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My first Tele partscaster build, from Warmoth body/neck

Discussion in 'Tele Home Depot' started by RLee77, Jul 30, 2016.

  1. RLee77

    RLee77 Friend of Leo's

    May 15, 2016
    Silicon Valley
    Thanks for the great info, I'm definitely going to check out FP again and maybe experiment on some wood pieces; wish I'd thought to ask warmoth for a few scraps of korina from my body build.
     

  2. MM73

    MM73 Tele-Afflicted

    Age:
    45
    Feb 24, 2015
    South Lyon, MI
    The neck looks great, so no worries.

    That said, one catastrophe with water is enough to burn it into your soul that water has only one place in guitar work - decals. I'll never use water for wet sanding anything again.
     
    RLee77 likes this.

  3. RLee77

    RLee77 Friend of Leo's

    May 15, 2016
    Silicon Valley
    Thanks... what would you use instead of water for wet sanding shellac? I had thought about using something else, but wanted to avoid anything with a strong odor. In retrospect, it seems that I could have just sealed the tuner holes with one or two coats of shellac before sanding (or even coated them with paraffin for that matter).
     

  4. RickyRicardo

    RickyRicardo Friend of Leo's

    Mar 27, 2012
    Calgary, Alberta
    Mineral spirits.
     
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  5. MM73

    MM73 Tele-Afflicted

    Age:
    45
    Feb 24, 2015
    South Lyon, MI
    ^ +1

    I haven't wet sanded since my catastrophe, but mineral spirits or naptha were options I was considering.

    I liked the idea of water, 'cause I could do the sanding in the house. Its just not worth the risk of getting water into the wood tho. Sometimes you learn the hard way.

    That said, I think naptha is a bit "hotter" than mineral spirites, and evaporates faster...less risk to swelling wood maybe? I think either is safe for shellac. You probably already know this, but alcohol is the solvent for shellac...so don't use that!
     
    RLee77 likes this.

  6. RLee77

    RLee77 Friend of Leo's

    May 15, 2016
    Silicon Valley
    Thanks for the info; I had some mineral spirits on hand but went with water for the "no smell" reason. I'll try it next time.

    Now that the neck is done, it's time to start on that korina body. Hopefully I can do it justice.

    From advice I was given in another thread, I got some timbermate for grain filling. Should I do a seal coat with shellac before doing the grain fill, or is it better to apply the timbermate to bare wood? Or is it fine either way?
     

  7. RickyRicardo

    RickyRicardo Friend of Leo's

    Mar 27, 2012
    Calgary, Alberta
    Seal it or the grain filler gets sucked into the pores and you'll end up doing multiple applications. And you have to sand it back with each application and who likes sanding? Not me. Just a thin coat is all that's needed.
     
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  8. RLee77

    RLee77 Friend of Leo's

    May 15, 2016
    Silicon Valley
    So I've decided to assemble this tele using the original contoured body for now, until such time that I have the space and time to finish the uncontoured korina body.
    That means I'm about to bolt the neck to a body, something I've not done before. Any gotcha's I should be aware of? I know I might have to fiddle with things to get the strings exactly right later. This neck fits VERY snugly into the pocket.
    Also, the standard 4-hole neck plate came with this black hard plastic piece that the steel plate fits into, about 1/32" thick, between the steel plate and the wood… should I use that, or just go with the steel plate right to the wood body? I'd post a pic of it, but I know that you all know what I'm talking about.
     

  9. RickyRicardo

    RickyRicardo Friend of Leo's

    Mar 27, 2012
    Calgary, Alberta
    Dump the piece of plastic for the neck plate. You should have a little wiggle room to adjust the neck so the strings align down the side of the neck. Get some string or fishing line and run it through like a normal string on both E's. Adjust The neck to where you want it and mark your first screwhole. Drill accordingly and do each hole one at a time. Slight pressure on the neck moves it quite a bit so have a tight neck pocket may not be a problem. If its too tight then you may have to sand the neck pocket a touch. Make sure there's no finish in there.
     
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  10. kafka

    kafka Tele-Holic

    806
    Oct 18, 2013
    Maryland
    That's a gorgeous French polish you have going on that neck. I've only done some test pieces on maple, but I found it very easy and forgiving, once you get the rhythm down.
     
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  11. RLee77

    RLee77 Friend of Leo's

    May 15, 2016
    Silicon Valley
    Thanks for the tips, neck is now mounted, went on very nicely. The holes were drilled already by warmoth, so I may end up adjusting tilt later when the strings go on. Now I'm working on getting the body hardware all mounted, and the question now is, black or white pickguard?

    IMG_0513.JPG IMG_0514.JPG
     
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  12. Loudog99

    Loudog99 Tele-Holic

    547
    Jul 29, 2009
    Howell, NJ
    With rosewood I always choose white or parchment. Black pickguards look better to me with maple necks.
     
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  13. tfarny

    tfarny Tele-Afflicted

    Sep 4, 2008
    Hudson Valley, NY
    Wow, this is a great thread! I've done a bunch of Warmoth builds and finished in a variety of ways, never shellac or french polish though. In fact I would not ever finish a neck that didn't need one for stability; I would have left the roasted maple unfinished. my #1 has an unfinished Canary neck that is the best thing ever. Nothing like raw wood in the hand. If I were you (and I'm not, I don't have the patience you do, obviously) I would do a basic grain fill and spray can clear gloss nitro finish on the Korina body. It's a classic and beautiful approach, and a LOT less work than what you have been going through.
    I'm not sure what you gain by the super-fine sanding; above 800 or so I can't see the benefit at all.

    I would also note that you can get a really excellent finish with a variety of other super-simple approaches (for next time). My #2 guitar is a Warmoth strat, the flame maple neck was done in a simple home depot wipe-on satin poly finish that looks great, feels smooth, plays great. I think I did a tiny bit of initial sanding and one coat of poly in about ten minutes, then allowed a few days dry time. Is functionally and aesthetically the same as anything Fender will ever make, and I'm not sure what another finish would actually do to improve the guitar.

    Short version: You are doing awesome work and have the patience of a saint. There are easier ways if you are interested. Congrats on a soon-to-be-awesome tele.
     
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  14. RLee77

    RLee77 Friend of Leo's

    May 15, 2016
    Silicon Valley
    Just discovered an unexpected problem while test-fitting the neck pickup. I had thought I was being clever when I ordered the warmoth body with a humbucker neck route, giving myself the option of easily converting to a neck humbucker if I didn't care for the tele neck pickup, or felt like experimenting. But I didn't realize that a tele pickup *does not* fit in a humbucker route if you want it in the standard location close to the neck, where a tele pickguard is slotted. Doh.
    So I have several options here, but really only one if I want the standard location -- I'm going to have to dremel/grind away the inner corners of the humbucker route to allow the flanges of the tele single coil to fit when mounted in a normal pickguard.
    Other options:
    - put in a neck humbucker (or bucker-sized P90) straightaway, both of which I have
    - mount the tele pickup 1/4" farther away from the neck, so it fits more in the center of the route. This would also require making a custom pickguard, so not keen on that.

    Since I am determined to build a classic tele to start with, I guess I'm going to be grinding out some wood. Lesson learned. Hopefully I can avoid making an ugly mess of it. Don't have to remove much, at least.

    There is of course a 4th option… make this tele a neck humbucker only and build another specifically for a tele neck pickup… hmm. My Gibson P94 looks terribly sexy in that neck route.:cool:
     
    Last edited: May 2, 2017

  15. Barncaster

    Barncaster Doctor of Teleocity

    You might want to consider a very low wind PAF style pup for the neck. They can be made to sing like huge single coils. PM me if you want to discuss a recipe.
    Rob
     
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  16. jwshuck71

    jwshuck71 TDPRI Member

    22
    Aug 6, 2016
    OKC, OK

    I just started a very similar build on a rear-route chambered T and am also really having trouble threading the cloth wires from the neck pickup.

    I’ll try this. Thx!
     
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  17. jwshuck71

    jwshuck71 TDPRI Member

    22
    Aug 6, 2016
    OKC, OK
    I've been working on guitars for 25+ years, 10 as a repairman in a mid-sized guitar shop, and i've never had this much trouble getting a wire path pulled. i've tried thin hanger wire, weed trimmer line, pipe cleaner and all to no avail. it's driving me a little batty cause i can't proceed with the rest of the completion of the guitar until i get the neck pick up in.
     

  18. RLee77

    RLee77 Friend of Leo's

    May 15, 2016
    Silicon Valley
    I found the abrasive cord to work really well; in my case the channel was large enough to accommodate the wires, but just had some edges that needed rounding. After using the abrasive cord, I attached the wires to a single long wire, pushed the single through, then pulled the other wires along with it.
     

  19. guitarbuilder

    guitarbuilder Doctor of Teleocity Ad Free Member

    Mar 30, 2003
    Ontario County
    I generally use solid gauge insulated copper hook up wire and tape the pickup wire to the end of it. It's pretty thin yet flexible, but rigid a bit too.
     

  20. GearHund

    GearHund Tele-Meister Silver Supporter

    462
    Apr 9, 2008
    East, Tx
    Came back to this thread and you decided to go with the Swamp Ash body. It looks great, but I was hoping see that sweet neck on the korina body.

    FYI - (for your next build) - I used "Aqua Coat Clear Wood Grain Filler" and TruOil on a korina (black limba) top and it came out with great looking grain.
     

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