Routing a pickguard?

Discussion in 'Tele Home Depot' started by SamIV, Apr 5, 2020.

  1. SamIV

    SamIV Tele-Holic

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    I own a Godin Session Custom. It is sort of a Tele, and it has a Strat type single coil route under the pick guard. Came from the factory like this. I bought another pick guard from Godin and would like to route the pick guard for a Strat single middle pickup. Bought another just in case I screw it up. Need some advice on how to attempt this.

    I would assume I would have to make a template for the correct placement of the route. Should I buy one of those templates for routing a pick guards as well? I think Stew Mac sells one, but they are available on Amazon and eBay I believe. I do have a couple dremel tools. Am I headed in the right direction? Image of guitar below. 28B03805-C554-4DB5-8543-312E9FDF40AC.jpeg FCEED2C1-BEDD-465B-B53D-73380CA41121.jpeg
     
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  2. Peegoo

    Peegoo Friend of Leo's

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    You are on the right track.

    A top-bearing pattern bit and a template will do it.

    If you son't want to invest the $$ on that stuff, you can spend about $8 on a Forstner bit of the proper diameter (23/32" or 18.5 mm) to drill a round hole at each end of the pickup cutout, connect those two holes with a coping saw (a scroll saw is better if you have one), and then finish to the two lines with smooth file.
     
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  3. Gardo

    Gardo Tele-Holic

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    I had a similar situation recently when modifying a pickgaurd. I thought if I’m going to cut a template. why not just cut the pickgaurd and be done with it . Use masking tape to prevent scratches, leave a little extra material and finish with a Dremel using a straight edge as a guide. It came out just fine . But that’s just my way to do it, not saying it’s the right way
     
  4. dogmeat

    dogmeat Tele-Afflicted

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    I'd do the same thing Peegoo said. in fact I have done that. drill the holes and clamp a guide rail between them. I cut with an Exacto razor saw.
     
  5. SamIV

    SamIV Tele-Holic

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    I do have a scroll saw sitting in the attic that I forgot about. Will check to see if it still works. Similar to below, but believe it’s a Craftsman. 8A7D5D87-A402-4AA6-9513-F4620C3DB801.jpeg
     
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  6. SamIV

    SamIV Tele-Holic

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    The exacto knife just might work for me. Then drill two screw holes. Thanks for the ideas.
     
  7. Steveinthesticks

    Steveinthesticks Tele-Meister

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    I have dremel brand scroll saw & I am constantly amazed at what I have been able to accomplish with it in the wee hours of the morning when a router would wake the neighbors. With both lenses flipped down on my jewelers visor I can rough out temples with a lot less sanding after than with my band saws.
     
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  8. Peegoo

    Peegoo Friend of Leo's

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    I always use a scroll saw for one-off pickguards.

    If I'm making more that one, I'll cut a router template because I cut the template on the scroll saw anyway.
     
  9. guitarbuilder

    guitarbuilder Telefied Ad Free Member

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    If you have access to a router table, get yourself a template bit. Then make a template for a humbucker pickguard rout. When you are satisfied with the result, then attach it to the pickguard with double sided carpet tape. Putting masking tape down and setting up a center line will be a big help in that regard. Once the pickguard is stuck to the template. Drill an access hole in the pickguard to allow the bit to poke through. You can remove the bulk of the material with a drill, but you'll want a router bit to clean it up. Depending on the cover and your router bit diameter, the inner radius may need some attention with a round file or dowel and abrasive.

    Here is what Stewmac's template looks like:

    https://www.stewmac.com/Luthier_Too...MI6v7gq-fT6AIVlIzICh0JXwLzEAQYASABEgLPbfD_BwE

     
    Last edited: Apr 6, 2020
  10. Ronkirn

    Ronkirn Doctor of Teleocity Vendor Member

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    you would use a Strat pickup cover to establish the correct size of the rout.. then using small pieces of material.. I used MDF, you double stick the piece in position then rout an initial template...

    While this shows a Humbucker, the technique is the same.. and for the round ends of the Strat pickup drill a ¾ inch diameter hole through the MDF, cut it in half.. and that becomes the template for the end.. here's some photos to give ya an idea.. sorry, I haven't had the need to do one for a strat yet...

    Of course do not rout the pickguard until you have made the template and used it to rout a "test" in some scrap plastic... once you're sure the dimensions and overall shape is correct... then do the pickguard.... once THAT is done,, use the pickguard to determine the correct location or the pickup cavity rout in the body... that way everything comes out fitting correctly..
     

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  11. Gris

    Gris TDPRI Member

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    Dremmel + proper attachment + steady hand
     
  12. SamIV

    SamIV Tele-Holic

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    Thanks for all the advice. I do have a router table, but my router is from the late 70’s. Have not used it in years. Will dig through my bits later, but don’t know if I will have anything useful. I do have a couple dremmels and quite a few bits. Guess I need to break down and order a template for the pickup size if I want to do this right. Would be the easiest thing for me. Picture below. Ironically I do have one for routing humbuckers that I never used.

    Going to use the tools I have at home for now. We are staying at home due to the issues with Corona. Have a few more weeks of food then will have that delivered. Thanks of all the advice. 0D50CFB2-C11F-468D-9999-FA6B56E3BC9C.jpeg
     
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