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curtisa

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curtisa last won the day on June 12

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About curtisa

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    Tasmania, Australia
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  1. curtisa

    First full build from scratch

    If it's anything like the rest of the generic plantation-grown Eucalyptus varieties, it should work quite well for a neck or solidbody instrument. Straight grain, probably a bit plain-looking. Can be a bit heavy so if you make a solidbody out of it you might want to consider chambering. If it behaves like the hardware store stuff that's available down here it might be a little bit splintery across the grain when milling, but like any timber you can always work around that. FWIW, one of my previous builds used hardware-store Eucalyptus for the body and neck. The neck has been one of the most stable ones I've made to date.
  2. curtisa

    Bass in Yo Face

    You know me, Carl. I'm not a happy builder unless I'm trying something completely ridonculous. At least it will incorporate an easy element for a change - no fret levelling and intonation to worry about. Playing the bugger when it's finished, however...
  3. curtisa

    Bass in Yo Face

    This the first time I've used brushbox myself (Australian native timber). It's actually surprisingly dense stuff, very tight grain. Under the handplane it almost comes away as a fine dust rather than long strings of curly timber.
  4. curtisa

    Bass in Yo Face

    I often have days where I'm not sure whether the person using the tool is a bigger tool than the tool he's using
  5. curtisa

    Current DIY Sustainer Technology

    As best I can tell there really hasn't been any development on the Sustainer around these parts beyond what PSW was doing. At the time there were a couple of offshoots based on similar ideas, but that was years ago and I don;t know what became of those projects and forum users. @Cycfi did some interesting experiments over at his website, which appeared to be the best 'new' direction I'd seen in the DIY sustainer, and he still seems to be fairly active over there. But his methods are pretty high up the curve and not for the bedroom hacker, unlike PSWs hammer-and-nail approach. His newer projects appear to be geared towards left-of-field pickup designs rather than the sustainer. You may find better and more up to date info elsewhere such as diystompboxes, but I think the DIY sustainer is no longer an active project over here at Projectguitar.
  6. curtisa

    Swift Lite 4 string bass

    Oh, and BTW. Neat ghetto solution to your overhead pin routing of the block inlay cavities So can you come up with a way of using the same template to create the inlays as well?
  7. curtisa

    SHB-2 - Tele build

    The other posibility is that the nut slot for the high-E is cut too horizontal and is encouraging the string to lay flat in the slot and rub like a sitar bridge. You could perhaps recut the tuning machine-side of the slot to tilt it backwards a hair (ie, angled back towards the face of the headstock - careful you don't gouge the headstock when filing!)) so the string leaves the nut right on the apex of the slot. If not, then a string tree could work, provided it gives you enough downward force and string deflection to keep things quiet. Roller trees look pretty schmick and a black one would blend in with your colour scheme..
  8. curtisa

    Swift Lite 4 string bass

    I initially looked at your mockup image and thought you were about to pull off some black magic and make a 4-stringed neck with a 3-tuner headstock. [Dammit. I've been foiled once again. How dare he make a more ridiculous bass than me. CURSE YOU ANDYJR1515!!!...and CURSE YOU AGAIN for having a screen name that is impossible to yell at the thundery skies while shaking my fist and acting diabolically...Oh wait...the fourth tuner is upside down....]
  9. curtisa

    SHB-2 - Tele build

    Lots of ways to skin a cat. My method is to fret a string at the 1st and where the neck meets the body. On a Tele that must be about the 16th or 17th fret? Use a capo or you'll run out of hands. With the string fretted in both locations I aim for enough relief to get a 0.3mm feeler gauge in between the string and the fret that sits at the midpoint of the two fret locations, so about the 9th fret on a Tele. Longer scale lengths or strings that want to vibrate a lot (eg downtunings and extended range gtrs) I'll put yet more relief in. 0.005" - 0.010" is pretty adventurous. My metric head says that's only a couple of thenths of a mm, which is near enough to a dead straight neck, or within the bounds of error on a fret levelling across the whole neck that you may end up with fret buzz anyway. 'S OK. Just throwing some alternative ideas out there for you to investigate Pretty much. FWIW my running order: Slot nut. Gauge correct nut slot depth by depressing each string at the 3rd and aiming for a 0.007" - 0.009" feeler gauge between the string being slotted and the 1st fret. Repeat for all 6/7/8/9/etc strings. If you're feeling super-ninja with the fret slotting, you can theoretically go lower still. Technically the unfretted string leaving the nut should give you the same clearance under the 1st fret as if it would if you depressed the string the 1st fret and measured under the 2nd and still be buzz-free. Set neck relief as per method above Set action at 12th for the two outermost strings using whatever bridge adjustments is appropriate for the instrument, say 2.5mm for the 6th string and 1.5mm for the 1st string. Use a radius gauge to set action of the remaining inner strings using the outer strings as a guide (or just eyeball it. You'll know when you play the guitar if the middle strings have lumpy-feeling action compared to the outer strings). Don't forget that the action is measured between the fret top and the underside of the string rather than the fretboard and string. On necks with big-arsed jumbo frets this can make it look like the action is much higher than it actually is. Set intonation as appropriate.
  10. curtisa

    SHB-2 - Tele build

    Might not be buzzing on the first three frets. It could be buzzing higher up the neck. The maximum displacement of the string when plucked will be in the middle between the bridge and where it's fretted. Could you have a high spot around the 13th - 15th? The neck will most likely need some relief. Getting buzz-free results on a perfectly straight neck is difficult. Could the neck have a twist in it? Sight up the neck along the bass side looking towards the nut and then flip the guitar over and sight up the neck on the treble side. If you have some relief in the neck you should see roughly the same degree and direction of curvature visible on both ends of the frets as they march up the neck towards the nut. I find it's easier to see this when in a darkened room and pointing the neck towards a light source to encourage the eye to see the high contrast between the straight strings and shiny fret ends. The other thing to look at is the action adjustment at the bridge. You might have neck relief and fret levelling perfect, but if the 6th string saddle is set too low to begin with you'll just be chasing your tail.
  11. Looking mighty fine, old chap. I alway look at your logo and think it wouldn't look out of place stamped across a surfboard. You weren't a surfie in a past life perchance?
  12. curtisa

    Bass in Yo Face

    Updates are slow at the moment as I'm waiting on some parts to arrive for the CNC to allow the milling of the body to commence, but things are still crawling along behind the scenes. Unfortunately things will slow down again fairly shortly as I'm having underpinning and restumping work performed on the house and workshop. This afternoon I've dismantled all the dust collection ducts and moved a lot of the machinery around to allow the builders access to the foundations. I'm sure @MiKro can sympathise. So the trick with milling a complex shape on the CNC where features exist on both sides of the object (control cavities, neck pocket, pickup cavities, bridge mounting holes, string-thru holes etc) is to devise some way of flipping the workpiece to allow the machine to precisely align both halves of the milling operation. First order of the day is to make such a method doable. The easiest method I can come up with (and perhaps the preferred method for all you CNC ninjas out there) is to strategically install some dowels in the spoilboard and drill corresponding holes in the body blank that allow the job to be flipped front-to-back so that each half precisely aligns with the other. Step 1. chuck up a 6mm twist drill in the mill and add four holes to the spoilboard. For obvious reasons these need to fall outside the edges of the intended body shape. Please ignore the sooty skidmark in the middle of the spoilboard. That was from a previous experiment that we no longer mention in public for fear of looking like a bit of a twat (hint: wood on wood at 18000RPM heats things up fast).: Step 2: line up the body blank with the centreline on the spoilboard and drill 4x corresponding holes that occupy the same coordinates as the four we just added in the spoilboard: Step 3: Install 4x 6mm dowels in the spoilboard, flip the body blank over, 'plug' the body blank into the pins and drill the same 4 holes again on the back of the body blank: Which now gives me the ability to flip the workpiece over and mill all features on both faces of the body. Oh, and first look at the neck laminations. This is going to be a monster neck when complete. It's currently gluing up and currently clocks in at about 4 inches wide. God help me:
  13. curtisa

    Telecaster for a friend

    The Musicman 'silent circuit' sounds like nothing more than adding a dummy coil to the pickups that acts exactly the same as the two coils of a humbucker (based on this marketing blurb from Ernie Ball). The pickups detect (strings+hum) and the silent circuit picks up hum. Electrically subtracting the pickup signal from the silent circuit signal yields (signal+hum) - (hum) = (signal only), which is no different to the way a humbucker works. The patentable bit of the circuit probably relates to the construction and characteristics of the hum-detecting coil of the silent circuit. You could probably get a similar effect by installing a dummy singlecoil pickup somewhere inside the body away from the strings and wiring it up as if it formed the second coil of a humbucker in association with the other pickups in the guitar.
  14. curtisa

    Telecaster for a friend

    Is there a particular circuit from a known manufacturer you're chasing for this? Hum cancelling, whether active or passive usually is nothing more than some 'thing' that picks up the induced hum (eg, one coil of a humbucker) and subtracts it from the other 'thing' that picks up the induced hum (eg, the second coil of a humbucker).
  15. That's @ScottR's other hobby. They're giant cheeses...obviously
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