To begin making an MSA steel guitar pedal, a guitar neck is first fashioned from hardwood. MSA prefers to use maple wood for the neck of its guitars. Once the neck has been shaped, strips of intricate wooden inlay are then glued to its sides. Next comes the fretboard design, which is silk-screened to the surface of the neck. A finish is then applied to the neck to give it a specific color. MSA prefers coloring its necks ebony.
An end plate for the guitar frame is then cut from aircraft-grade aluminum, is welded to the rest of the framework and is polished.
The next step is the machining of the part of the guitar called the "steps," which are the metal pieces attached to one end of the fretboard to house the tuning pegs. A pickup plate is also machined and attached to the other side of the fretboard, opposite the steps. The pickup plate holds the pickup that transfers the sound of the strings to an amplifier, as well as the metal fingers that raise or lower the pitch of the strings. Once the metal fingers are secured to the pickup plate, springs are then hooked to each finger to maintain proper tension.
Foot pedals and knee levers are then installed to the undercarriage of the guitar, connected to the metal fingers via pedal rods. Pushing or stepping on the rods moves the metal fingers, thereby changing the pitch of the strings to which they are connected.