Mandolin tailpieces are specially made metal components designed to be screwed to the end of a mandolin’s sound box, to serve as a place to anchor the strings. They are designed in such a way that they remain up and away from the body of the instrument, so that they do not muffle any of the mandolin’s resonance. Usually designed to work with loop-end strings, and available in a variety of styles and finishes, they can be a beautiful accent on an instrument.
Fortunately most mandolin tailpieces, such as the gold and chrome varieties available from C. B. Gitty Crafter Supply, can be easily modified for use on a cigar box guitar! Usually it is just a matter of drilling some small holes through the front lip, to accept the more standard ball-end guitar strings used on CBGs. Three or four holes can be drilled, or another number depending on what you are building. The photo to the right shows one example of how a C. B. Gitty mandolin tailpiece was drilled out for a three-string cigar box guitar. Once drilled, it is a simple matter to screw the tailpiece to the base of a cigar box guitar. The result is a beautiful and very useful piece of CBG hardware, that can really help dress up a build. The larger hole in the tailpiece’s base plate can also be used for mounting a strap button or endpin jack, which makes it even more useful!