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Thank you for the kind words.

The last guitar is Black Limba. I haven't had time to take many pics of it yet. I wanted to show how to do the brass inserts so I'm hoping to post info on it soon. I'm glad I did it with the Limba.

The one with the LED's was done mostly without a digital camera in house so I can't show how they were done. I can try to answer questions if you have any. There are some good web sites (not guitar related) that explain the electronics side of things. Let me know if you have any questions on it.

Thanks again for being so supportive. These have taken a lot of time to build so far. The skull inlay is a story in itself.



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Question time so:

Are they all individual LED's? If not, what material did you use to pipe the light to the different spots

How did you store the wire under the fretboard?

Did you use any circuit to power the LEDS?

How many LED's are there?

What's the battery life with the LED's on?

That's all for now I think.

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nice inlay, i've never seen it done like that before so very creative :D

ya what is the battery life on the led's, and it'd be cool if you could kinda throw together a breif tutorial on the basics for Led's kinda pull all the knowledge we'd need to pull it off and put it on one page, with a pic or 2, and a couple diagrams. (feel free to included my, *cough* pro *cough* diagram from earlier )

we can't see the brass inserts though can we? cause they're just in the neck it's self right? of are the washer/ferrules part of it too?

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Thank you Drak - that's the effect I was hoping for and believe me, I put in a lot of blood, sweat, and tears (literally) to try to obtain it.

Derek - you are right about the inserts - I will be posting pics of how I did it soon. I really like them and am excited to hear how it sounds. When the screwdriver hits the screws, I can hear the sound resonating throughout the wood so I'm hoping this will be a good thing. When doing this with a wood screw I hear a kind of thud if you know what I mean. Don't get me wrong, I have absolutely nothing against using wood screws - I just am excited to hear how the inserts affect the sound.

Damn. That is a really thick body!

Maybe you're talking about the Limba? That one is thick - about 1 7/8".

(Nice rear-mounted EMGs, too!)

Yeah, thanks - that took a while - I think maybe Alex helped - it's been a long time since I asked about how to do it. I think I used his method.

feylya - I will try to answer those questions tomorrow - need sleep! They are all LED's. I looked into fiber optics but that appeared to be a bigger installation nightmare than the LED's. I should get about 30-40 hrs of battery life (I'm not using 9V's).

BTW - I think that skull was done by PRS at some point (a better version than mine of course) - I could be wrong.

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feylya - I will try to answer those questions tomorrow - need sleep! They are all LED's. I looked into fiber optics but that appeared to be a bigger installation nightmare than the LED's. I should get about 30-40 hrs of battery life (I'm not using 9V's).

/me waits for tomorrow with his jaw still on the floor.

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WAY COOL!!! I like the 'George Lynch ESP' thing going on

I was wondering if anyone was going to make that association. He was a big reason why I started playing guitar. I always wanted a Kami but couldn't afford one. This was inspired by the Kami but has some differences in shape, ...

Did you recess the floyd? Which floyd did you use? What is the radius on the floyd?

It is recessed and routed for pull-up. I used a Schaller Floyd with a 14" radius.

Heres the list:

Body - Two piece Alder

Neck - Birdseye maple / Peruvian Walnut / Flamed Maple / Peruvian Walnut / Birdseye maple lamintaed with scarf joint and tilt back headstock.

Headstock - Birdseye maple

Fretboard - Ebony - compound radius 10 to 16 22 frets

Pickups - EMG 81 bridge, EMG 85 neck

Swithces, ... - Push/Pull volume, tone, kill switch, kill switch for LED's

Cover plates - Peruvian Walnut

Tuners - GOTOH

There are 12 LED's in the fretboard (10 side dots and 2 in the skull's eyes). The wires were placed in a routed channel under the fretboard. I used one resistor for each LED (mounted inside the fretboard). I looked into using light pipes and fiber optics but none of it seemed to fit very well. The LED's are glued in with CA glue and sanded flush. Installing the LED's takes quite a bit of time and patience. I would not recommend it to most. It is deceivingly simple on paper but the actual installation can be quite tricky and time consuming. There's very little room for wires, solder, ... Any mistakes or shaky wiring could lead to removing the fretboard and basically starting over. You also need to be very careful not to sand too close to the LED's base - if you do, you're done. For those who really want them, I can try to help when questions arise. I may be able to do a tutorial some day but I don't think I will be able to get to it for a while. Just let me know if you are doing it and are having trouble - I'll try to help.

Thank you for the kind remarks.


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:D that looks so wicked!!! B)
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The back won't show anything related to the pickups but I will be taking more pics soon. The lighting was awful in most of those pics so I'm trying to work that out.

The pickups can be slid into the guitar from the front. The body has additional routing on one side of the pickup so that it will slide in at an angle and then slide over and up. I don't remember but I thought it was Alex's idea and possibly implemented a little differently.

I don't know why I insisted on doing that - it took a while to get it right. When I get something in my head that I want to do, I stick with it until it's done. The same happened with the LED's - I just "had" to have them. :D

I'll try to get more pics soon and I'll also be posting some pics of those kick-butt brass inserts.


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I think I posted this before but here's a good LED info site : LED Tech Info

The circuits are fairly easy to deal with. One major consideration is battery life. You can use 9V's but I would suggest going with something with a little more maH (millamp-hours or battery life). 9V's typically have a maH rating of about 500. You can get medical/military versions (lithium) that are rated higher (about 1000maH). AA batteries are usually rated somewhere around 2800maH. That's a big difference. I use a power source of 4AA's which gives me a decent amount of LED life. I also included an LED kill switch so you can conserve batteries when you want to.

Knowing all of this is only part of the battle. If you've noticed, I have a bit of a bad attitude about these little buggers. I love the look of them but I would not want to be doing lots of guitars with LED's. It take a lot of time to prepare the fretboard. It also affects how you build the neck (you are forced to shape the fretboard before gluing) and is generally nerve racking. I can't tell you how scary it is to put the wires to the batteries after going through all of the installation work. If you sanded too low or if a solder joint failed, you're lookin at some serious re-work involving removing the fretboard, ... It's critical that the wiring/soldering be done flawlessly. Nothing can be left to chance - there's no way to cover up mistakes of this kind.

I'll probably copy some of this into the future tutorial (if Brian allows me to do one) someday. In the mean time, check out that web site and read up on the tech stuff. I think most of you can figure out how to run the wires but if you need help, let me know. When buying the LED's - don't buy the "super bright" type for side dots - the player will not be able to see anything but spots. Try to buy the ones with a little extra length in the tips - ot gives you a little more chance to avoid sanding down too far.

Hope that covers most of the LED questions asked earlier.


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