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Posts posted by MuffinPunch

  1. Ok... Wow! Lot of changes already taking shape in this build. I just had this wild idea that I consider to be an epiphany to be honest. Im guessing the rest of you will think im nuts, but fortunately for me, this isnt your project! :D

    So I have all but decided that the acrylic will be for decoration only. I know its retarded, but hear me out! The wooden blank will be the player and will receive its deserved attention after I finish the "art piece" for school (keep in mind this IS an art and design school). Essentially the two will be made simultaneously anyway, but I have to focus my efforts on the acrylic one for now since I have exactly 13 weeks to complete it and it will be a LOT more work than I had originally planned on.

    I will need a lot of advice here so I am hoping you can all attempt to take me seriously when I say that I will now be designing and building all of my own hardware, bridge and tuners included in addition to the pickups. Wait, it gets crazier... I will be making them out of cast clear resin as well. It will likely end up being strung with different gages of fishing line to top it all off. essentially what I will end p is a ridiculously heavy, non-functional, plastic guitar that (IMO) looks awesome! All of the cavities will be to the same spec as the wooden blank I will be building from, so I can very easily sub out the acrylic pieces for metal ones and real pickups later, so dont get too carried away. Oh, and the neck will be acrylic too down to the frets and the nut. Acoustically it will still work to some degree in theory.

    Im still debating on whether the material I cast it all out of will actually be acrylic, I will get tons of browny points if I can make it out of some other bio-friendly, 'sustainable' resin.

    Heres where it gets tricky, I dont know anything about bridge construction or design. I know what looks cool, and I know which bridges I like, but I dont really understand the mechanics of how it all goes together. I could theoretically build a bridge that looks identical to a ZR bridge for example, but I dont really know whats actually going on beneath the surface without reverse engineering one. I very well may end up doing just that if it comes down to it, but more likely with an Edge 7 or Floyd 7 if not a tune-o-matic. It would be infinitely cooler, not to mention more educational, if I could figure out how to design and build a double locking bridge myself from the ground up tho. I will be developing all of this in CAD obviously, so if I were to actually come up with a sound design (based off existing technology of course, Im not about to re-invent the wheel) I could machine the parts out of aluminum and/or steel for the player guitar later on! So if anyone can refer me to a resource in which I can learn the ins and outs of guitar bridges and/or trems I would be eternally grateful!

    Im super excited about all of this and Im sure im in waaaay over my head with all of this, but if time doesnt permit, I can always resort to using standard hardware for the presentation and finish up later. Let me know what you guys think. I will be posting the entire process here for you to follow if you choose, so it might be something interesting to watch if nothing else

  2. We are officially GO for building!!! I ran it past one of my instructors that I was planning to do this build and he got all excited about it and wants to work with me. Its likely the design will change quite a bit and end up more on the 'extreme' side, cuz he will push me really hard to go above and beyond what my current expectations are for myself. A few things are already changing, bridge design not being the least of them.

    If I recall correctly, the ZR system came out in 2006 or 7. My last review of a broken one was in late 2007. I haven't seen one come in since!

    Ive been dong so much research in preparation for this build my head is spinning! I found out the ZR trem was actually introduced back in '03, but was probably not made as comercially available in the states until later on. But if they were having quality control issues until late '07, it will be pure luck to find a used one without potential issues. Even at a fraction of the original cost, thats not really a gamble I want to take, especially with so many other "experimental" aspects being incorporated here, and with a grade on the line.

    All that being said, Im now leaning toward a tun-o-matic style fixed bridge string-thru. At least that is how I will spec the acrylic model. Ive come to terms with the fact that this will further alienate my build from the original SHRGR1 idea. I will also be reverting back to doing a 7 string with the first HS design I proposed. With some luck I might be able route the proper recesses into the blank for a ZR7 later on if I get my hands one.

  3. ASSanDimasfinal.jpg

    I couldnt figure out why I didnt like the graphic headstock... so I finally pulled my head out of my rear and realized the black Jackson graphic and the maple fingerboard just didnt match the overall theme very well. The ebony FB version of the original guitar uses abalone inlay dots, and it matches the mood of the body graphics much better. Still not sure I will actually use "Jackson", but it will definately be an abalone inlay instead of a black graphic. So I have basically decided to changes the roles of the twin builds at this point. The IM tribute version will incorporate the theme of the all white San Dimas and the "clone" will follow that of the maple and black version. I just got back to school this week so I will be buying my supplies to start this and my other builds shortly. My templates are all ready to laser and Ive got my wood plans all figured out. Now my main concern is trying to dig out all of my guitar tools from the 10X10' storage unit we packed our life into when we left for Minnesota!

  4. As always, love it! I think I already mentioned it in this thread, but your attention to detail is awe inspiring!!! I love following your builds! I dont know how exact you were wanting this interpretation of a PRS to be, but if you were going for close to exact, I think the carve on the inner horns could use a little work, go a little wider (not deeper), if you know what I mean. Crow's carve is a pretty good example, compare the inner horns of yours and you'll see what Im talking about. But yours looks great either way.

  5. hold on a sec muffin, lets see if i got this right. you said:

    I tend to appreciate it more when "copy" builds are actually built the same way or similar to the originals

    before asking

    why faux binding?

    i would think the answer is obvious - because most PRSi have faux binding :D

    although they have started binding their necks on some models this year, which seems very anti-PRS to me

    Fair enough. I guess I need to school myself a little better on a subject before making such an inquiry. In reality tho, the question was more geared towards Mark due to his previous work and in an attempt to present an alternative way to accomplish a goal given the new circumstances. I admit im no PRS expert, but the addition of a flamed maple binding would both look fairly authentic and could potentially present a thicker surface for carving the top. This is all subjective obviously, and completely my own opinion. I promise I will not be offended in any way should you chose not to head my uneducated suggestion. Im basically just thinking out load here. Im loving this build obviously or I wouldn't be so involved.

  6. Very inventive work.

    Glad you decided to go with the neck angle after all. I tend to appreciate it more when "copy" builds are actually built the same way or similar to the originals rather than simply being "look-a-likes". Looking really good.

    Quick question tho, why faux binding? Ive seen your binding work before and it seems like you could have achieved a professional looking bind very easily on this build, in which case you would not have had to worry about compromising the carve by angling the top. Wont you still have to rout a channel around the body to set the carve depth anyway? If so, I wonder if it would have been easier if you did that before angling the top. Tho I suppose you could accomplish that just fine using that handy router sled if need be. I honestly dont know, but these are all questions I would be asking myself were I doing this build, and as I have plans to build an LP in the distant future, I see many of these same questions arising.

  7. ok so i don't want to hijack your thread but i have really been wondering about the stacked heel i see here and on crows builds. I didn't believe it at first but is that really a viable option because i have three mahogany boards i thought i would only be able to make a laminated neck out of. Anyways if some one could tell me yay or nay I'd appreciate it. The boards I have are one inch thick or so, so stacked it would make a two inch heel. Also i was wondering if that's glued with titebond or similar or epoxy? Again sorry to interrupt I love the build by the way so clean you make it look easy.

    I gotta be honest. I was wondering that myself. It seems to me that stacking the heel like that would result in the same kind of joint you would get if you just glued the neck straight to the body without routing, albeit with a sightly longer join area on the body. Just the way my inner logic works I guess. Im sure im wrong as it seems youve done this before, as has Crow, and you both make beautiful instruments.

  8. I love watching your builds. The amount of detail you include in your progress makes me feel as if Im there building it too! This one should be great as always.

    neck pocket it would have been necessary to do the swoop according to me before a bite



    Crow, Im assuming you are talking about angling the face of the guitar top to accommodate the neck angle. From what it sounds like, Mark isn't planning on incorporating a neck angle for this project. Instead, the neck will sit higher on the face to accommodate the bridge height. Is that right? This might affect the carve a little bit, but probably not to a noticeable extent. I suppose it wouldnt be too late to add the neck angle now, but you'd have to reshape the tenon a bit.

  9. A Fender neck does not have a volute. And the headstock has no angle. I would liken it to a Boat Oar with strings.


    I was referring to the shape made where the neck transitions into the HS on a vintage Strat. If that were to be bent at a 11-13º angle, I imagine the result would look very much like the Gibson style volute from the early 70s you mentioned.

    Very insightful info there. Thank you for that. Also, I imagine that retaining a significant amount of wood for a volute could make it difficult to fit a locking nut...

  10. Really like the way this build is coming together. Nice wood combination.


    Just out of curiosity, is there some kind of structural advantage to having a big volute, or is it just a preference thing? I typically prefer a flat one. Probably because Ive been playing on Wizard necks for so long, but I figured volutes like this were derived mainly from Fender style necks where there is no HS angle. I dont know, which is why im asking. Im relatively new to this, but it seems kind of redundant if it adds no structural advantage, in which case doing it simply out of preference is completely acceptable. Just thought you guys would probably know...

  11. Headstocks #1 and #3: those bits coming out to the side might get in the way of your string winder, which can be verrry frustrating when trying to restring an instrument... it goes "knock knock knock" on the headstock every time you give it a turn.

    You might be right, but Id much rather wind those strings in slow motion using the tuning machines than sacrifice a good looking headstock. Not that either of those are the best looking HS you've ever seen...

    I took you advice Prostheta and reversed the first one. I also decided to see what it might look like if I tried a six in-line.


    Im trying to keep in mind that this HS design will also carry over to the Crimson King Bass design ive been working on as it shares the same basic silhouette.

  12. I had a few minutes this evening to throw together a couple of sketches of some new headstock designs. Im not sure I like any of them very much, but I may be heading in the right direction with 1 or 2 of them. Ill get some more done tomorrow. I wanna get this design nailed down. Only a couple more weeks to go!


    For reference, heres the guitar these will fit to:


  13. Just finalizing the design up a little bit. Got all of my templates drawn and ready to cut with the laser. Im hoping to get the bodies and necks cut and partially shaped before I really go nutz with the Giger guitar. Depending on the time table for the other guitar I may be able to get these two close to done in the next few months. Im gonna hold out on getting the hardware and electronics until later.

    Im trying to decide weather to add graphics to the HS in addition to the body. Ive decided to badge it "Maiden USA". Jackson decal may or may not make it onto either of the final products, but Im including it here for continuity sake.


  14. I've had a few ZR trems come in because the part that holds the barrings in near the trem arm had cracked. Upon further research, it turned out that was the most common problem with the trems. However, that was a few years ago, and quality control has probably improved since then.

    is there a way to tell when a bridge was manufactured? Im really planning on buying used and I dont want the thing to break on me down the road if it turns out it was made when the QC was bad.

  15. Herman Ri will have whatever Ibanez' newest marketing tool trem system is, in his "signature" guitar. Shame that the guitar returns to pitch and his playing doesn't.

    Judging Mr Ri, not you ;-)

    I prefer Edge trems also, yet I don't use mine - it's blocked off. That said it's svelte, comfortable, well-intonated, very easy (for me) to adjust plus I have the advantage of having fine tuners.

    Hahahaha! :D C'mon, be nice! Its true, but to be fair, the Edge Zero gives you the best of both worlds. The Edge + Zero Point. They are just so new that they cost a fortune and are extremely hard to come by used or new.

    To each his own...

  16. ibanez putting those zr bridges on all there premier guitars. What i've been hearing from people over at the ibanez and jem sites is that they don't like them. personally i've never played one, but i will tell you thta the edge is still the best floating bridge out there. .....INMO of course. i think mand esge bridge is around 200 on ebay.

    Thanks dude, I appreciate the words of advice. I wasnt exactly sure what you meant by that last sentance as it looked like you started typing blindfolded with your face, but I gathered that you were saying I could find Edge bridges on ebay for around $200?

    Ibanez only puts the ZR bridges on their S series. Personally, Ive never read a review or talked to anyone who didnt like the ZR bridge. Ive only played one a handfull of times at the guitar shop, and I wasnt plugged in, but it felt good to me. I like the Edge too tho. But, a big part of the point here is to emulate an SHRG, which uses the ZR trem, and I have found listings for under $120 used. Set up and intonation is incredibly easy with the ZR from what Ive learned. Its not a "floating" bridge in the traditional sense, as it utilizes a ball bearing pivot rather than a knife edge, so they potentially stay in tune much better and longer, and are more durable, and it essentially has a built in tremsetter and stop. Its kind of an all-in-one vibrato and Id like to try one out for a while. To be honest, I was sold when I saw Herman Li hold up his guitar by the trem arm in the middle of a solo and return to perfect pitch at my first DragonForce concert (dont judge me :D ).

    herman-li(1).gifYes, I know the Egen has an Edge Zero on it, but he used to use a standard S Prestige with a ZR, and the Zero Point system is identical in both bridges.

    I dont profess to be an expert on bridges, but I know what I like and I know where I feel other bridges are lacking. I may find that I prefer the Edge over the ZR down the line, and I have yet to try a Kahler, but by then I hope to have built and/or acquired a few guitars with each. B) I have plans for about 5-6 different guitar and bass builds at the moment with more coming all the time, and no intention of selling a single one of them yet. That may change as I gain more experience and confidence, but Im not getting into this because I think I can make money doing it. (Although, in order to convince my wife to let me set up a wood shop in our future home Ill have to use that as an excuse. :D )

  17. Frosting is a fantastic idea....perhaps that is how the acrylic JEM 20th was "solved" as it has a trem also. Can't say I recall seeing the hardware, but then again it is chrome IIRC. I wonder how the surface of frosted Perspex is achieved, whether it's a casting process or a treatment that can be carried out on arbitrarily shaped surfaces, such as a sprayed chemical etch. Hmm. You might even be able to use the laser (with surrounding areas masked off) to etch a fine bitmap noise pattern onto the cavity's internal face to achieve a frosted look.

    Damn, if I had a laser I would be doing all kinds of crazy messed up stuff....!

    A quick burst with the sandblaster will do an amazing "frost" job. I was thinking I would frost the entire backside of the guitar including cavities, but that still needs to be worked out.

    Isn't that Metalhead28's headstock ? really close to it anyway.

    besides , don't you have a battle axe , a bass and some other geets to do first ?? :D

    I always thought Metalhead28's headstock looked more like an exaggerated "metal" PRS shape, and I admit that I love it. I was going for a 3x3 Ibanezesque shape. It kinda failed tho. Im working on some new headstock designs for this guitar which will probably carry over to the bass as well. Im still going to finish the Battleaxe first, and eventually the bass and San Dimas Jackson copies will get done, but as I mentioned, I learned I can get school credit for doing this one so Im giving it priority at the moment.

    Ill post some headstock mockups when I get a chance.

  18. Not a big fan of the headstock to be honest. Pointy things like that don't really work on anything other than Vs (in my opinion) as headstocks generally compliment the body shape. From the body shape and the bound of using a 3x3, I myself immediately think "offset Widow shape, incorporate the tail stinger shape". The body is quite busy and in your face shapewise, and the headstock just doesn't seem to carry the same aspects of the top waist inset, tail stinger, etc.

    Just my gut feelings there. I think that if you want to incorporate a trem system into a clear body, you'll run into the problem of seeing the back cavity's mechanics, wires from the pickups, pots etc. That said, the acrylic JEM 20th (Google image search that for pics) manages to disguise them nicely, using white coated wire, etc.

    Can't wait to see what you come up with.

    Thats a good observation. I gotta say I completely agree with you on both points. I will definitely work on the headstock design. My original intension was to mimic the original Ibanez HS design in a 3x3 format and slightly more aggressive. As far as the wiring and control cavities go, I hadnt really thought of that much. I figured if I frosted the inside of the cavity it wouldnt show as much. Ill look into the white coated wire.

  19. Ive been excited about the prospect of building a seven string guitar, but after some shopping around, Ive come to the realization that having a limited budget is going to make this guitar a bit difficult to build. The ZR7 bridge alone will cost more than the rest of the guitar altogether, including mould blank and casting supplies. However, I came accross multiple listings for a standard six string ZR bridge on ebay that cost less than 1/4 of what Ibanez is asking for a new ZR7 bridge.


    So to make a long story short, I have reluctantly decided this will be a six string build. I will save the seven for another bridge design. To solidfy in my head that this change is a reality I have also thrown together one last mockup, which I really think is the best combination thus far, using an all matte black finish and a maple fingerboard with the black plastic spine inlay. The headstock got a little messed up here. the real one will have a shape much closer to the one I designed for the 7. I may deicide I want a slightly mor weathered look when I actually start finishing it, but as this guitar will be build from the mould blank for casting the acrylic body, it will be secondary in importance.


    I have also figured out a way to use this build to get school credit, so It will definitely become a reality this summer. Cant wait!

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