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

Snakehead Esquire build

Discussion in 'Tele Home Depot' started by TenaciousP, Jul 9, 2016.

  1. TenaciousP

    TenaciousP Tele-Meister

    370
    Apr 1, 2016
    Arkansas
    Hi everyone,

    Since my Les Paul build is moving kinda slow right now, I thought I'd contribute some Tele style content to the forum. It's the one in my avatar pic that I completed back in March. It took me about a year to complete. I think I'll post the completed pics up front followed by the build pics.

    Also, let me apologize right now for the quality of some of the pics. None of these pics were intended for public display. All of them are cell phone pics but some were taken with a phone with a scratchy lens.

    Aaahrg!!! And now my phone is not letting me upload any pics.:mad:

    Please stand by.
     

  2. TenaciousP

    TenaciousP Tele-Meister

    370
    Apr 1, 2016
    Arkansas
    Well, this is embarrassing.
    Having technical difficulties.
    I'll come back to this thread shortly. :(
     

  3. smile-4-me

    smile-4-me Tele-Meister

    107
    Apr 15, 2011
    Arkansas

  4. TenaciousP

    TenaciousP Tele-Meister

    370
    Apr 1, 2016
    Arkansas
    Ok, sorry everyone for the false start yesterday. I'm not able to use my computer right now so I'm having to do this with my phone and it doesn't work as smoothly as I hoped. Anyhow, the technical difficulties have been resolved!

    So here is the finished guitar.
    image.jpg

    image.jpg

    image.jpg

    The neck is "plain" maple but it has a pleasant subtle flame to it.

    image.jpg

    Fabricated my own bridge plate and wound my own pickup.

    image.jpg

    I'll start posting the build pics shortly.
     
    Shango66, Colors, src9000 and 4 others like this.

  5. TenaciousP

    TenaciousP Tele-Meister

    370
    Apr 1, 2016
    Arkansas
    So let's go back to the beginning. Since I wanted this to be a reasonably accurate replica, I decided to make my own bridge, control and neck plates.


    image.jpg


    image.jpg

    image.jpg

    image.jpg
     

    Attached Files:


  6. R. Stratenstein

    R. Stratenstein Doctor of Teleocity Silver Supporter

    Aug 3, 2010
    Loganville, Ga.
    Impressive fab on the bridge so far. Do you have a bending brake and other metal shop tools?
     

  7. TenaciousP

    TenaciousP Tele-Meister

    370
    Apr 1, 2016
    Arkansas
    A few more metal parts pics.

    image.jpg

    image.jpg

    image.jpg

    image.jpg
     
    jayyj likes this.

  8. TenaciousP

    TenaciousP Tele-Meister

    370
    Apr 1, 2016
    Arkansas
    No. No metal working tools. I found a block of steel that was exactly the bridge inside width. I sandwiched the flat bridge plate between it and another piece of steel in my vice and simply hammered the sides and back of the bridge plate over. Since I never intended to post any of this, I didn't take many detailed pics of my fabricating processes.
     

  9. TenaciousP

    TenaciousP Tele-Meister

    370
    Apr 1, 2016
    Arkansas
    As far as fabricating goes, I laid out all of the holes on each piece and marked them with a center punch and drilled with my drill press. For the pickup cut out, I used a hole saw in the drill press to cut a series of holes and cut the areas in between out with my dremel with a cutting wheel on it. I cleaned it all up with some files.
     
    Last edited: Jul 10, 2016

  10. HairyChapter

    HairyChapter TDPRI Member

    Age:
    36
    46
    Feb 11, 2014
    Göteborg, Sweden
    Not much are plain about this build... Really nice. Specially impressed by the fact that you make you own hardware
     
    TenaciousP likes this.

  11. ndeli55

    ndeli55 Tele-Afflicted

    Age:
    33
    May 12, 2008
    oklahoma
    I'm diggin that bridge so hard
     
    TenaciousP likes this.

  12. Asmith

    Asmith Friend of Leo's Ad Free Member

    Age:
    21
    Nov 27, 2014
    Morley, England
    lovely stuff, great effort to get that accuracy
     
    TenaciousP likes this.

  13. TenaciousP

    TenaciousP Tele-Meister

    370
    Apr 1, 2016
    Arkansas
    Thanks everyone. It was an interesting process to make the metal parts. I was a bit skeptical of how well the parts would come out. But after reading through Adirondak5's snakehead build many times and seeing how he fabricated
    and plated his own parts, I was inspired to try it myself.
     

  14. S00NERMAN

    S00NERMAN Tele-Meister

    261
    Jan 7, 2016
    Pratt,KS
    Very impressive so far, hope there is more to come......
     

  15. TenaciousP

    TenaciousP Tele-Meister

    370
    Apr 1, 2016
    Arkansas
    One mistake I feel like I made was scribing lines into the metal for locating the holes. I found them very difficult to get rid of. I had to do a lot of sanding. But then I had to get rid if the sanding scratches before plating. I think I went up to 2000 grit. Then polished on a buffing wheel. I now know that when it comes to plating parts, the polishing and prep work before plating is the most important part of the process.

    Once I had the parts polished, I cleaned them with some solvent (lacquer thinner if I remember correctly) then with an acid based cleaner called Cameo.

    I purchased two quarts of nickel plating solution, a nickel anode and a cheap variable DC power supply off eBay.

    image.jpg

    Here is a test sample plate. It worked!

    image.jpg

    Here is the neck plate in the solution. The anode is just off camera, but you can see the part side of the circuit is connected to the power supply through the copper wire hook suspended by a wood stick.

    image.jpg

    Below is the end result! The texture that appears on the part is actually the reflection of the ceiling texture in my kitchen. That's where I do all my chemical experiments. ;)

    image.jpg

    Apparently I didn't take any pics of the bridge and control plate after plating. They were done with the same process. I ran each part for about 20 minutes or so at low voltage. I tried to keep it low enough that the part didn't bubble very much. I read that low voltage produces a better quality plate.
     
    Shango66, jwilson, AAT65 and 2 others like this.

  16. TRexF16

    TRexF16 Friend of Leo's

    Apr 4, 2011
    Tucson
    That is seriously cool.
    Rex
     
    crazydave911 likes this.

  17. TenaciousP

    TenaciousP Tele-Meister

    370
    Apr 1, 2016
    Arkansas
    Around the same time as fabricating the metal parts, I made the pickguard. It's made of 1/6" Garolite which I know most blackguard style builders out there are familiar with. It was lacquered later on when I sprayed the body and neck.

    image.jpg

    Having built another Tele a few years back, I felt like the wood working part of this build would be fairly easy. And it was in comparison to my current LP build:). I knew the metal parts would be the hard part. So I did those first. Being satisfied with how they turned out, it was time to move on to the body. The body is 3 piece white pine.

    Band sawed to shape.
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    Template screwed in place.
    image.jpg

    Routed flush with 1/4" spiral bit. The bit is only a 1" cut length so I had to remove the template and make a second pass to cut the last 1/2" or so.
    image.jpg

    image.jpg

    I was really impressed with the spiral cut bit. No tear out or burn marks like I usually get from a straight flute bit. I may have to look for a longer spiral bit with a bearing on the end since I have a 1/2" router now.
     
    Captain Nutslot likes this.

  18. RickyRicardo

    RickyRicardo Friend of Leo's

    Mar 27, 2012
    Calgary, Alberta
    I believe a lot of us use the Whiteside RFT5200 bit. I have one and it's great.
     

  19. TenaciousP

    TenaciousP Tele-Meister

    370
    Apr 1, 2016
    Arkansas
    Yes! I just googled that bit. That is just what I'd like to get. The local specialty wood place that I buy from carries Whiteside bits. I may see if they have that bit the next time I go in there. I thought about buying one when I started my LP build but I went the cheap way and just spindle sanded it.
     

  20. RickyRicardo

    RickyRicardo Friend of Leo's

    Mar 27, 2012
    Calgary, Alberta
    The other one to look for is the CMT 191.507.11B and is very similar.
     

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