Breaking the bank/back -> Doubleneck

JohnnyThul

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Back in the 70's a friend of mine had one of these Carvin 6 string/bass doublenecks. I could never think of a practical application for that configuration. The guitar was very well made, and heavier than words can describe. The hardshell case that came with it could have been used as a kitchen table if you added legs to it.

Stock Photo View attachment 985959
The headstock shape and inlays remind me on Hofner guitars. I once had a Les Paul copy from them from the early 70's, and it featured the exact same headstock shape and inlays. Maybe there is a connection?
 

JohnnyThul

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Today I did some final refinements on the neck profiles and heels.
I decided to make the 12 string neck a little thinner but still beefy enough for my taste, as I like big necks.




IMG_20220526_150131.jpg


Then I checked roughly my centerlines for each neck, if the headstocks will be distanced enough for comfortable tuning.

IMG_20220526_150459.jpg


Seems to work.

Then a rough layout of the bridges.

IMG_20220526_150424.jpg


Looks good as well!

Now I have some final sanding to do on the body outline, and then I think I can do the neck pockets on the weekend.

I also checkz some videos on YouTube how to build a guitar case. That looked perfectly doable, so I think, I will give it a try! Does anybody know, what kind of radius the G&G cases have? They are the best looking cases in my opinion.
 

JohnnyThul

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Blood, sweat and tears....well, no tears, but bloodshed today. Why? Because I sometimes am too much in a hurry and stop thinking.
Let this be a warning to all of you working with Powertools, always be mindful, when using these machines!
Today I was fitting the necks, and after making the first neck pocket, I wanted to round off the sharp edges of the neck heel, so it would fit in the pocket. I was in a hurry and did not mount the spindle sander safe to the workbench, but just put it on the floor. And then, while I just wanted to sand off the corners, one of my gloves ( yes,I know....gloves...) was catched by the spindle, and it strangled my left wrist and the machine bumped on my legs two times quite hefty. It took a few seconds to push the power switch and that was enough for some damage done.
But I was damn lucky, nothing serious injured, but the pants are torn and drenched in blood, but it looks worse, than it is, fortunately.
It's the first time something like that happened to me in 6 years, but it should not have happened, as this was just completely mindless doing from my side.

So guys, always be careful, anytime when working with machines,no one is invulnerable.

But after the pain settled and I checked the wounds, I did some cussing, cleaned the wounds and put on a few band aids.

And then back to work, although not in the best mood.

But the mood got better after aligning the sixstring neck and routing the first pocket, because, I hit a channel I routed in the position of the neck pickups,something, I wasn't too sure,if I did. Well,this saves me a lot of trouble, nice!
And checking fitment of the first neck:

IMG_20220528_150613.jpg

Perfect! Angle is great, a little clearance over the bridge, I am happy!

Off to the second neck, same procedure, although, I had to make sure the angles are correct to the first neck, so it won't look crooked. Took a little longer but was easier than expected.

Pockets:
IMG_20220528_160353_1.jpg
IMG_20220528_160338.jpg


And the part I was waiting for a long time, putting both necks in. I have to admit, I am a little proud so far of the outcome. Hopefully all will work out smooth til the end.
IMG_20220528_160149.jpg
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It's heavy 😃 But just holding it in my hands with the dry fitted necks, it feels amazing!

Tomorrow I'll try to do the neck pickup routings and then I can glue in the necks.

I thinned the headstocks to final thickness and sanded the body sides, may have to do some sanding on the headstocks before gluing, as long as I have good access to them.

Now I will drink a coffee and then print some big lettered advices for my workshop to remind me,to be always careful and think twice,before using machines.
 

AAT65

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I was in a hurry and did not mount the spindle sander safe to the workbench, but just put it on the floor. And then, while I just wanted to sand off the corners, one of my gloves ( yes,I know....gloves...) was catched by the spindle, and it strangled my left wrist and the machine bumped on my legs two times quite hefty. It took a few seconds to push the power switch and that was enough for some damage done.
I wonder how many power tool accident stories start with "I was in a hurry"! Anyway glad the damage wasn't any worse -- and that it hasn't put you off working on this great project (which is looking great btw).
 

JohnnyThul

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Hm, I just was noticed, that the Switchcraft DPDT toggle will take at least 6 weeks to arrive here. That's a little bummer.

Has anybody a recommendation for a sturdy and reliable DPDT 3 way toggle which I can use instead? Can be pricey, quality is more important.
And it would be cool, if the thread on the switch may be long enough to fit easily in a carved top.
 

Freeman Keller

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I used three of the Switchcraft three way toggles (Gibson style) for mine, one for each neck to select neck or bridge or both pickups, one to select 6 or 12 string necks or both. As I recall I used the short version which have 11/32 of thread works nicely on a carved top. StewMac has them in stock, don't know what shipping to Germany would be.

While you wait, however, you could wire it so both pups are on and both necks are on, that way you could be playing while you wait.
 

crazydave911

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I know there used to be an electronics seller in the UK, my stepbrother used them. All kinds of Gibsonish stuff. Try Google, it's a poor guys best friend 😁
 

crazydave911

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I know there used to be an electronics seller in the UK, my stepbrother used them. All kinds of Gibsonish stuff. Try Google, it's a poor guys best friend 😁
 

JohnnyThul

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Thanks for the suggestions! Well, I can get simple Switchcraft toggles pretty easy here from multiple suppliers. But this rather special DPDT version seems to be rare these days here.
I checked the UK as well, and companies list this toggle,but they are not in stock, wherever I looked.
I think what Freeman suggested is my best bet to not lose time, just taking a standard toggle and replace, once the other is available.

Someone told me when I started building guitars, that you should have all your parts ready, before you start. Guess he was right. Shame I love chaos 🙂
 

JohnnyThul

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Low and behold, it seems the place I ordered the DPDT toggle now found one and can ship today! Perfect!

As I was at a concert last night and had a few beers, I didn't feel up to use the router today, especially after the incident from last weekend.

So I decided to do a jackplate, to have at least done something today. I will save the routing session for tomorrow, when I am perfectly fit again.

The jackplate:
IMG_20220603_132305.jpg
IMG_20220603_132258.jpg
 

crazydave911

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Low and behold, it seems the place I ordered the DPDT toggle now found one and can ship today! Perfect!

As I was at a concert last night and had a few beers, I didn't feel up to use the router today, especially after the incident from last weekend.

So I decided to do a jackplate, to have at least done something today. I will save the routing session for tomorrow, when I am perfectly fit again.

The jackplate: View attachment 990228 View attachment 990229
I've made many kinda like those with a grooved yardstick. Kinda rare these days, mostly printed 😥
 

JohnnyThul

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Today I marked the bridge and tailpiece locations and routed the bridge pickup cavities. Again I found chambering right under the bridge pickups🙂 Seems I did better planning, than expected.
But: even when I thought I had all exotic sizes available regarding drill bits for guitar building, I have not. I am missing a 1/2" centered drill bit for the bushing of the wraparound bridge. So, this will have to wait until next week.
The bushings in the 12 string side were a pain as well to get them fit, don't know, what's up with these.
And I drilled the holes for the M4 studs for the 12 string ABR and for some reason I first used a 4mm drill bit....yeah,well, I can fix that, but really, I don't know, what was on my mind.
Otherwise I am happy in regards to geometry, looks pretty even and it measures all nice, so, this should work.

IMG_20220604_154748.jpg


And this arrived today, so I can have some more fun tomorrow:
IMG_20220604_161713.jpg


I had some spare deep toggle nuts and they fit, pretty cool!
 

crazydave911

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Hi Dave,

I am not sure I understand correctly, you made such jackplates as well by using a yardstick? Sounds cool, you have any photos?
I MAY have one left, not pretty as yours of course but hey, enough of that lol
Not sure of your age, but they USED to make very nice steel then aluminum yardsticks with the grooves pressed into them and sometimes the numbers but they were usually printed and wore off. When my dad died he left me a couple I used as a flat edge (yes they were thick and flat) . Well one day I was brazing a guy's Dobro and carelessly burned one end of one. Being mad and sad I stuck to dad's motto, "Never waste anything" and cut the rest up in 2.5" lengths and drilled a 3/8" center hole for jackplate blanks 🙂. And over the years (in special circumstances) used them all but one. I'll try to find it but no promises lol
 

Lone_Poor_Boy

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I looked back at my notes and mine apparently weighed in at just under 17 pounds. I can only play it sitting down and it is an ergonometric nightmare. As I said in the build thread, I only built it because my son said he wanted one. Its been two years now (I think) - I doubt that he has played it much at all. The fun for me was in the building

View attachment 977344

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View attachment 977347

A few random thought that might be helpful. Use mini tuners on the twelve string neck, you want to make it as slight as possible. There is no reason to have the body joint any higher that 16, you won't be playing up there. Select your 12 string hardware carefully - its pretty limited. I was able to make mine fit in a Gibson EDS case - that saved a heck of a lot of work and expense.

It would be possible to only have one tone and volume pot - I would still suggest the three switches. When you are in the center of each you have all the pups working, but there is a definite drop in overall volume - I thought it sounded much better to play one neck or the other and have the option of individual volume for each pickup.

Have fun
What a wicked beauty!
 

JohnnyThul

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I MAY have one left, not pretty as yours of course but hey, enough of that lol
Not sure of your age, but they USED to make very nice steel then aluminum yardsticks with the grooves pressed into them and sometimes the numbers but they were usually printed and wore off. When my dad died he left me a couple I used as a flat edge (yes they were thick and flat) . Well one day I was brazing a guy's Dobro and carelessly burned one end of one. Being mad and sad I stuck to dad's motto, "Never waste anything" and cut the rest up in 2.5" lengths and drilled a 3/8" center hole for jackplate blanks 🙂. And over the years (in special circumstances) used them all but one. I'll try to find it but no promises lol
Ah,now I get it, that sounds like a fabulous idea!
Turning 40 this year, so, I know rulers with grooves, but no metal ones, at least not from school😉
But I will ask my father, he is a hoarder of old stuff,maybe he has something that might be cool to be turned into jackplates.
 




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