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  • Remember that build I was gonna do?

    I feel guilty for dragging my feet on this. Perhaps if I made use of that beautiful Carpathian top that knockwood donated maybe there'd be more traffic around here.

    Anyway, I was all set to do a Martin dread. I was even going to use a donated neck to do it. I bought a nice set of rosewood and glued some things together, even put a zig zag strip in like a real D-28 has but now.....I'm scratching that idea.

    You see, I was inspired. I hang out over at AGF where there are people with more money than me and people who have more dollars than sense sometimes but my guilty little pleasure is ogling all the boutique NGD threads. Nope, Taylors don't do it for me. Epiphone's Masterbilt line has essentially become a shadow of its former self and the rage for those "Eastman" guitars that would probably implode it you played western music on them. No, I look at the McKnights, the Yamamotos, the Kragenbrinks ... and Lord help me but I look at the Goodall and Olson threads.

    Those Olsons....*shudders*



    I gotta tell you, I used to think they were hype. $10K+ for several pieces of wood glued together? No way.



    Than I played one...






    Yes, way.

    The one I played belonged to another player with more experience than me and he was generous enough to let me bond with his 20 year old dreadnought with a cedar top and strung with light gauge strings - an anachronism of every belief I've ever held true from my time arguing about bridge pins here but by God that guitar SANG. I had to have one. Problem is even if I sold both my kidneys I could never afford one.

    Meanwhile, I continued my tinkering on my newfound hobby/obsession and late last year I FINALLY strung it up. You guys remember the pictures. I was proud of the way the neck came out - even though it's currently held together with little more than hardware you'd find in an IKEA box. I was proud of how the binding was ALMOST good enough to my eye. I was proud of how the French polish seemed to make the silking in the cedar and the ribboning in the mahogany come alive. I had a professional set it up and even though I still tinker on little cosmetic things to this day I labeled it as being "FINISHED"

    This about a year after I'd gotten that Carpathian from knockwood. Three years after I'd gotten a CNC'd neck with a CA glue stain in it. A year after I'd laid down some of my wife's hard earned money on wood to fill out the rest of the major organs for my next potential creation. Like Frankenstein the pieces were all mismatched. Sure, I could make a decent body from what I had but the neck didn't seem to go with it. Worse, it was a short scale neck. That complicates the geometry a bit for a noob like me but I did the early woodworking stages confident that the details would sort themselves out along the way just like last time

    I talked to other enthsiasts at Kit Guitar Forum and the Official Luthier's Forum and choked on the dust as others sped past me in their early builds. I felt defeated and uninspired. Still, I mulled things over and bought tools and materials here and there.

    Then I saw my inspiration: an Olson SJ made with east Indian rosewood not too different from the set currently sitting in my friend's workshop. It had a western red cedar top just like the one on the OLF MJ that I'd finished. It had that sexy 5 piece laminate neck with the racing stripe that makes my pulse quicken just as if I were looking at a pair of long legs in fishnet stockings. Even sexier though was the dark Brazilian rosewood binding acentuated with the customary black/white purfling strips. If this guitar ever fell in my lap you'd have to fight me to give it up - and it wasn't even strung up yet.

    But again, I'm poor and coveting other people's stuff ain't exactly Christian so I determined that I was instead going to try and imitate it. Just as with the first build - which was similarly inspired by an R Taylor Style 1 with WRC top and mahogany back & sides with EIR trim - I have pics of this build saved on my desktop. It will be different in that the Carpathian is much lighter and wider grained and the MJ has wider "hips" on the lower bout but if I continue to be inspired maybe - just maybe - I'll finish it. Who knows? Maybe in a year or two I'll finish it.

    Gear:
    2013 Official Luthier's Forum Medium Jumbo (Western red cedar/mahogany)
    2012 McKnight McUke (soprano ukulele, redwood/mahogany)
    2010 Martin D-16GT
    2006 Larrivee OM-03R
    1998 Fender American Standard Stratocaster (natural ash finish)
    1989 Kramer Stryker
    197? Epiphone Texan FT-160N

  • #2
    Good luck and keep us posted.
    Official HCAG “Theory-Challenged Hack”
    Member of the IBANEZ ACOUSTIC ASSASSINS
    Proud Member of The Alvarez Alliance
    Member of the Schecter Society
    Person-2-Person on the Web

    Comment


    • #3
      The hardest part is starting

      Comment


      • #4
        Yup. Losing momentum is hard too. I joined the plates last year and glued up a neck blank several months ago. My honey do list is similarly hodge-podged.
        Gear:
        2013 Official Luthier's Forum Medium Jumbo (Western red cedar/mahogany)
        2012 McKnight McUke (soprano ukulele, redwood/mahogany)
        2010 Martin D-16GT
        2006 Larrivee OM-03R
        1998 Fender American Standard Stratocaster (natural ash finish)
        1989 Kramer Stryker
        197? Epiphone Texan FT-160N

        Comment


        • #5
          No worries, it's always good to have a long term project. Work on it as time permits or when you are particularly inspired to do so.

          Comment


          • #6
            QUOTE=riffmeister lives;n31238584]No worries, it's always good to have a long term project. Work on it as time permits or when you are particularly inspired to do so.[/QUOTE]

            Same sentiments here. Slow cooking is best.
            “There is nothing which I dread so much as a division of the republic into two great parties, each arranged under its leader, and concerting measures in opposition to each other. This, in my humble apprehension, is to be dreaded as the greatest political evil under our Constitution.”
            John Adams, The Works Of John Adams, Second President Of The United States

            _____________________
            “The whole aim of practical politics is to keep the populace in a continual state of alarm (and hence clamorous to be led to safety) by menacing them with an endless series of hobgoblins, all of them imaginary.”
            H.L. Mencken

            Comment


            • #7
              OK, just in case anybody's forgotten, here's what the woods look like:





              I'm locked into having the D-28 style zig zag back strip:

              Gear:
              2013 Official Luthier's Forum Medium Jumbo (Western red cedar/mahogany)
              2012 McKnight McUke (soprano ukulele, redwood/mahogany)
              2010 Martin D-16GT
              2006 Larrivee OM-03R
              1998 Fender American Standard Stratocaster (natural ash finish)
              1989 Kramer Stryker
              197? Epiphone Texan FT-160N

              Comment


              • #8
                Since I've shifted gears and haven't had a chance to work on the body I've picked up where I left off with the neck. I had this blank glued up a couple of months ago and decided to use it. This week I glued the headstock ears on and started cleaning up the surface for the faceplate. I have the truss rod channel routed out and a dual action truss rod ready to go in as well as a preslotted 25.34" scale ebony fingerboard on hand. I haven't ordered the Abalam yet because we've put a lot of money into the house this past month as the stuff is pricey.

                I've also been refining the neck profile on my first build, sanding it down to bare wood and rounding out the flat segments:

                Gear:
                2013 Official Luthier's Forum Medium Jumbo (Western red cedar/mahogany)
                2012 McKnight McUke (soprano ukulele, redwood/mahogany)
                2010 Martin D-16GT
                2006 Larrivee OM-03R
                1998 Fender American Standard Stratocaster (natural ash finish)
                1989 Kramer Stryker
                197? Epiphone Texan FT-160N

                Comment


                • #9
                  ...on brighter news, I've been doing little things in anticipation of bigger things. The neck blank is ready for the truss rod and I have a slotted ebony fingerboard ready to epoxy atop that. I also have the headstock ready to accept both a faceplate and once I figure out how to carve a diamond volute I will be sanding the headstock thin enough to accommodate a matching back plate.



                  For that I have matching bookmatched sets of ziricote I bought from RC Tonewoods



                  I will most likely trim away most of the sapwood. I also have a third set of ziricote that has a lot more sapwood. I'm going to use it for my rosette. I don't have a specific design in mind but am considering on doing a mosaic ring and inlay a ring of blue paua zip flex.

                  I also ordered 6 strips of ebony for body binding. I'm contemplating on binding the fingerboard too but can't decide whether to do it in flamed maple of the ebony. I want to work on my fretting this time around and cover the exposed sides of the tangs. I also want to do something fancy to inlay the fingerboard that will match the rosette.

                  Anyway, as for the big things, I have the sides thinned enough to bend and the blocks and binding are on hand for the following steps. I'm looking forward to bending the sides; it's one of the most enjoyable steps.

                  Gear:
                  2013 Official Luthier's Forum Medium Jumbo (Western red cedar/mahogany)
                  2012 McKnight McUke (soprano ukulele, redwood/mahogany)
                  2010 Martin D-16GT
                  2006 Larrivee OM-03R
                  1998 Fender American Standard Stratocaster (natural ash finish)
                  1989 Kramer Stryker
                  197? Epiphone Texan FT-160N

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Looks good. You're about due for some good luck so I hope it turns out well.
                    Official HCAG “Theory-Challenged Hack”
                    Member of the IBANEZ ACOUSTIC ASSASSINS
                    Proud Member of The Alvarez Alliance
                    Member of the Schecter Society
                    Person-2-Person on the Web

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      I've been working on the neck a lot lately, particularly the MT joint. I also decided how to orient my bookmatched ziricote face plate for the headstock. I elected to flip the edges so that the heartwood is on the outer edges where it will be trimmed off. The "flow" of the grain seems more natural this way. Meanwhile, I've been putting a lot of thought into the fingerboard inlay design. Do far nothing definitive yet, but I'm gravitating toward a nautical compass theme that ties into the rosette. I want to incorporate the excess ziricote with some excess rosewood from the sides with a third wood to act as a color accent. I'm thinking red as a color; bloodwood or bubinga, perhaps?
                      Last edited by kwakatak; 11-29-2014, 08:15 PM.
                      Gear:
                      2013 Official Luthier's Forum Medium Jumbo (Western red cedar/mahogany)
                      2012 McKnight McUke (soprano ukulele, redwood/mahogany)
                      2010 Martin D-16GT
                      2006 Larrivee OM-03R
                      1998 Fender American Standard Stratocaster (natural ash finish)
                      1989 Kramer Stryker
                      197? Epiphone Texan FT-160N

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Originally posted by kwakatak View Post
                        Yup. Losing momentum is hard too. I joined the plates last year and glued up a neck blank several months ago. My honey do list is similarly hodge-podged.
                        We're all gonna die with stuff left on our lists.

                        Sounds like a song idea.
                        ..................................................
                        Just because you do not take an interest in politics doesn't mean politics won't take an interest in you.

                        ...Pericles

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Originally posted by kwakatak View Post
                          . . . Meanwhile, I've been putting a lot of thought into the fingerboard inlay design. Do far nothing definitive yet, but I'm gravitating toward a nautical compass theme that ties into the rosette. I want to incorporate the excess ziricote with some excess rosewood from the sides with a third wood to act as a color accent. I'm thinking red as a color; bloodwood or bubinga, perhaps?
                          It'll depend on the particular specimen of bubinga. It's generally about the color of mahogany. I don't know if that would be red enough. Tasmanian myrtle might work if you can find a piece in the right color: http://www.hearnehardwoods.com/flitc...le/flitch.html.
                          Last edited by DeepEnd; 11-29-2014, 12:19 AM.
                          Official HCAG “Theory-Challenged Hack”
                          Member of the IBANEZ ACOUSTIC ASSASSINS
                          Proud Member of The Alvarez Alliance
                          Member of the Schecter Society
                          Person-2-Person on the Web

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Flitch. New word for me. Not quite as useful to me as a murder of crows but words can be like that.

                            I've visualized various designs incorporating the flow of the neck into the body. I wouldn't ever actually spec a guitar out with such fanciful art but ideas do come up. One was paper currency floating down the neck from it's source at a wallet depiction and disappearing into the soundhole, which I thought most appropriate to the pursuit of the hobby. Another was depictions of popular space vehicles known from the NASA registry history all flying down the neck toward the Black Hole Of Nowhere. Another was the pictorial image of "Kilroy was here" in contrasting woods fashioned to the sound hole. Another was a steam-powered freight train chugging along the neck. I'm a sucker for old steam powered engines and their era.




                            Last edited by Idunno; 11-29-2014, 02:24 PM.
                            “There is nothing which I dread so much as a division of the republic into two great parties, each arranged under its leader, and concerting measures in opposition to each other. This, in my humble apprehension, is to be dreaded as the greatest political evil under our Constitution.”
                            John Adams, The Works Of John Adams, Second President Of The United States

                            _____________________
                            “The whole aim of practical politics is to keep the populace in a continual state of alarm (and hence clamorous to be led to safety) by menacing them with an endless series of hobgoblins, all of them imaginary.”
                            H.L. Mencken

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              I snuck away to the local Rockler and found some pauduk with a nice reddish "rainbow" and some nicely flamed maple. Overall, here's the palette. From bottom to top:

                              - streaked ebony fingerboard
                              - flamed maple binding strip (for fingerboard and body)
                              - east Indian rosewood (side slat)
                              - flamed maple 1/8"x3"x24"
                              - pauduk 1//8"x5"x24"

                              Gear:
                              2013 Official Luthier's Forum Medium Jumbo (Western red cedar/mahogany)
                              2012 McKnight McUke (soprano ukulele, redwood/mahogany)
                              2010 Martin D-16GT
                              2006 Larrivee OM-03R
                              1998 Fender American Standard Stratocaster (natural ash finish)
                              1989 Kramer Stryker
                              197? Epiphone Texan FT-160N

                              Comment













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