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

First Build: Five Piece Sapele/Pine Tele

Discussion in 'Tele Home Depot' started by -james-, Dec 20, 2013.

  1. -james-

    -james- TDPRI Member

    Dec 5, 2013
    Leicester, England
    Hi guys,
    Thought i'd share my first build with you all here! Until now I'd been lurking but I feel i've made reasonable progress to show all.

    So the concept was: Five piece contrasting body, p90 in the neck, la cab style controls, no pickguard

    First things first, off to the lumberyard. What seems like a simple task took me forever, every attempt to go ended up being hindered by something or another! There was one time where I was literally round the corner from it, got a phone call and I had to right round and go home because I was needed in the lab. Great. But when I finally got there I managed to pick up everything I needed for £10, so I was quite pleased.

    The neck and tuners are taken from a Squier SE Strat which I bought for £30 along with a load of accessories and managed to sell the body and scratchplate for £38 so up to this point i'm breaking even! (Always a good thing :p )

    Luckily my housemates are quite understanding and didn't kick up too much of a fuss when I started gluing up the pieces on the dining table :p


    The pieces aren't perfectly jointed, but close enough and certainly better than what I could achieve with the tools I had (next to none)

    Now this is where my Universities Physics department came in, I went in and spoke to the guys there about using the workshop, and it turns out they're all guitarists and one of them builds too! Needless to say, getting the use of that workshop for a few hours brought the build along significantly. Routes were done on a 3 axis milling machine at a high speed and the body cut out on a bandsaw.

    Note the messiness near the lower horn (more on that later)

    There was still a lot that the tools there couldn't do, so I had a lot of sanding by hand to do over that weekend.

    After speaking to a few of my friends, and trying one out in the local guitar shop, I decided to include a tummy cut. So out with the trusty rasp, and a few hours of rasping and sanding later.....


    Not too shabby! But please excuse the awful carpet, student accommadation and all that :p

    Test fits of the neck seemed to show it being a bit too high? But I checked my neck pocket depth and everything was spot on? Let's see how it plays out later.


    Quick test fit of all the parts to check allignment, the bridge is just some generic 3 saddle ashtray from amazon for £10 including a pickup (sound yet to be found out, not expecting great things). Warman P90 going into the neck position, local company to me which is always good :)



    There was then a lottttttttt more sanding done after this, I sure wish I'd had a router throughout this build, everything would have been so much easier.

    After a few coats of Wax oil (Could get it free as opposed to spending another £10 on Danish/Tru oil) we end up with this:


    Chrome knobs and gibson style 3 way switch again from Amazon, the output jack hole had also been drilled at this point.

    Time to install the neck again and give her a string up!




    I haven't decided on the pots/caps i'm going to use, so the electronics aren't hooked up yet, and I still need to make some sort of cover for the rear route.

    I'm also still not satisfied with the finish so i'll be stripping it down again over the weekend and applying more coats of the oil and after that's cured properly i'm considering a wipe on gloss poly :)

    If anyone has any suggestions on what pots/caps to use for this combination then they'd be greatly appreciated :)

    Hope you like it!


  2. SixShooter

    SixShooter Friend of Leo's

    Sep 20, 2008
    Looks great. It's unique but classy. Great job on keeping the costs down.

  3. dannew02

    dannew02 Friend of Leo's

    Apr 2, 2010
    Erin Prarie, WI
    Dang, that's really pretty. I love the multi-stripe body style and I'm building a Tele with a neck P90 and Strat shaped headstock... what was that about "great minds thinking alike"?
    As far as pots go, I have 500K's in mine and when I put it together to test it out it seemed to sound fine. The bridge pup didn't sound tto bright or anything. (Hey, they put 1meg pots in Teles already, half that shouldn't hurt, right?)
    Keep on, keeping on.

  4. dchwhite

    dchwhite TDPRI Member

    Apr 5, 2012
    Ely, Cambridgeshire
    Enormously cool. I especially like your inspiring approach to budget; the guitar looks great :)

  5. src9000

    src9000 Poster Extraordinaire

    Hey James, that guitar looks great. Congrats.

  6. hemingway

    hemingway Friend of Leo's

    Mar 14, 2012
    London, UK
    Looking great.

    BTW I fancy Derby to finish above Leicester this season. Come on you rams!

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