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Today's the Day: Cheap LP Jr Project

Discussion in 'Other Guitars, other instruments' started by Rich_S, Jan 23, 2021.

  1. Rich_S

    Rich_S Friend of Leo's Gold Supporter

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    Some of you may remember my Cheap NGD thread from back in November. After a looooooong startup, and moderately bad case o' COVID, and a few weeks of getting home, getting back to full strength, and getting some other projects out of the way, today's the day I turn this cheap Chinese LP Junior knockoff into a punky, junky PLAYAH.

    The real workshop is too cold to work, so I'm going to do this project on a folding table in the family room/office/studio. Walmart worktable for a Walmart guitar. Aerosmith's first album, "Toys In The Attic", and "Rocks" playing on the studio setup. (Why don't I have MP3s of "Get Your Wings?)

    Here you can see I have everything I need (and one thing I don't) for the project.

    [​IMG]

    First step: The tuners were absolutely awful. I replaced them with a set of used Grovers I bought from one of the forums. They're a little rough, but overall they raise the level of quality/class of this POS guitar. The little stick kept them in line while I drilled the new holes. (Yes, there's another stick on the front to project the plastic peghead face.) I even remembered to soap the screws before I ran them in.

    [​IMG]

    Next, I pulled the pickup, planning to replace it with a GFS Mean 90. First bump in the road: look at this pickup route. It looks like it was done freehand. The Mean 90 doesn't fit.

    [​IMG]

    Dang. I'm going to have to brave the cold, cold garage and get out the Dremel. Stay tuned.
     
  2. Peegoo

    Peegoo Poster Extraordinaire

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    You can work inside with the Dremel if you have an assistant hold the end of a Shop Vac hose in the pickup rout as you work.

    It sucks up all the dust and chips because the Dremel's cutter is really small and doesn't fling chips hard like a standard router.

    Turn on the Shop Vac. It works better with it running ;)
     
  3. SRHmusic

    SRHmusic Tele-Holic Silver Supporter

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    Cool project. Looks like you caught the cat in the act of some mischief - about to bat the tuners off table, I bet.
     
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  4. 1 21 gigawatts

    1 21 gigawatts Tele-Holic

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    Use the too-narrow HB route to your advantage and put a real dog ear P-90 in there. All you would have to do is to widen the length with a chisel between the screw holes.
     
  5. posttoastie

    posttoastie Tele-Afflicted

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    What about
    [​IMG]
     
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  6. Rich_S

    Rich_S Friend of Leo's Gold Supporter

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    Actually, it was 2 of the 4 pickup ring screws. I found them.

    A dogear would look more authentic, but ain't nothing authentic about this thing. Besides, I like the flexibility of being able to put a humbucker in there in the future, if I choose.

    I had that on vinyl back in the day, but not MP3 in the 21st century.
     
    Last edited: Jan 23, 2021
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  7. Rich_S

    Rich_S Friend of Leo's Gold Supporter

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    Well, it's sort of finished.
    [​IMG]

    The Tele knobs aren't right, but I didn't have the 500K spilt-shaft pots I thought I did in the parts drawer. These are from when I upgrade the electronics in my son's Squier P-Bass. They're better than no knobs at all until I order the good pots to go with the gold speed knobs that were in the parts drawer.

    "By Gibson". LOL
    [​IMG]

    The tuners I bought (used, for $20 IIRC) turned out to be Grover Auto-Locking. A learning experience for me. One of them was still locked, with a broken off bit of string stuck in it. After stabbing myself with it twice, I finally figured out that the screwdriver slot in the top of the post is there for just this situation - it lets you unlock the cam while holding the tuner button in place.

    The truss rod turned out to be 5/32". This surprised me, but it fit better than either of the metric sizes I tried. It was really loose, but tightening it a bit gave me 0.010" of relief. Screwing the bridge all the way down gave me good-enough action of about 1/16".

    After the sun shone on the garage all afternoon, it was 34 Deg F despite being about 10 Deg F outside. I Dremeled out the pickup cavity, but didn't really need to take off much more than just the finish. The Mean 90 sounds great.

    [​IMG]

    Who can pick out the day's major problem (Dare I say disaster?) from this photo?

    Now, to install a noodley old black leather strap from the '80s and a pair of beer washers, and it's done for today.
     
    Last edited: Jan 23, 2021
  8. Wallaby

    Wallaby Tele-Afflicted

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    Nice project.

    I don't see a problem that a black Sharpie can't fix. Or maybe it's my eyes playing tricks on me.
     
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  9. DrBGood

    DrBGood Tele-Holic

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    Pole pieces don't align too good.
     
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  10. Rich_S

    Rich_S Friend of Leo's Gold Supporter

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    That’s just the angle of the photo. And no, a Sharpie won’t fix it.
     
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  11. Oldsmobum

    Oldsmobum Tele-Meister

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    Is that pickup flush with the trim ring?
     
  12. posttoastie

    posttoastie Tele-Afflicted

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    Your bridge is the old style made for a wound G. You need a newer style bridge with the G string notch moved back or else it may have issues with intonation.
    [​IMG]
     
  13. Wallaby

    Wallaby Tele-Afflicted

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    Do I see a route underneath the wraptail, visible on the front edge?

    Maybe the disaster was the lack of a full-height pickup ring?
     
  14. Rich_S

    Rich_S Friend of Leo's Gold Supporter

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    Ding, ding, ding! We have a winner!

    Now I gotta find a wrap tail with normal compensation that will fit this maybe-metric maybe-not guitar.
     
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  15. pinchegil

    pinchegil Tele-Meister Platinum Supporter

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    lots of 3 wound lightning bolt bridges. Mojotone has a decent one i put on my 67 melody maker
     
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  16. posttoastie

    posttoastie Tele-Afflicted

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  17. ping-ping-clicka

    ping-ping-clicka Friend of Leo's Ad Free Member

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  18. ping-ping-clicka

    ping-ping-clicka Friend of Leo's Ad Free Member

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    at which point is kitty being installed and do you have the proper shield as that kitty-kitty doesn't get shocked
     
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  19. Rich_S

    Rich_S Friend of Leo's Gold Supporter

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    Kitty was asking for it when he started rubbing his jaw on my hand right after I picked up the soldering iron.
     
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  20. RobRiggs

    RobRiggs Tele-Meister

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    Kitty was just tryin’ to supervise. Dang!
     
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