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Discussion in 'Tele Home Depot' started by buffalohunt, May 4, 2016.
So funky cool, make you forget about the good ole days when guitars was made out of wood!
Cut through for the switch
I cut out a custom switch plate from some Aluminum. It's not going to be perfect, but will do for now. I will also be cutting out and bending up a custom tailpiece.
And then, the exciting part. The neck pockets on the originals were formed into the mould, and so the neck was sitting directly on plastic. This also meant that the neck fit wasn't great. I wanted a tighter fit.
Here, you can see that on the 90 degree bend of the plastic, it didn't actually lose too much of it's thickness. I'm quite happy about that. Also, here you can see the epoxy that is filling any voids between the wood and plastic. I only cut the neck pocket 3/8" deep. These guitars had their necks sticking really high out of the body to account for the tall bridge that was used, without having to have an angled pocket.
For this guitar I am using a cheap pre-built neck that I got from a repair shop that was closing down. I bought a couple of them for $10 bucks each. They're not great, but I don't have time to build a neck before this project is due. Again, if it sucks I can always upgrade it later.
Today I began work on the binding and did some work to the neck.
I routed a channel in the wood blocks to accept the rubber trim pieces.
Using a heat gun and cutting slots in the trim, I was able to make it form nicely around all the corners. I worked it around my mold and will leave it taped up to hopefully hold some of the shape.
It actually turned out to be easier than expected. I had no problem forming the curves, even the tight 90 degree angles. I will be super gluing it to my body, so I shouldn't have any issues with it staying in place.
I mentioned in my last post that I was using a cheap neck that I got from a repair shop that was closing down.
I wanted the headstock to be white, so I set up some rails and clamped the headstock flat. Using the router, I milled all the finish down to bare wood.
Then I got some more thin white plastic, and super glued it on top as a veneer and used a scraper to bring it all flush.
Brilliant idea for the head stock. I might steal that one.
This is where I'm at right now. The pickguard is made from clear plexiglas. I am debating how I will do the pinstripes on it.
I laid out all my parts to get an idea.
Very cool build. Definitely taking the road less traveled.
FWIW, I suspect that the color of the backside of the guitar will eventually age to match the slightly faded front.
I kinda like the idea of a no-finish body.
Great progress! I really like what you're doing here.
For the stripes on the pg, what if you kept everything clear but differentiate the stripes with texture. So one of two ways: 1)mask off the stripes and sandblast the rest of the guard to frost it, leaving the stripes clear, or 2) mask off the guard, leaving the stripes exposed and sand blast them so they're frosted while the rest of the guard remains clear.
On the original Nationals the paint was on the back of the clear pickguard so it would be shiny on top and not wear away.
On the supros, the black paint pinstripes is on top of the opaque plastic and wears off....
Ohhh. I kinda like that idea.
This is the most exciting build I've seen in ages, thank you for sharing this! May I ask were you got the rubber desk edging/gasket?
It may sound dumb, but I kinda like the color of the plexiglass as it stands right now.
That's a blue protective film on it. It is clear. I also made one that is a transparent dark grey.
I'm sorry I haven't had any updates lately. I ran into a couple problems that set me back. In order to finish the project in time, I have been rushing and forgetting to take photos. I got a bunch of updates and will post later on today or tomorrow. Thanks for watching.
I'm currently at an awkward point of "I really want to see updates, but I don't want to be pestering or annoying". . .
I hope it's going (or went?) well!
I'm REALLY sorry that I never came back to update. I had to hand the guitar in to be graded by my teacher and then summer happened, and I was busy. It was a general plastics project. Most people made little signs, or simple art pieces... I made a guitar... I got 100%
Anyways, first I'll finish up with the last of my build photos, and then give you the final result.
I stripped off the thick poly finish off my neck with a heatgun. It was a dark red colour, and I wanted it to be black.
I don't have any pictures of the neck after I painted it, but I just used a black poly spray paint.
With a standard tune-o-matic bridge that I got off eBay from BezDez, I carved out a wood base out of black walnut. I would have used Rosewood, but this was available, and free.
Here is the back with some copper shielding. I'm not sure if it does anything since it doesn't cover the whole area, but I actually used a copper sheet metal and epoxied it to the plastic with the intention of giving me a little more thickness in the areas where I drilled through for pots and the jack.
It's not my neatest wiring job, but I was in a major rush, and needed to get it finished at the deadline.
Also, you can see that I'm a screw short on the neck. Not sure how I forgot that before taking the picture.
I bought foam sealant tape from Home Depot to give me the "cushion" and fill any gaps between the wood and back plastic.
As I was in a rush, I didn't take a lot of photos of the final build process.... So, now I jump to the end.
For the pickguard, I went with a smokey transparent acrylic. Works well. It is raised above the body with clear rubber risers around the acrews
For the logo, I made a decal in the design of the old Supro logos. Szalay is my last name.
I made the tailpiece out of aluminum, polished it up on the buffing wheel, and made a walnut cap to match the bridge.
The switch plate is also polished aluminum. You can also see that the neck is sticking out higher above the top of the body than usual. This is to accommodate for the raised tune-o-matic. It's also the way the originals were. Rather than angling the neck back, they just kept it level and raised it.
Thanks for reading my thread! It was a fun build, but I wish I had more time to pay more attention to small details. I may go back to it and fix certain things if I find the time.
It plays pretty well, but could still use a proper setup once I get the time. The sound is very unique. But I haven't had a chance to really let her rip. I live in a basement suite and can't turn it up too loud.
Enjoyed this thread, nice work there buffalohunt!
what a great build! congrats.....
A red one of those beauties was my very first electric guitar back in the 60's. My parents bought it used. When my uncles 1957 Les Paul Special came into my life, I had to make a choice......so I chose Lester! However, I still miss my ol Newport and hope to find one someday.
Thanks for coming back to finish this one up. I really like what you were able to accomplish, and I'm glad your teacher could appreciate all the work you put in.