COMPLETED -- "Tidycatster", the $100 telecaster challenge

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JasonRobert

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I was going to ask if you made that router.... It is very nice. How have you made the linear bearings... are they something like this?

MH%20Z-Axis.jpg
 

guitarbuilder

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I'm trying to think outside the box on this guitar....err jar maybe. This is a plastic jar from a giant container of choc covered pretzels.

bridge1.jpg

This is my little metal lathe that I mainly use for turning down wooden parts. I'm using some left over aluminum hex rod from my cnc project to try my hand at saddle making.
bridge2.jpg

I tapped the saddles and drilled the holes in the plastic. Could be a bridge...who knows?
bridge3.jpg
 

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For those linear bearings I used Hex aluminum rod and bolts. I drilled the hex rod on the flats and inserted the bolts to hold the bearings. These are a bit more ridgid and substantial, and in my opinion more accurate than what you can do with just angle rod. I made these before the 90 degree angle rods came into favor maybe 5-6 years ago.
I have 2 pcs of angle attached to hex rod for each linear bearing.
cnctidy2-3.jpg
 
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jitensha

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Round 2
cnctidy1.jpg

This is my homemade CNC router. I'm really kind of proud of this thing. I designed and fabricated all the parts myself. The linear bearings are made from roller skate bearings, but in a more complex manner than you see on the CNCzone. The machine is made from aluminum angle and bar, High density Polyurethane, MDF, and some pine tongue and groove for the table. I made it a number of years ago. It can do roughly a 13x 24 area. My knowledge of electronics was limited, so I bought a motor and controller system from Maxnc. That ran about 8 hundred dollars. It came with software to run it. Not a horrible learning curve, but poor documentation for the newbie. I bought a version of BobCad to draw parts and convert to what is called G code, which is the machine language that the system understands.Basically the router moves up/down, left/right/ and back/forth corresponding to the X, Y, and Z axes you would find on a graph.

A line or two of a program looks something like this:
G01X 6.5Y12
G01Z-1.0

That tells the computer to spin the motors enough to make it move 6.5 inches on the x axis and 12 inches on the y axis. Then a G01z-1.0 would move the cutter down 1 inch into the wood.

that's some serious McGaivering.
 

guitarbuilder

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This is a hunk of quartersawn maple cut from the pc of wood in the initial bucket of wood. I used the CNC to mark the fret slots and cut them by hand with my hand saw. My CNC probably could be programmed to do it, but I don't have a tiny bit like that and don't want to spend the time figuring it out when I can just cut them by hand.
tidyneck-1.jpg



I'm thinking about not putting a truss rod in for the sonic possibilities and the mojo.... I need mojo points to keep up with the other competitors. ( random thought....Hmmmm maybe a carved top using a clam shell would have been better).
 

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Total cost update.... just my time and the glue so far. I'm gonna try and limit the cost to tuners, fretwire, and new- but cheap pickups/pots/hardware.
 

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1/4"red dots... I made them out of the tidycat container top too, but they were a bit too thin for my taste. I ended up making a couple of dozen black ones from leftover pickguard material.
dots001.jpg


Harbor Freight sells something like this one for about 20 dollars. You could make a lot of dots if it actually works!

harborfreight.com/cpi/ctaf/displayitem.taf?Itemnumber=91510
 

guitarbuilder

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OK... next part... the lap steel that will be attached to the rest of the body:
laptidy2-1.jpg


lap003.jpg


Might have to call this something else????? These were all pine scraps.
 
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guitarbuilder

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Here is the lap fingerboard. CNC routed with a 1/8" bit.
lap001.jpg


And here it is with 1/8" walnut fret markers.
lap002.jpg



I did a 24 inch scale with 25 markers, but I think I will end up with a smaller scale and 23 markers to fit on the above lap neck.

One week down already!

For the record I never completed a lap steel guitar before so I'm working on the fly here.
 

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Here is a rough cut lap blank and a sanded-down fingerboard for it. I tapered the peghead because I will glue on some ears ala Gibs*n. The fingerboard will get cut down a couple frets in the process as well.
tidylap2.jpg

Here's a Low Tech operation for more points-
I had the cats lick some milk off of the cut areas to smooth them out. You know how rough those cat tongues are. Probably 80 grit. Photo of cat licking pine not available.

Now I have to decide where to mount it on the tele body for maximum lapability.
No cost on the lap except for another quarter's worth of glue.

Now I'm off to hunt a deer so I can make up some hide glue and dig up some bauxite to make some knobs with.
My trusty mini van is a deer magnet.
 
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