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Personal Luthier is one-on-one, remote guitar consulting. This service answers questions and provides resources for guitarists and luthiers (guitar-makers). It is an extension of Learning to Speak Guitar: A Luthier’s Thesaurus, the only book surveying the experiences of owning, playing, repairing, and building guitars.

Together, Personal Luthier and Learning to Speak Guitar clarify complex topics, offer repair schedules and pricing guidance, support builders as they experiment with new materials or methods, and create an industry-wide language around the guitar to create more harmonious experiences for all.

Unlike traditional guitar stores or lutherie shops, consulting, advising, and guiding are Personal Luthier’s primary services. It’s like having a personal guitar expert whose focus is removing barriers so that you can enjoy whatever it is you love the most about the guitar.


Personal Luthier offers individual, remote consulting for all fretted instruments including guitar, bass, mandolin, banjo, and more. Along with consultations, Personal Luthier also offers In-Home Repair Services for clients living in (or visiting) Maine. We offer our Affiliate Referral Program which allows us to direct clients outside of Maine to verified service providers in their area. Personal Luthier also offers Guitar Fitting services for clients considering the purchase of a new or used instrument. Please visit our services page (at for more information and pricing.

How it works

Follow these steps to access professional support for your guitar questions.

  1. Complete the form found at this link or email us at Please include all relevant details and specify if you prefer email or phone support for your initial consultation, as well as your preferred method future communications.
  2. Personal Luthier responds to requests in one of two ways.
    1. For email requests, Personal Luthier responds with an initial evaluation based on your request. Pricing and availability of additional support are provided in this response.
    2. For phone call requests, Personal Luthier responds via email confirming a call window (typically 30–60 minutes) based on one of your preferred dates and times.
      • For example, if you said, “I’m available at 12 p.m. and 5 p.m. on 10/1/21 and again at 10 a.m. on 10/2/21.” We could respond with call windows of 11:45 a.m.–12:15 p.m. on 10/1/21, or 10 a.m.–10:30 a.m. on 10/2/21.
      • Then, within the call window, Personal Luthier provides the initial phone consultation along with information on pricing and availability of additional support.For phone call requests, Personal Luthier responds via email with scheduling options. Together, Personal Luthier and you schedule a mutually agreeable time. Then, Personal Luthier provides the initial phone consultation along with information on pricing and availability of additional support.
  3. After the consultation, there is a brief satisfaction survey. Personal Luthier asks all new clients to complete this form to improve client experiences.
  4. Personal Luthier works with you to establish a personalized consulting plan if you decide to seek additional services. Invoices are sent at this time.


Personal Luthier, an extension of Learning to Speak Guitar: A Luthier’s Thesaurus, exists to support guitar-lovers, regardless of industry, musical ability, or background. As such, Personal Luthier provides the following pricing structure.

All new clients receive one free initial consultation* which consists of one email or one five-minute phone call.* After the initial consultation, clients pay hourly for services based on method of communication, length and volume of consulting, and a rate based on complexity of service

Consultations start at $20. All rates are based on a standard $90/hour rate for non-routine guitar service. **

Personal Luthier encourages students, including those learning to play guitar and those learning to build/repair guitars, to ask questions. Lots of questions. For this reason, all students receive additional free consultations annually. ***

*Free consultation is one email, or one five-minute phone call. The initial consultation is free and carries no obligations.

**Standard bench rate of $90.00/hr was applied to all non-routine repairs and services by Mr. Richardson while servicing guitar-family instruments as part of operating Richardson Guitars LLC. Routine repairs include but are not limited to setups, fret dresses, electronics or hardware replacements, and nut or saddle fabrication. Non-routine repairs include but are not limited to finish repairs, tone consultation, buzz mitigation, and crack repairs. Many, but not all, guitar questions fall under the non-routine category and this rate is provided as reference for Personal Luthier users.

***Free consultations for students are limited to four (4) consultations per student, per year. That is four emails or 20 minutes of call time. Students may select a mix of methods (i.e.: three emails and one five-minute phone call). All clients, including students, under the age of 18 must submit questions with parent/guardian consent. Proof of such consent, and/or student enrollment will be requested prior to any response from Personal Luthier.

Personal Luthier
Learning to Speak Guitar