He cradles the instrument lovingly, twisting a shiny chrome tuner to achieve the proper pitch. Around him on a cluttered counter are arrayed the tools he uses to keep fine guitars making sweet music.
He's Brunswick's only luthier - guitar maker and repairman - and the town's unofficial minister of guitars.
When customers walk through the double glass doors of City Music downtown, he's the first person they see. And he's an eyeful.
Preacher has cultivated an image over the years designed to set him apart from the rank-and-file. Straw fedora shoved down securely on his head, red goatee cascading from his chin, stretched earlobes encircling large silver rings, brilliant tattoos on his arms, each telling a story of its own.
He says his fashion sense is based on a need to be different.
"Most likely, I have succeeded," he chuckles. "When I was very young, a big part of me cried out to be different. As I got older - I'm 38 now - I didn't care so much to be different. I just was."
He got his nickname before he ever became one. He's now an ordained minister of the Universal Life Church. As such, he eschews the use of drugs and alcohol.
Even though he was licensed through the Internet, his credentials are still legitimate. He has joined one couple in holy matrimony and has another wedding in the works.
"I was in a motorcycle club," he says, "and one of the brothers was going to get married. I'd had the nickname 'Preacher' for many years. Somebody suggested that I get ordained so I could marry them, so I did. Unfortunately, they decided to elope."
He got another chance later, and he's been tapped to perform the upcoming ceremony for fellow musician Crawford Perkins.
Chappell became Preacher when he showed up in a blues bar years ago ready for a nighttime gig after getting off of his day job as a video store manager. He didn't have time to change out of the coat and tie he wore at the store. He just slung on his guitar and started to play.
"An old blues musician said, 'Hey, you play like a preacher,' and somebody else said, 'Yeah, he looks like one, too!' That was 15 years ago. I've been stuck with it ever since," he says.
But it's not his image that keeps Chappell in the hearts of local guitar players. It's the loving care he puts into the guitars they leave in his capable hands.
"He has always set up my guitars, and he sets them up wonderfully," guitar player and instructor Marc Andress says.
Guitar players are picky people. They like their strings just the right thickness, and set just the right distance above the fretboard. Chappell knows what his customers want.
"He's an expert at what he does," Andress says. "He sets the instruments up with precision, and he takes the time to do it right."
He also makes electric guitars from scratch, shaping the bodies with hand tools, attaching the necks and installing the electronics. It's an interest that his late friend and fellow musician Lud Sisson instilled in him. Sisson died several years ago, but left a legacy even at a young 32.
"He had an extremely huge influence on me," Chappell says. "All the guitars I build now, I call 'CS' guitars, 'C' for my last name, and 'S' for his."
Chappell has managed to hold onto his night job, playing in a band called Dixie Grease with bassist Noel Holloway, guitarist Randy Reynolds, drummer Vince Jarocki and vocalist Emily Thompson.
"We play a mix of honky-tonk, rockabilly and '80s metal," he says. "There's no one else in town that's like us, that's for sure."
He's not getting rich, but Chappell says he's proud of the niche he's carved out for himself on the local music scene.
"Maybe I don't charge people enough, I don't know," he says, "but I do what I love to do. I am blessed in that way."