The goal was to make a guitar that not only sounds good, but one that is indestructible (sorry Pete Townshend). Swedish engineering company Sandvik says it has created the world’s first 3D-printed guitar.
Sandvik wanted to gather experts from across its company to demonstrate how engineers could use cutting-edge techniques to make something that is both highly precise and amazingly durable.
“Every element had to be drawn from scratch,” designer Andy Holt said. “I’m really confident that no guitar has ever been built this way before.”
The neck of the guitar is made with stainless steel, which engineers say makes it strong and light at the same time. But the big test came from guitar god Yngwie Malmsteen. Sandvik brought him in to test drive the cutting-edge axe.
“I’m been smashing guitars since I was 7-years-old,” Malmsteen said. “I saw Jimi Hendrix smashing a guitar on TV. I thought it was cool. It’s a silly thing really, but I thought it was cool.”
The testing ground was the Revolution Rock Club in Miami. Malmsteen walked on-stage with the guitar and abused it, but not before slaying the crowd with his trademark licks. The virtuoso smashed the guitar into a stack of Marshall amps, slammed it neck-first into the stage, threw it, smashed it again on the drum riser, and launched it skyward before it came crashing down. The verdict?
“To break it is impossible,” Malmsteen conceded. “But you can break other things with it.”