Jump to content

Entry for May 2018's Guitar Of The Month contest is open!


Popular Content

Showing content with the highest reputation since 03/26/2018 in Posts

  1. 5 points
    Warning: Pic heavy post Hope you're all having a good weekend. I've been wiring up some Fishman's and finished this wild beast... Full spec: 6-string DC with Leopardwood neck-thru-body, Alder body (wings), Leopardwood top with Ebony laminate, Pale Moon Ebony fretboard, Gotoh 510 Series tuners, TonePros T3BT Tune-O-Matic bridge, Fishman Fluence Modern pickups and Tru-Oil finish... Sorry, I know it's more pictures than usual in one go... Hope you don't mind
  2. 4 points
    Thanks Scott, I do like how the combination turned out. So the third build, here again I'm trying to make my life harder by attempting to solve the following problem: I like to work with veneer/thin drop tops but on the other hand I hate how flat top guitars without an .. what was the name for that?? .. the little cut at the edge of the body for the forearm. Forearm contour? Dunno. No, I wasn't drinking. Maybe not enough coffee today. Anyway. I don't like the idea of having to bend drop-tops, nor the idea of having to run binding in strange ways over the angled part, nor the idea of simply cutting through the top. At least I want to try something different. The first iteration was already present on the "Etna" build, there I had the idea late in the build, but here I want to try to incorporate it early on, with the possibility of this being a standard feature of my future builds. The idea is an angled/"V" top - so flat, but the two halves being at an angle to each other. But the way I want to do this is to cut the angle in the edges of the body blank halves so that I form the angle when glueing. This way I could for example glue the top to the two pieces and then join them together. But here there will be no top, just a poplar burl veneer, a one piece in fact, so this will go on later. Here's a mock-up illustrating the idea. The body wood is european basswood. It's not super-obvious how to glue this, but if I make sure that the whole thing doesn't slip sideways and fold it can be done: Then I roughly cut the outline using a cheap Bosch jigsaw (still the only thing I have for this task) and finally, veneer: as you might notice form the contents of this photo, I've become addicted to the method of ironing-on veneers by @Andyjr1515. I'm using is on both guitars in this thread, used it to veneer the mdf sides and fronts of a set of 80cm tall speaker cabinets that I built (to see if I can build a speaker cabinet) - this method is fantastic for large-surface tasks! The neck is a standard maple-mahogany 5pc sandwich, but since I'll be trying the same deep-set trick as on the strat, I needed the 3cm thick neck so I had to cut off a piece and glue it back on at the heel side, forming the actual.. tenon I guess. This is a later photo of the neck, but I don't have an earlier tenon shot. This features my router slip-up under the 17th fret marker will mostly be hidden in the neck pocket, I filled it vith maple veneer and epoxy later on, but it's not super-pretty. So due to this tenon business I didn't have enough wood for the headstock so after cutting the scarf I used an off-cuf of the body that I split horizontally and "bookmatched", giving me enough width and correct thickness for the headstock. Headstock veneer matches the body: and the shape is using my 3x3 shape (and template) from "The Driud" flying V from a few years ago. So the body and the neck will get 3-ply binding - peal/black/white. White on the outside. I did the inverse once (white on the inside) but I think this will work better. I spent quite some time pre-bending the laminated pieces and tuning the ends to get it as close to seamless as possible on the headstock: Also on the fingerboard (not-pitch-black ebony) The idea was for the binding on the fingerboard and on the headstock to align and blend into each other, I think I got pretty close: better visible on the fret press shot, here I already shaped the transition a little: Cutting the neck pocket was fun since there is no longer a flat surface to lay everything on, so I had to precisely position my mdf guides to be in the plane of the back of the guitar before routing. There is a second order effect coming from the fact that the sides of the pocket are not parallel to each other, so laying on the sloping top they actually produce a tiny upwards angle in the neck pocket, but it's so small that I could ignore it. In fact the final depth of the pocket was done withouth the jig (I couldn't go deep enough with is so I used using thinner pieces of mdf, laid down wider and perpendicular to each other, so that the router sat lower - and this surface was parallel to the bottom this time. The router bit was guided by the walls of the neck pocket cut in the step before. It all appears to have worked perfectly: At which point I could pre-drill the tremolo hole and insert the tremolo block to check alignment, which I always like to do as early as possible: This resulted in some deepening of the neck pocket (looks like my fingerboard is a bit thicker than my design was assuming). So now all is good and I can move forward with the tremolo routes. One thing not shown - the control cavity. I remembered to do it before flattening the back of the body, so that the cavity bottom is perpendicular to the top surface. Right, another thing not shown - flattening the back. After the shape was cut I took off as much wood as possible using saws, chisels and whatever I could find, and then set the body under my router planing jig, making sure that both sides are at the same angle, and planed the bottom flat. One thing learned - I'm contemplating adding the veneer at a much later stage in the build. By now it was impossible for me to not put a bunch of small dents in the top, which I will now have to fix.. I could probably hold off until all the routing is done and do the veneer right before cutting the binding channel and then finish sanding. Something to consider in the future. Maybe for some people who build faster and have more discipline this is not an issue, but here the veneering was done in November 2016 ...
  3. 4 points
    I tinted the curly maple piece and sprayed it with Nitro. I stopped the color just shy of red.....more of and IPA tone. So it went spray nitro, gently level Tru-Oil, spray nitro, level a bit more......rinse and repeat. Even with an orange peel surface this thing looks lenticular. AS it flips you'd swear the hills and valleys are over a quarter inch deep. I'm pretty sure I'm going to like it when it is polished out. SR
  4. 4 points
    No worries. But can I ask, have you been drinking? 😉
  5. 4 points
    Yes sir. It makes it so much easier to get an even color. Here is the Paduak SS almost ready. This thing is a beast!
  6. 3 points
    All right, I've focused my threads on (mostly) one guitar at a time, but I think I'll join the popular "joint thread" movement. Maybe because since I finished the blue multiscale strat I don't have anything fancy in the works (until I start on "The Druid 2.0"). So here are the three builds that are running right now. The strat had a head start and then I wanted to finish it quickly so I shifted most of my attention to that, but now I'm back to the other three, that are moving more or less in parallel. So let me back-trace the builds a little and show you where I'm at. First is a bass - I need a 5-string bass for my personal recording projects (mainly rock and metal covers of various stuff that I'm doing since ~2000). So I figured I'd build one, making it multiscale to have a nice long scale for the low B. Here's a pic of the body wood: from 2015.. This used to be a book shelf, actually a couple of shelves - was enough for this body and some necks. I'm not sure that this is, I suspect oak. Anyway - this is not quite thick enough for a standalone body, but with a quilted maple cap it's perfect: (I slapped some dark veneer between the layers to get an accent line). The neck is plain old maple, it turns out that it wasn't exactly long (and wide) enough for the headstock after doing the scarf, so the headstock is some horrible patchwork of maple pieces - that will be covered by the maple cap so not a huge deal. new way to thickness the headstock: run the outline with the router to a depth which is the headstock thickness + a few mm: then saw off the back part along the bottom of the route: I think I then cleaned it up on a spindle sander with a fence. The fingerboard is bocote, slots cut by hand over a template printed out from fretfind using a complex purpose-built jig: Then glued to the neck, using LMI epoxy: The template for my usual 12-th fret inlay marker pattern: Then pressing the frets in, cutting the neck pocket, rounding over the body edges.. I don't have pictures of that. Fast-forward to now - measured the bridge locations and drilled the holes for the ABM single bridges that I'm using on this build. Mounted the two external bridges to verify alignment (and make a sound ) There you go, now I need to profile the neck and carve the tummy cut, which will be an interesting exercise since I made some weight relief holes in the body but forgot to photograph them and I don't remember if I took the tummy cut into account when laying them out. In other words I don't know how deep I can go, exactly. Sounds like fun. Yea, this thread should be called "how to be lazy and still get a decent instrument at the end". Or "don't be lazy or you'll end up building a crappy guitar". We'll see.
  7. 3 points
  8. 3 points
    Thanks man! I'm really surprised that the Paduak SS was the one everybody liked the most. To me it was the most simple build ive done in a long time. It does look great and play great though. Here is a sneak peek of the Black limba EXP.
  9. 3 points
    so I used to hang upside down with "gravity boots" when I was younger to try to keep my back decompressed. Well- hanging upside down from a bar and getting your feet (the hooks on the boots) up onto said bar when you are 51 aint so easy no more- and honestly hasnt been for a few years now. So I bought a teeter inversion table. I finally sprang for one after my last episode with my back. Having basically been off my feet for 6 weeks just sucks. I have been using it for less than 5 min, 3 times a day for the last 3 weeks. not quite fully inverted either- 60 degrees maybe. (whatever 4-5 oclock on a clock is in degrees). The chiropractor was only getting me so far. This thing put me to the finish line. "as seen on tv" type products usually suck. Or are gimmicky at best. This thing is neither. I should have bought one years ago. I have forgotten how good decompression works. Getting out of bed in the morning and not grunting and growning -i would wake my wife up with my "oh" and uh and ahs . havent done that in almost 2 weeks. going from not being able to stand on your feet for more than 5 min without extreme pain to taking your first 2 mile walk in 6 weeks is a beautiful thing people. it also assembles in like less than 20 min. I was going to go with a cheaper table- but after looking at manuals on line- it would have taken me a couple days (in the shape I was in) to assemble those- and probably would have "undone" the progress I had made with the chiropractor (you can do that actually-trust me on that). This non-endorsed advertisement for Teeter inversion tables is now over. Mr Natural and his relatives are not related to, endorsed by or even friends with anyone from Teeter Enterprises or (whatever their company is called.)
  10. 3 points
    Today I gave my liquor it's own shelf. I feel like I owe it since it's given me so much.
  11. 3 points
  12. 3 points
    Sounds like my best friend. Always making super weird shit. Last year he wanted to make a paddle to spank grown women with. His ended up looking like basically something that would cause cuts, bruises, blisters on his hands, you know... So when I saw where he was going I made one. A very nice, ROUNDED paddle that would cover a large area with a nice handle that would prevent slipping and hitting the wrong thing. I gave it to him and asked him not to use his, because I don't want to see him in jail. Anyway, last time he was over he told me he uses it quite a bit(he frequents THOSE events) and that he makes women say " Thank you, Wesley" after he uses the one I made and shows them what he made. I don't know how to process such things. I would think he was lying, except I've met some of these girls. They are freaks.
  13. 2 points
    so, first off: not affiliated in any way. this is NOT shameless self plug or anything like that. I've gleaned a lot of good info here from very generous souls and just wanted to A) give back a bit and B ) help out my canadian new best friends - woodtoworks.com! I recently bought a 5A maple burl top from these guys and after shipping I paid approx $60. It is a stunning top - a few bark incursions but the figure is all of 5A. On the down side... right off the bat it started curling up due to the change in humidity. These are all kiln dried... so there's that. I'd show ya pics but I just took the top and laid it on a big flat piece of wood, put two straight 2x4s on top of it... and then loaded it down with barbells (I never work out anyway). Will leave it there for a month. Anyway, the site has some great prices on tops and body blanks (unglued). Wanted to share as even after shipping - for what you get, and assuming you are willing to deal with a little bow - they are better than anything I've seen - plus they are canadian which means they are guaranteed good folks ime.
  14. 2 points
    Luis (@killemall8) pretty much shares finished or mostly finished product these days. He showed progress in his earlier days. He has always been a remarkably fast builder, particularly considering the high quality of his builds. He's got his process very refined at this point. On the other hand, compared to @Norris and @mattharris75 you are blazing right along. SR
  15. 2 points
    Thank you so much Andyjr1515, I love doing that inlaying work, I really enjoy! I've tested that issue with a jig I bulid for that purpose (testing the perpendicularity, and after the slot I insert a cutter blade and test with a squad, and is perfect. The saw runs perfectly over the bearings, and with mapple or rosewood for example. But you're right, itps possible in ebony that for a tenth of a milimiter the problem occurs. Certainly is a torture... About your anterior question, no problem doing the slots with the freboard tappering, but if I had to choose, is better to do with the fretboard untappered. Maybe part of the problem could be caused for using the fretboard radioused, allways radious first and then slot, for the same reason, I radious with the router, and afraid of slotting first and the router bits tears the slots... Yes, is possible to cut the frets and then curve them with the drill press, I've done this way too, but the bender is easy to do, cheap and usefull. Fret press is a very helpful tool too. I've just bought one and can't understand how could live without it. Expecially important with ebony, I think ebony is my enemy hahaha... My diary advances: Today I've been freting the Flying-V and installing the side dot markers. The fret work was very delicated cause the frets slippered expecially due to inlays. In some cases I had to lube with bee wax, because the frets tended to go out the slot and produce tear outs. Fortunatelly had nothing to lament, but was a delicated and tense work all the time. For the side dot markers built a metacrilate template and is really quick and easy to do. Fix the template with double side tape and it takes no more than 20 minutes and the result is perfect. Some pics: Scorpionscar
  16. 2 points
    Polishing to this level lets me see how much depth I have left on the edges and above the dye layer. Now it hangs for another week....probably two, since I have family obligations next weekend. Then I'll see how much the finish shrank and sank and will likely level and polish again. SR
  17. 2 points
    This just in, a beautiful slab of Mun Ebony. about 36" x 8" x 1-3/4" MK
  18. 2 points
    I burnished the fretboard to a glassy 2000 grit.And hammered in frets.
  19. 2 points
    Headstock bound in straight tort. No pinstripe as per the body, mostly because I can't afford to put money into more bearings for one job right now. No big deal. The headstock still needs thicknessing, and plenty of sanding through the grits to soften the otherwise sharp edges. A few have been done, but there's a long way to go yet.
  20. 2 points
    Just finished in time and with the smell of varnish still lingering - I present to you the Swift Lite Mark 2 This is the latest incarnation following my personal curiosity about 6 string electrics. That is, do electric guitars have to be so heavy to play well and sound good ? I'm a hobby builder and I've been modding and refinishing guitars and basses for 7-8 years. I did my first scratch build around 6 years ago. I do occasional commissions, generally for fellow band members and friends / family, but sometimes build requests that interest or intrigue me Having gained a bit of a reputation in two or three bass and guitar forums for being a teeny bit crazy and willing to try anything (at least once), I ended up with some really interesting and unusual build commissions. And some of those have led me to question my acceptance of some of the long-standing 'conventions' your see in features of many electric guitar designs - one being that they tend to be so heavy! I've also got to that 'certain age' And I've realised how many guitar players I know personally who have given up because of neck, back, shoulder issues and just can't stand with that weight for a full gig-length anymore. Over a couple of builds, I have used the combination of thru-neck and slimness to reduce weight. This has given an unplanned but very welcome additional benefit of eliminating the usually abrupt encounter of the playing thumb with the heel and body when playing the upper frets. This particular build has sought to exploit that with full access up to the 24th fret, including a thumb anchor point for three or more semitone bends at the top frets. And Mark 2? Well, the original Swift Lite - same basic construction but quite different in shape and other aspects - I built at the back end of last year for my own use. This one, the Swift Lite Mark 2, I have built for Jane, my sister-in-law. In the build I have incorporated a piece of an oak mantlepiece rescued from her late mother's recently demolished house. Here is the spec: 25" Scale; 24 frets Amboyna top; oak back Maple/purpleheart laminated thru neck Macassar ebony fretboard Tonerider Alnico IV Classic humbuckers Master tone / master volume and three-way toggle, wired '50's style' Total finished weight 5lbs 4oz Home-made knobs (oak and macassar) The full build thread is here It balances beautifully both on the strap and over the knee. I'll try to post some sound clips before the entry closes but trust me - it will do anything and everything! And here it is:
  21. 2 points
    And finished! I think Jane will be well pleased with it. It is spot on 5lbs 4oz, it balances and sits great on the strap or over the knee, it sounds excellent with a HUGE range of tones and the neck has worked out really nicely. I'm well pleased with it - it never bothers me to hand over a build...but I would have loved to keep this. I know slim guitars and guitars with fancy tops aren't to everybody's taste, but this will be one I will persnolly miss when it's gone Anyway - here it is: As always, folks, many many thanks for your encouragement and help along the way
  22. 2 points
    Brief picture update on progress: Started work on the pickguard. Was going to cut this pattern out, and then mount it on the copper pickguard that I have posted earlier. Decided instead to route the pattern out, fill with copper dust, CA, then sand. From a design perspective it turned out really well IMO... from an execution perspective, I have a lot to learn. There are supposed to be music notes in the helix, but they ended up being too small, and not routed deep enough, so they distorted when I sanded down. And then with the white maple, I accidentally left some larger grit sand marks in place. At this point, I don't think it is worth fixing. Generally I am happy with it, but would definitely do some things different in the future. Additionally I got around to doing some fret work. Not levelled yet, but started to dress the frets. Aaaand, stained the back of the guitar. Minwax Jacobean. The varying penetration of the poplar gives it a kind of "relic" look, and partially worn w/o sanding. Generally pretty happy with it. Next guitar, I am going to try to steer clear of poplar though.
  23. 1 point
    I just want to touch it and feel it!
  24. 1 point
    That Limba is just amazing. Absolutely perfect arrangement. Celluloid likes to spit its dummy, definitely.
  25. 1 point
    Here's my entry for March.. This is a guitar that I designed that's inspired by a September 1959 article in Mechanix Illustrated entitled 'How to Make an Electric Guitar'. I call it the MI59DC for double cut. I did a little modification of the basic body shape, and designed my own snake head inspired 21 fret 25" scale neck. The top is an interesting piece of flame maple chosen more for it's uniqueness than the mirror quality of the pattern. The finish is nitrocellulos lacquer tinted with ColorTone Vintage Amber. Both body and neck are maple. I used my CNC machine to do the 2D machining on both body and neck, then shaped the neck profile by hand. Neckplate, control plate, and pickup rings are CNC'd 6061 aluminum with my own engraving designs. The engraving is a sun, moon and stars theme. Other details...GFS Alnico Pro humbuckers, 6061 aluminum nut, Ernie Ball #10 strings, hardtail bridge, open back Wilkinson style tuners, heel adjust truss rod (you can tell I cut my teeth building Tele's). I built this guitar for myself. Close up of the engraving on the control plate... Closeup of the engraving on the pickup rings... Closeup of the engraving on the neck plate... Shot of the entire guitar... Closer up view of the body... Thanks and hope you enjoy the pics of the guitar.