Left Handed DIY Guitar Kits

Left Handed DIY Guitar Kits

Left handed DIY guitar kit bundles aren’t exactly a dime a dozen, but there are some excellent options available that will (fairly!) easily let you build something special and unique.

In this article, I’ll highlight and compare a few of the amazing guitar and bass kits that are currently available to us southpaws. Psst, ever wondered why they call us southpaws? Check out this article for the answer.

Playing guitar is a brilliant hobby, but do you know what is even more brilliant? Playing a guitar that YOU BUILT!

However, the majority of us, unfortunately, don’t possess the necessary skills to create a guitar from scratch. So what’s the next best option?

A DIY Left Handed Guitar Kit

Luckily, there are kits available that will take a lot (but not all!) of the hard work out of building a guitar or bass. A left handed DIY guitar kit will generally come bundled with everything you need to put together a complete instrument with the minimum of fuss.

Although, you can obviously deviate from the instructions and add a little more complexity if you’re confident in your abilities. Make it as hard or as easy as you’d like!

Are DIY Guitar Kits Worth It?

Absolutely! Even if you aren’t interested in fully diving into guitar building, it’s a great idea to try a do-it-yourself guitar kit at least once. Even if you are as DIY-minded as me and it ends up being a bit of a disaster!

Why?

No matter how much or little of a success your build is, you will unquestionably learn a ton about how a guitar functions. The skills you pick up will help you to understand how to better set up your guitar, how all of the parts interact, as well as how to make little modifications and repairs without expensive guitar tech bills.

On top of this, you will also gain a massive sense of self-satisfaction through persevering and building something with your own two hands.

Got A Soldering Iron?

Although the electronics on the specific kits I’ve recommended below are pre-wired, you will need to carry out some very basic soldering to finish them off. If you haven’t done this before, don’t panic – it’s very easy!

Check out my beginner soldering guide to learn everything you need to know!

Best Left Handed DIY Guitar Kits

As far as left handed DIY guitar kits are concerned, the bundles available from FretWire are a great option for absolute DIY newbies, as well as for those with a little more experience. Their left handed range is inexpensive and surprisingly large, featuring DIY left-handed electric guitar kits, as well as a couple of options for bassists. In addition, these kits are very well-reviewed (read customer opinions in the links below).

The bodies are already routed, have most of the holes drilled in place, the frets are installed, and the electronics are pre-wired, requiring only basic soldering skills to complete. Perfect for taking your first steps into the world of guitar building without taking on too much too fast.

1. Left Handed DIY Telecaster Guitar Kit

Who doesn’t need a Telecaster in their collection? TheFretWire’s left-handed DIY Telecaster kit will let you put your own stamp on this legendary guitar.

Left Handed DIY Telecaster Guitar Kit

This kit is supplied with everything you’ll need to build the complete guitar. You obviously have the choice to swap in some of your own parts if you’d prefer to source your own.

In terms of materials used, it features an easy to work with basswood body coupled with a maple neck and fretboard. The body is already pre-routed and has holes for easy alignment of the individual parts – although you will need to drill a few pilot holes for the scratchplate. This is actually pretty smart as it allows you to use your own pickguard if you’d prefer.

The body and neck are both raw wood, so those will need finishing before you put the instrument together. Other than that, it’s just a simple case of screwing and soldering – nice and easy!

The kit comes as a SS pickup configuration, although the neck position is routed large enough to accommodate a humbucker if you’d like to be a little different!

The only downside is that you will need to shape the headstock yourself unless you are happy to leave it as is. But it shouldn’t be too tricky for most people to do this themselves and really put your own stamp on this iconic guitar.

Check it out at the link above!

2. Thinline Telecaster Kit Left Handed

If you already have a Telecaster then this dual humbucker, left handed DIY thinline Telecaster kit might tickle your fancy a little more. It’s fairly rare to find a lefty thinline t-style guitar (or even a humbucker-equipped Tele!) out in the wilds, so this is very cool to see.

Left Handed DIY Thinline Telecaster Guitar Kit

All parts and hardware necessary to build a fully functional guitar are included in this kit.

The body is mahogany and has one side hollowed out and a single f-hole carved in. The neck is maple and has been custom fitted to the body at the factory to ensure a good, snug fit. A nice touch rather than just pulling mismatched parts from the shelf that might give a loose or non-fitting pairing.

As with the Telecaster kit above, you will need to shape the headstock unless you’d like to stick with the oversized paddle look! This is a nice opportunity to really customize the look of this guitar though. The included instruction manual walks you through how to shape the headstock yourself.

Most people will choose to stain a thinline telecaster, but if you’d like to spray paint instead, you will probably need to painstakingly mask the installed binding before spraying.

Basic soldering skills will be required to install the pickups and output jack. See the top of this article for a link to my beginner’s guide.

Check this guitar kit out at the link above!

3. Left Handed DIY Les Paul Guitar Kit

Prefer the warmth and thickness of a Les Paul? Well, this left handed DIY single-cut kit might tick all of your boxes!

Left Handed DIY Single Cut Guitar Kit

Again, this kit is bundled with all the necessary parts and components to assemble a complete instrument. Feel free to substitute in your own parts however – as this is a DIY guitar after all!

It features a basswood body with a flamed maple veneer, so it will look great either with a clear finish or fully painted. It also features a set-in maple neck with an engineered rosewood fingerboard (due to CITES regulations).

The wood is raw and unfinished, so you might need to do some basic prep work before you apply any finishes. As the neck is set-in, you will also require some wood glue for its installation (and a clamp or two!) – the manufacturer recommends Titebond Original wood glue, but most other products will work as well.

Unlike on the Telecaster style kits above, the headstock on this model could be left as is. However, there is still scope for some customization if you were so inclined.

This left handed DIY Les Paul kit has a scratchplate included, but obviously, you have the option of not installing it if you prefer a cleaner look.

The instruction manual is provided as a download from the manufacturer.

Check it out at the link above!

4. Jaguar Left Handed Guitar Kit

Although Fender has started to offer a few southpaw offsets over the last few years, they are still fairly rare beasts. So it’s great to see that FretWire is also producing this awesome left handed DIY Jaguar kit!

Left Handed DIY Jaguar Guitar Kit

Inside the package is all of the required bits and pieces needed to assemble a fully functional Jaguar-style guitar.

Main features include an alder body, and a bolt-on maple neck coupled with an engineered rosewood fingerboard. Other highlights include a Fender-style tremolo, 1 volume and 2 tones pots, a 5-way toggle switch, and a classy tortoiseshell scratchplate.

It’s also the only left-handed DIY guitar kit here that features an HSS pickup configuration (as standard!). You should be able to coax a wide variety of different tones from this beauty when completed. You do have the option of using your own pickguard if you’d prefer a different pickup setup, however!

Interestingly, the manufacturer has decided to pre-shape the headstock on this model, in contrast to the two Tele-style kits above. So that will save you a little elbow grease.

An online instruction manual is supplied with this kit, and the manufacturer also has several videos which will clearly take you through the process of wiring up the electronics.

Check it out at the link above!

5. Left Handed DIY Semi-Hollow Guitar Kit

Next up we have this semi-hollow kit, which features F-holes for that classic Gibson ES-335 style aesthetic.

Left Handed DIY Semi Hollow ES-335 Guitar Kit

As you can see in the image above, the left-handed DIY semi-hollow kit is supplied with all parts and hardware that you will need to build a complete functioning instrument.

In terms of tonewoods, this guitar features a laminated maple body with flame maple veneer, mated to a maple set-in (glued) neck and rosewood fingerboard. As the neck is set-in you will require some wood glue to complete this build. FretWire recommends Titebond Original wood glue for this job.

The headstock on this model has already been shaped for you, so this will save a little additional work. You will still need to perform some basic prep work before applying a finish to the wood, as well as some simple soldering to wire up the electronics.

Unlike other cheaper alternatives, this Fretwire pack comes with a body and neck which have been paired at the factory to ensure a solid, snug fit. This should result in improved tone and resonance when completed.

Unusually, there is no scratchplate supplied with this kit, so the finished guitar will have a very clean look. If you prefer the more traditional aesthetic you can obviously source your own scratchplate for the guitar.

You will be provided with an online manual for the build process, as well as a link to FretWire’s library of instructional materials.

Check it out at the link above!

6. Left Handed DIY Hollow Body Guitar Kit

FretWire has already spoiled us with the sheer range of styles available, but they’re not finished yet! Check out this awesome left handed DIY hollow body kit!

Left Handed DIY Semi Hollow Body Guitar Kit

Once again, this kit contains absolutely everything you will need to build your very own, fully completed guitar. Minus wood glue and a soldering iron of course…

Main features include a basswood body with maple veneer and dual f-holes, and a set-in maple neck with rosewood fingerboard. The neck has been matched to the body in the FretWire factory to ensure a tight fit.

Other highlights include a trapeze style bridge, dual humbuckers, 2 tone and volume pots, and a 3-way toggle switch. The body also features multi-ply binding to complete that elegant, hollow body aesthetic.

As the wood is raw and unfinished, you may have to prepare it before applying a finish. This might include sanding, patching, and drilling pilot holes if needed.

You will save a little time having to shape the headstock on this model however, as it has already been completed.

As with the rest of the kits, you will be provided with an online instructional manual as well as other tuitional resources to help with the build.

Check it out at the link above!

7. Left Handed Bass DIY Kit

You didn’t think I’d forgotten about you southpaw bassists, did you? Next up we have this very cool left-handed DIY bass kit from FretWire.

Left Handed DIY Jazz Bass Kit

You’ll be pleased to hear that this pack is bundled with all the necessary parts to complete your very own 4-string Jazz bass. Although you are obviously free to source some of your own parts if there’s specific hardware you’d prefer to use.

Main features include an alder body, maple bolt-on neck, and rosewood fingerboard. Other highlights include dual jazz bass pickups, 1 tone and 2 volume controls, and a classy white pickguard.

The headstock on this kit has not been shaped, so unless you like the vibe of the oversized paddle you will need to get your creative hat on here. FretWire has provided instructions on how best to do this, but you will require a coping saw, band saw, or jigsaw to complete this task.

Other simple tasks might include prepping the wood before applying your finish, and you will also need to carry out some basic soldering to install the electronics.

If you think you might struggle with the wiring of the bass, the manufacturer has also provided a collection of videos that will walk you through this process.

Check it out at the link above!

8. Semi-Hollow Left Handed Bass Kit

Bet you didn’t expect to see this at the end of the list! It’s incredibly rare to find a semi-hollow lefty bass, so to see a kit available is very surprising. Nice work FretWire!

Left Handed DIY Semi Hollow Bass Kit

At the risk of sounding like a broken record, yes, this kit includes everything you will need to assemble a fully functional semi-hollow bass.

Main features include a semi-hollow basswood body with flame maple veneer and double f-holes, and a set-in maple neck with engineered rosewood fretboard. Other highlights include dual humbucker pickups, 2 tone and 2 volume controls, and a 3-way toggle switch.

The kit doesn’t include a scratchplate, but you are obviously free to source your own if you prefer a more traditional aesthetic.

Due to the neck being glued in, you will also need a little wood glue to complete this build. The manufacturer recommends Titebond Original, but all wood glues will work perfectly. Additional work required might include some light prepping of the wood before applying your finish, and you will also need a soldering iron to install the electronics.

A manual for the build process is available online, and you will also be provided access to FretWire’s library of tuitional videos.

Check it out at the link above!

Things To Consider When Buying a Left Handed DIY Guitar Kit

1. Style/Aesthetics

The entire point of building one of these kits is to hopefully end up with a guitar that you’ll love. So make sure to choose one that you’ll want to pick up every time you see it!

2. Assembly Difficulty

The kits I’ve listed above are some of the easiest to put together, which will make a perfect first project for most. However, a few of them will be a little more involved than others. For example, the ones with set-in necks will require additional wood glue and clamps, and many of the Fender style kits will also need the extra step of having their headstocks shaped.

The guitars which feature binding will also require extra consideration before applying your finish, as the binding may need to be masked off. Even after the finish has been applied the binding may need additional work to clean up.

3. Cost

I specifically chose to feature the FretWire kits above as they were some of the most affordable that I could find, while still receiving good customer feedback. This is important, as during your first build you may make a few mistakes here and there and end up with a less than perfect guitar. Don’t throw away your hard-earned cash by starting with a much more expensive kit from the likes of Warmoth. Work towards that, unless you are already very confident in your abilities!

4. Tools

Make sure to have the correct tools ready for when your kit arrives! As I’ve mentioned at the start of this article, you will need a soldering iron to complete all of these kits. In addition, you will require screwdrivers, pliers, and finishing products such as various grades of sandpaper, stains, and paints, etc.

For models that require headstock shaping, you will also need a coping saw, jigsaw, or bandsaw. Other models might need wood glue and clamps to attach the neck to the body.

5. Upgrades

As these are DIY guitar kits, it is fairly common to swap out a few of the supplied components for better quality or differently colored hardware. For example, you might want to install branded humbuckers or tuners. Or maybe you’d like a black pickguard rather than the supplied white one.

Think about this before you purchase and save a lot of extra work swapping them out later on.

6. Ventilation

When I was younger, I refinished a guitar using spray cans inside my apartment hallway. Terrible idea! I was coughing for days and ruined the carpet. And to add insult to injury, I then managed to sand straight through the clear coat when done…

When finishing the guitar, make sure you have access to a well-ventilated area that you don’t mind getting a little messy. Especially if using spray cans!

Easily Mock Up Your Guitar Designs

If you’re planning to pick up one of these left handed DIY guitar kits, you might also want to test out a few looks before you commit to the build. You can easily do this online with the help of a guitar builder tool.

Check out my article ‘How to design a custom guitar without photoshop‘ to learn how easy it is to do this!

Send Me Photos!

If you decide to grab one of these kits, please send me a photo or two of the finished guitar so that I can share your triumph on social media! Click here to email me.


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