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King V: Build Myself? Suggest A Builder?

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Hey All,

I am just fielding opinions for now. I am going to begin a prototype for an ES-335 clone beginning this week, my first build ever. However, at some point I would like a Flying V. I have heard they are hard to make, however, I have a picky set of options I want and nothing QUITE gets everything on a commercial level. Nothing fancy. I am wondering if this will be something I can do myself, or if it is advanced and I should have it custom made, in which case if there is somebody I can ask for a quote. Or should I just go with the commercial brand that is closest. I am thinking of looking into this in the summer or fall after the semi-hollow is done.

Anyway, here is what I would like:

3-piece Mahogany neck, although would settle for a Maple neck.

Mahogany body, Mahogany-colored (that reddish kind of brownish color) or dark Honey-colored finish, glossy clear coat

25.5" scale with a set-neck

HH pickup configuration, two volume knobs, one tone, maybe coil taps

Floyd Rose locking tuner set (I am actually pretty set on this or else a TOM bridge)

Pointy Jackson King V style body and headstock (not rounded like Gibson or Hamer)

My other option is to just suck it up and get an ESP LTD V-500. That seems like the closest option commercially.

If I go with a custom build, what would be the difficulties in doing this myself? If that would be REALLY difficult, any recommendations for builders?


Edited by Dave I
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It's not a particularly difficult guitar, to be honest. No more complicated than any other set neck mahogany instrument, that is to say, it's certainly achievable. Will it match your expectations? Will it play like you want it to? Will it feel like you want it to? That's where practice comes in. Where you're most likely to get a little frustrated is in finishing and setup, if you don't have a lot of experience in those two areas. Setting up a floyd isn't the simplest thing in the world, but you can always have your local guitar tech do that sort of thing for you. Every feature you list is pretty vanilla, really. Nothing terribly special/unique/wacky/off the wall there. You've essentially - short of finish options and bridge - described a Jackson KV2.

Finish your first guitar, see how that goes, see how well you like the feel, fit, finish on that, and don't expect to do 10 times better on the second. Better, yes; you hopefully won't repeat the mistakes you made, but you will make other mistakes.

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First builds will always be hard. No matter what kind of guitar you wanna build. A King V is no different from any other guitars from a building point of view. The body is different and that's all. The only difference is that you need large size blanks for those long wings.

Starting in summer/fall gives ou plenty of time to do some search. There is a lot pictures and tutorials on this forum. Read, read, read and read more. Post questions, a lot of people will be glad to help you out.

Good luck!

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Honestly, I would think an ES-335 would be harder than a V. A V is pretty much like other basic flat-top solid body designs. Just a different shape and different features.


Agreed. Have not built either, but the V is just the classic slab with a neck glued in. :D The ES335 is more like an acoustic (bent sides, etc.)

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