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Not Your Momma's Strat......


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Yeah, I'm kinda excited about it too. I've been fascinated with ziricote for years now, but this is my first chance to work with it. I polished up the offcut that I have sitting on my desk. It is nearly impossible to see any growth rings and the patterns/markings(?) do not seem to have any connection to the rings or "grain" what-so-ever. It is sitting next to a piece of bocote of which similar comments can be made. Perhaps they are related.

Certainly one of the wildest looking woods out there.

SR

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Gotta agree with RAD about the tennon. It does tend to take over from the remaining bulk of the body a little. But if your glue joints are tight & you have used a good glue that dries glass hard (not like some crap that dries kinda rubbery) you will still get an excellent sound.

Iv found that gluing all the surfaces has a different affect on tone than if you only glue 3 faces (bottom & sides), or glue 3 faces & leave a small chamber at the end of the tennon. Attaching the bridge directly on to the tennon is another way to go. you know, have the tail end of the tennon come up thru the guitar top & attach the bridge directly to it. Kinda like the voodoo in my Lotus builds where the nut & bridge are sitting on the same piece of timber with no joints in between to break the flow.

But you know the way it is, There are an absolute mountain of ways to do this stuff. & they are all developed to generate great tone - that some guitar player then subverts by using a digital delay with an analogue delay, a chorus pedal, reverb, a compressor & a noise gate, all together, thru an amp thats got massive gain driven to its limits. & then a fookin wah pedal on top. <_<

As to tone wood & long tennons & voodoo

I used to use a big long tennon on some junker wood teles i build. Absolute crap tone wood in the bodies - just reclaimed scaffold boards from building sites. I would go to great lenghts to ensure that the neck tennon went all the way down the body & finish under the bridge. I would then screw a piece of brass to the tennon & mount the bridge over that. Drill thru the lot to the back & use string thru ferrules.

Even though it was a glued in, long tennon neck. I still put on a neck plate & fake half lenght neck screws so it looked like a bolt on. Wicked cool guitars, looked like crap but played & sounded great.

Untill some Jazz player friend of the family (I used to jam with him wen I was about 12 :D ) asked for one built without all the funky mods." just use the crappy junk wood, It will be fine" So I did. & it sounded better than any of the previous elaboratly built gitirs. Iv been making them with terrible lumps of pine dragged out from skips on sites ever since.

You just never know with this voodoo stuff

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Yup, voodoo is mysterious stuff. Even voodoo has voodoo.

For me, the long tenon is about piece of mind. I can carve the neck join as deeply as I want without any worries about losing strength. And I have all the confidence in the world that the guitar is going to sound good. Would it sound different if it had a short tenon or bolt on neck instead (all things else being the same)? I'm sure it would. Better or worse? Probably not even quantifiable. You can probably get more tonal change by passing the guitar from one player to another. But it has quality lumber, and it will have quality construction, quality pick ups and electronics, and a quality set up. I know it will sound good.......it will have a fairly crappy player and it will still sound good :P.

Oddly enough, I have never heard anything but good things about the way pine sounds. Not the most attractive wood compared to others and a total pain in the A-- for carving, but very nice sounding, or so I'm told.

SR

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The good.

Pine always has great tone.

The bad.

Everything else about working with it. If it is not old and weathered (like it is recently milled) you get knots, sap, cracks, pith, rift to flatsawn in the same plank, soft, cuts like crap, no bit will cut it clean, drills wander, never dry, did I mention the sap?

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The good.

Pine always has great tone.

The bad.

Everything else about working with it. If it is not old and weathered (like it is recently milled) you get knots, sap, cracks, pith, rift to flatsawn in the same plank, soft, cuts like crap, no bit will cut it clean, drills wander, never dry, did I mention the sap?

Yeah, unless I'm framing a room, I can't stand using the stuff.

Say, maybe it's the pine studs that makes a diddly bow on the wall sound good.

SR

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yea. it has to be old stuff. & even then it has to be stored about 2 years before you cut it up for blanks.

I have a few left here (19 to be exact) that came out of a bell tower that was being restored. I can remember the work starting & then getting left for years. the guys that finished the work were dumping the lot because they all had to be cut in 2 to get them out after the work was done. So the boards that I ended up getting from it were inside this old church tower since 1999. score. dry as a bone, free & filthy so I didnt have to weather them for any of my gammy lookin teles (when they get orderd, which is rare, but hey screw it)

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NOS?

The Spanish Cedar body is holding up very well. It does have a layer of Zpoxy under a medium thick nitro clear which is getting the expected rub marks from playing. But so far I have not hit anything hard enough to dent it. Before it got the finish all you had to do was look at it crosseyed to mark it.

SR

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Molding-grade pine is a different story altogether. All of the bad properties of yellow construction pine? None of them are in monding grade. It's a dream to work with. It's also VERY light, and has a wonderful tone. The only drawbacks I can think of are 1) it is soft, so it doesn't take much abuse before it's dented up, and 2) it's kinda boring to look at. Price-wise, around here it's just a little more than oak & hard ash, but less than maple.

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Leveled out the neck tenon....

Oh yeah, I had a router bite. It was shallow and I filled it with sanding dust and CA and went on about my business,

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And routed wiring channels.

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Then I fitted the fretboard cutout in the top and transfered the pickup locations and drilled screw holes in preparation to gluing the top.

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SR

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I think I'd go crazy if I had to do a drop top. My urge for a deep carve would be so frustrated by the wood shortage. RAD pulls it off every time.....but I'd still be wanting more when it was finished.

SR

Don't try it. It is a real test of the ability to drop the tools and say it is done.

I think your style is what it is. Drop tops don't fit your style. You are a sculptor. Sculptors need plenty of medium to work.

You know come to think of it Drop Tops (.25") test my ability. I really need 3/8".

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Good job lining up the holes! I see way too many crooked lines when people do those lately...

Thanks Firey lady!

If I were any more **** I'd mention that I did have some minor deflection, but this gets one of those 6 hole bars instead of individual ferrules, so those minor discrepancies will be hidden anyway.

I think I'd go crazy if I had to do a drop top. My urge for a deep carve would be so frustrated by the wood shortage. RAD pulls it off every time.....but I'd still be wanting more when it was finished.

SR

Don't try it. It is a real test of the ability to drop the tools and say it is done.

I think your style is what it is. Drop tops don't fit your style. You are a sculptor. Sculptors need plenty of medium to work.

You know come to think of it Drop Tops (.25") test my ability. I really need 3/8".

<_<

One of mine was 4/8" and it was stressful. I really prefer 3/4" and up. And you are correct about the style. If I ever made a flat topped or backed guitar, I'd spend the rest of my life feeling like the damn thing wasn't finished yet. :unsure:

SR

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I'm taking a week of vacation starting Saturday so no work and no update this weekend.... I did get some time in today.

I made a single coil template and got the pickups routed.

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I had to route a wide channel to fit over the fretboard.

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SR

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