1. Win a Broadcaster or one of 3 Teles! The annual Supporting Member Giveaway is on. To enter Click Here. To see all the prizes and full details Click Here. To view the thread about the giveaway Click Here.

OK... so I promised... here ya are. . . .

Discussion in 'Stratocaster Discussion Forum' started by Ronkirn, Apr 14, 2008.

  1. Scotland

    Scotland Poster Extraordinaire

    Age:
    66
    Posts:
    8,363
    Joined:
    Mar 17, 2003
    Location:
    Aberdeen, Scotland, Yewrup
    Just returned from a week's holiday and made straight for this thread. Wow, Mr. Kirn, you have certainly not left me disappointed. Not only is your work flawless, your explanations of exactly how you do it is incredible.
    I just LOVE this thread !
     
  2. Ronkirn

    Ronkirn Doctor of Teleocity

    Age:
    74
    Posts:
    12,381
    Joined:
    May 1, 2003
    Location:
    Jacksonville, FL
    Shoot. . I just do guitars.... you're the one I envy.... Aberdeen... home of Dallas Dhu, Glenlivet, Glenfiddich, Strathisla Distillery, home of Chivas Regal, Benromach Distillery, and others equally remarkable...all make me feel sorry for Bourbon drinkers....:p and you think I got it good..... Sigh......


    Ron Kirn
     
  3. telemomo

    telemomo TDPRI Member

    Posts:
    65
    Joined:
    Jul 14, 2007
    Location:
    SoCal
    One of the fascinating aspects of the Internet is that it allows us "average Joes" to see the work of truly gifted artisans and craftmen like Ron Kirn. I am blown away by the fact that people with skills like Ron are out there.

    It is both humbling and inspirational to see work like your's Ron. Thank you for sharing.

    Sincerely,

    Mike (average Joe)
     
  4. Ronkirn

    Ronkirn Doctor of Teleocity

    Age:
    74
    Posts:
    12,381
    Joined:
    May 1, 2003
    Location:
    Jacksonville, FL
    There's a lotta “Average Joes” out here.... all doing different stuff, I know an average Joe that can rebuild a small block Chevy in a weekend, another that does Brain Surgery, and yet another that won 11 PGA tour events, we all like a good beer, a good game, and a good guitar.

    Knowing how to do something well don't make ya much more than someone that can do something well. I just like sharing what I do... I tried to get the Doc to log onto the Neuro-yourself forum to show how to do brain surgery, he said nahh....

    It is fun though.... umm . . building guitars….that is… I’ll faint at the sight of a brain…

    rk
     
  5. BB

    BB Poster Extraordinaire

    Posts:
    5,767
    Joined:
    May 17, 2003
    Location:
    Great Pacific NW
    To echo Scotlands and telemomos comments......WOW! As an old fart that has put together many a partscaster over the past 25 or so years, the sheer level of professional craftmanship that Ron and several others here put into their work leaves me in awe.

    While I'm perfectly happy with my old, ugly homebrew, if I were to ante up for a new guitar, I would definately look to Ron ( or one of the other amazing builders here ) to make my guitar dreams come true. Fabulous stuff! Thank you for sharing.
     
  6. jcw

    jcw Tele-Meister

    Posts:
    118
    Joined:
    Oct 6, 2005
    I would venture to say that there are lots of people out there with skills like Ron's.

    But so very few would be humble and generous enough to spend time with us other Average Joes and take the time to show us the magic they can do.

    Thanks, Ron. This is an awesome thread. :)
     
  7. Arlo

    Arlo Friend of Leo's

    Age:
    62
    Posts:
    2,744
    Joined:
    Jul 22, 2006
    Location:
    Upta Camp
    That Iron trick is amazing Ron!
     
  8. Ronkirn

    Ronkirn Doctor of Teleocity

    Age:
    74
    Posts:
    12,381
    Joined:
    May 1, 2003
    Location:
    Jacksonville, FL
    The USGA neck arrived, in the typical Tommy Rosamond fashion, i. e. Impecable..

    [​IMG]

    but since the headstock needed to be reshaped, there was a little work to do prior to finishing.

    The choice of headstock shape can be a controversial topic, so here I’ll use other photos showing the process as it is shaped into the headstock I use on many guitars.

    The first thing is to create a template, of the desired shape, I trace out the existing headstock, re-draw the new style, then using a spindle sander fine tune to the final shape.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    Once I’m happy with the appearance, using double stick tape, fasten the template to the headstock.

    [​IMG]

    Now, I use the router to SLOWLY remove the excess lumber, working down to the template, If you’re removing large amounts of wood, you may want to trim the excess with a band, or jig saw first.

    Ron Kirn
     
  9. Ronkirn

    Ronkirn Doctor of Teleocity

    Age:
    74
    Posts:
    12,381
    Joined:
    May 1, 2003
    Location:
    Jacksonville, FL
    Oh yeah, if using tape to secure the template, be certain it is firmly attached, you would want any slippage here now would ya?

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    once the final shape has been achieved, it’s time to finish sand the bugger.

    [​IMG]

    Since sanding is a concept most understand, I’m not posting a lot of photos, showing my chubby little fingers pushing paper over the lumber, I just begin at the spindle sander then hit it with something like 150 grit, then 220, and finish with 320.

    [​IMG]

    There are a few little things to do to fine tune the shape, mainly the flow from the back of the neck’s profile into the headstock.

    Ron Kirn
     
  10. Ronkirn

    Ronkirn Doctor of Teleocity

    Age:
    74
    Posts:
    12,381
    Joined:
    May 1, 2003
    Location:
    Jacksonville, FL
    I just take a small sanding block and 150 paper and allow the block to follow the natural curve of the neck, removing the hard edges the router left.

    [​IMG]

    once it’s about right, I check in the sunlight, the ‘ol shadow trick, and then finish sand.

    [​IMG]

    Correct any foibles the sunlight may reveal, an that’s completed…

    [​IMG]

    Now, back to our regularly scheduled program, in progress. . .

    Ron Kirn
     
  11. Ronkirn

    Ronkirn Doctor of Teleocity

    Age:
    74
    Posts:
    12,381
    Joined:
    May 1, 2003
    Location:
    Jacksonville, FL
    This is what I mean by the sunlight trick. By allowing the sunlight to fall over the shape, the shadows will reveal any irregularities in the graceful curves, some may be as subtle as .001 of an inch, but can be quite visible when it’s finished, so a light sanding will correct it and make life easier as you check your finished project in a few weeks.

    [​IMG]

    If you have a fingerboard that doesn’t require lacquer, do not forget to mask it…

    [​IMG]

    Now, let’s make a little amber… I take about 8 oz of lacquer…hey!! You anal types. I said. . ABOUT…. This ain’t rocket science….it’s not gonna blow up, unless you drop your Camel in the acetone laden lacquer.

    So pour a bit of lacquer..

    [​IMG]

    and add about 8 drops of yellow… . I’m suing Sherwin Williams Universal dye..not cheep and not easily removed from anything you get it on..

    [​IMG]

    and on. . . .

    RK
     
  12. Ronkirn

    Ronkirn Doctor of Teleocity

    Age:
    74
    Posts:
    12,381
    Joined:
    May 1, 2003
    Location:
    Jacksonville, FL
    Since yellow, is yellow and not amber, I need to add a touch of red…now, you have to consider the natural unfinished color of the neck’s wood as you do this, the very light maple may need a touch of brown also… as I’m mixing, I use a paint stick I have made from a piece of scrap maple as close to the color of the neck as I can find. This allows me to assess the tint as I’m mixing…

    Here I’ve added a drop of orange… orange because it’s red and yellow.. a single drop of just red would be too much….

    [​IMG]

    Here you can see the color is about right.. (depending on how your monitor reproduces color)

    [​IMG]

    What you want is a pot of lacquer that is about the same shade as a bottle of fine Scotch, or Amber Bock beer, for those Southern Baptis**, it would be about the color of that sweet iced tea Granny used to make when you were a kid…

    [​IMG]

    now, wipe the neck with a good degreaser, to remove any fingerprints or other funk that may have landed on it… like if you neighbor is outside hosing down his lawn mower with WD 40, that crap can float in the air forever, settling nowhere but on your soon to be sprayed project…

    I use lacquer thinner… and don’t forget the area where the tape was attached, it can leave a very thin residue, clean it well…

    [​IMG]

    now. . let’s squirt the rascal….

    Ron Kirn
     
    Last edited: May 14, 2008
  13. Ronkirn

    Ronkirn Doctor of Teleocity

    Age:
    74
    Posts:
    12,381
    Joined:
    May 1, 2003
    Location:
    Jacksonville, FL
    Oh yeah, when mixing your tint… keep it “thin” you want to have to spray several coats to get the correct shade, this makes it much easier to control, Try to do it in one shot, and you will be washing the neck down with lacquer thinner, thinning your tint and re-doing it.. I guarantee….

    Here I shot the head, so you could see the comparison with the un tinted maple..

    [​IMG]

    and here’s the neck with one coat compared to one un sprayed…

    [​IMG]

    On this day I had a neck or two going, so there was one or two to compare it too..

    [​IMG]

    Now it’s just a matter of re-applying coats until you have the shade you want…. Here’s a tip, don’t do it all at once… leave it to dry for a while, then com back to asses the color. You will get used to seeing he shade as you are applying it, by leaving it, then returning, you get a different perspective.

    Once the correct color is applied, allow it to dry for about a half hour or so… like forgetting it for a month is OK too,.. then shoot the head with a few coats of clear, to make a bed for the decal….

    [​IMG]

    I’ll beee bock….

    Ron Kirn
     
  14. Gaber_771

    Gaber_771 Tele-Meister

    Posts:
    341
    Joined:
    Jan 8, 2007
    Location:
    WV
    looks fantastic... thanks soo much for the schoolin'...
     
  15. magicguitar

    magicguitar Tele-Afflicted

    Age:
    73
    Posts:
    1,541
    Joined:
    Aug 23, 2006
    Location:
    Fallon, Nevada
    Super Ron... just super!! Looking forward to seing the finished geetar.
     
  16. Ronkirn

    Ronkirn Doctor of Teleocity

    Age:
    74
    Posts:
    12,381
    Joined:
    May 1, 2003
    Location:
    Jacksonville, FL
    Now that the lacquer has dried for a few hours, I can apply my decal. Since it’s a water slide, I use a special fluid, its called water….great with scotch too.

    [​IMG]

    Let it soak for about a minute, or until is slips freely around. With today’s modern decals, the film is generally a synthetic material and will stretch, so be gentle.

    I put a drop or two of water on the neck to facilitate locating the decal.

    [​IMG]

    Then slide the decal off the paper base onto the neck….

    [​IMG]

    I very lightly press the decal into the approximate location, not hard enough to squeeze the water from between the decal and the neck, just hard enough to keep it from floating around.

    [​IMG]

    I do this so I can “eye ball” down the neck, or whatever other visual references, I use to get it located correctly…

    Ron Kirn
     
  17. Ronkirn

    Ronkirn Doctor of Teleocity

    Age:
    74
    Posts:
    12,381
    Joined:
    May 1, 2003
    Location:
    Jacksonville, FL
    Now I “eye ball” down the neck to get it visually “straight” relative to the apearent “lines” of the neck…

    [​IMG]

    Now using the appropriate applicator, I start slowly working the water out from between the neck and decal.

    [​IMG]

    The applicator is one specially designed for this particular use, here you see a roll I keep handy, I find keeping a “Bounty” of them handy is a good thing, also they can be sued as a “quicker picker upper”

    [​IMG]

    you will see when the decal attaches to the headstock, then I increase the pressure, to work the remaining moisture out.

    If you have additional decals, apply them now, it the same manner.

    [​IMG]

    Just a brief word about decals. Years ago the glue allowed for unprotected decals to have a reasonable service life. Those on Vintage products that are all “chipped” or gone, rarely fell off, they were eaten. The film was a gelatin, some used egg white, so the insects would find ‘em and have a feast.

    Today the bugs wont eat the films used, but the glue is much less aggressive, so some protective coating is a must,

    rk
     
  18. Ronkirn

    Ronkirn Doctor of Teleocity

    Age:
    74
    Posts:
    12,381
    Joined:
    May 1, 2003
    Location:
    Jacksonville, FL
    Once the decal is set, check it closely in good lite from several angles…

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    Now I let it dry thoroughly over night, tomorrow is lacquer day…

    Ron Kirn
     
  19. Shadowrunner

    Shadowrunner Tele-Meister

    Age:
    39
    Posts:
    211
    Joined:
    Apr 25, 2008
    Location:
    Independence, MO
    wow good work on the decal there i love it
     
  20. boris bubbanov

    boris bubbanov Tele Axpert Ad Free Member

    Posts:
    54,563
    Joined:
    Feb 24, 2007
    Location:
    New Orleans, LA + in the
    Nice work. Thanks fer the tutoring.
     
IMPORTANT: Treat everyone here with respect, no matter how difficult!
No sex, drug, political, religion or hate discussion permitted here.