For my next trick: Sawing the Lady in Half. With a twist.

Discussion in 'Tele Home Depot' started by Peegoo, Dec 13, 2019.

  1. Peegoo

    Peegoo Tele-Holic

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    Alternative thread title: How to turn a two-piece body into a four-piece body

    This is something I've wanted to try for many years: resaw a tele body down the middle, hollow it out, and glue it back together.

    I've built hollow and chambered guitars in the past, but they were all built in stages, with chambering done before gluing up the 'sandwich'.

    This approach today was a little different because I was starting with a reasonably completed Tele body. I've had a pine body hanging in my shop for several years collecting dust, so I decided to make it dustier. It's yellow pine, about three pounds, made from a two-piece glued-up slab. All the machining was done (routs, drilled holes, and perimeter round-overs). I used a template from a '53 Telecaster for it.

    I have no band saw, so it was get out the ripsaw, clamp on some sticks to serve as saw guides, and have at it. I didn't go down the center because I wanted to leave plenty of meat in the top surface of the neck pocket.

    upload_2019-12-13_19-58-6.jpeg

    There are two 1x2s on each side of the body, held in place by clamps. The gap in the boards is 3/32" to accommodate the blade and kerf of the saw which is 1/16".

    As I cut through the wood I had to move the clamps around to prevent sawing through them. You can see how many years this body's been hanging in the shop by how nicely darkened with age it is.

    upload_2019-12-13_20-1-4.jpeg

    It was easy going because the pine is fairly soft, but the grain still had a tendency to deflect the cut so a few times I had to switch sides that I cut from to help keep the saw tracking straight.

    upload_2019-12-13_20-3-27.jpeg

    It worked pretty well.

    upload_2019-12-13_20-4-21.jpeg

    You can see the saw marks in the wood, as well as the shadow where the bridge pickup rout is...because the wood is paper-thin there.

    upload_2019-12-13_20-7-1.jpeg

    Next step...get out the router and hog out some wood.

    More to follow.
     

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  2. Maroonandwhite

    Maroonandwhite Tele-Meister Silver Supporter

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    That’s awesome! Can’t wait to see the progress.
     
  3. Peegoo

    Peegoo Tele-Holic

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    Cheers!

    There have been some weirdo guitars that emerged from my lab, but this one will be fairly pedestrian compared to those other things.
     
  4. Deeve

    Deeve Friend of Leo's Silver Supporter

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    I've wanted to do this to the avatar guitar, which is great, but heavier than I'd like.
    Props for the decision to keep the neck-pocket safe.
    Peace - Deeve
     
  5. Peegoo

    Peegoo Tele-Holic

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    Cheers, Deeve.

    It really does not matter that the saw cut is off center because I will be shooting color on this one.
     
  6. Davecam48

    Davecam48 Friend of Leo's Ad Free Member

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    IMGP7795.JPG IMGP7796.JPG IMGP7803.JPG I understand that this is an exercise in "What if I....?" but there are other ways of achieving a lighter stronger guitar with out all the "hogging out" as you guys call it, and all the hard work. Still, if it uses up an old neglected body (sounds like me!") and you have some fun doing it .....who am I to criticize? :lol:

    DC
     
    Last edited: Dec 13, 2019
    Macrogats and old wrench like this.
  7. jfgesquire

    jfgesquire Tele-Holic

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    Ooooh!!! Can I make a suggestion!?!?

    Do the reverse of the George Harrison Tele and sandwich a Rosewood strip between the two halves!

    George's has a maple strip between the two rosewood halves.

    Sent from my LG-H932 using Tapatalk
     
    Skydog1010 likes this.
  8. Peegoo

    Peegoo Tele-Holic

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    That's why I mentioned having built hollow and chambered guitars in the past. I've already done it that way. Like you say, I'm just having fun with this one.
     
  9. Peegoo

    Peegoo Tele-Holic

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    I have sheets of hardwood veneer and I considered doing ebony, but since I'm painting this, it won't show anyway.
     
  10. Blue Bill

    Blue Bill Poster Extraordinaire

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    That's so radical! Make sure you take out enough material to make it light enough, after all this effort. You may want to weigh it and measure how much weight you have shed,before re-glueing it. Keep the pictures coming!
     
  11. bender66

    bender66 Poster Extraordinaire

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    This is cool!

    All in!
     
  12. Macrogats

    Macrogats Friend of Leo's

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    Wow, that is brilliant and so well executed.
     
  13. Peegoo

    Peegoo Tele-Holic

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    Thanks! I had some time today to work on this.

    I used a 1" Forstner bit to remove wood in a honeycomb pattern. To make the holes match up when glued, I did a full-size drawing with the locations for the holes, and transferred the center points to each half.

    I decided on a honeycomb because it reduces the size of the cavities and the extra webbing between them increases the strength of the top and back. The thickness of the face, front and back, is 3/16". Pretty thin for soft pine; that's why I left a 3/4" band around the circumference because that's the area that takes the most abuse.

    This started out as a 3.5-lb body. I just got it out of the clamps and it weighs 2.5 lbs. It will probably lose perhaps another ounce once the glue completely cures. Dropping a full pound is pretty significant.

    I'll give it two days to cure and I'll get to sanding. I may do a larger roundover on the front and back...perhaps 1/2" or maybe 5/8". It will make for a really comfy player.

    upload_2019-12-19_16-22-29.jpeg
    You never ever have too many clamps :)
     
    Jim_in_PA, RiversQC and Macrogats like this.
  14. Dan German

    Dan German Poster Extraordinaire Silver Supporter

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    Very cool.

    If it were me, I would do a natural finish, and paint the seam to look like stitches.
     
  15. Macrogats

    Macrogats Friend of Leo's

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    That’s a great job on the reduction holes!
     
  16. DrASATele

    DrASATele Poster Extraordinaire

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    Nice, you should have taken a tone test before and then do one after to see what you've added or subtracted from the sound. Cool project!
     
    RiversQC likes this.
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