Jump to content

I Feel Dumb As A Box Of Rocks

Recommended Posts

Hi Im trying to Build a guitar from an old one's design its just some old import that my dad was in love with. It was a smaller (But HEAVY) body strat knock off with one bucker and a shorter neck.

I want to recreate it using the old body to make a basic outline template. Then i'm going to put a longer 6o's Fender neck on it and change the pup configuration to a H/S/H or a S/S/H.

SO how do I determine the location for the new pup routing?

Also will this change the sound too much?

Cause my dad loved it's bright highs and great sustain. He said it would sing forever and played like a dream. I want to resurect this guitar for the ashes so to speak and hand him a guitar that has the same soul in a new shiny package.

EDIT P.S Sry if I should have put this else where i just ment to ask about the pups and then i got kinda carried away

Edited by Strato-Master
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Yeah...probably the wrong section...the mods might move it...


The scale length probably has a much greater influence on it's sustain, playability and sound than anything else. John Lennon's Ric with the beatles was short scaled. You should probably be looking for a mustang neck or one of fender's other old "student" models for parts...try the eBay or somewhere.


Link to comment
Share on other sites

I hope that you have already thought of this, but the pickup placement isn’t the most critical issue you have to deal with. If you are putting on a new, longer neck the placement of the BRIDGE need to be changed, if the neck pocket is identical with the original body design. If you have this covered already: sorry for bringing it up.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Well, this is a pretty cool project idea, but can we start from the beginning? (I'm a writer, I don't like feeling like I've missed part of the story :D )

First, can you post a pic of the guitar? That's going to answer at least 90 percent of any questions.

Second, the guitar still exists? Your dad still plays it?

If he loves THIS guitar, your chances of recreating it will be pretty slim-- different woods, different electronics, different era. And especially a different neck --putting a longer neck on a short scale guitar (in addition to the problem of bridge placement) will have a big effect on the sound of the guitar.

I'm not saying it's impossible, just that it might be difficult.

On the other hand, you might be able to find the same guitar in better condition (hence the request for a photo to help identify it).

Or you could take this guitar and fix whatever's wrong with it --like refret the neck or fix the electronics, etc. (I wouldn't refinish it though --that just removes memories)

Or you can build him a new guitar 'inspired' by this one --try to go one step further perhaps --kind of like a son is supposed to be a step further than his father, get it?

Link to comment
Share on other sites

First I need apoligize the guitar is a 25.5 scale length the body is just a lot shorter then my squier so it made the neck seem smaller to me so next time I will pull out the taper measure b4 I say something stupid again :D

Second the bio of the origanal guitar

Ok basicly this guitar is FUBAR

(for you non military buffs out there that means Fouled up beyond recognition)

Its an import guitar The brand is a gremlin beyond that I have no more info on what she is. My dad bought the guitar for me 10 years ago when I was 7 thinking he could teach me to play guitar.

Well long story short it didn't work he could keep my interest long enough but he did love that guitar he played the crap out of it. Now he has moved out of state for a job and I prolly wont see him for a few years so when I see him again I want to give him this "New" guitar with all the soul of the old one but more too it that next step like you said.

So anyways. It's body is cracked and has been repainted a few to many times but it is a very heavy guitar body for its size infact the body alone weighs almost as much as my entire Fender Squier. the electronics consist of one bucker pup, one tone, and one volume. The neck has a twist thats starts at about the 5th fret and goes to the nut. It's hardware is all wore out except I think the tremolo bridge might have some life left in it.

So you could say that the guitar is in rough shape. :D

Because the guitar was very heavy but smaller bodied ( About 14 inches long and 11 inches wide ) had great sustain and I have no idea what wood they used in it. I plan to use oak for the new body. It is in great abundance here in minnesota.

So as for your New project based on the old guitar but a step further idea. basicly thats what I am trying to do. I want to take this guitar and try to enhance the features my dad loved when he had the original. Like it's sustain, fast smooth neck and higher brighter tone which thanks to the search function and a couple hours I figured out how to place my pups to still get that sound but with a lil more kick because I do remember him saying he wanted a bit more SRV like sound out of it.

I will post a pic as soon as my mother surenders my digi cam back to me.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I would suggest considering a wood other than oak. It can be done, but it will be a bear to finish (BIG pores). Also, I have heard that it is not that great of a tonewood. But, as with anything, its what you want and what you will be happy with.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I want to take this guitar and try to enhance the features my dad loved when he had the original. Like it's sustain, fast smooth neck and higher brighter tone which thanks to the search function and a couple hours I figured out how to place my pups to still get that sound but with a lil more kick because I do remember him saying he wanted a bit more SRV like sound out of it.

Well, the thing is, I'm not so sure you can just build in features like 'sustain' etc. I think part of that is just luck... but sure, since you have the original guitar, copying it is going to be a lot easier, you'll be able to make templates off the existing guitar.

I think your first step is to identify the type of wood the guitar is made of, you can work from there. Doubtful it's oak!

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Ok. I thought the denser the wood the more sustain was a general rule? or is it just the denser the builder?

EDIT: Here is a pic of the guitar laying on top of my squier to show the size differance. I'll post more pics of it once I have it sanded down to the wood.


Edited by Strato-Master
Link to comment
Share on other sites

An all-maple body will certainly give you the brightness you crave, although it might come off as a little harsh.

One thing you might want to consider when building this guitar is how you can improve on the design of the guitar to make the new model even more to your dad's liking. Is the neck thick or thin? Wide or skinny? Did he like the finished neck just fine, or would an oil finish work better?

What kind of music does your dad play? That alone will make a big difference in your pickup and wood choice. Mahogany will give you a dark, growly rock tone (think Les Paul), while Alder will give you more of a classic strat tone. Maple will be very bright, but will sustain well and cut through the mix. There is also an infinite number of pickup choices, so let your ultimate tonal goal govern that choice as well.

As for the pickup position, it's pretty simple. If your scale length is staying the same, just measure the distance from the bridge to the pickup, and you're done. If for some reason you have a different scale length and bridge position, figure out the pickup's distance from the bridge as a fraction of the total scale length on the original guitar, and just use the same fraction with your new scale length on the new guitar.

Finally, one of the best things you can do to improve overall sustain and resonance on the guitar is to make sure that all of your wood-to-wood connections, namely the neck pocket, are tight. You may even want to consider going with a neck-through design (blanks are available at www.carvin.com) for incredible playability and sustain.

Last, and probably also least, is appearance. If you want a clear finish, it's best to steer away from uglier woods like poplar and, often, alder. Also, if you use multiple woods for your neck, fretboard, and body, make sure they look good together. The other option is a solid color finish, but a quick spin through the finishing section will show you that a professional quality thick finish is harder to achieve than, say, a nice tung oil or Waterlox finish.

Above all, have fun with this project. Make this guitar your own. I'm sure your dad will love it regardless of how accurate a reproduction it is of the previous guitar. Anyway, a well-built guitar made from quality parts is likely going to sound far better than a cheap strat knockoff any day, so don't stress the tonal things too much. Part o the fun is finding out what your guitar actually sounds like once you get it all finished!

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

  • Create New...