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BA.Barcolounger

A gig near-fail that turned into a guitar project

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Some of you may know, I play in a celtic rock band. We had a gig down in Rockaway beach at an Irish festival. I packed up my stuff in the truck, but I left my guitars in the house because I had some errands in the morning and I didn't want them sitting in the heat.

 

The rest of the band met at my house, piled their gear in the truck and we got on the road.

 

2 hours down the Thruway, I realize that the guitars are still on the couch. It's too late to turn around. The swear words were flying.

 

Our fiddler fired up google and found a Sam Ash in White Plains. We stopped and I bough a cheap Squier telecaster, got to the gig, played and then drove home.

 

Now I have an extra guitar, that plays nice, looks meh, and sounds terrible.

 

So I took it apart...

 

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I bought a Seymour Duncan Little 59 to replace the stock bridge pickup, because the stock pickup was way too tinny and noisy.

 

It is a used tele with a very significant chip on the body (lower right). So I decided I was going to replace the entire top. With this...

 

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So I sanded off the existing finish off the back and sides...

 

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to be continued...

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Then I took it to my dads woodworking shop and used his surface planer to remove 3/8" off the top...

 

[ATTACH=JSON]{"data-align":"none","data-size":"full","title":"65682766_10219062792509058_5418619697996234752_o.jpg","data-attachmentid":32550301}[/ATTACH]

 

Then I distressed it and stained it to match the box...

 

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Then glued down the new top (not pictured - it was covered with car batteries), and then used a router to trim it to size...

 

[ATTACH=JSON]{"data-align":"none","data-size":"full","title":"65847815_10219062809509483_4077528799908986880_o.jpg","data-attachmentid":32550303}[/ATTACH]

 

Then I routed the cavities, and began reassembly (including the original box nails)...

 

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This last photo was taken before I applied a flat clearcoat sealer, and screwed down the switch plate. I have also swapped out the tuners since with some fender locking tuners with the compensated pole heights (so I could yank the string tree).

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That looks great. I've been to Rockaway Beach

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Missouri.

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I can't imagine what a pain it must have been to have to sand through all of the original poly finish!

 

The end results are pretty awesome though - very nicely done! :philthumb:

 

 

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I can't imagine what a pain it must have been to have to sand through all of the original poly finish!

 

The end results are pretty awesome though - very nicely done! :philthumb:

 

 

I used a big-ass belt sander. And like 3 belts.

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Posted (edited)

That's fantastic!

 

If you ever get a shot at a cheap rosewood neck, I wonder if it might even be better looking.

Edited by Into Nation
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I used a big-ass belt sander. And like 3 belts.

 

I don’t doubt it... that stuff can be tough to remove.

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Cool story that could have turned out much worse. Happy New Guitar Day. :thu:

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Cool story that could have turned out much worse. Happy New Guitar Day. :thu:

 

I'm just glad I realized it before we got to the gig. There was nowhere anywhere near the gig to buy a guitar. There was one in Astoria, Queens. 45 minutes away.

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Not much of a Tele or relic'd fan but I would love to have that guitar. Nice job!

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Awesome work BA!

 

How does it sound now with the new pickup?

Will this be your new main axe for gigging?

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Yeah' date=' BA I'd like your thoughts on the little 59! :)[/quote']

 

Excellent crunch through my tube amp. What I like best is the volume knob roll-off.

 

With the volume knob at 100% it gets a great lead tone.

With the volume knob at 75% it gets a great crunchy rhythm tone.

And at 50% its clean.

And all of it with no loss in clarity.

 

What I like least is the behavior with the tone knob roll-off. As soon as I go below 100% on the tone knob - instant mud.

 

So as a result, my tone knob is always dimed.

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Awesome work BA!

 

How does it sound now with the new pickup?

Will this be your new main axe for gigging?

 

I tend to cycle between guitars, even within gigs. Having a bagpiper in the band, I always have to have at least one guitar prepped with the first fret capo (one of his sets of pipes are in Bb), so I can just grab and go, between songs.

 

If a song has a ripping solo, I always use the SG. If it doesn't, then I use this one, or the Gretsch.

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Excellent crunch through my tube amp. What I like best is the volume knob roll-off.

 

With the volume knob at 100% it gets a great lead tone.

With the volume knob at 75% it gets a great crunchy rhythm tone.

And at 50% its clean.

And all of it with no loss in clarity.

 

What I like least is the behavior with the tone knob roll-off. As soon as I go below 100% on the tone knob - instant mud.

 

So as a result, my tone knob is always dimed.

 

Thanks for your review! I hate tone pots like that my SG was like that, it had that crappy new wave soldered drop in board we're starting to see, I yanked that out and put a real harness in for a vast improvement in tone for around $60

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Posted (edited)
That looks great. I've been to Rockaway Beach

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Missouri.

I've been to Rockaway Beach, Oregon...

 

...and England.

 

 

Great job on the guitar.

I have a Tele with a SD '59, the full humbucker. It's on a pine body with no pots. Signal goes straight to the amp, and it sounds amazing.

May add a SD Antiquities Strat neck too.

 

I already sanded down the body so it's comfy like a Strat.

Edited by Hoot Owl

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I don’t doubt it... that stuff can be tough to remove.

 

Heat guns are a wonderful thing. :)

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Heat guns are a wonderful thing. :)

 

Sandpaper, heat guns, Aircraft stripper... no matter what you use, poly’s a PITB to remove...

 

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