Conway Custom: Ryan Conway working on a range of prototype guitars he wants to produce.
Conway Custom: Ryan Conway working on a range of prototype guitars he wants to produce. Allan Reinikka ROK271016aconway2

Rocky boy creates his own sound

GUITAR wasn't always Ryan Conway's first instrument of choice but now he spends his days producing his very own line of electric guitars.

The 24-year-old Rocky local was actually first introducted to music through the organ.

"I started playing organ, hated that because mum forced me and I was being teased about it,” Ryan laughed.

"So I decided to play guitar instead and I hated honestly and then I didn't do it for a while but my brother was playing so I thought I'd get back into it and I've never put it back down since.”

Playing guitar since grade six, Ryan began tinkering and taking apart guitars in his early highschool years.

Ryan really enjoyed fixing and modifying guitars which lead to him opening his own business, Conway Custom.

"So I've got two parts of the business, the main part of the business at the moment is the repairs, servicing, restoration work and that's kind of the bread and butter.”

"In between that I'm starting to work on prototypes and developing designs and the end goal is to eventually have that be the main business and if I need to keep doing the repairs and the servicing on the side.

"It is just a matter of finding time between all the repairs to work on my own stuff which is tricky but I make it work.”

Through youtube clips, online research, trial and error Ryan taught himself how to repair, build and restore guitars.

"Obviously I'm still learning, I'll always be learning which is good to know you never stop learning with this kind of stuff, there's always something new that comes up,” he said.

"At the moment I've got two more prototypes I'm working on, so I've currently got four that I've built and I'm doing two more, I'm constantly working and doing little tweeks on the designs and the body shapes.

"It's pretty awesome, especially when it works, there's been a few where I pick them up and go okay thats not quiet there and it's good because for the next one you learn for the next one I've got to change this or fix that.

"But then when you get to the third one and go hang on I've got it right it's a very good feeling especially because I play with my band and test them in a real life situation in terms of how they are meant to be used, it's very rewarding.”

When asked how long a guitar takes to make Ryan replied "how long is a piece of string”.

"Time depends on the customer and how much they want to spend or the quality of guitar you want to build in the end,” he said.

"It's hard to put a number of hours on it to be honest, especially when I'm doing designs for the first time, I can spend a long time just tweking a certain little part of it until I get it right.

"And then when you get into more of a production line it get's quicker and quicker obviously.”

Ryan said the enquiries had began to roll in but at this stage he was still working on prototypes and final designs.

"I have had people wanting to buy the prototypes one and two but I've said I'm not sure yet because they're a bit hard to let go.”

Yeppoon parents' desperate bid to give son, 2, a better life

Yeppoon parents' desperate bid to give son, 2, a better life

MONTHS after Jayce was born they received a dreaded diagnosis

Inside look: Restaurant becomes Rocky's stand-out feature

Inside look: Restaurant becomes Rocky's stand-out feature

MENU boasts something for everyone in both casual and refined space

Local Partners