Jump to content

build #11 - Snuffy's Billy Bongo bass


Recommended Posts

1 hour ago, willliam_q said:

Yep, that’s definitely purple.  I’ve the crimson stains purple but haven’t tried it yet, looking at the angelus stuff, I might have been better getting some angelus dye as the colour BigD gets is pretty much what I’m after.

 

relly like the purple and rose, looks like it would be a great colour on that guitar.

Which Crimson stains do you have? I've bought several of the water based and spirit based stains but feel they were all useless. They come far too diluted to stain maple. All I use their black stain for is grain raising and showing up the scratches I missed before sanding it all off again. The shots I expect are better, but after doing these recent testers, I'm convinced that regardless of whether or not theyre water or alcohol based - to get any vibrant the stains need to be concentrated or close to. Anything can be sanded back to reduce intensity. 

I found this really useful video the other day. Definitely worth a watch

 

  • Like 2
Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • 3 weeks later...

Some more progress on these 2, couple of updates in the medium of youtube and some pics.

I made some mahog control covers. This is prior to learning about @Prostheta's awesome method to route around and saw off a grain matching cover so the grain direction is vaguely correct but the covers are unfortunately from a different piece of mahog.

ByQxoHoAmPmS1cXtpw_BC1KdvV9D-R-RW1UvNTX7

Got the whole thing filled with walnut grainfiller after spending an age taping off the neck binding and body faux binding. I've sanded the body and covers back so far, still got the neck to do. I really like this colour and unfortunately the sanded back filler is nowhere near as dark so I'm currently weighing up the pros and cons of staining it brown. The cons being that I don't particularly want to mask all the binding off again.

k9DbPTe5BfejZqm2oUo9QSTKP4bmYJxbTjObpV14

  • Like 3
Link to comment
Share on other sites

A trick for your next one, perhaps? I think I learnt that off Setch many years back. Still, once you get finish on there you'll hardly notice the difference and even if it were matched, you'd not notice that either 😉 I hope you got squeegeeing that filler off before it started to set up! It's hell once it does.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

13 minutes ago, Prostheta said:

A trick for your next one, perhaps? I think I learnt that off Setch many years back. Still, once you get finish on there you'll hardly notice the difference and even if it were matched, you'd not notice that either 😉 I hope you got squeegeeing that filler off before it started to set up! It's hell once it does.

Yes I've already employed that trick on the new PRS build I'm working on, worked great.  No I didn't do any squeegying because last time I squeeged, I found that the grain wasn't "full enough" and had to repeat the process. It didn't take long with sand it off with the random orbital though.

 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

The one that opened my eyes was to sand with 100 after carving to find any shiny gaps. I've done that but now I know what to look for.

But yes, I've been winging it all the time and I sure will continue doing that! There's always an alternative way of doing things without lessening the quality of the workmanship. Carving is probably the area where anything has to be tried for a smooth result. But as we've seen here, even making a straight join can be made by a plane, a joiner, a router or by sanding against a flat surface.

 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

On 1/17/2020 at 11:27 PM, ADFinlayson said:

Which Crimson stains do you have? I've bought several of the water based and spirit based stains but feel they were all useless. They come far too diluted to stain maple. All I use their black stain for is grain raising and showing up the scratches I missed before sanding it all off again. The shots I expect are better,

Finally got testing the stain shots on some test flame maple.  There’s not much in the bottle, I would say each would do about 4 guitars...maybe.  I agree that blue denim is very light and probably not one to use on its own although I didn’t try darkening it down too much.  It seems a nice colour in more or less concentrated form. The purple gets pretty dark with 4-5 droppers in a small amount of water

the premixed crimson stuff definitely looks too light from their demonstrations.

given that BigDGuitars on YouTube uses Angelus dyes, I’ve looked at that and it might actually be better value for money.   If I hand stain more in the future I might look towards those, their colours look nice too.
 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

On 2/7/2020 at 7:46 PM, willliam_q said:

Finally got testing the stain shots on some test flame maple.  There’s not much in the bottle, I would say each would do about 4 guitars...maybe.  I agree that blue denim is very light and probably not one to use on its own although I didn’t try darkening it down too much.  It seems a nice colour in more or less concentrated form. The purple gets pretty dark with 4-5 droppers in a small amount of water

the premixed crimson stuff definitely looks too light from their demonstrations.

given that BigDGuitars on YouTube uses Angelus dyes, I’ve looked at that and it might actually be better value for money.   If I hand stain more in the future I might look towards those, their colours look nice too.
 

Yeah I saw in your thread, looks great. The size of the bottles did put me off a bit as well which is why I opted to buy the Liberal spirit stains, they're a much thicker concentrate and the bottles are about twice the size. 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Finally got round to glueing the neck on this one, I say finally but I was really just procrastinating over sanding all the grain-filler. Got that done and glued the neck in this evening. This time, trying to combat glue squeeze out around the neck pocket - something that seems to plague most of my builds, I have applied a modest amount of glue to the pocket and tenon with a paint brush. Then I used warm water and a toothbrush to scrub away all the excess thoroughly. Hopefully that combined with already having filled the grain will prevent white lines appearing along the joints and white flecks in the grain once I've sprayed it with lacquer. Touch wood...

Something else I did this time, was to thin down some sanding sealer and lightly apply several coats on the inside of the f-hole with a brush to help prevent dye seeping into the edges - it's quite easy to stop dye spilling over the sides on the body but it's a bit more awkward with the f-hole.

Md7uNXGG9KYJHreJhiiKhnV5ypTRvFFqDjslq_ga

I'll be wanting to get this one stained and sprayed before too long. But with my humidity gauge in the garage reading 75% on a good day, I don't think that is going to happen any time soon. 

  • Like 2
Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • 3 weeks later...

Spent a couple of hours on the monkey build this evening. The goal was to get the bridge installed but that involved a couple of other jobs too, Started off by reaming out the tuner holes so I could test fit the sperzels and later check that the bridge is drilled accurately. 

Ec2vbGfKK4rVneGJMnNLUP01H-5i4pVwjTV9CAjO

Then I needed a nut to put my strings in if I was going to test the bridge... I've always used Graphtech and never bothered with cutting/slotting my own from scratch - the price of nut files seems hard to justify when a Graphtech nut is £10 and is almost perfect out of box every time. But Adrian wanted ivory coloured appointments (pickup rings, switch tip) and I have a load of bone nut blanks (one of the ebay sellers I buy fretboards from throws one in with every order) so I figured a bone nut would look good on this build. I got the Crimson nut file set and their string spacing ruler during their last sale and finally got round to using them tonight.

Making the nut was quite enjoyable but man, it's was time consuming.

O6Pfk1XzkNd9w13XceOE3sA0z-ymb5m1go5GeM4u

Dusted off the disk/belt sander - first time I've used it in an age, but really glad I had it for this job.

cwttJLq4zb6272fsdAAyyxLDnhAc9beojoUJW7o_

I rounded off all the exposed corners and stuck it in place with a drop of super glue.

8JeSM7aTYEnrPHx5aN-ON5EdrtL92ipY4Bapeh1T

Then I marked the string locations with a pencil and the string spacing rule and made a light cut with the razor saw so I had a start.

oz8pRRnFejZWEd8yRXqiT_EOrajZ0Ocpi89pqvAO

Then I got the bridge location marked out and a couple of 11mm holes done with the hand drill. I used a couple of squares to ensure I was drilling plum 

Pc_1WbdgFgoH_-TcfVx5RYdQgHv_2YWR3balh_EO

Bridge all good so I got a set of strings on, it's now officially a guitar

mT3I8HxbCaidWwj4ko5Byhog3tT-SI8xVBMx8ErJ

Then I spent a good hour on filing the nut slots. On the slots where I had a file that was slightly bigger than the string gauge, I got perfect results. But files that were the same gauge as the string were a bit awkward, eg the 26 and 10 gauges - the string would bind in the slot and be really difficult to get all the way down or to pull back out again, fortunately I realised that before I went too deep on any of them. So I played around with rocking the file side to side to widen the slot slightly which work well.

I think I've still got a bit too much height on the nut, the string slots are pretty good, but the overall height of the nut (making the  slots deeper) was clearly contributing to the strings binding. So before I do the final assembly, I'll file a bit more off the top of the nut, it all needs a good sanding and polishing anway.

I still need to do fret levelling, crowning polishing etc yet but I'll let it hang on the wall with strings on for a while, get it used to it's new shoes.

kFECKaOuK7rNg2w_bw-x3TYgqBKC3UaDKxYU1TL7

FwwaTM8jBslGJVX8N-xAj5XP5uA4jEcdZe5AuxCm

That was an enjoyable evening of learning, all be it time consuming. I think I'll have to revisit the ziricote build at some point and make a bone nut for that one too. 

  • Like 3
Link to comment
Share on other sites

8 hours ago, ADFinlayson said:

files that were the same gauge as the string were a bit awkward, eg the 26 and 10 gauges - the string would bind in the slot and be really difficult to get all the way down or to pull back out again, fortunately I realised that before I went too deep on any of them. So I played around with rocking the file side to side to widen the slot slightly which work well.

Jerry Rosa cuts all his nut slots with a single razor saw, adjusting the width by rocking it side to side so your method is fully valid.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

1 hour ago, Bizman62 said:

Jerry Rosa cuts all his nut slots with a single razor saw, adjusting the width by rocking it side to side so your method is fully valid.

That sounds like a lot of work, but I've not heard of Jerry Rosa so I'll check him out.

I left the phone on while I was doing a couple of jobs last night, so heres a quick vid on drilling for bridge studs

 

  • Like 3
Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • 3 weeks later...

I've been cracking on with this one. Got some stain on, well I got purple on it about 3 time sand kept finding scratches. I went over it with the orbital sander from 60 grit up to 220, found loads of scratches, repeated about 3 times. This bit of work just seams to be really awkward to sand, just couldn't see these prior to staining.

snbYd4PYKCDQYz80cDem9JeWfZJgNTYmKie3D3vu

vVSg01IjU5x7Kqa9MflBkbdLO6Jg01kAezeB3EzX

More missed scratches

6oNzdRkis4tAAP5qEj7YqQQw6MwbDhwnMCX-MhAB

so lots of hand sanding too. Then finally I decided I was happy. God another load of purple on, sanded it back (again) with 320 just to know it back for another colour, then added rose

YFhk7_ZQE_SG2yJ6j0soKxurcmWmSIc6jJfUOvaa

Once that was dry, I started working on the faux binding. Still a fair bit of tidying up to do there, the f-hole is particularly tricky to sand. The weather seams to be on my side, it was 15º this evening and 40º humidity so I might at least be able to get this done and get it sealed tomorrow. Then it's on with the bass.

Ittk3T5ns0WsaN23FZnyMca4BWqr2tvUd-4YILkM

  • Like 2
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Looking good. 

For a stained finish I usually apply a first stain just to find the scratches.  Theoretically, you can see most of them just by wiping a damp cloth over the surface.  But if you do there seems to be ALWAYS ones you miss that jump up and scream at you just as you apply the first 'proper' stain coat.  So I kid the blighter into thinking it IS the first stain coat!   

These guitars think they're cleverer than us.  Psychology...that's what you need.  Psychology.  :) 

 

  • Like 1
  • Haha 2
Link to comment
Share on other sites

On 3/26/2020 at 5:32 PM, Andyjr1515 said:

Looking good. 

For a stained finish I usually apply a first stain just to find the scratches.  Theoretically, you can see most of them just by wiping a damp cloth over the surface.  But if you do there seems to be ALWAYS ones you miss that jump up and scream at you just as you apply the first 'proper' stain coat.  So I kid the blighter into thinking it IS the first stain coat!   

These guitars think they're cleverer than us.  Psychology...that's what you need.  Psychology.  :) 

You’re not wrong Andy, a preliminary scratch finding stain seams to be the norm for me, intentional or not because I’m shut at finding scratches. It’s all stained anyway, good weather over the last couple of days meant I could get the top sealed too as I’m using cellulose sealer. We are due cold spell now so hopefully after then I’ll be able to get some clearcoat over it 

 

  • Like 4
Link to comment
Share on other sites

On 2/3/2020 at 2:47 PM, ADFinlayson said:

Some more progress on these 2, couple of updates in the medium of youtube and some pics.

 

 

Hi, @ADFinlayson

With the extra time afforded by the lockdown, and with a slight confession, I've had enough time at last to watch one of your videos.  Good work - both on the video and the carving.  Nice that the only sound other than your explanation is of wood being chiselled or filed and no cat-scaring death metal suddenly springing out from nowhere and for no reason 😉

Having built on my back patio for years with only a workmate, I strongly recommend that your master long term plan should include a decent carpenters bench (in UK, Axminster have some great ones).  I found the reduced effort from the energy transferring directly through the chisel to cutting the wood, as opposed to moving the workmate around the patio, had to be experienced to be believed! 🙂

 

 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Fantastic work for a flat chisel. If you have the opportunity and availability, get yourself a 3/4"-1" incannel gouge for that sort of work. That is, a gouge that excels at paring wood from the inside of a concave surface. I have one that is 1/2" and is a little small, but still helps tease out material from where (it isn't) needed.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • 2 weeks later...

Spent a bit of time on this one this evening. Found some scratches on the headstock so I sanded it all off and started again, then sanded in the faux binding. 

XzAeoAJ6fhzkYBM4nXEq6bbYqGSLEx7izaVrCInV

I also spent a bit more time getting the f-hole binding right. The top has had 5 mist coats of sealer now too which I've smoothed off with 0000 wire wool. I'm going to have to reseal the headstock too. 

PHjuuB6dB4gLk5E8xVmiu_7v7bUxYvOdt4iQfsb_

I made pickup templates for the bass this evening too, which was a bit of a pita, the nordstrand pickups have quite a tight radius and none of my bearing bits will cut the corners to be tight enough to I had to get it as close as I could then use a 1/4" straight bit. So I've painted the inside of the templates with watered down wood glue to firm up the template edges so that hopefully the shaft of the router bit doesn't turn the template to smoosh when I've routing the cavities. So all being well I will get the routing finished on the bass tomorrow.

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Finally some bass progress - Made a couple of MDF templates from measurements taken from the pickups. As above, I had to use a 1/4" straight bit to get the correct radius on the corners, so once I had made the templates, I sealed all the edges with wood glue to make sure the were hard enough to withstand the high speed bit with no bearing and I did most of the routing with a larger bearing bit, then just used the straight bit to get in the very corners. 

Did a test route first on a walnut offcut to get out the template. it was all good except not deep enough.

dGLEmwl4CIoSRGDf-SvqyJv92scBpdindE5P3koO

Marked out locations and hogged out waste with the pillar drill

cO5pGvFhO5xR6173717qxvBhCJvxQRJEs6EkoLom

Then routed, managed to get them perfectly square on the centre line and square with each other fortunately, because I need to make a ramp out of some pheobe wood offcuts to go between the two pickups.

bk130uxx-6ba62mWU2XZ3XGSu9NK28i4ISDH9JRr

Also did a test first, starting to look fairly basslike now. In fact it's not really that far away. I just need to drill holes for the 5 pots, bridge and an earth wire, sand the hell out of it and spray some lacquer. Hopefully all that won't take another 6 months.

scJkatEkStjC2-oAS-RwcDehCX_JG4wrfhWBJXew

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.

Guest
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.

 Share

×
×
  • Create New...