'Building' a Danelectro 58 DC

Discussion in 'Tele Home Depot' started by Olav, Dec 14, 2010.

  1. Olav

    Olav Tele-Afflicted

    Age:
    52
    Posts:
    1,147
    Joined:
    Apr 2, 2010
    Location:
    HLMRmeer
    I have long since wanted a Danelectro guitar and especially a DC. I just think they sound so cool. The Made In China reissues don't exactly tickle me though and being a lefty there aren't many old stock DCs to be had.
    Oigun, my luthier buddy, told me to get a cheap righty from the interwebz that we'd rip the top off to make room for a lefty-fied top.
    I'm an impatient SOB and in the last year every Dano I came across on the eBay either went for more than I was willing to spend or was a MiC.
    Then I found this neck;
    [​IMG]
    It's got the Coke bottle headstock that I like way more than the goofy new style heads.
    [​IMG]
    Some nice D-stamped tuners!
    [​IMG]

    I figured a Dano wouldn't be real hard to make, and since I won the auction for the neck, seller included some other nice Dano stuff too, why not give building one from (kinda half-way) scratch a try?
     
  2. Olav

    Olav Tele-Afflicted

    Age:
    52
    Posts:
    1,147
    Joined:
    Apr 2, 2010
    Location:
    HLMRmeer
    Oigun agreed a Dano wouldn't be hard to build, but he's busy with all sorts of other projects, so I'd have to do the body myself.
    OK. Here goes;
    Oigun was nice enough to copy one of his Danos to make a routing template for me, which helps a LOT!
    [​IMG]
    There you have it. The GUN made template, a piece of 18mm plywood (birch! don't use the hardwood stuff Oi says, that'll get you in trouble when routing the second or third channel), a piece of 4mm MDF, which is basically the same as Masonite which is used on Danos. A bunch of clamps, box set of router bits, bottle of run-of-the-mill wood glue. All in all €75/$100. I own a circular saw, a coping saw, a router, powerdrills, a B&D workbench or two, cleaned out the garage, let's get cracking!
     
  3. Olav

    Olav Tele-Afflicted

    Age:
    52
    Posts:
    1,147
    Joined:
    Apr 2, 2010
    Location:
    HLMRmeer
    [​IMG]
    Rough cut the outlines with coping saw. Need a second one.

    [​IMG]
    Some holes drilled for easy turns with coping saw.

    [​IMG]
    Glued and clamped the two pieces together to get to 36mm.

    [​IMG]
    Cut top and back from MDF.
     
  4. Olav

    Olav Tele-Afflicted

    Age:
    52
    Posts:
    1,147
    Joined:
    Apr 2, 2010
    Location:
    HLMRmeer
    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
     
  5. zedd

    zedd TDPRI Member

    Posts:
    32
    Joined:
    Jul 14, 2008
    Location:
    South Shields UK
    More please, I do have a dano Fetish.
     
  6. Dababy

    Dababy Tele-Meister

    Posts:
    395
    Joined:
    Jan 30, 2009
    Location:
    Northeast Ohio
    I like the danelectro's too. Looking good so far!
     
  7. Olav

    Olav Tele-Afflicted

    Age:
    52
    Posts:
    1,147
    Joined:
    Apr 2, 2010
    Location:
    HLMRmeer
    Kinda made a little booboo. Glueing the top to the skeleton, had some (couple dozen) spills on the outer edge of the skeleton. No biggy, just makes it a bear to route the top to size. Came out looking like a dano with goosebumps...
    Need to learn to clean up a mess the minute I make it... :oops:
    pic tomorrow.

    I'll be needing some advice on how to get rid of those 'goosebumps' without the aide of a drumsander too...
     
  8. Laservampire

    Laservampire Tele-Meister

    Posts:
    141
    Joined:
    Nov 17, 2009
    Location:
    Australia
    Is that a right handed neck you've got?

    I have a lefty Dano U2 neck with left handed tuners, do you want to trade your righty tuners for my leftys?
     
  9. Olav

    Olav Tele-Afflicted

    Age:
    52
    Posts:
    1,147
    Joined:
    Apr 2, 2010
    Location:
    HLMRmeer
    Thanks for the kind offer LV, I think I'l pass though.
     
  10. Olav

    Olav Tele-Afflicted

    Age:
    52
    Posts:
    1,147
    Joined:
    Apr 2, 2010
    Location:
    HLMRmeer
    I made a couple booboos along the way.
    1) I neglected cleaning the glue spills when joining the two 18mm skeletons
    2) I neglected to clean the glue spills when glueing the top and back on the skeleton

    Made for a couple dozen runs that made routing the top/back to size along the skeleton... hmmm... an interesting experience.
    Body came out looking like it had goose bumps if that makes sense.
    Wound up having to 'dremel' sand those off.

    3) Neglected to check router depth between runs when rounding of the edges. For some reason the router bit slipped inside the lock and routing depth ended up being a fraction of a mm deeper the second sweep. Made for a 'nice' snipe (I think you call it) that had to be sanded down. By hand. Don't wanna ruin the edge by using a sander.

    OK, that's enough for confession time.
    Here's some pics.

    routed to size
    [​IMG]

    goose bumps
    [​IMG]

    dremel sanding bumps and glue runs off
    [​IMG]

    rounded off
    [​IMG]

    centre lined
    [​IMG]

    weighed
    [​IMG]

    the net I used will have added maybe 100 grams
    [​IMG]
    comes out just under 2kg

    Tomorrow I'm routing the neck pocket at Oigun's. I need the neck to create a tight fit. The tighter the better. Neck is at Oigun's because it needed a bit of a touch up here and there.
    So... updating tomorrow night.
     
  11. winny pooh

    winny pooh Friend of Leo's

    Posts:
    4,834
    Joined:
    Jan 24, 2006
    Location:
    South London
    Nice work, its looking good.
     
  12. Olav

    Olav Tele-Afflicted

    Age:
    52
    Posts:
    1,147
    Joined:
    Apr 2, 2010
    Location:
    HLMRmeer
    Thanks Winny.
    Today I attended a Masterclass at Oigun Sensei's workshop. He showed me how to make a template for a neckpocket and we routed both that and the pickup cavity.

    prepared a piece of MDF, drew a centerline to act as a guide
    clamped the neck
    [​IMG]

    double stick a piece of MDF on three sides of the neck, squeeze 'em in!
    [​IMG]

    routed out the pocket template, made a tight fit!
    [​IMG]

    took some doing to place the pup cavity in the template
    [​IMG]

    routed everything
    [​IMG]

    Next step is routing for control cavity and making a cavity plate.
    Tomorrow?
     
  13. Olav

    Olav Tele-Afflicted

    Age:
    52
    Posts:
    1,147
    Joined:
    Apr 2, 2010
    Location:
    HLMRmeer
    I failed to take a piccy with the neck in the body. That was a sight! Starting to look like a guitar now.

    Build fever; it's just like Oigun said; Once you get it, you got it.
    And I got it good.
    When I told him I wanted to reshape the headstock on this cheapo neck to make another guitar with Oi gave me a maple neck to practice shaping on.

    [​IMG]

    The rosewood is the cheapo from a Jack&Danny guitar, the maple is the GUN neck.
    Way cool huh?
    It's a baritone neck, fretslots and nut have been done, fingerboard has been profiled, now it's up to me to shape the back profile.
    That'll be another thread, maybe.

    Oigun is doing some work on the Dano neck for me. As if it weren't enough to 'lefty it up' a bit, he's gone ahead and performed a complete 'leftification'!
    This is from the Mosriteforum;
     
  14. Greg M

    Greg M Tele-Holic

    Posts:
    944
    Joined:
    Sep 4, 2003
    Location:
    Virginia
    Cool build man. Did the originals use that same material for the top and back? Let us know how it sounds when you're finished. I've never played a Dano original or reissue so I don't even know what they're supposed to sound like :D. But I love low tech, high mojo instruments like these. Probably about as inexpensive a guitar as you can build too.
     
  15. Olav

    Olav Tele-Afflicted

    Age:
    52
    Posts:
    1,147
    Joined:
    Apr 2, 2010
    Location:
    HLMRmeer
    Thanks Greg. The materials I use aren't really correct for a 58. Or for any vintage Dano for that matter.
    For one, Danelectro used to build their skeletons (term is mine, they might be called frames or whatever :rolleyes: ) from any old piece of scrap wood they had lying around. Or at least this is what I'm told. So the plywood I'm using is really off. Also in 1958 I don't believe a product like MDF would have been available although some sort of fibre board will have. I'm not sure (somebody jump in!) but I think Danelectro used to use Masonite. Which I am lead to believe is basically the same thing as MDF.
    These are all assumptions I'm making based on my very limited knowledge of both Danelectro-history and the 58DC model.
    Like you, I like the look and the 'vibe' surrounding Danos and the DC is just an easy build (first timer here). Also I like to do things just a little different any chance I get and a 1 pup guitar instead of the very popular 59DC 2 pup model is right up that alley.
    Total cost till now will be around $125. That's counting the neck, plywood, MDF, glue and a set of cheap routerbits. I'll be buying a pup, some electronics and other stuff this weekend, I expect total cost to come out at around $250. Maybe I could have bought a secondhand MiC 59DC for that money, but not the fun building this thing.
     
  16. tonyv77

    tonyv77 Tele-Meister

    Age:
    34
    Posts:
    361
    Joined:
    Mar 24, 2009
    Location:
    New Brunswick, Canada
    Sorry if I missed it, but, what thickness of MDF did you use for the top and back? I want to do a build like this for my first build once I get my router.
     
  17. Olav

    Olav Tele-Afflicted

    Age:
    52
    Posts:
    1,147
    Joined:
    Apr 2, 2010
    Location:
    HLMRmeer
    I used 4 millimeter MDF and 18 millimeter plywood.
     
  18. Olav

    Olav Tele-Afflicted

    Age:
    52
    Posts:
    1,147
    Joined:
    Apr 2, 2010
    Location:
    HLMRmeer
    Haven't gotten round to much in the last couple days. Routed the control cavity, well... opening. And cut a plate for it.
    [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Dec 22, 2010
  19. jkingma

    jkingma Super Moderator Staff Member

    Posts:
    12,221
    Joined:
    Nov 15, 2006
    Location:
    44°55'09.9"N 79°25'39.1"W
    Admin Post
    Good work Olav.

    ================================================================
    PS - I like your avatar. I used to have the soundtrack to that movie. It was awesome.
     
  20. Olav

    Olav Tele-Afflicted

    Age:
    52
    Posts:
    1,147
    Joined:
    Apr 2, 2010
    Location:
    HLMRmeer
    Thanks.
    Did you mean the movie or the soundtrack to be awesome?
    As if I couldn't guess... :rolleyes:
     
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.