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Andyjr1515

Finished Pics! Re-body of a Fender Rascal

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Hi

One of the smaller jobs that has been backing up for a while is a request to build a Fender Precision Lyte shaped body for Mike's rather splendid Fender Rascal.

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Mike likes the sound and the pickup options and the neck, but can't get on with the body shape.  So the idea is to do a reversible build of a Precision Lyte to fit everything onto.

Oh....and to incorporate some of this:

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It's timber from the last tree (an English Walnut) that his late friend, Mervyn, cut down during his youth-to-retirement career as an axeman.  What's more, Mike wrote a biography of Mervyn that was published a few years ago.  Fascinating stuff... 

So that's where this one's starting from :D

 

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So a quick up-to-present update.

This shape is what we're aiming for:

5a22c834c1e59_PrecisionLyte.thumb.jpg.745c8b242867473f4751b1c05dea7792.jpg

 

First job was to get the find the best orientation of walnut and cut a suitable bookmatch top.  A friend, Rob, kindly did this for me on his 'proper' bandsaw:

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The Lyte is a much smaller body and is designed for a smaller headstock and longer scale (the Rascal is 30").  To make this reversible, meant seeing if it was possible to make a very thin walnut plate to double-side-tape fix on top of the existing headstock.  After a bit of careful cutting, sanding and bending, I managed to get this:

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Once it's sanded, that'll do :)

Then - how to fit the lipsticks, which are designed to be screwed onto a scratchplate?

Learning from the ultra-modern Psilos bass build...put them in from the back!  Spin off advantage is that it takes some weight out of the sapele back:

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From the top...

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The back also has a weight relief chamber cut into it:

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I'm using wenge constructional veneer (2mm) again as the demarcation.

Then glued up and trimmed:

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Still going to be a bit of a large headstock, but I'm sticking with this being fully reversible.  The walnut plate balances it out at least a touch:

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And then bringing right up to date as of an hour ago, the first rough carve begins:

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Never heard of a Fender Rascal before. Does the heel on the Rascal also have the same expanded treble side as your new body does?

 

8 hours ago, Andyjr1515 said:

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I bet you got some interesting looks from the neighbours while you were taking that pic.

'Watch out lads, Andy's taking photos of fence posts again...'

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:lol:

No ref the neck heel @curtisa - I won't cut that to shape and size until I've worked out the back carve.

I want to taper the heel transition down to lessen the doorstop heel effect of such a thick body (necessary because of the depth of the 5-way) and haven't yet figured the best way so played safe on the basis of 'you can always take more off but you can't put it back' :lol:

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This is almost complete.  It also has given me a chance to try an A/B comparison of Tru-oil with the Osmo Polyx 3044 that some of you will remember I used for the 'white wood' Psilos bass. 

The 3044 version is intended for white and light woods and aims to minimise the yellowing effect of most finishes.  It worked well for the Psilos:

_MG_2519.thumb.JPG.f372dbe95c52f5b5f19bc9697dd60f9d.JPG

...but how well would it work on a dark wood like walnut?  Mike wanted me to try :)

The great thing, however, is that - because I use a tru-oil slurry and buff now as a sealing and filling process before sanding it all off to then apply the intended finish coats, I could do an absolute A/B comparison of Tru-Oil vs Osmo Polyx 3044.  And here it is:

A/B Comparison of Tru-Oil vs Osmo Polyx 3044

 In both cases, the body has has a single application of oil, slurried with 400 grit wet and dry and then immediately wiped off

Tru Oil:

_MG_3791.thumb.JPG.ae3f11ae882af30ba09f06d58038a31b.JPG

 

Once fully dry.  This was all sanded off, leaving the body in the same pre-oil state.

Osmo Polyx 3044:

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Quite different - especially in the darker figuring areas where the tru-oil (and water does the same) turns the figuring grey to almost black.  The Osmo, on the other hand, retains the light brown.  The lighting is about the same in both shots.  If it's a bright enough day tomorrow, I'll repeat the shot with the same background as the tru-oil - it actually shows the contrast even more.

In real life it looks lovely.  Also, once it's had a few more slurry and buff coats, the silky satin feel has to be experienced to be believed

Here's the back with the Osmo - DON'T PANIC - THE DISTORTION IS THE CAMERA LENS (trust me - everything is straight and true! Honest )  The edges of the hatches still need tidying up but this is basically how they will look:

_MG_3798.thumb.JPG.0b24232bba7bc5250a8e8be6e12468c2.JPG

 

The matching up of the sapele grain and the walnut grain, by the way, is total coincidence...

And this is the 'fan who is getting too up close and personal' 's view:

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I really like this product.  Super easy to apply and, well, it works!

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The headstock plate is too thin to risk adding an inlay but Mike and I thought it would be fun to have at least a little bit of the original Rascal colour showing :D :

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Once the plate has been sanded to the exact outline and had the finish applied, it will be secured at the edges with thin double-sided tape just to stop it lifting at any of the edges.  The tuner bushes and string tree will do the main work.

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2 hours ago, ScottR said:

That sounds like you are not going to glue it on?:mellow:

SR

No - sorry...should have explained.  This is going to be fully reversible. 

I was dubious at first this would work but am pretty sure now it's going to work just fine.  The plate is flat and stable (it's been sitting loose on the headstock for the past few weeks from an unusually mild spell, to heavy rain and high humidity to (for us) very cold and snow back to mild with no problems).  The tuner bushes and string tree will hold the plate securely so the double-sided tape is just to make sure the edges don't lift.  They can't go anywhere even if they do...

I know - madness.

But this is Andyjr1515...  :hyper

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I guess I wasnt paying attention when Fender has this Rascal and Lyte basses out. I have never seen those before. 

yet another "different" build Andy- you are batting 1000 as they say in baseball. looking good so far. 

 

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Another couple of coats of Osmo has given me this:

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The hatches will be darkened and the edges have got to be tidied up, but this is how the Osmo has gone with the Sapele:

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In terms of the headstock plate, I drilled the hole to match up with the position of the string tree and added the thin double-sided tape:

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To give me this:

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So, the whole body is starting to look like this:

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That headstock no longer looks out of proportion...and it remains fully reversible :)

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I'm thinking that Osmo might be just the ticket for ziricote, which tends to darken and hide all the cool stuff with regular oil.

The bass is looking excellent, very much a display of natural wood.

SR

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On 18/12/2017 at 3:01 PM, ScottR said:

I'm thinking that Osmo might be just the ticket for ziricote, which tends to darken and hide all the cool stuff with regular oil.

The bass is looking excellent, very much a display of natural wood.

SR

Thanks, @ScottR :)  Somehow seem to have missed this post :rolleyes:

I've talked a little bit more about the Osmo trials on @Pariahrob 's excellent thread if it is of any interest

 

And in the meantime....it's almost finished.  Just got to put the magnetic catches on the hatches and we're done.

This is how the front ended up looking:

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The five-way switch (with push pull) gives some very usable sounds.  Still a bit of cable tidying to finish but it all fits :)

_MG_3949.thumb.JPG.b729e66337149566a70edf001900d734.JPG

 

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And...it's finished :)

Magnetic catches fitted:

_MG_3957.thumb.JPG.f274f1cdf30eccb68b6b2418c505bb9b.JPG

And then the obligatory dark-background shots, starting with a 'before and after':

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Thanks, folks :). Means a lot, especially as it's coming from fellow builders I hugely admire :)

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Lovely clean work. You've really stepped up your quality in the last couple of years, so that exceptional is the norm now :)

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wow this is truly stunning and all the finish experiments paid off - the matter finish on the walnut top is fantastic. I'm going to need to research this OSMO stuff...

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