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My Inaugural Guitar Construction.


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Small update. I've shot my sealer and sanded it down and started shooting my coats of clear lacquer.

Sealer

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Lacquer

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I shot roughly 12-15 thin coats of lacquer then wesanded.

I had some concerns about water penetrating the open parts of the guitar and swelling the wood. I thought of using blue tape protect it but its not water proof. My solution was silly putty stuffed into the open holes. It worked great.

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Knocking down my orange peel and almost ready for my final coats.

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I started shooting my final coats. I did 5 and I think its ready to sit in the closet for a month.

Thats it for a while.

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Nice progress on the guitar. I think the sunburst suits it very well.

The silly putty seems like an easy and convenient solution to the water problem during finishing. The only thing that worries me is that, according to Wikipedia, Silly Putty is "the Crayola owned trademark name for a class of silicone polymers". I know that silicone can interfere with finishes but I'm not sure if 'silicone polymers' has the same effect. Hope the guitar turns out OK!

Keep up the good work.

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Nice progress on the guitar. I think the sunburst suits it very well.

The silly putty seems like an easy and convenient solution to the water problem during finishing. The only thing that worries me is that, according to Wikipedia, Silly Putty is "the Crayola owned trademark name for a class of silicone polymers". I know that silicone can interfere with finishes but I'm not sure if 'silicone polymers' has the same effect. Hope the guitar turns out OK!

Keep up the good work.

Thank you. That could be an issue. I wasnt aware of the contents. But I did clean and wipe the body down with naptha and a tack cloth before finishing.

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  • 2 weeks later...

Great work SD! I can see this guitar is going to be absolutely gorgeous. I'm extremely new to working on guitars and have been trying to find the neck bolts with inserts for a project I'm working on and haven’t had any luck. If you could point me in the right direction I'd greatly appreciate it. Keep up the excellent updates and I'm really looking forward to reading about your progress. Thanks in advance and have a great Saturday!

:D

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  • 4 weeks later...
Great work SD! I can see this guitar is going to be absolutely gorgeous. I'm extremely new to working on guitars and have been trying to find the neck bolts with inserts for a project I'm working on and haven’t had any luck. If you could point me in the right direction I'd greatly appreciate it. Keep up the excellent updates and I'm really looking forward to reading about your progress. Thanks in advance and have a great Saturday!

:D

Sorry I couldn't respond earlier. I've been away for a while. I got my hardware for the inserts from Lowes. I couldn't find them at Home depot.

On another note my curing period is over for my lacquer finish. I waited 5 weeks I think. I wet sanded everything Sunday and buffed it out.

I only used 2000 grit. I tried it out on my test piece and it seemed to cut just fine so I figured it would save me time. That and it insures I dont have to remove any scratches from lower grits.

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I initially tried clamping the body to the bench but was worried about leaving a mark on the finish so I had a friend hod the body while I buffed it.

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I'm pretty happy with the result. Its my first experience with nitro.

This is my test piece.

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And the final finish.

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Almost there. I have some pickups in the mail. I still need to make a truss rod cover and level my frets.

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First, I like the looks of it, especially the brown stain. I like guitars with a really dark black/brown stain on them without a high gloss clear, real rustic looking (provided it's not something super amazing on the top). Those CADD drawings must've taken forever to get exact if you did that all yourself.

Second, DANG you take a lot of pictures.

Third, hows that Craftsman router working out for you? I'm thinking of buying the 2 base set Craftsman router like yours.

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IbanezDudeCK: The router works great. I like that it ramps up to speed instead of just cranking on. As far as the pictures. I learned half the build methods I'm using from forums like this one so I'm just trying to give a little back.

Narcissism: Thanks for the tip. I'll keep it in mind next time.

I finished my fret level. Its my second time. I bought an old junker Ibanez off craigslist for 30 bucks to practice on.

I made a notched straight edge from a piece of precision ground stainless steel I got from the local metal supply store for $4.00.

Saved myself $68 off the stew mac version and it worked great.

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For the leveling I used this easy touch bar sander I bought from a hobby store for 6 bucks.

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All polished up.

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I never did find any suitable blank replacement saddles for the Gotoh TOM that I bought so I filed the notches off so I could widen the string spread a bit. It was tedious to say the least.

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This will work.

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I shielded the electronics cavity and started my wiring. I used shielded wire for the stop tail stud ground. I'm going to attempt to make this guitar as quiet as possible.

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It aint the prettiest but the connections are solid.

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Not far to go now. I have to finish my truss cover which a should have done 2 weeks ago while I was waiting for paint to dry. Then slot my bridge saddles and do a set up and intonation.

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Finished the truss cover today. Cut em out from some left over mahogany and used double sided tape to mount them to a stick for finishing.

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And with the truss cover I'm officially finished with my first build. Boy what a learning experience it's been.

Here are some final pics and some specs.

Quarter sawn rock maple neck with walnut strips finished in tru oil. 2 way truss. Graphite nut.

Ebony fretboard.

Body is 1.5" thick mahogany finished in nitrocellulose.

Duncan TB-14 neck/Jazz bridge

Gotoh TOM, stop tail and 510 tuners.

24.75" scale.

Start to finish it took a little over 2 months including curing time.

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I didnt have to alter the spacing too badly on the bridge. Its a little strange looking but functional.

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I did run into some problems with the JB pickup I bought for the bridge. bridge.

Because of the wider spacing on the TOMI had to go with a trembucker. Not string spacing is correctly over the pickup poles. Problem solved.

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I just got done playing it for about 2 hours. Without going into too much detail it plays very good. Much better then any of the other guitars I own. No fret buzz. Holds tuning great. Action is nice and low but not too low. No dead frets.

Pickups sound great although the neck is a tad on the bright side. Because of the ebony FB Imaybe. Nothing that isnt fixed rolling off the tone a bit. The TB-14 sounds much better then I thought it would. Nice and punchy. The TB 14 measured out at 15.5k vs the JB measured out at 16.4k. I'll probably leave it in. The other thing that blew me away is how well the shielding eliminated any hum. Even with monster distortion, when your not playing its just super quiet. Even without muting the strings.

I cant even begin to express how stoked I am at how this turned out. The sense of accomplishment us unreal. I have to admit I spent some time drinking a beer and just staring at it for about 20 min and thinking of all the work that got put into it.

Although I dont really know anyone on these boards personally I'd like to thank anyone who's ever posted a tutorial or offered help here. I've learned so much from these threads.

I'm hooked. I have most of the tools I need now and I cant wait to do another.

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I have a question. Do you think it would be to put this in the GOTM entries?

Do we think it would be what?

If you mean "worth it" or something along those lines Id say definately! How could it possibly hurt? Really beautiful work man! So whats next?

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