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willliam_q

Dinky style guitar

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I haven’t been on this site, or built a guitar, in years.  I’ve finally made the journey back and I’m building a Dinky style guitar and am a few months in to the project by now. 

I only get to work on this for 2 evening per week (for 1.5 hours each) and the occasions Saturday or Sunday morning.

ive gone for something that I think is complicated (to me anyway) as I didn’t want to build a standard strat style guitar to only want to make something fancier later. So whilst it’s difficult it should be something I’m happy and proud of.

specs will be:

Jackson style Dinky bolt on

flamed maple neck with walnut stringers.

ebony fretboard, with maple and walnut laminate binding and abalone shark fin inlays

flamed maple top and blank limba body

floyd rose original in black

gotoh tuners

emg 56/67 

 

i started by hand planing, and bandsawing out flamed maple blank and gluing up the stringers.  I don’t have mechanical planers  and jointers so it was all done on a £20 hand plane that is very well setup.  I’m very proud of this as I’m not an experienced wood worker.

i prepared the fretboard in terms of cut to size, inlays in, binding on.  A lot of firsts, I’ve never done inlays or binding before but I'm very happy with the results.

50B90304-41D4-4834-800A-D8B3368BA722.jpeg.ca30fc8291e396c45de0bd502a9aa848.jpeg

Scarf joint cut and joined, another impressive feat, can’t see the join line until the stringers

Made a boo boo when cutting truss rod, the router bit fell out gouging a huge chunk deeper than do wanted to go.  Time to make a jig.  
jig built, routed almost all the way through the blank and installed a walnut fillet strip.  Rerouted truss rod slot and much happier this time.

A96B36E6-FA7D-41C4-BC41-E64B851CE28E.jpeg.67d7d44c341ed02f14ddb112aec016da.jpeg

fretboard on, neck carved and fretboard radiused.  Need to install frets and a bit of final sanding to finish the neck

4030F1C4-C49A-4E39-A9C5-A7CDE9150323.jpeg.fc79ff546820cc41ffe28d20831db5ad.jpeg483050DC-713D-424F-8A3C-02C9AB4335EC.jpeg.c51d020821342fbc4b6fb36d0835f5ce.jpeg1DD0BDA8-97C8-4F05-A444-5971D23A946F.jpeg.5d86d878c25f24e4609a2e9aac51eee1.jpeg7FDE5AEE-98DF-42BF-B2EC-A4AFDEE09161.jpeg.9369e93a03cafafca2c3bce832e27bb7.jpeg410A4E6C-5056-4C7E-93DC-6869C7997223.jpeg.da24264fe2be5655bfab637f98a8c9a9.jpeg

Need some help deciding whether to keep the headstock bare or to stain it the same colour that the body will be... a vivid purple stain.

progress is slow but so far I’m happy with the results and how I’ve overcome mistakes.

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Welcome (back). :)

Clever save on the router mishap, nicely executed.

 

46 minutes ago, willliam_q said:

Need some help deciding whether to keep the headstock bare or to stain it the same colour that the body will be... a vivid purple stain.

Personally I'm not a fan of the visible stringers that pass through the front of the headstock, so if it were me I'd either paint it an opaque colour on the front or cover it with a fancy veneer with your choice of finish. But that's just me..

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Thanks,  yes kinda thinking on this style of guitar the stringers won’t look great from the front.

I have a curly/quilt maple veneer that I could use but, since the body is relatively heavily flamed straight tiger maple, the quilt might make it look too busy and not match.  Also, I have no experience with veneer, if I decide to use it would I have to install binding?  
the fretboard is already on so binding the headstock might be difficult.

ill think about it but I might just go opaque on this one, maybe paint a black headstock face.  I want to put my own personalisation on the front so will have to think about how any lettering might work.

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Awesome looking neck, I especially like the maple/ebony binding. I'm with @curtisa on the headstock, in that I'm not a fan of the lams from the front. If it was me, I would be sticking an ebony plate on the headstock to tie in with the neck. If you're feeling brave you could carry on your binding into the headstock. Maybe some maple purfling would provide the same affect.

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some quality work there... looks great.  the headstock is lovely... if you do walnut binding on the body I think those stringers would tie in nicely - just a thought.  rock on.

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Thanks all, agreed I really like the walnut fillet myself.   


Frets pressed in and bevelled.  my first time using a fret press,  I hammered them in previously. The press (Elmer style drill press attachment) seats the frets much better and with less chance for something to go wrong.  So much better then anything I did previously.  So much so I have little to no levelling to do.

AF16563D-041E-483A-9D9B-8C1233C4AD59.thumb.jpeg.46da5779b3e226915e53c25ceab7fdb7.jpeg

C6230BD4-2D3C-45FA-AFEA-74CA0E3F496C.thumb.jpeg.2b6a3161dc53dac5679712f5cadcd000.jpeg

i also added a maple quilt veneer to the headstock but it’s been fighting me a bit.  Keeps chipping out at the sharp corners, even with sanding by hand.  So I’ve had to patch the chip outs, and will paint a black burst to mask it.  Lesson learned, veneers are best applied before any shaping work takes place. 

85797E1F-6D22-4055-9CA2-D1D6002E91B7.thumb.jpeg.20668b52aa2eaadd757b6d767ca7cdcd.jpeg
 

I’m a little nervous about re- drilling the tuner holes through the veneer given the issues I’ve had with it.

I also received a 1 3/4 plank of limba for the body.  Cut to size, hand jointed and glued.  Will need to be thicknessed to take the top, which is also glued.

C8D57851-CA42-41CD-84BC-358768FC26EC.thumb.jpeg.f6351f32d235c509fc40045ef4c0672d.jpeg

I had thought of binding the body but I don’t think I’ll be doing that, think I like the faux scraped binding look.  

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Disaster Strikes! 🤬

I was propping up the neck to drill the veneer for the machine heads and the neck fell off the bench!  🤬

DBB20605-D831-440A-A001-0FEBCF872835.thumb.jpeg.2aa5b50974497631a5f40efdb2968c79.jpeg

It caught the corner of the neck at the last fret damaging the binding.  Only thing for it was to cut the binding back and re-laminate and glue a small piece of maple and walnut.  

I’m quite happy with the repair but obviously wish it wasn’t there in the first place

EF3A5060-3205-4B54-AB3E-CFCA552A11AE.thumb.jpeg.9a1f6db1f785c1d1f30878a7b1e5c8f5.jpeg

2A2B9CD3-DD00-41B0-A388-779B5BDF3C36.thumb.jpeg.1f0f83a6071d87636baae7488d3d79a4.jpeg

and then finished off shaping headstock and drilling.  All that’s left on the neck is to fit the locking nut and final sand.

130C7576-DB1C-4187-A431-220B3A3DB422.thumb.jpeg.4e73b605bbb5afb5851bd9c035bf1647.jpeg

 

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nice recovery.  those are the kind of little things that might drive you nuts... but know one else will notice.  Def don't let it get you down... chin up.

 

that truss rod... where did you get it?  How easy does it turn?  Can you tell me the aprox diameter of the wheel? 

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Got the Truss rod on eBay, can’t really comment on how reliable it is although I’m pretty sure I’ve another of the same without the spike wheel and it works fine.  Turns easy enough both ways so I think it will do the job.  

Spoke wheel Dual Type guitar Truss Rod 440mm 460mm and 630mm TR13

Diameter is approx 15mm


 

 

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11 hours ago, willliam_q said:

I’m quite happy with the repair but obviously wish it wasn’t there in the first place

Luthiery isn't only about how well you can build instruments. It's even more about how well you can fix issues caused by accidents like that. Well done! 👍

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6 hours ago, willliam_q said:

Got the Truss rod on eBay, can’t really comment on how reliable it is although I’m pretty sure I’ve another of the same without the spike wheel and it works fine.  Turns easy enough both ways so I think it will do the job.  

Spoke wheel Dual Type guitar Truss Rod 440mm 460mm and 630mm TR13

Diameter is approx 15mm


 

 

thank you sir.  I have tried a few similar (w/o wheel) from evilbay and I'm sure they are fine (have one in my delta cloud build) but they require a fair amount of tension to turn... and without the benefit of time makes me a little nervous but many seem to have used them and they seem to be fine.  Thank you for the info!  again, build looks great.

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8 hours ago, Bizman62 said:

Luthiery isn't only about how well you can build instruments. It's even more about how well you can fix issues caused by accidents like that. Well done! 👍

I think my entire build is about how well I  can fix mistakes! it’s definitely a good way to learn 😐

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On 11/30/2019 at 8:28 PM, willliam_q said:

I haven’t been on this site, or built a guitar, in years.  I’ve finally made the journey back and I’m building a Dinky style guitar and am a few months in to the project by now. 

I only get to work on this for 2 evening per week (for 1.5 hours each) and the occasions Saturday or Sunday morning.

ive gone for something that I think is complicated (to me anyway) as I didn’t want to build a standard strat style guitar to only want to make something fancier later. So whilst it’s difficult it should be something I’m happy and proud of.

specs will be:

Jackson style Dinky bolt on

flamed maple neck with walnut stringers.

ebony fretboard, with maple and walnut laminate binding and abalone shark fin inlays

flamed maple top and blank limba body

floyd rose original in black

gotoh tuners

emg 56/67 

 

i started by hand planing, and bandsawing out flamed maple blank and gluing up the stringers.  I don’t have mechanical planers  and jointers so it was all done on a £20 hand plane that is very well setup.  I’m very proud of this as I’m not an experienced wood worker.

i prepared the fretboard in terms of cut to size, inlays in, binding on.  A lot of firsts, I’ve never done inlays or binding before but I'm very happy with the results.

50B90304-41D4-4834-800A-D8B3368BA722.jpeg.ca30fc8291e396c45de0bd502a9aa848.jpeg

Scarf joint cut and joined, another impressive feat, can’t see the join line until the stringers

Made a boo boo when cutting truss rod, the router bit fell out gouging a huge chunk deeper than do wanted to go.  Time to make a jig.  
jig built, routed almost all the way through the blank and installed a walnut fillet strip.  Rerouted truss rod slot and much happier this time.

A96B36E6-FA7D-41C4-BC41-E64B851CE28E.jpeg.67d7d44c341ed02f14ddb112aec016da.jpeg

fretboard on, neck carved and fretboard radiused.  Need to install frets and a bit of final sanding to finish the neck

imageproxy.php?img=&key=97e65993e3ce47e9imageproxy.php?img=&key=97e65993e3ce47e94030F1C4-C49A-4E39-A9C5-A7CDE9150323.jpeg.fc79ff546820cc41ffe28d20831db5ad.jpeg483050DC-713D-424F-8A3C-02C9AB4335EC.jpeg.c51d020821342fbc4b6fb36d0835f5ce.jpeg1DD0BDA8-97C8-4F05-A444-5971D23A946F.jpeg.5d86d878c25f24e4609a2e9aac51eee1.jpeg7FDE5AEE-98DF-42BF-B2EC-A4AFDEE09161.jpeg.9369e93a03cafafca2c3bce832e27bb7.jpeg410A4E6C-5056-4C7E-93DC-6869C7997223.jpeg.da24264fe2be5655bfab637f98a8c9a9.jpeg

Need some help deciding whether to keep the headstock bare or to stain it the same colour that the body will be... a vivid purple stain.

progress is slow but so far I’m happy with the results and how I’ve overcome mistakes.

Just entered this thread, looking at your first post and already love it! :)

Edit: Yes, cool, looking forward to seeing you finish this... And great recovery on the fixes, that's what it's all about. Keep at it!

Edited by KempGuitars
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Thanks for the encouragement, I really like the Kemp Guitars style of super Strat and your build quality is something I’d aspire to someday.  

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I have got the nut shelf routed and locking nut installed.  As with everything else in this build so far it’s been fighting me.

I eyeballed the screw holes and got it completely wrong...don’t know how that happened.  Had to fill with scrap hardwood chippings and superglue.  That’s what I get for working when tired.

thankfully it’s a top mount nut (I went for Gotoh to get the 16” radius) so it won’t be seen!  To redrill the holes I looked at the data sheet and took the measurements from that instead.  Worked out perfect.

The next issue was when the top mount screw head wore due to the pilot hole not being deep enough.  The neck is quite thin at that end and I was very afraid of busting through but as a result put a little too much pressure on the tiny screw and rung it.

Again I got lucky in that I was able to back it out.  I can’t find a replacement screw online so I found a small wood screw of similar length and sanded the head down to a diameter that would fit.  Worked perfectly.  It is silver so I’ll have to touch it up with a spot of black paint.

All in all this step took way more time than was necessary.

38D12EF2-C648-409E-9058-1497A79F0E71.thumb.jpeg.461efb7f1921610855f3c52d7e50b917.jpeg


I’ve also got the body template cut out to shape...does anybody else hate making templates????  I get impatient and want to start cutting and shaping wood instead of working with MDF...which is horrible stuff.

Edited by willliam_q

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41 minutes ago, willliam_q said:

 I get impatient and want to start cutting and shaping wood instead of working with MDF.

Every. Single. Time.

SR

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11 hours ago, willliam_q said:

 I get impatient and want to start cutting and shaping wood

The templates we're allowed to borrow are mostly for drawing outlines. That allows us to immediately start cutting and shaping wood - a process that can take much longer than what it would take using router templates. Then again, there's no router bits for templates either, the only ones with a bearing are for rounding over.

Edited by Bizman62
"a"

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15 hours ago, willliam_q said:

I’ve also got the body template cut out to shape...does anybody else hate making templates????  I get impatient and want to start cutting and shaping wood instead of working with MDF...which is horrible stuff.

Yes. Hated making the templates so I cut corners and found making unnecessary mistakes. This was one thing that I should have done better on my first build.

Edited by JouniK

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finished off the body shape template,

B986BA89-0137-4FC1-8D4A-6D3E275D0571.thumb.jpeg.a174cd735820c08050766b7814d1bb05.jpeg

roughed out the body and top

4AAA5C17-4252-46E3-BEF4-69E414FB48AC.thumb.jpeg.71024a81ea199e8dac547f59f0f320c9.jpeg

89D2D5AE-EDC4-46BC-97D9-E6BFB2125E88.thumb.jpeg.707c5accda9cee31e233f55919763907.jpeg

and finally thicknessed the body.  I done this with my router planer sled and got a bit of chip out on one of the horns but recovered the piece and glued it back in seamless. Am a bit nervous now of finish routing the body now as it seems it would chip out quite easy.

not sure whether to put the arm contour on before I finish rout the body and then add the top, or finish rout the body now and then put in the contour.  

Are there any disadvantages of either way?

i

PS that’s a centre line in both body and top...not the glue line (although it’s on the glue line).  The glue line is seamless. 

 

 

Edited by willliam_q
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On 12/19/2019 at 9:04 AM, willliam_q said:

Are there any disadvantages of either way?

The longer you can leave flat surfaces the better. Makes it easier to attach templates, make critical measurements and work off reference surfaces. Adding a curve to a surface removes it from being used as a reference for any subsequent work.

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Sooo,

inhave now routed out a little bit for wiring channels prior to putting on the maple cap.  


E3B49AF5-C4AC-42A9-8DF9-14F3FB99896B.thumb.jpeg.f03759490d0e284e46f04177e4ae49e4.jpeg

I also did the arm contour carve with a hand plane and finished off with random orbital.  I deliberately made a shallow carve to make it easier to apply the top.

E7E59483-74F7-4CF9-83C7-4DAA785C00AE.thumb.jpeg.d3cb0ae468e0dbd0ddd38ca3ca83680b.jpeg

 

i made rough templates and made a pliable corner piece from MDF with slats to help me press the maple top down.  
 

I also made relief carves on the back of the maple top to allow it to bend over the arm contour.

Unfortunately I decided to test the flexibility of the relief carves by hand without supporting the top and it split down the glue seam!!!! 🤬

so I’m now waiting for the glue to set on that before gluing the top down...I am getting impatient now.  Speaking of impatience, I know rule of thumb is to let the glue dry 24hrs before doing anything.  My experience with titebond is that it can at least become fairly solid within a few hours.  It’s now 4:45pm, would any of you chance cleaning up the top, releasing the clamps and gluing it to the body wood at around 9pm?

I have tomorrow all to myself and would love to get the neck pocket routed out.  Christmas day and Boxing Day are out for me and then I’m back to work on Friday so want to get as much done as possible.

 

Edited by willliam_q

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I remember when I first had ago at doing the forearm contour, i was amazed just how quickly it could be done with a small hand plane. Don't be tempted to glue the top down until the glue has had 24 hours on the seam, your contour is quite close to the centre line and it will just pop open again if it isn't fully cured.

It might be worth prebending the top too before glueing, when I did it (granted I didn't do the relief route) I used the combination of a wet rag, a heat gun and gradual clamping pressure to bend the top, then left it clamped for 24 hours before glueing it.

One thing that caught me out on my second build: When I did the routes between the pickups and to the control cavity, glue got into the channel and I had a nightmare of a time trying to unclog it to get the pickup wire through, so now I stick masking tape over the channels before glueing the top on which prevents any glue seeping in.

Looking good though, that's a nice top - Lots of fleck and big flames 😀

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Thanks for the tip(s), I had the masking tape on the body over the wiring routs just before this happened.

do you remove the masking tape after spreading the glue, or do you keep the masking tape there and glue the top down over it?

yep,  took all of 2 minutes to make the arm contour with the hand plane.  It’s a very satisfying job to do.  

I’m targeting myself for mid February finish date.  Hopefully it will be sooner but want to be realistic. 

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