I want to tell you all about an interesting "tourism" option here in Statesboro. Last year, I wrote an article about Pladd Dot Music owner Chris Mitchell opening a 7,500-square-foot manufacturing facility for amplifiers and guitars just off U.S. Highway 301 North.
In just 18 months, sales are booming for Mitchell's line of Chris Mitchell Guitars and Devilcat amplifiers, and he is offering guided tours of his plant to those interested in seeing how his products are crafted.
"I want to show people what we do and to show them that our products are made by local artisans and engineers that are very skilled at what they do," Mitchell said. "Sometimes, we just assume that all things are mass manufactured, and they aren't. The tour takes you from pre-assembly through the finished product. Our guitars and amplifiers are completely handcrafted."
Mitchell's manufacturing plant has five full-time employees including an electronics engineer and two luthiers. A luthier is someone who makes or repairs lutes and other string instruments such as guitars.
"I expanded into manufacturing, because I am always looking for affordable equipment that is American made," Mitchell said. "It is usually very expensive - much more so than equipment that is imported and produced outside of this country. We are producing something that I have always sought to buy."
This year, Mitchell plans to build 100 amplifiers, 200 electric guitars, and 12 acoustic guitars.
"We just announced that we would begin manufacturing acoustic guitars, and they will start at $1,599," he said. "It is a very labor intensive product to handcraft. Our electric guitars begin at $749 and the amplifiers at $1,299."
Mitchell said to arrange a tour, one only needs to call Pladd Dot on North Main Street to set up a time.
"We give tours on Monday and Friday," he said. "All you have to do is give us a call, and we will be happy to show you around."
To learn more about Pladd Dot Music, CMG guitars, and Devilcat amplifiers, visit the company's website, www.
So, until next Tuesday, I bid you au revoir.
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