Original

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About Original

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  1. Nice carve! I've always loved walnut and maple together. How thick is the body on this one?
  2. @Skyjerk, "22 Special" Super Nice! The absolute attention to detail is very obvious. It's definitely a masterpiece. @Viktor, "Telecaster Texas Spirit" I can only imagine the amount of time, and careful woodwork that went into this. "Art Guitars" almost need a category of their own. This one is a beautiful example of the merging of design, craftsmanship, and music. Well Done! @KnightroExpress, "Voyager 6" The incredibly clean lines of your work, along with original design are always eye catching. I love the understated elegance. You achieve it like a master. @Original, "Custom Fiftyone" My contribution this month. Thanks everyone for the nice compliments. I'm happy to say that I'm keeping this one.
  3. Thanks Tim, The red guitar was self indulgence, and I dig the way it turned out. It's inspired me to do another 'bolt on'. I've glued up, and cut out an Alder body for a Duo-Sonic. It's small and lightweight compared to the red one. I started work on a two piece neck for this one. It'll be a simple project. I've never done a metallic finish. This one will be sonic blue. Another one that I've started this winter is a parlor sized electric. Mahogany body, and neck, Cedar top, Rosewood fingerboard. 24.75 scale. I've seen these growing in popularity, so I thought I would give one my spin. .
  4. Moving right along... I always liked the Squier '51's They were a neat little guitar for the price, and I really missed the one I had, after selling it. I had this Ash Strat shaped body, and Pau Ferro Tele Shaped neck blank sitting around for a long time. There's not too much to talk about on this one. It's about as basic as they get construction wise, There's only a few pieces of wood involved. It's the first 'bolt on' that I've built in over ten years, so it was about time I guess. I love the way the neck turned out. Anyone familiar with me knows that I like doing one piece necks. I've used several species, but this is the most exotic so far. Be careful working with this stuff. The sawdust is pretty nasty, and quite toxic. I finished it with a single coat of Tru-Oil. The body finish is transparent red over black grain fill. I left the grain a little bit open because I liked the look, and this one's so simple, I felt it needed the affect. I wound the humbucker, and strat pickup to vintage specs. It is a Freaking tone beast. I'll be keeping this one.
  5. Hello Everyone. I haven't posted in a while, I spent most of the summer on the road, and didn't get back into building until late this fall. I finished a couple of DC Juniors that I started earlier in the year. One is a TV yellow replica guitar, and another in Heritage Cherry that I helped a friend put together. I've done construction threads on this type before, so as not to be repetitive I'll just share a few pictures. I've always loved DC Jr's, and never get tired of making them. The yellow one is as absolutely close to original specs as I could make it. I had an actual '59 Jr. on loan for a while, and I used it to make an exact set of templates. This was my first attempt at the 'TV' finish, and I love the look that I got. I'll be doing another one like it this year. When I did the wood work on this one. I made another that's identical.
  6. Hi Everyone, I'm John Hawkins from Las Vegas Nevada. For lack of a better name, I'll call this "Custom Fiftyone" For those of you who don't know me, I'm a life long woodworker. I build a few guitars every year in my home shop. I try to do as much as possible of the process myself. I built this one for myself, and it's an absolute beast! I had the Pau Ferro Tele shaped neck blank, and Strat shaped Ash body sitting around for a couple of years. Both had been given to me by friends. A while back when I was having some medical problems, I sold off a lot of gear. Included was a Squier '51. I had bought the guitar originally to test pickups. I had just begun winding, and it was a great instrument for that purpose. After some hardware upgrades, and a good setup it was a neat little guitar. Very many people were buying them, and modifying them in every imaginable way. They were a fine platform for beginners. Even back then I thought it would be cool to do an upscale version of the '51 from scratch. It was only fitting that the Ash body, and one piece Pau Ferro neck came together. - 25.5 inch scale One piece Pau Ferro Neck - 1.75" Ash Body -Custom pickups - 18:1 Grover Tuners - CTS Pots I didn't remember ever seeing one with black hardware, but I knew it would look sweet on this one. Guitar Demo
  7. I'm still here! A few weeks ago, my desktop computer went the way of the dodo bird. I don't really like cyberwebbing on my phone, or tablet when it involves a lot of keystrokes, but I've cobbled together a new computer that seems to be working pretty good. Stay tuned, I'll upload a few pictures to show what I've been up to...
  8. Hi Everyone. I'm John Hawkins from Las Vegas Nevada. I build a few guitars every year in my little home shop. Most of my tooling is home made, and the majority of my technique is self taught. I try to do absolutely as much "in house" as possible. It gives me great freedom of design, and the ability to make unique, original instruments. My entry this month is a seven string Multi-Scale. It's my second using this format, and my first seven string ever. The trend for guitars of this type seems to favor the "Metal" genre. I chose to do something more my style. It's a Jazz Guitar. My contribution for March is "The Dook" > Specifications: The chambered, one piece Honduran Mahogany body measures; 12 7/8" at the lower bout, 10 1/2" at the upper, and 8 1/2" at the offset waist. It's capped with a book matched figured maple top, and single ply black binding. The overall length is 41", and it weighs a comfortable 7.8 lbs. > The Neck: The laminated neck is made from Sapele, Alder, and Maple. It features a 15 degree laminated scarf joint. The fingerboard is reclaimed Brazilian Rosewood with football shaped Abalone inlays that are oriented to the angle of the frets. The scale lengths are 27/25.5, and perpendicular at the eighth. It has 22 frets on a 12" radius. > The Electronics: I designed, and built the pickups specifically for this one. The low profile, double slug seven string humbuckers are completely handmade with the exception of the bobbins, pole pieces, and magnets. They are angled at 13.5 degrees to match the end of the fingerboard. I vacuum formed the custom covers, and mounting rings. The switch, and output plate, are no name, but very nice quality. CTS potentiometers. >The Hardware: For this one I used the Agile Pendulum bridge system from Rondo Music. The tuners are Ibanez "take offs" from an 8 string. I was very lucky to have the finish match perfectly with the black output jack plate, and switch. >The Plastics: I made the Control, and Truss adjuster covers from the same ABS plastic that I used to thermo form the pickup covers, and trim rings. The finish on the guitar, and metal parts is very glossy, so I held back on the luster of the plastics for aesthetic reasons. I polished the knobs, and switch tip to match. >The Finish: The Curly Maple top is stained with woodtone "Keda" aniline dye, and I used "Golden" high flow acrylic for the airbrush work on the Two Tone Tobacco Burst. On the Mahogany back, I followed the black Timbermate pore filler with the same Keda tint that I used on the top. The neck was left natural. The clear coat is Sherwin Williams Hi-Bild precatylized gloss lacquer applied with a gravity fed HVLP system. Thank You! to everybody who followed along, and contributed on my construction thread. If anyone would like to visit, check it out at the link below. Edited 14 March by Original
  9. Thanks Carl, I've always felt that my results were better when I spent the time to make a proper template. Anything that is done "freehand" is time consuming, and not as accurate. Usually, I'll engineer my own solution like I did for this one. I've made hundreds of various jigs, and templates over the years, and can most of the time pretty quickly come up with a workable solution for the task. I've only been making guitars for a few years, but I've been using these tools my entire life. Sometimes my methods might seem odd, but I'm not afraid to try anything. I like working with this Honduran. It really machines nicely, but yeah "that sawdust".
  10. So far this year, I've finished three guitars, and the list of unfinished projects is almost gone. Here's what I have coming up next. The double cut was being built at the same time as the seven string, and served as a crash dummy. The finish has been sprayed, and it's ready for wet sanding. I have all of the parts to complete it except for the pickup covers that I'll probably make this weekend. When I do, because of a lot of interest, I'll take a bunch of pictures, and do a more comprehensive description of the process. Last summer when I was laid up, I sold a Squier 51 that I had for quite a while. I miss the guitar, so I'm going to make my own to replace it. The solid Rosewood neck blank, and Swamp Ash Body will be a good start. I haven't built a "bolt on" in ten years! My Son in law is a bassist. I'm going to do a four string multi scale with a carved walnut top that I'll bookmatch from this 8/4 billet. It'll have a one piece maple neck 34/33 scale lengths, and chambered maple body. I'm still designing, but I'll be working on it soon. I had to make a neck tenon jig for a single cut Special that I'm helping a friend build. I had never done one of these joints before, The templates worked great, and the neck fits the body perfectly.
  11. I finished my seven string over the weekend. This was surely a fun project, and I picked up a lot of usable experience along the way.
  12. Hi Everyone. I'm John Hawkins from Las Vegas Nevada. I build a few guitars every year in my little home shop. Most of my tooling is home made, and the majority of my technique is self taught. I try to do absolutely as much "in house" as possible. It gives me great freedom of design, and the ability to make unique, original instruments. My entry this month is a seven string Multi-Scale. It's my second using this format, and my first seven string ever. The trend for guitars of this type seems to favor the "Metal" genre. I chose to do something more my style. It's a Jazz Guitar. My contribution for March is "The Dook" > Specifications: The chambered, one piece Honduran Mahogany body measures; 12 7/8" at the lower bout, 10 1/2" at the upper, and 8 1/2" at the offset waist. It's capped with a book matched figured maple top, and single ply black binding. The overall length is 41", and it weighs a comfortable 7.8 lbs. > The Neck: The laminated neck is made from Sapele, Alder, and Maple. It features a 15 degree laminated scarf joint. The fingerboard is reclaimed Brazilian Rosewood with football shaped Abalone inlays that are oriented to the angle of the frets. The scale lengths are 27/25.5, and perpendicular at the eighth. It has 22 frets on a 12" radius. > The Electronics: I designed, and built the pickups specifically for this one. The low profile, double slug seven string humbuckers are completely handmade with the exception of the bobbins, pole pieces, and magnets. They are angled at 13.5 degrees to match the end of the fingerboard. I vacuum formed the custom covers, and mounting rings. The switch, and output plate, are no name, but very nice quality. CTS potentiometers. >The Hardware: For this one I used the Agile Pendulum bridge system from Rondo Music. The tuners are Ibanez "take offs" from an 8 string. I was very lucky to have the finish match perfectly with the black output jack plate, and switch. >The Plastics: I made the Control, and Truss adjuster covers from the same ABS plastic that I used to thermo form the pickup covers, and trim rings. The finish on the guitar, and metal parts is very glossy, so I held back on the luster of the plastics for aesthetic reasons. I polished the knobs, and switch tip to match. >The Finish: The Curly Maple top is stained with woodtone "Keda" aniline dye, and I used "Golden" high flow acrylic for the airbrush work on the Two Tone Tobacco Burst. On the Mahogany back, I followed the black Timbermate pore filler with the same Keda tint that I used on the top. The neck was left natural. The clear coat is Sherwin Williams Hi-Bild precatylized gloss lacquer applied with a gravity fed HVLP system. Thank You! to everybody who followed along, and contributed on my construction thread. If anyone would like to visit, check it out at the link below.
  13. You're Welcome. That guitar of mine started as a conversation between me and a friend about laminated necks. It's not the sort of embellishment that I would normally do, but I like the way it turned out, and it gave me some solid design ideas that I can use in the future. With the exception of the coveted Brazilian, the neck was scrap wood, and drop off. It was a fun project, and won't be my last "Hippie Sandwich" I love working with Poplar. It's a little prone to tool burning, but it machines beautifully. The grain is tight, and doesn't require pore filling. It's my first choice for painted bodies. Many Danelectro guitars had poplar necks too. Yes, the 7 string is done! I want to get some better pictures before I post it up here. The f/b photos will disappear in a few days unless people "right click > save as" (which I do commonly), but on this forum they'll live for a long time. Pictures display so beautifully here, I try to put up the best possible. Yes, I do my own stunts! I've been riding dirt bikes since 1970 when I got my first, a Yamaha 125. I love riding as much today as I did when I was a kid. After decades on big open class race bikes though, I'm scaling down a little, and looking for a little 125 2 smoke to do a dual sport conversion on. As I get older, the "beast bikes" aren't ideal for me anymore. I'm 5' 8" @ 150lbs, and 57 years old. I don't really need the KX500 nowadays, but it's still a blast! I noticed from your pictures that we had more in common than guitars. In the picture of my "toy herd" are my buggy, two XR600R's, a CRF450R, and the KX. With my health issues behind me, I really want to get back to racing, but on a smaller bike. I don't have to be as fast in the old guy classes. I'm always budget conscious when buying materials, and I know I won't find any AAAAA tops in the pile when I dig through it, but I'm thrilled when I come home with a plank that will yield 5 or 6 tops for $25-30. I try to cut costs wherever I can without giving up quality. If I told you what it cost to build the 7 string, you probably wouldn't believe me.
  14. That looks like it will work fine. Quit doubting yourself! A couple of notes: The laminated neck of mine that you're looking at was my first attempt at one of these also. I used a thick piece of material in glue-up for the head stock, so that when cut to size, the scarf would be further down the neck. Poplar can be used for necks, but it's not very attractive under a natural finish. Any neck with multiple lamination will be stiffer than a solid piece of wood. I think that it's wise to use woods with similar densities for laminate necks for a couple of reasons. The consistency makes a lot of difference when sanding, or scraping. Strength of the glue joints can also be an issue. Don't worry about the set neck. We'll all gladly coach you through it, and you'll likely forget about bolt-on's for a while. Your work looks good so far! Buying material for tops can be pretty pricey. I usually look for "off the rack" material at my local supplier, and do my own book matching. The material cost works out to about $5 a top. Here's some that I have in queue for future work.
  15. I described the process earlier, but maybe I can clear this up for you: The color coat goes on first. It has to be oil based, or lacquer. Something that's not water soluble. - The filler is white, I thin it with water (blending it thoroughly) until it has a consistency that I can spread, and push into the pores. - There is no sanding of the filler. I use a damp rag to pull it back to the effect I want. - After you seal with the shellac, the clear top coat can be anything you want to use. The seven string made progress last night. It's almost there. I wish the knobs would arrive.