Customize Your MIDI Guitar

Before you print all of the pieces, you should consider customizing the design to fit your playing style. By default, the buttons on the base and neck are laid out for a left-handed player. You can customize the layout of the buttons by using most 3D modeling packages. In this tutorial, we will be using TinkerCad for an easy customization workflow.

TinkerCad Designs

Make It Right Handed!

You can modify the base design in Tinkercad. To make it right-handed, you will need to mirror the base. Under the Adjust top menu, select the "Mirror" function. Now click on the black arrow bar with arrows pointing to the left and right. Once pressed, you should see the model flip to the opposite direction. You only need to modify the base for making it right-handed. The neck is symmetrical but you can also modify those! You can export each file by selecting "Download for 3D Printing" under the Design menu item.

Modify those Buttons!

You are free to use any type of buttons. By default, the buttons in the base are fitted for 30mm arcade buttons. The neck is fitted for 16mm buttons. Are the buttons to close or far apart for your fingers? Do you want more or less buttons? You can customize the position of the buttons with a little bit of effort! Import the blank neck frame and blank body frame STL files into Tinkercad using the import option. Both of the frames are symmetric so you can add holes for the button where ever you like. To make a hole for a circular button, create a new object by clicking on the cylinder thumbnail. Move your cursor around the grid to get a visual preview of the object. Click again to place the down the object. Use your arrow keys to move the object where you want.

Measure and Subtract

If your buttons are different than the listed Adafruit buttons, you will need to measure the size of your buttons. Use a caliper and measure the diameter. To resize the button hole in Tinkercad, use the Ruler tool under the Helper menu in the sidebar and click on the object. Double-click on the appropriate number values to change the size. Press the enter key to confirm your size change. Click on the x dismiss ruler icon when you have made your size changes. When you have created and positioned all of your desired button holes, select them all and change the color type to "Hole" under the Inspector panel. To subtract the holes, select all of the objects by using the cmd+a (ctrl+a on Windows) shortcut and click the Group icon in the top menu to subtract merge the object. You can export each file by selecting "Download for 3D Printing" under the Design menu item.

This guide was first published on Oct 23, 2013. It was last updated on Mar 08, 2024.

This page (Customizing Design) was last updated on Oct 10, 2013.

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