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Home made Les Paul

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  • Yep...that burst looks amazing. Nice work! I don't know how much more you're going to do but I really like how the dark part is quite thin on the outer edge.

    And I love how you matched the grain pattern on the control cavity cover to the back of the guitar. Great attention to detail there.

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    • Wow, great choice in colors imo. Can't wait to see more.

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      • That burst looks AWESOME!!! So many home done bursts come off looking kinda cheezy.... yours looks like a pro job!!

        Cant wait to do my build. I have a lap steel under my belt, and thinking of doing a kit next to get reved up for a scrach build!!

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        • How do building acoustics and electrics compare so far? I'd think the acoustic would be more difficult.

          I have to say that you also have a nice place to work and adequate tools, always a plus!

          I like your lifestyle. In some respects it's like my wife's and mine. No TV means lots more time in the day!


          These are good questions so I'd like to come back to them. How does building an electric compare with an acoustic? Remember this is my first electric so my experience is pretty limited, but as I see it with the electric its the pups that make the sound so really what you are doing is building something to hold them and to present the strings to them. Neck and playability are paramount - I think electric players are much more into the subtle shape and feel of their necks. And of course cosmetics is everything - wood choice and finish are so important to an electric player.

          The carved top and set neck make this guitar a little harder than say a Tele with its flat top and bolt on - I may make a Tele some day just because I want one, but with this I really wanted the challenge of carving that top. Obviously you can make this easier by buying a precarved top and a preshaped neck - cnc's make absolutely perfect ones over and over and over - but there is something very satisfying about a scary sharp chisel or plane working the wood.

          With an acoustic the sound is all in the wood, the size and shape and bracing and thickness of the plates. You have to be aware of all of that as you work - and again, there is a real joy in carving a brace with a sharp chisel and listening to the tap tone change. I think the actual word working is harder - bending the sides, all the radius (nothing is flat on a flat top guitar). There is certainly a lot more fitting and figiting - many more steps in the build.

          The hardest parts of any guitar for a home builder are (1) setting the neck angle - this is the basis of playability. A dovetail is a nightmare for a first timer (I've done a few) - an MT neck like this is easier and a bolt on even more so. (2) binding is hard for either an acoustic or electric, tight curves like a cutaway are tricky, if the top and side are not at right angles it is hard to cut the channels. I did an F5 mandolin one time - those scrolls are a bitch. (3) And finish is also hard - the amature builder will never get a factory looking finish no matter what method we use. Each of mine has flaws, I get better each time, but as my wife says, "no piece of art is 'perfect' " (thanks, dear).

          I work in my garage. I covet a truely nice shop with heat and humidity control. I have had serious problems with some acoustics during the winter when humidity goes up and down. I also buy one major tool with each build - I think of something that I had trouble with on the last one and add it to the collection. The only thing worse than GAS is TAS ("honey, I need a new router...")



          Last, thank you for the comments on our life style. Our family has made decisions over the years where life style has trumped jobs or moves - I'd probably be making a lot more money today but I sure wouldn't be as happy. Music, books, the mountains, my wife and family are the most important things in my life - I'm blessed.

          Sorry about the long reply, back to your regularly scheduled building thread....

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          • oh man, oh man, oh man...that guitar is looking more beautiful every single day!

            Do you have an estimate as to what the finished weight will be?


            No, sorry, no idea. Its a whole lot heavier than a D18, however. I'll probably have to buy one of those strap thingies.

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            • I have been following silently, but I have to say "Holy CRAP, that is turning out gorgeous!" I wish I had your skills!
              HCEG PLATINUM TRADER

              Great transactions with Yo_Squig, DenverDave, TehSuperFox, dcooper830, zuzuman (x2), iplayanesp, cavpilot, vangkm, maltomario, Hyphy Panther, jonnyrocket, dcindc, the new guy (x2), blind radish, Woody_in_MN, A-20, kidgloves, justinaz (x2), cerebrix, Lightnin8281, BAXANDALL, Assumer, Firebrand, Cobalt Blue, PunkKitty

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              • No, sorry, no idea. Its a whole lot heavier than a D18, however. I'll probably have to buy one of those strap thingies.


                You're going to MAKE the guitar and then BUY the strap ?
                It is a piece of leather with holes in it !
                Cheater !
                Fender-TeleSonic Tele Elite, ProJr, 75Amp, '67 Bassman w/212 cab
                Gretsch- 71 Nashville, 2003 New Nashville
                Gibson- 76 LP '55 model
                BC Rich- 1977 Koa Eagle deluxe
                Martin- 1972 D-35
                Mesa Boogie-Subway Blues w/12" EVM 12L-F cab.
                Assorted fun toys and boxes of joy.
                "Many are cold, few are frozen"

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                • thank you for posting this. your confident and descriptive posts are both helpful and descriptive.
                  2x4 Telecaster build - | - killer HC search

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                  • Thanks for posting. I've enjoyed seeing your work a great deal. Awesome job!

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                    • You're going to MAKE the guitar and then BUY the strap ?
                      It is a piece of leather with holes in it !
                      Cheater !


                      Where can I get the plans and special router bit?

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                      • Where can I get the plans and special router bit?


                        you can buy the kit...

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                        • Have at it !
                          http://www.leathersmithdesigns.com/guitar-straps-making.htm
                          Fender-TeleSonic Tele Elite, ProJr, 75Amp, '67 Bassman w/212 cab
                          Gretsch- 71 Nashville, 2003 New Nashville
                          Gibson- 76 LP '55 model
                          BC Rich- 1977 Koa Eagle deluxe
                          Martin- 1972 D-35
                          Mesa Boogie-Subway Blues w/12" EVM 12L-F cab.
                          Assorted fun toys and boxes of joy.
                          "Many are cold, few are frozen"

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                          • *shivers*

                            Comment


                            • you can buy the kit...



                              rockin' for life







                              Originally Posted by GAS Man


                              Thrash the establishment, strip it down, and let it rip.









                              Originally Posted by Deadbeat Son


                              There's no "just a" allowed here. There's no reason to denigrate a great guitar that does the trick for you just because it's less expensive than someone else's.



                              Good Trades with: boonestunes, smithshred

                              Nox P

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                              • I just started following this thread. It's fascinating to me to see this level of home craftsmanship. I once made a toothpick.
                                A '57 Classic, MIJ from USA parts.
                                HCEG Existentialism: I buy guitars, therefore, I am.
                                Well Dick, it's got a good beat, and I could dance to it, so I give it a 10!
                                I have opinions of my own,strong opinions but I don't always agree with them.

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