I just picked up a light-weight early 70's Precision Body
that I plan to marry to an early 70's Precision neck
. As you can see from the photos
, there's been a route for a hum-bucking-style pickup. It appears to have patched over with a wood insert, although the outline is clearly visible. The previous owner said he thought it was putty, but I can see the grain in the patch, so I think someone put in a wood blank. Two unfortunate aspects to this: 1) The wood insert might be a bit too low on the surface of the body 2) The wood looks dissimilar to the other wood which I assume would be Alder, and the grain runs perpendicular to the other grain on the body, as best as I can tell.
The body is positively enveloped
what I assume is a hard black poly finish (the last refinish attempt by the previous owner was in the late 80's).
My game plan here is to re-create a 70-ish Precision. These are both refinished pieces, so I am not super worried about retaining vintage integrity. This will be a player's bass. Although I do want to keep to using colors and features that would have been available in 70-74.
So here are my questions:
- I don't know what kind of wood this is. Any way to tell without seeing the grain? (It weighs 4 lbs, 4 oz.)
- What should I do about the rout?
- If I choose to strip the finish, chemical or heat?
- My favorite type of finish is sunburst. Would it be possible to either put a correct grain block on this bass and have it finished in sunburst -- or --
- If it's not possible to do the put a correct grain block on this bass and have it finished in sunburst, is a veneer technically possible?
- Plan B is probably an Olympic White finish.
- Plan C is to gently sand the rough spots on the top and use it as is (Black) - the finish is so thick I think that would work pretty well.
- The neck pocket, control, and pickup cavities are seriously thickly coated with paint. Is there a way to selectively strip these? Should I?
My plan is to hire professionals if necessary (recommendations?). But if there a way I can be the "dumb labor" for the prep work, I'd like to do it. I can take my time on this, or even send it away if needed. I don't have unlimited funds (obviously) but I'm willing to do this right.
I've read just about every thread on TB I can find that discuss the pros/cons of this.
I think my "best case scenario" would be for me to strip (or otherwise prep) the body myself to get it to a point where I can send it to be finished by a pro, then do the remaining assembly myself.
Thoughts? Opinions? Chortles of derision?