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

First Partscaster Assembly

Discussion in 'Other T-Types and Partscasters' started by Vanzant, Sep 28, 2013.

  1. Vanzant

    Vanzant Tele-Afflicted

    May 18, 2013
    United States
    Hey Folks,

    I thought I would create a thread that documents the process I go through as I assemble my first Partscaster. I have been checking out this forum ever since I got my first Telecaster a little over a year ago, and I am completely impressed by all the amazing “parts” guitars people are making and sharing here. So over this past year I have been researching and probing the forum for the specifics, the opinions, the debates, and the what-not-to-dos and have found a wealth of information.

    So far it has been a lot of fun collecting all the parts, perhaps even an obsession…hopefully putting this thing together is just as fun, and not a complete disaster :eek:. I plan to take pictures of each step along the way to perhaps add something to the collective knowledge of this forum, and again, hopefully it’s not a thread full of what-not-to-dos ;)

    I imagine this will be a very slow process, as I plan to take the advice of one forum member who said, “Take it easy, go slow. It'll be fine.” I am going to start by posting pictures of all the parts, body, neck, etc…and then the assembly process will follow. Feel free to chime in and let me know what you think… Thanks in advance for any help or advice you might have to offer… it is and has been greatly appreciated!


    Here is the body I got from MJT Guitars. I really like the way their relics look, and they're pretty cool to work with. This is a Light Swamp-Ash body that has some light aging and checking.

    IMG_0167.jpg IMG_0169.jpg IMG_0168.jpg

    Here are the EBAY photos of this body...funny how much more yellow it looks in these photos (this maybe has something to do with the background and lighting -something to consider when looking for a body).

    MJT Tele 3.jpg MJT Tele 2.jpg
     
    Last edited: Sep 28, 2013

  2. Vanzant

    Vanzant Tele-Afflicted

    May 18, 2013
    United States
    The Neck

    Here is my Musikraft Neck that was also finished by MJT Guitars.

    Here are the specs I went with...

    Orientation: Right for Right Hand Players
    Number Frets: 21 Fret
    Scale Length: 25.5 Standard Fender
    Shaft Wood: Rock Maple
    Nut Width: 1.650 (41.91mm)
    Heel Width: Standard Fender 2-3/16 (55.56mm)
    Truss Rod: Vintage Single Acting Adjust @ Heel
    FB Radius: 9-1/2
    Fret Wire: Vintage 6230 Nickel Silver
    Tuner Holes: Vintage Kluson Style 11/32
    Top Dots: Black Synthetic Dots
    12th Dots: Wide Pre '64
    Custom Inlay: None Use Dot Inlay as Selected Above
    Binding: None
    Side Dots: Black 2mm
    Back Profile: Medium C .83 X .92
    Nut Style: Fender Flat Bottom
    FB Edges: Semi Rolled
    Finish: MJT Guitars - Light Aged
    Mount Holes: Drill Neck Pilot Holes
    Nut Install: Install Slotted TUSQ Nut

    IMG_1206.jpg IMG_1185.jpg IMG_1186.jpg IMG_1205.jpg
     

  3. Vanzant

    Vanzant Tele-Afflicted

    May 18, 2013
    United States
    The Parts - Pt. 1

    Neck Plate, Control Plate, Bridge Plate, Saddles

    539694_10201716733546507_1562764674_n.jpg IMG_1042.jpg IMG_0997.jpg IMG_0990.jpg
     

  4. Vanzant

    Vanzant Tele-Afflicted

    May 18, 2013
    United States
    The Parts - Pt. 2

    Strap Buttons, Milled Jack Cup, String Ferrules, Volume & Tone Knobs

    IMG_0963.jpg IMG_0992.jpg IMG_0894.jpg IMG_0953.jpg
     

  5. Vanzant

    Vanzant Tele-Afflicted

    May 18, 2013
    United States
    The Parts - Pt. 3

    Pickguard (Front & Back), Hayride Neck Pickup, Zep0tone Bridge Pickup
    IMG_1082.jpg IMG_1083.jpg IMG_1085.jpg IMG_1087.jpg
     

  6. Vanzant

    Vanzant Tele-Afflicted

    May 18, 2013
    United States
    The Parts - Pt. 4

    250K CTS Control Pots, CRL 3-Way Switch, Switchcraft Output Jack, Tone Capacitors

    IMG_1067.jpg IMG_1073.jpg IMG_1068.jpg IMG_1093.jpg
     
    Last edited: Sep 28, 2013

  7. Vanzant

    Vanzant Tele-Afflicted

    May 18, 2013
    United States
    The Parts - Pt. 5

    Slot Head Screws, Cloth Covered Wire, Neck Decal, Everything

    IMG_1076.jpg IMG_1089.jpg IMG_0889.jpg IMG_1204.jpg
     
    Last edited: Sep 28, 2013

  8. Vanzant

    Vanzant Tele-Afflicted

    May 18, 2013
    United States
    Miscellaneous

    Various tools, Inspiration :lol:

    IMG_1095.jpg IMG_0928.jpg

    Think I will skip the shielding...
     

  9. Vanzant

    Vanzant Tele-Afflicted

    May 18, 2013
    United States
    Installing Milled Jack Cup

    The first thing I decided to do was install the Milled Jack Cup from Glendale. The cup was a little too big (A) for the hole in the guitar, so I had to sand it down a tad bit to get the initial fit. I did this by using really small pieces of very fine sand paper with my finger in the hole (no power tools). Once I had a partial fit (B), I lubed the cup up with some bees wax and pressed it in by hand and then with this clamp (C) (I learned this idea from adirondak5 on this thread http://www.tdpri.com/forum/other-t-types-partscasters/413722-glendale-jack-cup-too-big.html). When it was done, I noticed it didn't quite go in all the way (because the clamp wasn't fully retracted before starting), so I just tapped the rest of it in with a rubber mallet (D) . I probably could've just hammered it in with the rubber mallet from the get go...

    A) Cup Too Big B) Hole Sanded And Pushed In By Hand C) Press In With Clamp D) After Hammering With Rubber Mallet - Voila'

    IMG_0293.jpg IMG_1215.jpg IMG_1216.jpg IMG_1219.jpg

    Next up...String Ferrules
     

  10. Vanzant

    Vanzant Tele-Afflicted

    May 18, 2013
    United States
    Installing String Ferrules

    Installing these string ferrules (A) was pretty straight forward and easy to do. There is a lot on this forum about using a soldering iron to heat up the ferrules (B) before pressing them in. This is to prevent cracking the finish around the ferrule hole. The soldering iron heats up the finish (C) and allows the ferrule to just slide in; finish cools/hardens, and you're all set!

    Some folks warn to be careful that you don't overheat the ferrule and burn the finish. I decided to heat the ferrule up with the soldering iron, and then press them in with an additional cold soldering iron to eliminate any chance of burning. I really only had to apply the hot iron for a couple of seconds before pressing the ferrule in with the cold iron.

    This whole process took like 3 to 5 minutes (D).

    No hammering or tapping needed, just heat it up, and press them in. This Youtube video helped me further understand this process - it's as easy as this 34 second video makes it look :D



    A) Retro Rockets - Cold Rolled Steel B) Getting Started C) Soldering Iron to Heat Up/Cold Iron To Push In D) Finished :D
    IMG_0894.jpg IMG_1221.jpg IMG_1225.jpg IMG_1229.jpg
     
    Last edited: Sep 29, 2013

  11. Vanzant

    Vanzant Tele-Afflicted

    May 18, 2013
    United States
    Assembling The Control Plate

    Assembling the control plate was a cinch (A).First I took some sand paper and scuffed up the underside so the biting washer had something to bite ;). Then I scuffed up the top of the Volume and Tone Pots so the solder for ground has something to cling to (B).

    Then I simply inserted the pots making sure that the biting washer was underneath and that the terminals were facing each other (C). Then I added the washer and bolt to the top, and tightened it all down by hand. Next, I used da 13mm socket to snug the bolts down nice and tight.

    Finally, I replaced the switch screws with slot head screws and screwed the switch on to the control plate (D).


    A)
    Control Plate, Pots, and Switch B) Sanding On the Control Plate and Pots C) Terminals Facing Each Other D) Ready To Wire
    IMG_1232.jpg IMG_1234.jpg IMG_1242.jpg IMG_1241.jpg
     

  12. Vanzant

    Vanzant Tele-Afflicted

    May 18, 2013
    United States
    Wiring The Control Plate - Part 1

    For the record, I have never soldered anything in my life except for a new switch on my Crybaby Wah Wah Pedal. This was a very tedious process, but I think I did it right...we'll see. I pretty much just followed the Glendale Diagram (A) and included the treble bleed capacitor. I started by installing the Paisley tone capacitor from the tone to volume pots (B). Then, I attached the coaxial cable (jack cable) and treble bleed capacitor (C) to the center lug on the volume pot. Then, I connected the vol and tone pots on the outer lugs, and attached an additional wire that ran to the switch (D)...to be continued....

    A) Glendale Diagram B) Paisley Capacitor C) Coaxial Cable and Treble Bleed Cap D) Attaching the Two Pots and Additional Wire
    IMG_1255.jpg IMG_1245.jpg IMG_1249.jpg IMG_1252.jpg
     

  13. dsutton24

    dsutton24 Poster Extraordinaire Ad Free Member

    Dec 29, 2010
    Illinois
    You'll find that there isn't a lot of spare room in a Telecaster control cavity. Try to keep your components as compact as possible, and keep them well within the margins of the plate. Keep component leads short, and insulate bare wires with scraps of insulation. If you need to push components around to get the control plate mounted, added insulation makes life a lot easier and prevents annoying shorts.
     

  14. Vanzant

    Vanzant Tele-Afflicted

    May 18, 2013
    United States
    Wiring the Control Plate - Part 2

    Next, I created a series of loops around the switch (A) by splicing together little pieces of wire. I wasn't sure if I should just strip the wire and run a single wire around the switch, so I went with splicing together pieces and keeping them covered in cloth...I would love to hear what everyone's take on this is (does it matter?). Last, I attached a ground wire onto the tone pot for the jack output (B).

    Overall, this was pretty fun, but also challenging. At one point I was like..."what's burning?" and looked down and saw that I was burning some of the cloth on the wire with the soldering iron...easily fixed, just replaced the wire. Hopefully this will work, won't know for some time. Is there a test I can do on it? Any suggestions so far?


    A) Wires Spliced Together For Switch B) Ground Wire and Completed Control Plate

    IMG_1254.jpg IMG_1253.jpg
     

  15. Vanzant

    Vanzant Tele-Afflicted

    May 18, 2013
    United States
    dsutton... I was wondering about room in the control cavity, but I tested it out and it seems to fit nicely.
     

  16. JBennett

    JBennett Tele-Afflicted

    Age:
    40
    Jun 23, 2008
    Cold Spring, NY
    Looking good so far. But the string ferrules holes are too perfect for a black guard! :)

    You can test your wiring with a multimeter to make sure connections are being made, or just solder on your pickups and jack and plug it into your amp. (you can tap on the pickups to see if they are "picking up".
     

  17. Vanzant

    Vanzant Tele-Afflicted

    May 18, 2013
    United States
    Thanks Mr. Bennett...I can't wait to put on that decal you made for me :lol:
     

  18. mrkenny

    mrkenny Former Member

    412
    Sep 29, 2012
    maryland
    I've put together three that are close to yours. I used USACG wood and finished mine myself. I'm a finisher. Mine have Hayrides, Bakelites and Mag 7's. I bet it'll be great one.
     

    Attached Files:


  19. Vanzant

    Vanzant Tele-Afflicted

    May 18, 2013
    United States
    Thanks mrkenny, I sure hope so!! I've heard good things about these pickups...nice looking tele you got there!
     

  20. Vanzant

    Vanzant Tele-Afflicted

    May 18, 2013
    United States
    Going to throw this out there one more time before I move one...

    Shielding or No Shielding

    Right now I am thinking no, unless someone can change my mind. Thanks!
     

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