A Simple Wooden Stand
To make a wooden banjo or guitar stand, you need a piece of 4 by 9 foot /12 inch plywood. Cut it to the shape shown - basically an "L" shape with feet and a headrest. Measure your instrument and make sure you have a long enough headrest support. Don't go too high or you'll wind up with the headstock loose below the headrest piece.
Measure from the base of the instrument. About 3 inches below the nut is about right.
Make sure the legs are deep enough to reach beyond the body of the instrument.
Cut the two pieces apart, sand and varnish them. I'd do that before adding padding or hinges.
Set the pieces down and lay the hinges spine down so that the spine drops between the two legs of the stand. The flaps of the hinge will screw down to the inside. To make the stand fold really flat, you will want to recess the hinges so they are flat with the top of the wood.
Screw the hinges in place and set up the stand. Finally, add a strip of felt or weather stripping or some form of padding to the insides of the headrest and the saddle of the legs to protect the body of the banjo or guitar.
Stain and varnish it and you've got a nice little stand that looks great sitting in the corner of the stage and offers a place to put stickers and decorations from your road trip.
Give your wooden guitar stand a unique look by hand-carving designs in the sides. It's easier to do than you think. You can find simple instructions and designs with a hobby shop wood-burning kit. Before you stain and varnish your stand, sketch out your drawings or designs on the legs, inside and out. After that it's just a matter of time and a steady hand.
Once you've drawn or stenciled your design onto the wood, use a woodburning tool to trace the design pattern. You can also use a Dremel Moto-Tool or even carving tools to etch out the design. It's really not as hard as it looks. Once you have your design cut into the faces of the legs, go over it with light sandpaper and steel wool to make it smooth to the touch.
When you stain and varnish the wood, your design will pop out nicely giving your stand a hand-hewn look that's eye-catching and distinctive. You might even try some custom carrying handles for when you fold your gear up to carry it home.
What you'll need is at least a half sheet of 3/4 inch plywood. I like marine grade simply because it holds up longer if you spill beer on it a lot. I don't have that problem, but have some friends that do.
You'll also need a piano hinge and screws almost as long as your stand is tall with screws with which to attach it.
If you plan to stain and varnish it, you'll need that, of course, some rags, thinner and a place to work where your significant other won't yell at you about the smell.
If you do any carving or etching, you'll need whatever tools are necessary to pull off the job you have in mind. Of course, you could get some acrylic or oil paints and paint a design on it before you stain and varnish. Use a lighter stain if you are varnishing over painted-on designs.
You'll need a sabre saw or band saw, drill with bits and screwdrivers, sandpaper or an orbital sander, steel wool, a brush for varnishing, and a rag for staining. You'll need tools for etching, woodburning, painting or carving if you elect to fancy up the wood faces. You probably have that stuff in your garage if you are even thinking about making your own guitar stand.
twayneking (author) from Puyallup, WA on December 17, 2010:
The measurements like the length of the neck and the width of the saddle at the bottom depend on the guitar. If you know those measurements, you can pretty much wing it with the rest of the measurements. I marked the distance from the base of the guitar to a spot 3 to 4 inches under the nut on the back of the neck. I made a mark there and then measured the thickness of the base of the guitar, added a few inches and then drew a perpendicular line. Then I hand drew a rough picture like the one in the diagrams, used a straightedge to clean up the lines and then cut out to identical pieces of plywood.
Easy Peasy, and it's custom sized for your guitar. One for a bigger guitar will hold a smaller one, just not as snugly. Leave a little room for the padding.
Have fun. If you like woodworking, you can route the edges and even do a little carving on the sides to decorate it a bit. A Dremel moto-tool is a great carving tool.
Kelly on December 17, 2010:
Looks pretty simple and sturdy. Did you make measurements for it?