Tele-Paul-Les-Caster builds

Discussion in 'Tele Home Depot' started by Muzikp, Feb 26, 2012.

  1. Muzikp

    Muzikp Friend of Leo's

    Posts:
    3,271
    Joined:
    Nov 5, 2010
    Location:
    Sacramento
    Tele-Paul-Les-Caster, I don't know who coined the name I read it somewhere on this forum, but I like it and it nicely describes these builds.

    I’ve been playing my Jagster a lot lately and really enjoying the humbuckers and the pickup selector switch location.
    [​IMG]

    But I really prefer the tele shape much more than the Jaguar shape. So now the idea is to marry this Jagster with a Tele and live happy…until I decide something else would be even better :D.

    These will be top bound only with a medium round over on the back, until I change my mind. Back and sides will be a dark reddish mahogany color and I haven’t decided what color I will tint the tops yet.

    My Dad builds acoustic guitars and has made me several including a really nice 12 string but I’ve never made him an electric. So I thought I might as well make two of these while I’m at it.

    First I picked up a really nice piece of Sapele, I guess it’s a sort of mahogany, hopefully the wood experts chime in.

    [​IMG]

    It’s the long one in the middle. It’s a little on the heavy side so these will need to be chambered.

    I also have a bunch of unknown wood that has nice grain and even some curl that will make really nice tops for these.

    [​IMG]

    It’s the shorter pieces on the right. I don’t have a re-saw saw so I have to do some actual labor to saw these pieces into tops. First I run them through the table saw as deep as the blade will go.

    [​IMG]

    Then I take the table, guide blocks and some protective pieces off my bandsaw to get the maximum exposed section of blade I can get. It looks like this and is sorta scary to use in this configuration

    [​IMG]

    Once the saw is apart I run the tops through like so (sorry this is a terrible picture) but you get the idea.

    [​IMG]

    I don’t own a 13” planer…yet, so once they are all sliced, I carefully run a hand held Ryobi planer over the tall middle part that is left behind. The bandsaw blade is much thinner than the table saw blade so I’m left with a ridge like a Firebird has, only my ridge is not cool like a Firebird. Once I plane down the middle strip all that’s left is lots and lots of sanding. But in the end I ended up with 6 really nice looking book matched tops.

    [​IMG]

    Here’s the one I selected for my Dad’s top

    [​IMG]

    These are actually pretty large and I won’t need the area with the knot in it.
    And here is the one I selected for mine.

    [​IMG]

    I set those aside for a while to start working on the bodies. Here are two of the blanks glued up.

    [​IMG]

    And truth be told I had enough for three so I figured might as well and threw this one in the clamps.

    [​IMG]

    Roughed them out on the band saw. I just put a new blade and some poly-urethane tires on my band saw and I was able to cut these out like this

    [​IMG]

    With my old blade I had to make 50+ relief cuts and fight all the way through the process.

    Sanded close to the line with the ROSS and that's where I’m at on the bodies for now.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    I already thinned down the one in the middle, the sapele board I bought was over 2” thick. If I was smart I would have done the same table saw, band saw routine and made a few tops but I didn’t think about that until after I had glued the two piece body blanks together. Oh well.

    I’m also working on the necks for these. My brother had given me some maple, enough to make 6 necks out of. Here’s the four I’m working on now. These are all 1 piece builds, I’ve never made a 2 piece neck but I hear it’s easier.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    Nothing exciting to document on these neck builds. You can see my template and reference neck in this shot. I have a homemade fret slotting device so I’ll show that when I get to it.

    [​IMG]

    I’m afraid these will end up being slow builds because I will probably set these aside to try my hand at losing the challenge build. But I’m not the type to never finish these things so eventually I should have more to add here.

    Thoughts, suggestions and ideas are always welcome.
     
  2. PHawley

    PHawley Tele-Meister

    Posts:
    243
    Joined:
    Aug 2, 2011
    Location:
    Naperville, IL
    I have an idea if you haven't planed down the other 2 bodies to the 1.5" yet. If you mount the controls from the back (like a Les Paul), you will need a back cover. However, if you start with a piece of wood 1/2" thicker than you need, you can plane with a router and then go around the areas where the covers will be. Saw them off with a flush-cut saw and route them as covers. Viola! You have wooden back covers that match the grain so well that the only thing showing it's a cover are a few tiny screws.
     
  3. jipp

    jipp Friend of Leo's

    Posts:
    4,761
    Joined:
    Jan 1, 2012
    Location:
    apache junction az
    looking good. but the bandsaw setup scared me a little. i would of just used a hand saw. glad the blade did not break. cool project tho, im sure your dad would appreciate it. he must have some skill.. i look at acoustic builders in aww.. so much skill in making a acoustic it seems. but i guess like anything its all about starting.. and learning as you go.
    chris.
     
  4. Muzikp

    Muzikp Friend of Leo's

    Posts:
    3,271
    Joined:
    Nov 5, 2010
    Location:
    Sacramento
    That's a great...no brilliant idea. These will have the controls mounted from the back and perfectly matching covers would be awesome. Thanks for the tip, I'm going to try it.
     
  5. Muzikp

    Muzikp Friend of Leo's

    Posts:
    3,271
    Joined:
    Nov 5, 2010
    Location:
    Sacramento
    Yep the bandsaw in that configuration is not the most ideal setup, I keep my hands as far away as possible. I did one with a handsaw a few years ago and it took forever, I think I would still be cutting all six of these with a handsaw. With the new blade on the bandsaw these cut really quick with little effort. To me the table saw operation is actually more scary than the bandsaw.

    I agree on the acoustic builds, I'll leave that to him. Here's the 12 string he did for me. It sounds incredible.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
     
  6. OpenG Capo4

    OpenG Capo4 Friend of Leo's

    Posts:
    3,829
    Joined:
    Aug 4, 2010
    Location:
    Athens, GA
    I use pretty much the same technique for resawing my tops. I'm lucky enough not to need to take the table off my bandsaw to do it, my bandsaw will just barely clear a 6-3/4" board. But it doesn't have near enough power to saw through 6 3/4" of wood, so I use the table saw to do most of the cutting.

    I use a 13" planer to remove the middle sections, but when using thin pieces of figured lumber the planer likes to tear it out. So I'm planning on getting my hand plane professionally sharpened and just hand-planing the middles out.
     
  7. Muzikp

    Muzikp Friend of Leo's

    Posts:
    3,271
    Joined:
    Nov 5, 2010
    Location:
    Sacramento
    Yeah I agree, even if I had a 13" planer I don't think I would run the tops through it unless they were way over size. I'm pretty sure the snipe would be a problem on a thin top.

    I think these two boards I was re-sawing were just over 8" so that's why I had to take the table off. I suppose I could have trimmed them down first but I like having a little extra around the edges in case I mess up or need to take out an ugly spot that you didn't expect pops in the middle at the seam or something.
     
  8. Greg M

    Greg M Tele-Holic

    Posts:
    940
    Joined:
    Sep 4, 2003
    Location:
    Virginia
    Nice builds all around but I really like that 12-string. The binding and back are especially cool.
     
  9. Muzikp

    Muzikp Friend of Leo's

    Posts:
    3,271
    Joined:
    Nov 5, 2010
    Location:
    Sacramento
    Thanks to Mr. Hawley my arm hurts :lol:. Kidding... sort of.

    I liked the idea of perfectly matched grain for the rear covers but I'm not a big fan of my router sled and I didn't want to make a template for the two covers and deal with keeping them in place while doing the router sled.

    Here's what I did.

    I marked the cover locations on the backs, truth be told I marked them on the front first and luckily I caught my mistake before cutting.

    [​IMG]

    Then it was back to the table saw like so

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    Here's where my arm got sore

    [​IMG]

    The table saw blade didn't reach high enough to clear the cover so there was lots of sawing by hand.

    Then a vertical cut

    [​IMG]

    And now I'm left with material to make the covers and a massive mess to clean up on the backs of these two bodies.

    [​IMG]

    But I think it was worth it, the covers will look great.

    Thanks again PHawley.
     
  10. Muzikp

    Muzikp Friend of Leo's

    Posts:
    3,271
    Joined:
    Nov 5, 2010
    Location:
    Sacramento
    Thanks Greg. The wood my Dad used on the 12-string is spectacular. I've never seen binding that big before but I think it works well on this guitar.
     
  11. Muzikp

    Muzikp Friend of Leo's

    Posts:
    3,271
    Joined:
    Nov 5, 2010
    Location:
    Sacramento
    A few passes with this horribly crude and savage tool

    [​IMG]

    Then some time spent on my homemade thickness sander

    [​IMG]

    Start the shallow passes with the router on the sides, don't want any tear out now, that would be awful

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    Halfway through day two of working on these and I think they are ready to be chambered.

    [​IMG]
     
  12. Muzikp

    Muzikp Friend of Leo's

    Posts:
    3,271
    Joined:
    Nov 5, 2010
    Location:
    Sacramento
    I feel like a beaver

    [​IMG]
     
  13. kwerk

    kwerk Poster Extraordinaire

    Posts:
    5,100
    Joined:
    Feb 22, 2010
    Location:
    New Zealand
    Me too.

    Sorry, you kinda left that open.

    ;)
     
  14. Muzikp

    Muzikp Friend of Leo's

    Posts:
    3,271
    Joined:
    Nov 5, 2010
    Location:
    Sacramento
    :lol: I was wondering if that would end up in the gutter :D.
     
  15. Muzikp

    Muzikp Friend of Leo's

    Posts:
    3,271
    Joined:
    Nov 5, 2010
    Location:
    Sacramento
    I remember reading one of motor city's threads where he built 12 at one time. That's hardcore, doing three at once is really efficient but sometimes you feel like you are stuck on one task forever. Hogging those out on the drill press was a long haul.

    Anyway they are coming along nicely.

    [​IMG]
     
  16. JeffPBlues

    JeffPBlues Tele-Holic

    Posts:
    574
    Joined:
    Jul 31, 2011
    Location:
    Space Coast, Florida
    I look forward to seeing these finished! Nice work so far.
     
  17. Muzikp

    Muzikp Friend of Leo's

    Posts:
    3,271
    Joined:
    Nov 5, 2010
    Location:
    Sacramento
    Thanks. I'm looking forward to it also but there will be a 2 month interlude on these soon.
     
  18. Muzikp

    Muzikp Friend of Leo's

    Posts:
    3,271
    Joined:
    Nov 5, 2010
    Location:
    Sacramento
    This is an acceptable weight I suppose. I like them even lighter than that but these should still sustain and sound good with that dense mahogany.

    [​IMG]
     
  19. Engraver-60

    Engraver-60 Friend of Leo's

    Age:
    66
    Posts:
    3,499
    Joined:
    Jan 6, 2008
    Location:
    Brentwood, TN
    Very nice build thread. I especially like the beck removal part. With a hand saw nonetheless.
     
  20. crazygtr

    crazygtr TDPRI Member

    Posts:
    97
    Joined:
    Jan 6, 2010
    Location:
    PR
    subbed!
     
IMPORTANT: Treat everyone here with respect, no matter how difficult!
No sex, drug, political, religion or hate discussion permitted here.


  1. This site uses cookies to help personalise content, tailor your experience and to keep you logged in if you register.
    By continuing to use this site, you are consenting to our use of cookies.