Copycat Gretsch Chet Jet Build

Discussion in 'Tele Home Depot' started by macaroonie, Sep 13, 2011.

  1. macaroonie

    macaroonie Friend of Leo's

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    Well its a bit sooner than I was planning but I guess I gotta throw my hat in the ring.

    First thing I must do , TDPRI are you cool with all this Gretsch activity ? I hope so , cheers Mac

    Next post I will lay out my plan of action. Hope everyone has a good time.
     
  2. flatfive

    flatfive Friend of Leo's

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    Subscribed and looking forward to something epic.
     
  3. goldguitarguy

    goldguitarguy Tele-Meister

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    Can't see it being a problem,I'm doing a flying V thread here
     
  4. adirondak5

    adirondak5 Wood Hoarder Extraordinaire

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    :DSubscribed
     
  5. Mojotron

    Mojotron Poster Extraordinaire

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    Ya the whole Tele thing is about a love for guitars, not the pretense that one type of guitar is so great that it's all one is allowed to talk about... a Gretsch is just a "gretschy Tele" anyways right?

    I'll be watching you guys.
     
  6. macaroonie

    macaroonie Friend of Leo's

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    Plan / spec call it what you will

    OK I'm goin to have a go at one of these

    [​IMG][/IMG]

    Its a Gretsch 6120 Chet Atkins 'Solid Body ' according to their blurb which also states that it is chambered. No matter , I will be chambering mine.
    Maybe they mean a carved top with chambering. Anyone know whats going on ?
    Anyway I'm pretty keen to try this laminated top method ( Having already done a carved top http://www.tdpri.com/forum/tele-home-depot/179733-crazy-build-newbie.html ) and I have been reading the good stuff from Telemccaster.

    I don't have any wood yet but thats OK I can get it pretty sharpish when the time comes

    What I will be concentrating on in the first instance is getting this vac lam method to work to my satisfaction.
    I'm not setting out to make an exact replica , although the guitar will outwardly look like the pic above.
    Here's what I don't like about it. That lonely knob in the bottom horn makes the nice shape look too busy. That won't be there . The internal chambering set up makes no sense to me at all plus you have the silly wee blocks at the bridge. They won't be there. I dont like the heel / neck pocket detail at all. That won't be there.
    What will be there is that nice classic shape and the great colour. Binding all over the place , yup, Ebony board Yup, Filtertrons , oh yeah!
    Guitarnut has done some nice heels lately and I will be looking closely at that as well as a set neck.
    How does that sound peeps ?

    I do have some other stuff on my plate , got me some amps today

    amps 002.jpg

    They have to be installed in a flight case that I have to make and the dinky speaker baffles need installed in the cab carcasses that are ready for them and then all the cabling that goes with it has to be put together etc etc
    Speakers are JBL 2206 12" bass mids , horn throats are P Audio 2723 and the compressors will be JBL large format 2446H or similar. Boxes rated at 1200W peak or 600 continuous. for those with enquiring minds. Compact but very powerful is the plan. Intended to be used with subs which I have already finished.

    So erm please don't expect super rapid progress on the Chet Jet but I'll post all the relevant interesting build details as I go.

    Dog needs out , see you soon
     
    Last edited: Sep 13, 2011
  7. macaroonie

    macaroonie Friend of Leo's

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    Absolutely. Good to see ya
     
  8. njg12171

    njg12171 Tele-Meister

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    Gonna be watching, might resurrect my super Chet build someday soon
     
  9. flatfive

    flatfive Friend of Leo's

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    Macaroonie, you going with gold hardware? One of
    the reasons I prefer the Power Jet is the chrome hardware.

    I guess Chet Atkins, like the Power Jet, has a pinned down bridge.
    But I wonder how it's pinned down?

    Another difference is the tuners; the Power Jet has Sperzel
    locking tuners, but not the CA, I think. The locking tuners
    should help with Bigsby tuning issues.
     
  10. Guitarnut

    Guitarnut Friend of Leo's

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    Subscribed and watching closely. :eek:

    Gonna be a good one for sure.

    Mark
     
  11. crazydave911

    crazydave911 Poster Extraordinaire

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    Same here
     

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  12. 6stings

    6stings Tele-Meister

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    Subscribed and learning!
     
  13. macaroonie

    macaroonie Friend of Leo's

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    Well Glenn is off to the races it wood seem. Bravo !!

    I went to a guitar shop today. They were moderately helpful but since I had my work gear on and was covered with Iroko dust they probably thought I was a lunatic. What I didn't mention was that I do not play. They wood have probably turfed me out. I think I may take in something for them to gawk at in the future, fretless maybe ?

    The only Gretsch they had was a Chinese made Electromatic. S/H for £300. Quite a nice looking guitar in the flesh actually although I noticed a small chip on the back of the neck showing a really thick paint job. The top was nice though and the carve or whatever shaping is very easy on the eye. Quite subtle in fact. It is probably heat formed and dropped on to the body.

    I got some good info on the vac bags for storing clothes. Seems as long as you are carefull with the hose fittings they will stay closed down for literally months. I have felt these in the deflated condition and I can attest that there is not a lot of air left in there at all. I am quietly encouraged that this may well work and for about £2 a whip it is the way to go fo this weekend warrior.
    I'm going to get an MDF base 18mm about 700 mm x 500 mm and round off all the corners and edges. Then I will trace the template on to it and with a Sharpie I will fatten up the line so I can see it readily. From there I think I will try forming the arch shape using stuff we have here called ' Fast Set '
    It is a drywall filler but it is the hardest and most durable of its type. It sands easily with P60 or P80 so shaping should be a doddle. What will be interesting is seeing the translation to the top surface as there is 3.5 mm of lams to go on top.
    Once that is done I wll give it a coat of GF release coat so that any adhesive that finds its way into contact will not stick the whole thing down. I suppose a wax would do the same.
    Then its lay up the veneers , glue them up and stick them in the baggie.
    Should work :lol:

    I have a sniff of some spruce veneer so that should do the core nicely but I think i will go with more lams than Gretsch do. I reckon they will conform better to the shape than having a thick one in the middle. Mind you they use a heat press. Different caper entirely .



    Printed .pdf is in my posession now so I'm staring at it to imprint it in my mind and will then make a 6 mm template.

    Thats all for today gang , make sure you watch FlatFive's build in progress.
     
    Last edited: Sep 15, 2011
  14. macaroonie

    macaroonie Friend of Leo's

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    here's the guitar I saw

    2505010506_frt_wlg_001.jpg

    Quite tasty to my eye. Note NO knob in the lower horn giving a cleaner look.
    I'm trying to get a handle on these Bigsby things The one on this guy is a B5 and is £145 to buy here. OUTRAGEOUS !!!
    Another thing I spotted talking of prices was the discrepancy on a Gotoh 510 wraparound bridge
    Stewmac US $44.95
    WD Music UK £64 ie twice the price OUTRAGEOUS !!!

    Rant over for today
     
  15. 6stings

    6stings Tele-Meister

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    'roonie, the Electromatic Pro Jet is probably the most modified solid body Gretsch. There are many mods of that model and some bulding examples to see on Gretsch-Talk forum.

    As for the Bigsby, all these Chinese Pro Jets comes with the B50, it's a cheaper, licenced version of B5. Personaly I don't like them on curved top models, I like B3 which 'floats' over the top, like on Duo Jets...

    I wish I could build one Jet, I guess I have to stick with modifying:D

    If you need the dimensions, neck angles, or whatever measurings of Jet or Double Jet, I'll be happy to help.
     

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  16. davmac

    davmac Tele-Afflicted

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    If you want a genuine Bigsby you'll pay the price but if you're happy using a non-Bigsby generic unit, I've bought a couple of B5 style vibratos from papadmusicstore on eBay and they were perfectly usable. Both cost around £40 IIRC.

    The name plate area is left blank. I made myself a waterslide decal to add a personal touch.

    [​IMG]

    Here's the other one, which I bought for a friend in the US.

    [​IMG]
     
  17. davmac

    davmac Tele-Afflicted

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    If you can track one down, the Wilkinson "Wigsby" vibrato is pretty cool too and cheaper than a Bigsby.

    [​IMG]

    I was also thinking about your idea of using the storage vacuum bags. You could test out whether it would work by putting a set of bathroom scales in there and seeing how much "weight" you can apply. For a good laminating vacuum bag I think you should be aiming to get as close to 14.7 lb/sq inch as possible.
     
  18. macaroonie

    macaroonie Friend of Leo's

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    Got the bags , 5 quid for 2. !000 x 800 so I'm going to do a dummy run with just one layer of veneer over a simple shape to see if it does in fact conform to the shape.

    Wigsby ? Thats a new one on me.
     
  19. davmac

    davmac Tele-Afflicted

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    Me too. I just stumbled across it today and immediately thought of your build.
     
  20. toddfan

    toddfan Tele-Holic

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    just gonna watch...
     
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