My Workshop

A corner of my workshop
My Workshop


Antique ouds require special attention and sometimes painstaking work.

A restoration can take much longer and cost more than a new oud, but the result is unique and has much higher value.

Over 40 years of oud building and repair experience insures quality workmanship. Extensive database of specifications of antique instruments insures accurate reproduction.

1900 Hamza Usta

1900 Hamza Usta

This oud was purchased by John Bilezikjian from an antique store in a nearly ruined state.

The original braces were used to rebuild the soundboard using the finest grade German Spruce.

To see the restoration on Mike's Ouds Project Forum click here

Click to see and hear John playing his newly restored oud. (Quick Time plug-in may be needed)

1902 Hanna Nahat

1902 Hanna Nahat

A family heirloom instrument completely restored to original condition for a client including a new soundboard with tiled edging, bridge cap and rosette inlay.

The neck joint was reinforced with a dovetail mortise-and-tenon.

An ebony fingerboard was installed and the original Rose restored to replace missing pieces. The finish applied is a durable oil-based varnish.

On receiving the instrument the owner wrote: " It was like falling in love all over again."


A broken or damaged instrument will not get played and will deteriorate with neglect. For a list of repair tips click here


Here are some tools and jigs I came up with over the years (click to see them)

Tools and jigs
Brace Clamp detail
Neck Support detail

Other Luthiers' workshops

For a look at the workshops of famous luthiers, some of whom have now passed away, click here