Island Instrument Manufacture

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Nic Delisle, Guitarmaker

The Island Instrument Manufacture is a one-man operation that came into its own after a chance-encounter with Lenny P. Robert led to a two year apprenticeship at Daddy Mojo Stringed Instruments. My venture into the craft began when after two years of University, I found myself frustrated with the education system and disillusioned with the medium I was studying. A longing to create something with my hands that would transcend my time on Earth as well as a long withstanding passion for musical instruments led me to guitarmaking. Everyday spent in the shop is a reminder of my limitations and a challenge to surpass them. The guitar is far from its definitive state. There is a  long and rich future ahead of it. The infinite room for learning experiences and personal growth is the reason I build guitars.

The name is a reflection on the current state of production. As American manufacture continues to head overseas, more and more craft and tradesmen find themselves without work. My belief is that this needs to change, and it is a principle that guides my production. All the hardware, components and accessories I use are manufactured in North America. The endless possibility for collaboration with other talented artists and craftsmen is one of the aspects of my craft that excites me most.

One of my concerns is the ecological footprint we leave. While it is minimal for the individual builder, I believe it is the responsibility of everybody to take care of our planet’s resources. My preference is to build exclusively with domestic and reclaimed timbers. With the proper techniques and attention to detail throughout the build, they can be sonically indistinguishable from exotic timbers. In the event a customer insists on exotic hardwoods, I will donate a percentage of the sale to organizations supporting sustainable forestry management. For the same reasons, I prefer to use natural hand-rubbed oil, wiping varnish or French polish of shellac finishes.

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