making of - part and go back to Instruments, click here


Original sketch and maquette. 


I spoke about this guitar project to luthier friend Mario Lamarre.

Upon seeing the sketch, he hinted that the drawing reminded him of the paleolithic mother goddess. 

I looked that up and found something interesting: 


Numerous clay figurines examples of this subject are found all over the world. What ties them all together, is their raw-ness and chalky colour. 

Working from the light Poplar wood for the viewable part of Echoes of Time, inspired its current mineral finish. 

Poplar: Its two large slabs where originally 3.125 inch thick. 

Poplar-slabs-for-Echoes-of-Time,Harp-guitar by Thierry Andre-Andre Instruments.jpg

Making a little plasticine mockup at the beginning, really helped to figure out how the top would transfer its deeper lines to the back (below). 


Areas of the back are carved with ergonomics in mind :


1- The rib-cage area of the player meets a thinner body (as on Multi 2 ) at the waist, which is around electric guitar thickness on bass-side.

2- The treble side of the back is less rounded, especially where the leg meets the guitar, in the traditional -lap- area. This makes for a guitar that doesn't slip and stays put. 


The column, here a little more refined with files, hints a twisting shape while looking strong.

Only 3 strings will be supported by the column, Its greater function might be this time around more acoustic, as it is the hollow channel by which the air from the guitar body  will exit :

The column is the main sound hole for this guitar, and is shaped in the form (as Zyra) of an acoustic horn.

Here are a few pics of this process:


Once the outside form truly established, the plates will be separated to permit the actual soundbox to be carved out.



As mentioned, the oval column -horn- Inspiration for it came in part from the (left) - Horn in field- which is part of an amazing landscape art project by StudioWeave.


" Hi Thierry!

Love the webpage. Very exciting! The back of the instrument is amazing. Thanks for the update and no worries about the delay. I’d rather have it built to your standards and vision than have it quick." JT


More Technical :


As impractical and detrimental to the look and balance of the column to have tuners on it, the 3 sub-bass strings will be tuned at the tail, using 3 ABM single bridge in chrome.

Since string ball-ends are at tail, the other end of these strings has to be clamped, and held by (ABM also) individual locking headpieces on column.

Dynamic soudboard :

Seeing the image above Is mysterious yet breathtaking.

As Echoes of Time now shares the same dynamic soundboard outline as one of my recent instrument titled Sun, Moon, and Vibrations.


Also present are Influence of Kouai and Zyra : These two hollow body guitars merge both their internal top & back carving to form expressive sound holes.


The intent for Echoes of Time is to magnify this visual feature by making it larger, and as possible, more acoustic.

echoes-bass-pickup - copie.jpg

Two custom hand-made pickups where ordered especially for the instrument :

Both are stacked-humbuckers made from phenolic bobbins.

This material is neutral in colour value and texture. It look old without anything -relic- being related to it.


Demo (electric version) :

Flight case:

Beautiful classy colour: Willow gray. 


Guitar neck:

- From the standpoint of more ancient instrument-making techniques.

In short, Echoes of time Poplar body's structure is to be treated literally as a gourd or calabash, in terms of weight and rigidity.

My early-work on -smaller- instruments like Sun (right picture), a gourd-banjo made around 2007, comes into play ; - Its raised fingerboard configuration and string projection is very similar to what is needed in the context of the current build.  


Below is a view of the internals for Guitare-Fruit Wurcer. In its case, a counterweight was needed at tail of the instrument, to cover for short soundbox and 19th fret body-neck joint configuration.


The neck-through construction is all spruce and epoxy glue, with carbon fibre bars inserted each side of the  (picture at left) truss rod channel.

Once the whole neck is tapered according to string projection, it is -slide fitted- into the lower part of the soundbox, 1.75 inch deep.


The -dry fit- of the rectangular neck gives interesting lines from the soundbox's rounded nature.

From there the heel and whole neck shaft will be shaped off the guitar before actual gluing takes place.

Headstock and fingerboard:


Finding ways of design and selecting materials that can feel both modern and ancient for both these parts was quite challenging.



1 -Headstock should reference the guitar body in some way, with high-relief and carving.



2 -It should also materialize a sense of totem-like, ascending-progressive figure. 


Used for fingerboard inlays:

-Pipestone red recon-stone. This material is very similar in colour to the phenolic pickup bobbins.

-Parchment white recon-stone as the high-contrast line, very close in colour to aged cow bone.

-Dark green linen-micarta for the outer bindings. It is the complementary to the red, and its mid-tone has an interesting checkered appearance surface.

The fingerboard's 19th fret is short but importantly there. It fits so nicely under the 6th string, and is the geometric  2/3rd of the string.


- Since Echoes of time is such a departure from conventional guitar making, and that it represents a definite creative statement : A call of duty is felt, to make it sound as best as possible.


Echoes of Time, in the white, prior to final assembly and finish work.

Andre Instruments no. 114, 2022

Echoes of Time, harp-guitar by Thierry Andre Instruments

" Opened Echoes of Time today. What can I say Thierry. Just amazing!!!!!!!!!


Thank you for being such a gifted artist and craftsman!!!!!! I am so pleased to have this beautiful instrument in my collection.


Certainly a true gem!!!! " 



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