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Double Bound Contoured Tele for my Sister

Discussion in 'Tele Home Depot' started by DavidV, Jul 10, 2018.

  1. DavidV

    DavidV TDPRI Member

    Age:
    23
    57
    Dec 9, 2017
    Springfield, MO
    This is going to be build number 3 for me. I had enough poplar left over from my jazz bass that I could just barely make a telecaster sized blank as well as some extra hardware and a neck. The only stipulation my 12 year old sister gave me was that she wanted it olive green, so I ordered some Bristol Green milk paint that hopefully matches.

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    After roughing out the body on a bandsaw and gluing the two halves together I planed it on my slightly janky router sled. It works... but I need a more stable and level bench for it if I use it again.

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    The toggle clamp is useful for locking it in place though.

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    The thickness after getting the whole surface level is 1 11/16", so it is a little thin for a traditional telecaster body.

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    Back to the bandsaw to cut closer to the lines, it has a 3/4" blade on it right now so I can't get TOO close to those inside curves, just enough that the first pass on my router doesn't bog down too much.

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    Now I'm screwing the MDF routing template down. Just one under the bridge and one in the neck pocket has worked so far. The clamps do most of the job holding the template tight to the body.

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    Last edited: Jul 10, 2018
    Mouth, Brett Faust, BB and 1 other person like this.

  2. DavidV

    DavidV TDPRI Member

    Age:
    23
    57
    Dec 9, 2017
    Springfield, MO
    Now on to my not so favorite thing, freehand routing. A router table should be next on my list of projects, maybe I can incorporate the routing sled into the design. For now I'm just going to go slow and cautious, double checking everything before I go.

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    First I go far enough using the template to make a lip for the guide bearing to ride on.

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    Then take the template off and go as far as I can on my 1/2" bits. They're easier to go in increments.

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    Now the big 3/4" bit, what is pictured is as far up as it can go so I don't like to use it until I have to. I flipped over the body blank so that the waste is on top and the guide bearing can ride below it.

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    It mostly came out smooth

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    Except here where the router bit caught the grain, I usually try to nibble out areas like this but I must have missed. It should sand out.

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    Now I lay down some 3/4" masking tape as a rough guide for the belly and forearm contours.

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    And start roughing them out with a modified scrub plane

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    You can't tell by looking at it but that Iron is pretty sharp. It has a 9" radius ground into it so it leaves a pretty aggressive cut. I use it for roughing out archery bows after a draw knife.

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    Then I smooth it out with a shinto saw rasp. I've found that switching up tools often during waste removal makes it go a lot faster and saves the life of your tools.

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    The belly is a little harder to get into so I had to use a rasp for most of it.

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  3. Davecam48

    Davecam48 Friend of Leo's Gold Supporter

    Age:
    70
    Dec 31, 2009
    Queensland Australia
    That's going to be excellent!!

    DC
     
    DavidV likes this.

  4. Robert.II

    Robert.II Tele-Meister

    202
    Feb 25, 2013
    Fort St. John, BC
    Nice job so far. I’m interested to see how the double binding will go.
     

  5. BB

    BB Friend of Leo's

    May 17, 2003
    Great Pacific NW
    David, that is just fantastic.....and quite inspiring. While I've cobbled together many partscasters over the years, if I attempted using a draw knife, (or any of the other cool things you are doing) I'm sure the guitar would turn into a Handcaster and I'd have to learn to play one handed.

    Excellent work and I can't wait to see the finished guitar. Double bounds are my fav's and I bet your sister is going to be spot on with her color/finish requirement. Keep up the great work!
     
    DavidV likes this.

  6. Good work! Look forward to seeing the progress!

    Eric
     
    DavidV likes this.

  7. oldrebel

    oldrebel Friend of Leo's Gold Supporter

    Oct 23, 2011
    Lynchburg Tennessee
    That's looking good!!
     

  8. DavidV

    DavidV TDPRI Member

    Age:
    23
    57
    Dec 9, 2017
    Springfield, MO
    I debated for a while whether I was going to rout

    e the neck pocket or add binding first and ultimately decided to do the binding since I'm still waiting for parts in the mail. This means I have to be extremely careful when i do the neck pocket however.

    I bought this dremel attachment a while back at Grizzly, Stewmac has a similar one. It lets you have a little more control than on a router which I needed to bind the contours. I wasn't very impressed with the HSS cutting bit however as it could just barely cut through the poplar taking shallow passes. It also slipped out of the collet which led to me having to fill the channel back in and recut in several places. I wasn't super impressed, but then again I haven't been impressed with my Dremel much at all. I'll chalk it down to operator error.

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    Here is where I cut too wide for my binding to fit. I refilled with CA glue packed with sawdust.

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    Because of the width of the attachment I had to cut around the upper bout freehand using the cheap router base my dremel came with.

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    Onto binding. I tried binding my first telecaster and was not happy at all with the outcome. Here is what I learned so far 1. Sand the edges of the guitar well before cutting a channel for binding. The waviness gets magnified once the binding goes on and I ended up with spots that were very thin. 2. prebend the binding using a heat gun rather than try to force it flat against the body. 3. Don't glue the binding on with duco cement. I'm not sure if all CA glues do this or if it was just the duco but it made the binding brittle and left me with unsightly micro fractures on my first guitar.

    Here it is after being bent with a heat gun. I needed three arms just to do this so there weren't any pictures of the process.

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    For glue this time I'm just using some offcuts of the binding dissolved with straight acetone. I liked this better because it is already color matched and fills any voids I may make while putting binding on. Plus no glue on my hands.

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    Stewmac sells these tape holders for only 150 dollars.

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    This did take a little wile. about 1 hour on the first side. I'm going to let the binding cure while I'm at work. Will update tomorrow.

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    Last edited: Jul 20, 2018

  9. Macrogats

    Macrogats Tele-Afflicted

    Age:
    51
    May 15, 2017
    Auckland, New Zealand
    Great job so far. Love the binding work.
     
    DavidV likes this.

  10. Finck

    Finck Tele-Holic

    Age:
    52
    921
    Oct 11, 2017
    São Paulo - Brazil
    I have no words to describe how envious I am... :p
     
    DavidV likes this.

  11. DavidV

    DavidV TDPRI Member

    Age:
    23
    57
    Dec 9, 2017
    Springfield, MO
    The binding looks like it stuck just fine. There were a few gaps here and there which I filled with the plastic/acetone mixture and smoothed over. I think I'm going to sand it flush after this and see if any more voids pop up.

    20180721_134125.jpg
     
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  12. chemobrain

    chemobrain Friend of Leo's Ad Free Member

    Nov 5, 2016
    oakland ca.
    WHAT A CONSIDERATE AND KIND ... thing to do for your sister. Well done sire.
    the work in the images appear amazingly life like,:cool: a hand built tele.
     

  13. DavidV

    DavidV TDPRI Member

    Age:
    23
    57
    Dec 9, 2017
    Springfield, MO
    If anyone is actually following this, I apologize for being so slow. Today I did get something done which has been giving me grief for a while. I'm using what I think was a genuine Fender Stratocaster neck from 20 years ago that my father bought for a partscaster (which sat in a workbench drawer my entire childhood). I don't have a template for a strat neck and didn't want to make one with 1/4" MDF or make a trip just for some decent template material. Instead I took some pine 1x boards and made a quick and dirty jig with a round heel. Clamping it to the table so I could route took some creativity and a lot of clamps, but in the end it was more solid than my previous MDF neck template.

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    I'm happy with the results, neck pocket is exactly 5/8" deep all around and the neck drops in from the top with very little wiggle.
     
    Kyle01 likes this.

  14. DavidV

    DavidV TDPRI Member

    Age:
    23
    57
    Dec 9, 2017
    Springfield, MO
    Oh and here's a little teaser picture. 20180728_134519.jpg
     

  15. DavidV

    DavidV TDPRI Member

    Age:
    23
    57
    Dec 9, 2017
    Springfield, MO
    20180731_193352.jpg I just realized I haven't bought a control plate for this guitar yet. Most of my parts so far have been from china so shipping has taken some time... and rather than pay 15-20 plus shipping for one from here I decided I was going to go ahead and make my own with some aluminum barstock I have on hand.
     

  16. DavidV

    DavidV TDPRI Member

    Age:
    23
    57
    Dec 9, 2017
    Springfield, MO

  17. DavidV

    DavidV TDPRI Member

    Age:
    23
    57
    Dec 9, 2017
    Springfield, MO
    I did a quick test fit of the neck before getting ready to sand and paint today. Feels good to hold, pretty much like a strat but heavier. 20180731_221213.jpg 20180731_221234.jpg
     

  18. DavidV

    DavidV TDPRI Member

    Age:
    23
    57
    Dec 9, 2017
    Springfield, MO
    Sanded from 100 grit to 220 grit 20180807_185814.jpg
     
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  19. DavidV

    DavidV TDPRI Member

    Age:
    23
    57
    Dec 9, 2017
    Springfield, MO
    The paint I'm using is this premixed milk paint, it's kind of a mess but easy to clean up with water. I'm just going to brush it on and if brush strokes show through in the final finish I'm fine with that. The whole guitar has a modern/utilitarian vibe to it. If anyone has any suggestions for a clear coat I'll take them, I have some Tru-oil, Watco clear lacquer, and half a can of Behlen nitro. I did a test piece with just shellac and the paint darkened up quite a bit.
    20180807_192924.jpg 20180807_205341.jpg 20180807_205522.jpg
     
    Jsil13 likes this.

  20. jaybones

    jaybones Friend of Leo's

    Love a double bound Tele!

    I have a Betamann Tele copy in burgundy that's double bound. I'm posting from my tablet while my laptop is down, so no pics- new HDD coming Thursday, and I'm hoping it will drop in and I can get it back together and it works!
     
    DavidV likes this.

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