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Entry for March 2018's Guitar Of The Month is under way!



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  1. The Project Guitar.com "Guitar of the Month" contest is a showcase for all the members, so show us your axe in this thread! This contest is open to any and all members and will be continued each month for a place showing your creation on the homepage! The winner of course will have hi/her guitar featured on the homepage of Project Guitar.com and if you have a website the picture will link directly to it if you so choose (even commercial site's). If your a forum member you will also be upgraded to a Featured member which allows you to see the Advanced Chat section and download area. So show us your creation in this thread! You've got till midnite EST the 23rd of December then this thread gets locked and the voting starts! Side note, if you are unable to post a picture you can e-mail one to Brian and it will be posted for you
  2. Guitar of the Month

    Time to Vote!
  3. The Project Guitar.com "Guitar of the Month" contest is a showcase for all the members, so show us your axe in this thread! This contest is open to any and all members and will be continued each month for a place showing your creation on the homepage! The winner of course will have hi/her guitar featured on the homepage of Project Guitar.com and if you have a website the picture will link directly to it if you so choose (even commercial site's). If your a forum member you will also be upgraded to a Featured member which allows you to see the Advanced Chat section and download area. So show us your creation in this thread! You've got till midnite EST the 23rd of November then this thread gets locked and the voting starts! Side note, if you are unable to post a picture you can e-mail one to Brian and it will be posted for you
  4. October Contest

    The Project Guitar.com "Guitar of the Month" contest is a showcase for all the members, so show us your axe in this thread! This contest is open to any and all members and will be continued each month for a place showing your creation on the homepage! The winner of course will have hi/her guitar featured on the homepage of Project Guitar.com and if you have a website the picture will link directly to it if you so choose (even commercial site's). If your a forum member you will also be upgraded to a Featured member which allows you to see the Advanced Chat section and download area. So show us your creation in this thread! You've got till midnite EST the 23rd of October then this thread gets locked and the voting starts! Side note, if you are unable to post a picture you can e-mail one to Brian and it will be posted for you
  5. September Contest

    Since Project Guitar.com is officially 1 year old this month I would first of all like to thank each and everyone of you for helping make this place what it has become today. Project Guitar has grown in leaps and bounds over the past year and it is time the Guitar of the Month contest is handed over to all the members, so show us your axe in this thread! The contest is open to any and all members and will be continued each month for a place showing your creation on the homepage! If you have a website the picture will link directly to it if you so choose (even commercial site's). If your a forum member you will also be upgraded to a Featured member which allows you to see the Advanced Chat section and download area. An additional prize (yet to be determined) will be awarded to the one person that win's this contest in a poll to be taken starting the 22nd and ending on the 29th of this month. So show us your creation in this thread! You've got till midnite EST the 21st then this thread gets locked! Side note, if you are unable to post a picture you can e-mail one to Brian and it will be posted for you
  6. August Contest

    This month I thought I would do something a little different so here we go Find the cheapest guitar for sale at a fixed price! The rules are simple: 1. It can be your own or somebody else's but it must be a legit sale advertisment on the web. 2. Classified add's in forums do not count. 3. Auctions are allowed but the price has to be the lowest available at the end of this contest so fixed price auctions and those with the lowest buy it now are the only qualifiers. 4. This contest is open to everyone! 5. In the event of a tie (lowest price) the winner will be the first one to post his/her find. 6. You must post it in this thread on the forum to win. This contest will run till the end of the month! The person that finds the lowest price guitar on the internet will win a magnifying headset like the one pictured below:
  7. August Contest

    Splitting the contest up into two seperate catagorys with the same prize for each. Acoustic and electric solid body Remember to post them here! IM's and e-mails don't count folks
  8. July Contest

    This month I thought I would do something a little different so here we go Find the August Guitar of the Month for Project Guitar! The rules are simple: 1. It can be your own or somebody else's. 2. It must be from somebody who has not previously won Guitar of the Month. 3. It must be a one of a kind either in finish or design. We will close the search 1 week prior to the end of the month on July 24. Then voting start's in the poll section and ends on July 30th. In the event there are more then 10 entry's there will be a vote off between the poll winners since more then one poll will be taken. The person that found the winning "Guitar of the Month" for August will win a magnifying headset like the one pictured below: Rule#2 edited to clear things up
  9. June Contest

    Ok everyone has visited the supply page at least once. At the end of this contest I will be splitting up the supply section into the 9 different groups currently listed so this months contest is to find suppliers not currently listed! Here is how you score points! You get 1 point for every category the supplier falls into but you must also list the category's with the link see example below: Stew Mac- Guitar Kits and Supplies, Hardware Supplies Direct, Inlay Supplies, Paint and Finishing Supplies, Tool Supplies (this would count as 5 points) Suppliers that fit into the Specialty Supplies section count as 5 points each since they only manufacture or supply 1 item. Your Points double if they ship worldwide and you tell us in your post! Your links must be to the home page of the supplier and not currently listed on the supply page anywhere. The winner of this contest will receive this handy boxed toolset shipped anywhere in the world as their prize:
  10. June Contest

    tsl602000 wins with a point count of 11 PM me your address bro and I'll get your prize shipped out to you next week! Thank you for entering everyone!
  11. April-May Contest

    Yes I know I'm late so this one will be for both April and May! So let's get started and everyone hit your bookmark folder and search engines again. What your looking for this time? Build sites and tutorial sites of course! The old basic rule's apply: 1. The site must not be listed currently on Project Guitar.com 2. Post only the home page website address of your entry 3. First to post a site claims it for the point count. 4. You must post which catagory the link will fit in to. Now on to the prize, just about the most common problem people come up with when working on a guitar doing a custom job for the first time is they don't take the time to practice and experiment on something else first! Even I use an old beater neck to practice on as pictured here! The winner will get a new neck to practice on so you don't have to trash your own! It is factory finished with some of the toughest stuff I have ever run across so you can even practice removing finishes! Contest deadline is May 31st but remember rule 3
  12. April-May Contest

    And the winner is LGM Guitars! Don't worry folks the neck will be back up as he has already told me he is going to do something special to it then return it for another contest BTW to the folks that though Project Guitar.com had just about every tutorial on the net already Look here
  13. April-May Contest

    Winner to be announced soon (soon as I go through all the links and weed out the links already featured).
  14. Special Rules for This Section

    1. All Standard forum rules apply here. 2. All discussions posted in this section are for the benifit of the members that can access this area and are not to be discussed outside of this section of the forum unless permission has been posted by the original author of the information in question.
  15. 2002 Winners

    2002 December 2002 - Alex Van Der Linde November 2002 - Jonathan Ghesquiére October 2002 - John Johnson
  16. December Contest

    :o Ok BeAR I can appreciate and respect that, I thought you were trying to get points in this contest and wasn't aware of that............ And now back to our regularly scheduled thread...........
  17. November Contest

    This contest will run the length of November Everyone that participates following the rules listed below will become a winner. All you have to do is submit a link in this thread that is relevant to the Project Guitar.com web site. The rules : 1. It must be a site that is either useful in the modification, building or repairing of guitars and you should post where you think the site should go in the Project Guitar website. 2. No retail sites- links to sites such as Musicians Friend or other places that just sell guitars and equipment have no real relevance to the concept behind project guitar. The only exception would be sites of manufacturers for the "Obligatory Guitar Manufacturers" listings. 3. The site must not be previously listed in the Project Guitar.com web site elsewhere. 4. Home page links only- in other words 10 links that tell different things all from the same main website to boost your score isn't an option. They would and will count as 1. 5. The first to post via time stamp of the board is the one who gets credit in the event two different people post the same link. 6. Rules subject to change as needed in order to promote a healthy contest. 7. Winners are responsible for any and all import taxes if you live outside of the continental United States. 8. You must have a valid e-mail address listed in your profile so that I may contact you to find out what size and colors you want at the end of the contest. Here is what you will win and how you are scored: For each link used by Project Guitar.com, you will receive 1 Bobbin Topper (retail value $2 USD) furnished from Universal Jems.com. These will be distributed the following week after the closing of this month via standard air mail (included). The person that list's the highest number of usable links will receive not only their Bobbin Toppers but also a Project Guitar.com coffee cup (retail value $12 USD) as grand prize for this contest. There will be No substitutes of prize winnings. All prizes will be awarded as is and no cash prize's are available for this contest. In the event Universal Jems is out of the specific color of Bobbin Topper requested an alternate color should be provided at time of request for your list Let the contest begin
  18. Your Profile And Signature

    Yes anyone caught having a direct link from all of their posts to a business site in either the signature or avatar can and will be suspended (min 30 days), it is only fair to keep it this way so that the supporters of Project Guitar be allowed to go about business in the appropriate section for their level of support. This really shouldn't be an issue but I have actually had more than one complaint about it. If I allowed everyone in the forum to post business deals on every catagory and in every forum this would surely turn into nothing more than a business center and not the educational experience it is ment to be in the first place. Plus the lack of supporting revenue from spammers would cause the web site and forum to end due to lack of funds, it may be free to the general public but it still cost's a lot to run both a web site and a forum.
  19. Repotting Your Pickups

    Special thanks go out to Sondra (my betrothed/candlemaking guru), Gabe Nickelson, pri0531 and Sebastian from the forum over at jemsite.com, for pointing me in the right direction. WARNING – WAX IS EXTREMELY FLAMMABLE. DO NOT ATTEMPT THIS NEAR AN OPEN FLAME - MOLTEN WAX IS HIGHLY FLAMMABLE DO THIS AT YOUR OWN RISK - BE INFORMED, SAFE AND WORK RESPONSIBLY Tools required to pot pickups: A double boiler (I used a large metal measuring cup place inside the boiler)Electric stove top or hot plate (open flame is a no-no)Candle making or candy thermometerRubber bandsPliers or tongsBeeswaxCanning waxPaper towels Remove your pickup(s) from your guitar. Wrap a few rubber bands around your pickup to hold the bobbin tape together while its being dipped. The glue or whatever holding the tape can melt and make a HUGE mess (or so I’m told).Fill the double boiler about halfway with water. Place the inside part of your double boiler into the water.If needed, break up the wax into small cubes. Use your judgment on the amount of wax to use I needed a pound and a half to provide enough liquid to completely submerge my pickup. And when it was all over I had quite a bit of wax left over. StewMac recommends a wax mixture of 20% beeswax and 80% canning wax. Mine was more 50/50.SLOWLY turn the heat on the stove and attach the thermometer to the inside of the smaller pot.Stir the mixture around until it’s a consistent liquid. DO NOT LET THE MIXTURE GET MUCH PAST 150°F/65°C – The wax melts at 148°F degrees so that’s as hot as you need it to be.Use the tongs to hold your pickup – BE careful WAX IS HOT – (duh). And dip it into the mixture. Wiggle it around until there are no more visible air bubbles. Repeat this every 5 minutes or so to make completely sure you're getting full saturation (sounds like an ad for Peavey).After about 20 minutes you should be good to go. Remove the pickup from the wax and place it on a paper towel to cool. Wipe off the excess wax.After a few minutes when the wax looks like its almost completely cooled remove the rubber bands.Let cool for another couple of hours. Put the pickup back in your guitar and Whola!!
  20. Swirled Guitar Finish

    Tutorial courtesy of Wade Finch This swirling technique is for oil paint although I think urethane paint will work also - I don’t have any urethane paint to test with so I'll just say oil paint for now. Don’t use “Testers Model” paint! It is too thick and has clear gloss mixed in it, which makes it clot and become messy. Fast dry “PlastiKote” enamel is what I used but I'm always looking for other types of paint to use. There are other oils out there, but I don’t have the time to test them all.... First off you are going to need a large “something” to dip in. I say "something" because you can dip in anything that can hold a large deep amount of water. I use a 50 gallon "Rubbermaid” hamper for dipping - it is big enough for submerging the body and has lots of room on all sides so not to hit the body against it whilst dipping. It also has a lid which is nice for when you want to save the water for dipping later on. Secondly, it is useful to have a second person helping you....we'll get to that bit later on.... Once you have your water filled tub, hamper or whatever it’s time to add in the Borax (sodium borate/sodium tetraborate/disodium tetraborate). I use “20 Muleteam Borax”. Take your Borax and pour in about one cup (depending on how big your dipping tub is) and mix the water until you don’t see any Borax floating around. Let it sit for about 30mins. Borax is used as an agent that breaks the water's surface tension and lets the paint spread out over the surface. Next, test the water with some oil paint to see if you have enough Borax in your water. Only a little drop is needed!! You should see the paint start to disappear or dissipate and spread right across the water surface into a very thin film if you have enough Borax mixed in the water. If not then you need to add more Borax to the water. Once ready you can now test which paint colors need to be thinned - some colors are thicker and need help spreading. Adding a little “paint time extender” helps this. You can pick up this extender at a fine art shop. Once you have your color you want and tested, it’s time to do a test dip! Test test test! It is far better to spend time test dipping things other than your guitar body. Test dipping helps you get the feel of the dipping process and also helps you see how much paint to pour in to achieve the balance of your colors/lights/darks. Pour your dark color first then your lightsLet the first color poured dissipate before pouring your next colorOnce you have your colors down, swirl the paint around. I use a wood dowel with 4 zip ties to make a brush to glide across the water/paint. Swirl your paints! Don’t take too long - your paints will dry and skin over and you don’t want to dip anything into that! This is all up to you in making a pattern. Once you see what you like, dip your test object in and hold it. This is where it's nice to have another person helping you as you need to make an "escape hole" for your object so you're not pulling it back through the paint film a second time. You can do this by blowing the paint with your mouth or if you have that second person, get some newspaper and wipe the paint off the water surface leaving a clear water hole so you can pull out your item. If you don’t do this, the item will be covered 2 times and contrary to what you might think, won't look that great. Remember! Test test! Get to know the paint and the process. When you're ready to do another test use newspaper to clean the water of all leftover paint from the previous attempt. Make sure your guitar is sealed before you dip. If you don’t, you could easily end up with a cracked body or other problems. I put wax in the screw holes and in the neck holes; this makes a good water seal and can be removed after the dipping. Any unsealed areas where the wood is exposed to water can become a problem. You will need a piece of wood to use as a fake neck to dip your guitar body in with. It helps give you control and helps you hold the body down in the water. Make something to hang the guitar body from, such as a hole, loop or hook on the fake neck. Make sure you can hang it to dry easily before you start the dipping process. If your guitar body has a rear strap button, screwing a long thin wood screw or similar provides a useful standoff to prevent the body hitting the bottom of the container. This is useful as your hands will get tired and unsteady whilst the paint is being removed from the water surface to make a clean exit point! Now that you're jumping with anticipation and you feel that you're ready, it's time to dip your guitar! It’s that exact same way you dipped your test item plus what you learned from testing. You did test didn't you? After you have pulled your guitar body out of the water, you want to get the water to bead away from it off it as fast as you can. Blowing and twirling the guitar helps, heat lamps, hair dryers, etc. Make a space somewhere for it to dry for at least 24hrs before handling it. Now I'm not going to go into any detail about sanding other than that I sand the bodies down to the sealer coat. Follow normal guitar paint/sanding techniques to get your guitar ready. If you just sanded the clear coat off and don’t want to go down to the sealant, you can but you want to put a coat of primer or paint on before you dip. Like with a 777MC, it has been painted first with white then dipped.
  21. Ebonizing Wood

    Ebonizing describes two different methods. One is simply dyeing a wood black whilst the other is applying a chemical solution to blacken the wood. Both methods are only a surface finish and do not penetrate through the entire workpiece. An ebonized fingerboard may wear through after extensive playing. Dye Ebonizing When using the dye version of ebonizing, it is easiest to start with darker-colored woods. You can ebonize any wood, but a darker wood gets black more quickly. Additionally, closed-grain woods look more convincing than those with large open pores. Mix up a fairly concentrated black aniline dye. Alcohol-based dyes dry quicker and do not raise the grain of the wood easily. Spirit-based products such as Fiebings Leather Dye work just as well as common wood dyes. Water-based dyes are also an option, however the water can cause problems with grain raising on some woods, requiring a plain water grain raise and knocking it back with fine sandpaper. Brush a coat on the wood and let it set for about one-two hours. Take a rag and buff the wood to remove any excess that might have collected or sat anywhere. Feel the wood and check if any of the grain has risen. If so, knock it back with fine sandpaper. Apply a second coat. When that's dry, simply buff the wood with clean clothes and finally apply a finish of some kind. Chemical Ebonizing Not all woods can be reliably ebonized with this process, so test with a scrap piece if possible. Some woods turn odd colors which can be fun however we want them to go black! The woods that work most reliably with this method have a high tannic acid content. Woods like Oak and Walnut are ideal. Mahogany (Swietenia), Ash, Sycamore, Cherry, Maple, Pine and Beech also work, however they tend to turn varying shades of grey rather than black. Firstly, we need to prepare our smelly chemical mixture. Take a handful of steel wool and rinse it with hot water and dish soap to get rid of any oils or contaminants. Stuff it into a glass jar and cover with white vinegar (acetic acid). Poke a couple of holes in the lid and screw that on before leaving the jar for a week or two, swirling the jar a little every couple of days. The acetic acid in the vinegar reacts with the iron in the steel to produce iron acetate. What you'll see in the jar is a scummy rusted flaky junky mess swimming in a greyish liquid. This is perfect for our needs. The longer you leave the solution to work, the stronger the effects however a couple of weeks is good. Strain the liquid into a clean jar through a coffee filter and discard the junk. To ebonize a wood, lightly brush on the iron acetate and watch as it reacts with the tannic acid in the wood and turns black before your very eyes! Walnut can turn a jet black within a minute whilst Oak can be variable with it being a lighter wood. The process may raise the grain slightly on the surface, so like the previous example be prepared to knock back any fuzzies with a bit of fine sandpaper and reapply. European White Oak lightly brushed with Iron Acetate If you wish, you can neutralize the acid by dabbing it with a cloth moistening with a sodium bicarbonate/water mix. This isn't hugely necessary unless you go a little too happy with the application. The fewer wet things you add the better. To increase the reactivity of woods with lower tannic acid contents, you can make a tannin tea. Simply soak lots of tea and stew it to death. Strain through a coffee filter and use the resulting super-tea as a pre-treatment before the iron acetate. Don't leave this mixture for days however, since it will go mouldy very quickly!
  22. 10-Step Electric Guitar Neck

    First you need a nice piece of wood, wide enough to fit the widest part of your neck. The thickness can vary but I usually take a piece of 20mm thick. I usually use fretboard woods of 6mm. Step 1: The most important thing to begin with is shaving the surfaces of the piece of wood to get perfectly flat surfaces. Now shave the sides of the wood to get perfect 90° degree edge. This is important if you’re going to use the sides as a guide for a router. Step 2: Draw a line on the sides of the wood under the angle you want for your headstock I usually take 13° like a Gibson. Now cut the wood in two pieces on this line and do this as straight as possible. Step 3: Align the two pieces like the picture below so you can shave the tilted surface of both pieces. If you do it like this you can save time by shaving both pieces at the same time. Shave downward with the grain! Step 4: If both surfaces are perfectly flat, then glue the pieces together like the pictures below. The more you move the little piece, the thicker or thinner your headstock gets. I like my headstocks pretty thick for the stiffness, so I make them 16 to 17mm. Shave the excess wood off the headstock. Step 5: Now you can saw or rasp the shape of your neck out of the big piece. You can only make a neck volute if you used a thick piece of wood! Step 6: I like to use the truss rods with the small ends, unlike the big bullet truss rod like a 70’s Fender. Because of the small end you can keep more wood, and that is important if you want to use a top lock with screws which go through the neck. The more wood you have, the more stable the screws. In case of a top lock, I move the truss rod a bit back from the lock. From there I route a narrower channel for the truss rod adjustment tool or Allen-wrench. So just measure your rod, and route the channel out of the wood with the exact dimensions. Step 7: Place the fretboard wood over the neck wood. I always like to use a longer piece of fret board than the neck, because I’m never sure if it’s going to be a 22 or 24 fret neck. (as shown below) Drill a hole through the fret board into the neck on the exact places where the 1st and 15th fret will come. Not in the middle of course, otherwise you’ll drill into the truss rod . Make sure you have two drill bits of the same diameter as the hole you just drilled. Now glue the fretboard to the neck (don’t forget the truss rod), and keep the fretboard in place by putting the drill bits into the drilled holes. After gluing you can take them out again. I use the inner tube of a bicycle tire to wrap around the neck tightly to press the fretboard to the neck while drying, but you could use wood clamps. Step 8: Now cut out the neck and head stock shape you want. Just use a bandsaw or other shaping saw. If you want you can already drill the holes for the tuners. Step 9: Onto the slots for the frets and fretboard radius. There are lots of fret calculators on the Internet to calculate any fret distance for any neck scale. Calculate the scale you want, and draw lines on the fret board where the frets must come, and use a fret slotting saw to saw the slots. Be very careful and saw straight, or intonation will be a problem! A fret slotting saw automatically saws the right depth, so don’t worry to cut your fretboard in half. Now you can radius the top of the fret board Just choose a radius you like, for instance a fender radius is smaller than a Gibson radius. Take a piece of cardboard or plastic and draw the radius on it. Cut out the radius so you get a shape like the picture below. Now sand the fret board to match the radius on the template you just made. With different templates you can create a compound radius neck. Step 10: Last but not least, the back of the neck. Start rasping the neck on different angles from outside to centre of the neck. Look at the pictures below. For this job you can also create a template to check the radius. After rasping all the angles out of the neck, you have to smooth the edges with a metal scraper. After that use some sanding paper to finish the neck. Now the neck is ready for inlays and frets....
  23. JEM-Style Monkey Grip Handle

    You will need a few common tools to make this on your guitar. Other tools can achieve the same ends if needs be. Accurate ruler Awl/nail/centre punch 3/4" (19mm) and 1" (25-26mm) Forstner bits Jigsaw/scroll saw Files/rasps/sandpaper Router Straight bottom cut router bit 1/8" (3mm) roundover bit First of all grab a square and measure from the very tip of the upper horn down 5-1/2" (140mm), parallel to the center of the body. Make a horizontal mark 5/8" (16mm) from your line of measurement in, towards the center of the body as shown. This method works for both AANJ and standard neck joint bodies. Mark a line parallel to the center of the body from the beginning of the point you just marked. Make a second line parallel to it 1/4" (6,4mm) in towards the center of the body and then a third line another 3/32" (2,4mm) in. Make a line 90° from your first mark across the other two vertical lines. Using this as a starting point, draw a second horizontal line below it by 27/32" (21,4mm). Draw a third line 1" (25,4mm) below this second line, and follow up with a fourth line 13/16" (20,6mm) below this. You will end up with this marking layout: The first points where you will be drilling through the body are located at the various intersections of these lines. The first hole is located at the first mark made (top left in the grid). The second center is located 1/4" in and down 27/32" (second down, second in). For the third center point you will have to drop down 1" and go in 3/32" (third down, third in), and finally the fourth hole's center is be located dropping down the final 13/16" but moving back to the 1/4" marked line (fourth down, second in). Time to take out an awl, centre punch or a trusty nail to make starter marks at all four of these locations! You do not need to press hard or make deep indentations as these are meant only to prevent the drill bit wandering off centre in the following step. Looking at the next photo you can see that I have drilled out pilot holes for the hole saw drill bits used. If you have the appropriate sized Forstner bits, you can skip pilot holes altogether. You will need two sizes of drill bit - 3/4" (19mm) for the very last hole (located furthest away from the horn) and 1" (25mm) for the three points closest to the horn. Forstner bits are recommended for cleaner cuts. When cutting, place the body on top of a clean flat piece of scrap wood or plywood so that when the drill bit exits the other side it cannot push wood out and splinter the other side. If you're using a hole saw, start your drilling from the top, go about 3/4's of the way through the body, flip it over and continue your cuts through all of the holes from the reverse side. Your pilot holes will help the hole saw meet the first cut perfectly. With a Forstner bit, cut slowly by "pecking" a bit at a time to help remove chips in the cut. Do not apply excessive pressure when reaching the opposite side. Pressing too hard will cause wood to splinter out of the rear face! Now that all the holes are drilled out, we need to make a work support jig for the router and the jigsaw. I used some 2x4 and 1/4" scrap. Across the side of your 2x4, draw the outline of the edge of your guitar: ...now cut out that piece of wood. This is a side support caul which butts up against the side of the body. The top face of this needs to be parallel to the flat face of the body. This extends that surface outwards so the jigsaw and router bases stay level when working inside where the tummy cut drops away. Ideally it needs to be the same thickness as the body otherwise you'll have to shim it up with scrap. Using the jig you can properly support the base of a jigsaw to make the cut along the body at the base of the handle to remove the ridges of the original holes: If you have a tabletop scroll saw, you could also place the blade inside the holes and make this same cut. Now take out your router and a straight cutting bit and set the router's maximum depth of cut to 5/8" (15,9mm) using the depth stop: Using the jig you made as a support, cut a flat plane in several shallow passes from the outside rear of the body to just within the handle area. The final cut should be your 5/8": Now flip the body over and inspect your work so far, I left the jig in place so that you would get a better idea of what it looks like next to the body: Using a flat bladed file or rasp, smooth and round out the inside of the grips on your handle: You are now ready to do the finishing work. Using an 1/8" (3mm) radius roundover router bit (I prefer Dremel tools for this) go ahead and smooth out around the front of the body inside the handle. Soon you won't think twice about doing this to all of your bodys - it really is not as difficult as you might think as long as you have the proper tools and understand each of the steps. Good luck!
  24. As I have worked on my “relic obsession” (and make no mistake….it IS an obsession!) One of the biggest challenges that I had was figuring out the best way to get that ambered 'vintage' look. The goal I was shooting for was that of a ’62 Strat neck & the color of the headstock & back of the neck (I wanted to start with a rosewood neck first. I plan on tackling an all maple neck at a later time). The target neck has this cool brownish-goldish-amber finish (that’s quite a mouthful!). I wanted to make it look authentic; not only in color…but REAL vintage necks bring out the grain of the maple. The most common way to TRY to achieve this is for people to add amber to their clear lacquer. It looks o.k…but as I stated before I have a RELIC obsession & “o.k.” is just not good enough!! Also, the “amber-clear” technique actually MASKS the wood grain! Think of it as having plastic wrap over your Television screen….you can still see the picture, but it just isn't right! Well…. here is my technique on how to make it RIGHT: The first secret is that you have to stain the wood, not the finish. This is the ONLY way to really make a neck look like it came from 1962! Here’s what I did to create the “secret sauce”. I used ColorTone concentrated liquid stains from Stewart MacDonald. The colors you need are Yellow, Red & Tobacco Brown. The mix ratio of yellow, red, and brown water stain for "vintage maple" is more art than science. I eyeballed it & had good results BEFORE YOU START!!! YOU NEED TO USE SCRAP MAPLE! Don’t put this stuff on ‘till it’s how you want it to look on the scrap! You don't want to test it on paper, it will just soak it up & not give you accurate results. Now for the secret ingredients.... Start with full strength yellow in a bowl. Add warm water until the color isn’t too strong when wiped on your piece of scrap maple. Then add little drops of full strength brown and red to “amber” it. When you think it's right, test it on your scrap maple & put on the clear lacquer. Remember, it won't look right until it's sprayed with clear lacquer. If you REALLY want to bring out the grain, you can stain the wood and then sand most of it off again. The grain will hold the color & the rest of the maple will sand back to natural. For an even more DRAMATIC effect, try it with black or silver stain to really make the grain stand out. Then, when you wipe on your final coat of stain and don’t sand it off, the grain is like 3D & comes right out at you! This technique looks GREAT on a birdseye maple neck! You can wipe stain on with a clean rag or by spraying. I think it looks better & is far easier wiping it on. Once you got the color, clear & results you were looking for on the scrap, repeat the process on your neck! I have used "the REAL Vintage look" technique for refinishing a vintage neck AND for making a new one look old! You will be amazed at how much better this looks, especially if you compare side by side with a neck done with the “Amber-Clear” technique! Here are some tips: This technique raises the grain of the wood. Before you start staining make the wood damp to raise the grain. After it dries, sand off the rough spots with fine grit sandpaper.To avoid streaks wipe with the grain (lengthwise)For best results, let the stained wood dry at least 48 hours before applying clear.PRACTICE ON SCRAP!! I used an old maple baseball bat & got very good results (I guess that would make it a “Batocaster”)A Little ColorTone goes a VERY LONG WAY!!!WEAR Gloves! Otherwise you will "relic" your hands for a VERY long time. Please, trust me on this one!