Asher Guitars WD Music Products Amplified Parts Mod Kits DIY Nordstarnd Pickups Warmoth.com
Asher Guitars WD Music Products Amplified Parts Mod Kits DIY Nordstarnd Pickups Warmoth.com
Asher Guitars WD Music Products Amplified Parts Mod Kits DIY Nordstarnd Pickups Warmoth.com

Crap to less crap build

Discussion in 'Other Guitars, other instruments' started by mitchfinck, Jun 5, 2017.

  1. scooter_trasher

    scooter_trasher Tele-Meister

    359
    Jul 2, 2012
    UTOPIA
    Yup nothing sustains like a Les Paul in front of a Marshall stack, but that comes from the sound waves vibrating the guitar and strings, get a louder amp if you want more sustain or lower your pickups , high pickup settings will kill sustain faster than anything, I've heard some dam fine music come from particle board guitars, just ask Jack White, Silvertone, Harmony and even Gibson's Kalamazoo mustang copy used pressed board bodies, probably a million kids learned on pressed board strat copies from department stores :)
    I'll have to revisit my $40 Epi Les Paul Special II, with it's alnico pickups I've always thought it was on par tone wise with my Gibson Flame top, a little hotter wind maybe, but I liked Dimarzio Super Distortion back in the day, so what do I or those thousands of people that bought them know.
     
    oldfish likes this.

  2. awasson

    awasson Friend of Leo's Gold Supporter

    Age:
    53
    Nov 18, 2010
    Vancouver
    If you've got a plywood guitar that's dull and doesn't ring out look at the hardware and workmanship for the problem because the wood isn't the problem.

    You may be correct about plywood or particle board not being particularly well suited for instruments but it's not because it absorbs the energy. That's the opposite of the way dense/rigid materials like plywood and particle board work. The more dense, the less absorption and more reflective the material. Plywood in particular is a very rigid material because the grains on each layer are run at 90 degrees to each other and it's loaded with glue. Any kinetic energy from the strings will ring out because the wood won't absorb the energy; it reflects it.

    I would suspect your cheap plywood guitar is a crap guitar because of the sum of the cheap materials it contains. Cheap hardware, cheap electronics, cheap workmanship.
     

  3. Zepfan

    Zepfan Friend of Leo's

    Nov 30, 2013
    Horn Lake, MS
    I've owned several plywood guitars and still have a couple. They were never anything to brag about tonewise and I have been able to hear the difference between them and my Basswood body - Maple neck guitar or my Oak body - Maple neck guitar or my Mahogany/Maple cap body - Mahogany neck guitar. Good hardware and pickups included.
    There are some plywood Epiphones and there are some great Epiphones out there. Same goes for Squier.
    If your happy with plywood, then good for you. There are others that have been happy with plywood. For the most part, I'm not one of them. I can definitely tell a difference between them. That being said, I have come across a guitar with a so called good body/neck wood that was a dud before. My thinking is that it's possible to have a bad tone from good wood, but less likely.
     

  4. Mase

    Mase TDPRI Member

    82
    Apr 20, 2016
    Australia
    Go for it man, doing stuff for someone else adds to the vibe.Ignore the fun police:p
     
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  5. mitchfinck

    mitchfinck Tele-Holic

    Age:
    27
    684
    Dec 7, 2015
    Stratford, Ontario
    It's taking on a bit of a cheaper bent as of late (even though all the parts were already owned) because my gf actually prefers the look of some of the cheaper components. The guitar sounded just fine and played alright when I got it (had to adjust the truss rod and action a bit... NBD), so I'm excited. Since the design process became more collaborative not much work has been done yet.
    I bought a heat gun from a meth-house this weekend to start stripping the beat to hell paint.
    Let's see how it goes!
     
    awasson likes this.

  6. mitchfinck

    mitchfinck Tele-Holic

    Age:
    27
    684
    Dec 7, 2015
    Stratford, Ontario
    So I've got it stripped and clean. Went a bit overboard rounding the edges when I was sanding but it's not big deal. Since it's for my girlfriend I had to give a bit of a belly cut on the back, but we'll call it a booby cut for arguments' sake. An extra control is being added for a bass cut... why not? Humbucker route is changed for P90 (rough, I know... no router)... hopefully the small gap (0.25mm at the front) isn't too glaring. I'm considering just putting a small piece of wood in there, but I think the paint might do the job for me.
    I had a few spots where I pulled some wood out, so I'm going to fill those tonight.
    Thursday we're going shopping for paint!

    20170711_072702_HDR.jpg
     
    awasson likes this.

  7. hopdybob

    hopdybob Tele-Meister

    377
    May 28, 2008
    netherlands
    nice project, but if i had it under my hands i would not go for a P90 because of hum and other single coil problems. why not use a 4 wire humbucker with series / parallel option.
    try the G&L PTB wiring with bass and High cut with it.
    makes it more versatile
     

  8. mattdean4130

    mattdean4130 Tele-Afflicted

    You know this is a Tele forum, right? lol

    Man, doing stuff for the sake of doing stuff makes life worth living. If we all cared about the dollar/time : actual value ratio nobody would have nice cars, boats, instruments etc etc etc

    To be fair, really, even playing an instrument in 2017 is a bad frugal decision - let alone us gear heads.

    I look forward to seeing the ridiculousness in all it's amazing glory. You had me at booby cut.

    haha
     
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  9. mitchfinck

    mitchfinck Tele-Holic

    Age:
    27
    684
    Dec 7, 2015
    Stratford, Ontario
    Well it's none too pretty. There are a few ugly spots that become apparent in the picture, but the important thing is that she loves it. We went for a semi-gloss, textured pink.

    I do have a bit of a problem that I've not encountered before though - while the high frets are reasonably well intonated the low frets (1-5) seem a bit out. You don't notice this when playing single note stuff, but in chords it becomes apparent. It makes sense to me that this could be due to the nut being too high so that the string has to bend comparatively more to hit these frets. Anyone else have this problem and want to chime in? I'll file the slots tonight (I have some watchmaking files that should do that job), but I'm curious if anyone else has had this before.



    20170919_213605_HDR.jpg
     
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  10. awasson

    awasson Friend of Leo's Gold Supporter

    Age:
    53
    Nov 18, 2010
    Vancouver
    Excellent! Nice to see the finished product.

    As far as the intonation problem goes, the nut sounds like a reasonable place to be looking at. I can't think of any other reason for the intonation problem.
     

  11. Piggy Stu

    Piggy Stu Tele-Afflicted

    Age:
    38
    Feb 26, 2017
    Manchester UK
    I just got my daughter a 3/4 size cheapy strat

    The frets are something over 1 mm high! Pressing down on the lowers frets makes them all sharp but I can't bother changing the height

    Nut is first thought but try less pressure if high frets?
     

  12. ReaL Madras

    ReaL Madras Tele-Afflicted

    Apr 8, 2012
    Good job, lets see the Pink Panther in action!
     

  13. Zepfan

    Zepfan Friend of Leo's

    Nov 30, 2013
    Horn Lake, MS
    Bridge is the problem for the intonation(by looking at the pic anyway). It looks like the bridge isn't angled. The bridge should be angled towards the neck 3mm at the bottom(high strings) and out away from the neck 3mm at the top(low string side) of the bridge.
     
    Zuzax likes this.

  14. the_lyall

    the_lyall Telepathetic Ad Free + Supporter

    563
    Jan 15, 2017
    Bedford, UK
    I could do with one of those... And it's a much better name for it!

    Excellent! That's the most important bit - happy girlfriend, worth the effort, brownie points earned :)

    Good job! Hope she enjoys playing it. Now, she needs another one to keep it company right? ;)
     

  15. JuneauMike

    JuneauMike Tele-Holic

    978
    May 5, 2015
    Alaska
    When you level sand that paint down and hit it with several coats of clear, wet sand and polish, that color will pop. Good luck.
     

  16. mitchfinck

    mitchfinck Tele-Holic

    Age:
    27
    684
    Dec 7, 2015
    Stratford, Ontario
    Intonation problems are only on the low frets though. Intonation is nearly perfect at 12th. That's why I was hesitant to think that it's the bridge.
     
    awasson likes this.

  17. Zepfan

    Zepfan Friend of Leo's

    Nov 30, 2013
    Horn Lake, MS
    You may have a problem at the nut, but you need to address the bridge as well if it's straight up and down. The 12th fret may indeed be good, but the higher frets will need the compensation.

    Speaking of the nut, what is the height of your strings? If they are sticking in place, put a little graphite in the grooves. Also check all the frets to ensure they are indeed in the right spot. Hope that helps.
     

  18. awasson

    awasson Friend of Leo's Gold Supporter

    Age:
    53
    Nov 18, 2010
    Vancouver
    I can't tell for sure because the photos are pretty blurry but that bridge looks like it might be compensated. In that case would it still need to be moved?
     

  19. Zepfan

    Zepfan Friend of Leo's

    Nov 30, 2013
    Horn Lake, MS
    Yes it still needs the extra help because the adjustment screws on the 2 posts can only go so far.
     
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