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Stew-Mac Tele kit???

Discussion in 'Tele Home Depot' started by TreborHCablekriz, Oct 11, 2018.

  1. TreborHCablekriz

    TreborHCablekriz TDPRI Member

    Age:
    44
    4
    Oct 10, 2018
    Brighton Colorado
    Does anyone have any experience with the Stew-Mac Tele build kit. The price seems great to cit my teeth on my 1st build. It appears to have everything needed. I realize the hardware is probably cheap and not of high quality but....once again. For learning purposes I like it. Any thoughts?
     
    Rospo likes this.
  2. RodeoTex

    RodeoTex Poster Extraordinaire

    Sep 14, 2005
    Nueces Strip
    Lots of quality Tele kits on eBay for a lot less money.
    Building a Tele isn't rocket surgery.
     
  3. TNO

    TNO Friend of Leo's

    Apr 25, 2003
    NC-USA
    For me most of the incentive to build up a partscaster is choosing the parts you want.
     
    Tonetele likes this.
  4. bender66

    bender66 Poster Extraordinaire

    Jan 18, 2010
    on my bike
    Those Stewmac kits don't look like anything special for the price.
     
  5. TreborHCablekriz

    TreborHCablekriz TDPRI Member

    Age:
    44
    4
    Oct 10, 2018
    Brighton Colorado
    Thank you for the information. The biggest (only) difference I've seen between this kit and others is this one has a mohagany body.
     

    Attached Files:

  6. John Nicholas

    John Nicholas Tele-Afflicted

    Jun 26, 2014
    Poughkeepsie, NY
    I have not purchased this kit.

    But have a few points to make, the two less expensive kits listed above have Basswood ($77) and Swamp Ash ($110.) which certainly makes a difference in price. Mahogany is significantly more expensive and is a beautiful wood for a body.

    If you have any issue with any component on the Stew Mac kit, they will stand behind it and ship out another part asap. No questions asked. Why is this important? There are so many things that can go wrong with a kit that is mass produced and parts basically thrown into a box.

    If there is an issue with routing or the neck, it will be far easier to get the part replaced at Stew Mac.

    The other point is that on the Stew Mac page there are reviews of their kits from people who have actually built the kits. To me this would be important.

    While you may not have any issues with the less expensive kits, and since this is your first build having a good quality kit to start with could be an advantage.

    In building from scratch, there are many "mistakes" and other issues that come up and a part of building is correcting these issues as you go along. And because of Stew Mac's customer service, you could call them if you have a question. That certainly has a value.

    I'd read those reviews and then make your decision.

    https://www.stewmac.com/Materials_a.../Guitar_Kits/T-Style_Electric_Guitar_Kit.html
     
  7. TreborHCablekriz

    TreborHCablekriz TDPRI Member

    Age:
    44
    4
    Oct 10, 2018
    Brighton Colorado
    Good customer service is priceless.
     
  8. Urshurak776

    Urshurak776 Tele-Meister

    355
    Jul 2, 2004
    Charlotte
    I guess it depends on how much $$$ the OP wants to spend. He stated his goal was to learn on his first build and to basically cut his teeth. For me, i would go with the swamp ash kit. $109 isnt too bad to learn on. Each to his own.
     
  9. Tonetele

    Tonetele Friend of Leo's

    Jun 2, 2009
    South Australia
    There are plenty of kits out there that have all the parts including pickups.
    No Tele building is quite easy- I've built several.
    If you buy the Stewmac kit you need to add all the pots, switches, one ( or 2 caps), alll parts electric PLUS the pickups ( stewmac offer better quality types). Their service is great and the neck pocket and neck should fit perfectly. It's up to you and your budget.
    When I build a partscaster I usually buy $650 on parts ( plus postage) because I know what parts are good. Yet I don't have to go the Warmoth route-too expensive.
    It is your call. If it was my first build, I'd go the stewmac, as their service and products are good/excellent.
     
    Old Deaf Roadie and Urshurak776 like this.
  10. bgmacaw

    bgmacaw Tele-Afflicted

    Feb 11, 2006
    Near Athens GA USA
    I recently built a Mosrite style kit from TheFretwire.com that came out quite good. They also have Tele kits that are probably similar to the StewMac kit but less expensive.

    Whatever kit you go with, remember you'll need tools, materials and improved parts to get the best out of it.

    Nut and fret files should be on your shopping list. It is a given that the nut and frets will need work. Painting and finishing supplies can add up as well.

    Stock tuners are usually good enough, better than what you get on a Squier Bullet.

    Electronics are one area where they cut cost so plan to spend $30 or so for better pots, caps jack and switch. Pickups often could be better since they're usually on the very cheap side. But, give them a try first, they might surprise you.
     
    Tonetele likes this.
  11. guitarbuilder

    guitarbuilder Doctor of Teleocity Ad Free Member

    Mar 30, 2003
    Ontario County
    To the OP. Stewmac is a great place to buy guitar building related stuff. That kit is on sale now for 225 plus shipping costs. If it were me, I'd at least look on ebay for a Fender licensed allparts neck and a decent body to go with it. The rest of the parts ( bridge, wired control plate, pickguard, neck plate, tuners, and pickups) can be had from China for about 50 dollars ( I'm making this number up...It could be more or less) shipped. The neck being the most important component to the instrument is where you should be spending your money. If you get a body from a reputable source then a fender licensed body should fit fine.

    This way you can get a vintage style bridge too, which to me is a plus. This way you'll have to do some drilling, sanding, finishing, maybe a roundover, and assembly. You'll end with a Fender shaped peghead too. Down the road any and all of these parts can be swapped out or upgraded too. Oh...and this is an alder body. So for a bit more you get the higher quality and desirable neck, with the traditional body wood that accommodates the vintage bridge.


    Just something to think about.

    And it will cost less than $290 shipped.

    http://rover.ebay.com/rover/1/711-5...0001&campid=5338148343&icep_item=142824173004


    http://rover.ebay.com/rover/1/711-5...0001&campid=5338148343&icep_item=113225828868


    http://rover.ebay.com/rover/1/711-5...0001&campid=5338148343&icep_item=253234413461


    http://rover.ebay.com/rover/1/711-5...0001&campid=5338148343&icep_item=323451355309





    http://rover.ebay.com/rover/1/711-5...0001&campid=5338148343&icep_item=202102324137


    http://rover.ebay.com/rover/1/711-5...0001&campid=5338148343&icep_item=292317151967


    http://rover.ebay.com/rover/1/711-5...0001&campid=5338148343&icep_item=392002817244


    http://rover.ebay.com/rover/1/711-5...0001&campid=5338148343&icep_item=292702185390


    http://rover.ebay.com/rover/1/711-5...0001&campid=5338148343&icep_item=263838143418


    http://rover.ebay.com/rover/1/711-5...0001&campid=5338148343&icep_item=302806188467


    http://rover.ebay.com/rover/1/711-5...0001&campid=5338148343&icep_item=112166613987
     
    Last edited: Oct 12, 2018
  12. Billnchristy

    Billnchristy Tele-Holic

    893
    Sep 21, 2017
    Georgia
    GFS is a good choice too, build your own kit.
     
  13. TreborHCablekriz

    TreborHCablekriz TDPRI Member

    Age:
    44
    4
    Oct 10, 2018
    Brighton Colorado
    Lots of good info. Thanks!
    I'm getting stoked about this. From what I've been hearing it sounds like I may be able to accomplish something a bit "finer" out of the gate. My current favorite guitar in my pile is a Les Paul. I love mohagany. I think the Stew-Mac may be the way to go.
     
  14. beninma

    beninma Tele-Afflicted Ad Free Member

    Age:
    41
    Mar 17, 2017
    Massachusetts
    The pots, switches, wiring, output jack, etc.. that Stewmac ships out are nice quality.

    I put them in my Telecaster and all of them except maybe the pots were a significant upgrade over what Fender had put in my guitar.

    If it was me for my first (I've never done one) I'd get the Stewmac one just for the customer service and help they can provide, although it'd be cool if they had an Ash/Alder body kit since Mahogany is expensive and is not a traditional Telecaster body wood anyway. They're quite good and helpful whereas for all I know with Ebay it's "as-is/no-returns/no-refunds/no-exchanges/no-instructions/no-support."

    Lots of people with experience saying "It's easy", but for someone without significant wood working experience shaping the headstock alone looks like a tough job.

    I'd have to go get a router setup just to do the headstock (I have one of the nicer dremel setups but I doubt it's good enough for this).. pretty sure these kits all come out more expensive than a Squier or MIM and possibly more expensive than a lower end MIA Fender unless you've already got the whole workshop setup.
     
  15. yelemusic

    yelemusic TDPRI Member

    60
    Oct 21, 2012
    I’d get a really cheap one as a test run, because mistakes are going to happen! You’ll learn a lot for the next build. Sure, in the end you’d spend a little more money, but you’ll end up with a better guitar as well (the second one, that is)! Nothing worse than screwing up expensive, nice parts!
    Before I built my first „better“ Les Paul, I built a really cheap LP, and I’m glad I did. The second one turned out great!
     
  16. bgmacaw

    bgmacaw Tele-Afflicted

    Feb 11, 2006
    Near Athens GA USA
    It's actually not as hard as it looks, it just takes some practice. I'd recommend honing your technique on some scrap wood first, then do the guitar.

    For my cigar box guitar builds I shape them using a scroll saw followed by sanding to finish it out.
     
    John Nicholas likes this.
  17. guitarbuilder

    guitarbuilder Doctor of Teleocity Ad Free Member

    Mar 30, 2003
    Ontario County

    You make a simple design and cut it using a coping saw assuming you don't have a scroll saw or bandsaw. That gets followed by some abrasive paper.
     
  18. mefgames

    mefgames Tele-Afflicted

    Oct 31, 2010
    North Bay, Ca
    I've built all my own guitars from raw wood, neck included, but I've always been curious about the quality of these kits. This one looked pretty decent so I took a chance and ordered it. I have Grand-kids that are always wanting to play mine, so I wouldn't mind them having a go at this one.
    I will report back and let you all know my thoughts on this kit.
     
    Urshurak776 likes this.
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