3D printed guitar is fully rockin'

A 3D printing afficianado named Bård SD created a free/open design for a printable electric guitar called the Zoybar Tor. He then printed it, attached pickups and strings, and performed on it, to quite pleasant effect, as can be verified by this short video. Bravo!

Here's What A 3D Printed Guitar Sounds Like (Thanks, Glen!)


  1. Seems the only printed parts are the arm and leg rest, and the back end attachment point for the strings. the neck is made elsewhere.

  2. on another note, did he name it that ‘cuz it’s good for playing the growly bits from “By-Tor and the Snow Dog”?

  3. Yawn… Plastics have their place. Unfortunately 90% of what I’d like to build requires something better.

    Can we get an aluminum 3d printer made out of SS and Ti?

  4. This Zoybar is very cool tho,
    This guy only created the plastic parts and not the zoybar concept…
    Thanks for the tip!

  5. I suspect that emulating existing instruments in 3d printed plastic will always come up a bit short…

    but- theoretically, wouldn’t it be possible to mathematically model and 3D print an acoustically “perfect” stringed instrument- compensating for the properties of the material, and using as a target goal, rather than basing on an existing instrument form (like a traditional violin shape, guitar, or whatever)? Basically model the sound quality and characteristics that one wishes to attain- and reverse engineer the instrument body from the wave form to be produced.

    1. Well, it would be *possible* to model a “perfect” stringed instrument – if we understood what “perfect” even meant. A “perfect” string would vibrate at only the fundamental frequency, and produce a pretty boring sine-wave sound. It’s all the harmonic frequencies that give the sound texture – and we don’t have a really good model of how that all works. That, plus there’s a *reason* why I own 3 guitars – they all sound *different*. Each one has it’s own sound and tone and personality. And as such, no one of them is “perfect”. One sounds better for blues, the other is better for neoclassical. No one guitar is perfect for all of them. And that’s just guitars – trying to extend “perfect stringed instrument” to violins is hopeless. Stradivarius versus Guarneri is a religious battle that will never be won by either side – and there are those that claim that neither is well suited for “proper” performance of Baroque music, and only period instruments will suit. And I have to agree there – although most modern recordings of Bach’s Brandenburg Concerto #4 are arranged for flute, the piece takes on different dimensions with recorders instead…

      1. Agreed! perhaps “perfect” was a poor choice of words- more applicable would be “pre-visualized sound modelling” or something along those lines… creating unique person-performed instruments around computer-modeled sound.

  6. I think you are all missing the point here.
    I went to see their website

    they are not trying to provide the perfect instrument, instead
    they are offering a hardware short cut for independent developers to design and print new hardware features.


    “With Zoybar, you don’t need to be a huge corporation to develop or promote your special effects application. We’ve done most of the heavy lifting, and your application can be easily attached to the Zoybar platform, just by adding and changing its position across the profile grooves with common bolts and screws.

    We believe that only open decentralized approach can provide tools for the different needs and abilities of these scattered vast users. We provide physical and virtual platforms as creation tools for developing new music instruments. The end instruments are in the users hands, making each user a unique developer that can share ideas, solutions and even sell their own applications and instruments to other users of the community”

    Zoybar was founded by the designer Ziv Bar Ilan

    Thank Cory for posting this, I`m definitely going to dive deeper into it.

  7. This is certainly pretty cool.

    However, I will admit that for a moment as the video started to load, there was a faint hope that it would sound like an ancient high speed Epson dot-matrix wide-format printer, spooling off reams and reams of tractorfeed fan-fold paper.

  8. That’s a pretty neat toy. If that’s all done with printable materials, I can’t imagine it will stay playable for very long. The tension of the stings puts a lot of strain on the neck, and a guitar of any quality what-so-ever has a steel rod (usually adjustable) reinforcing the neck to manage bowing. I took a peek at the page with the CAD files, and it looked like the neck was plastic through and through. Over time that neck is going to twist up in crazy ways.

  9. This is not very impressive. The two-string guitar Mark posted is more musically sound than this experiment. The parts that are printed are the least important parts. For a simple electric guitar you need:

    1: Steel strings
    2: A magnet with wire wrapped around it
    3: Tuning machines to keep the strings in tune

    None of those things were made using a printer.
    The body could be anything solid. The neck can be anything solid and flat. This is a complete joke.

    1. I think we shouldn’t regard 3D printing as a virtue by itself.
      The most impressive thing that I get from this is the ability to customize a collaborative hardware platform. This by itself has the potential to bring new ideas to life without the need to reinvent the “basic core”. For this reason I find the collaborative and openness of this design brilliant. :)

  10. I find 3D printing absolutely amazing. But to trivialize the many different parts, materials and physical problems that are part of making a real instrument is not cool either. I am sure that if you had several 3D models for different parts, using different types of plastics for printing, you could actually make most of the parts for an instrument, but this particular project is just a very small part of the whole thing and calling it a guitar is a joke.

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