About Powell Guitars



My Name is Ken Powell, I live and have my workshop in Llanwyddn in Montgomeryshire, Wales, UK.

I started serious building of acoustic steel string guitars about 20 years ago and have long had a passion with the guitar having been a player for more years than I can remember.

I’ve also been a semi-professional musician for many years and played in many fine venues throughout England, Scotland and Ireland, mostly with a successful band called Risky Business.

I now tour extensively with my wife Ruth and go out as Ruth and Ken Powell  http://www.ruthandkenpowell.co.uk

I come from an engineering design background and my curiosity and ideas in the design and construction of the guitar set me on a quest. Have you ever been curious as to how a guitar is made?

My curiosity also led me on a long trail of information gathering (which still continues) not only to find out how and why they are built but also to question long standing “accepted” beliefs and preconceptions on the best design and construction.
After many searches and headaches and great information from the Internet I finally joined the Guild of American Luthiers in 2003.

Most professional guitarist’s and enthusiasts naturally search for the instrument that suits them best and I  think that changes with each instrument played! After such a search and growing curiosity I decided to look  into building one for myself and I’ve never looked back, it is a passion that grows with each new finished instrument.I have spent a lot of time researching and studying, trying to find the optimal construction and design to evolve an instrument that suits the serious picker and I now have a steady stream of orders, my reputation is continuing to grow. All my instruments are hand made by myself in a small workshop and I can usually manage around ten guitars a year.

I also give talks, mainly at festivals, on guitar design and building aimed at the curios, the potential builder and the established builders with a question and answer session. If you would like me to hold a workshop at your event, folk festival or guitar festival please get in touch.

I am still developing this site and intend to increase the technical information and share my knowledge with anyone interested. If you have any questions about guitar building get in touch. If any luthiers reading this wish to share their knowledge with others then by all means send in your thoughts and ideas.

Recently my output and orders have intensified and now include a full size guitar, a mid size guitar, a small body or parlour guitar, a guitar shaped bouzouki or gazouki, a guitar shaped Mandola or Octave Mandolin and a guitar shaped ten string Cittern.

All instruments are designed and hand made by myself, although like most builders the odd power tool is used to take out some of the hard work, band saw, router etc.
All my instruments are french polished, finished with shellac a natural varnish made from the secretion of the lac beetle.