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Custom Pearloid Pickguard


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We all know that black guitars with pearloid pickguards are hot, and that black guitars can be boring at times, so I've decided to add a pearloid pickguard to my ESP LTD F-50.

Here's the overall design idea:



after ( general idea for the shape )


I plan on ordering some pearloid blanks from Stewmac. The only thing I need to know before I finally do this is how to cut the blanks. I was told that scissors or a plain knife would do fine but I'd like a few more opinions.

Thank you!

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Cool idea. I like the mock-up.

I know what you mean about pickguards on black guitars. I recently finished a custom pickguard for mine using Stewmac material. What I used was lamintated W/B/W and was 0.90" thick. Don't know what you plan to use, but after dealing with this, I can't imagine cutting it with scissors or a knife. It's pretty tough material and it would be difficult to get a clean job that way IMHO.

I cut out the rough shape of mine using a jig saw leaving about 1/4" excess around my pattern. Then I taped it (double stick) to a MDF template I made and then routed to the template using a straight pattern cutting bit including the pickup holes. Then I beveled the outside using a 45 degree bevel bit (pattern cutting). It came out good. Well, the second one came out good. :D

If you go this way, watch out for the pointy bits on your design. They will be easy to snap off if you don't run your router in the right direction.

Here is a pic of the pickguard taped to my template with the tools I used to route and drill it out. Hope this helps.


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You can't use scissors. You have to have a band/scroll saw, or a router/dremel and pearloid doesn't just melt, it ignites! So please keep that in mind. Slow, cool cuts are recommended. But go too slow, and you'll build up excess heat and ignite the pearloid.

:D Great I'm a fire hazard now!

Thanks for all the advice. I'll have to take everything into my school's work shop. Can't wait to get this stuff started, it's gonna look great when its done... just gotta get the funds together

I'll post pics here when I'm done!

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