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about to cut and reshape a P-bass body

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by Wade10987, Oct 14, 2011.


  1. Wade10987

    Wade10987

    Joined:
    Sep 27, 2011
    Location:
    Tallahassee, FL
    Hello fellow Bassists,

    I have a Squier Affinity P-Bass from '01 that I really would like to customize. I have been posting questions on here this week about electronics and hardware. Thanks for all your input so far.
    I decided on a Badass II bridge (Thanks Jarrod Cunningham!) and DiMarzio DP 127s.

    It has also been defretted. Neck is varnished and looking classy.

    Now I have really wanted to enter the woodshop and do some subtle cutting and sculpting of the body. I am thinking a Jazz Bass lower body contour on the left side. Then thin the horns a LITTLE so they are more curvey and graceful and have a sanded, curved edge instead of the P Bass slab style. I was also thinking of shaping the bottom horn to point "off" a little like a Schecter Stiletto.

    I already have a Cherry Mahogany stain and it will look great on Alder.
    I plan to do this soon. I will definitely be measuring twice and cutting once. Also I plan to cut minimally at first so I don't take it too far or make it look to weird or radical.

    What kinda advice do you have to offer on sculpting a cheap old P bass body? Anybody been here before?

    Thanks!
     
  2. ghostdog93

    ghostdog93

    Joined:
    Jul 27, 2010
    Location:
    Washington, USA
    Is the body already stripped? If not, don't count on it being a nicely matched 2 or 3 piece slab. It might be ok underneath that paint...or it might be ugly.

    Also, are you sure the '01 Affinity Ps are alder and not agathis?
     
  3. 68camaro

    68camaro

    Joined:
    May 31, 2010
    Location:
    West Central MN
    Can't wait to see some pics. I have an uncle who works miracles with wood and I always thought about having him make something for me. I'll have to dig on here to see what the possiblities are. Good luck!
     
  4. Gord_oh

    Gord_oh Supporting Member

    Joined:
    Oct 4, 2008
    Location:
    Michigan
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  6. Wade10987

    Wade10987

    Joined:
    Sep 27, 2011
    Location:
    Tallahassee, FL
    Ghostdog93: I had thought of that. If this is a nasty piece of wood then I plan to just do a solid paint job (since I already had the stain that won't be an economic waste).

    Thanks for the nods camaro and Gord oh.
     
  7. SurferJoe46

    SurferJoe46

    Joined:
    Feb 22, 2010
    Location:
    The Bitterroot Mounts, Montana
    By all means try to sculpture that body a little.

    I took a tracing of a VM-Jaguar and rounded it more like an Ibanez SR500 body and got the following:::

    [​IMG]

    Here's the whole online album if you like. I know it has too many pixs of routers and Dremels, but it might be interesting.

    https://picasaweb.google.com/vreela...authkey=Gv1sRgCJfqloamvo_CpQE&feat=directlink
     
  8. darkstorm

    darkstorm

    Joined:
    Oct 13, 2009
    If you havent done so allready. Make a full size drawing of the intended body. Make 2 copies. One to be colored, the other as a spare. If you can find onion skin paper or other thin see thru paper. Also trace the full size body on it. This sheet is most useful for seeing exactly where youd be cutting etc on the body to make the mods.

    Seeing the lifesize drawing helps one to make little tweaks to it if desired and to reaffirm the idea will look good etc outside fantasy.
     
  9. Wade10987

    Wade10987

    Joined:
    Sep 27, 2011
    Location:
    Tallahassee, FL
    Ghostdog93:

    After researching I am quickly realizing how optimistic I was while predicting the wood underneath. It likely is Agathis. I had it in my mind that it would be alder. So that red mahogany wood stain might go unused for now. I DID find some awesome colors from reranch.com. Their Inca Silver looks unique. The dark red is nice too. Leaning towards the Inca Silver.
     
  10. RobJ

    RobJ Supporting Member

    Joined:
    Aug 17, 2008
    Location:
    Mukilteo, Washington. USA
    That's a real cool looking bass. Nice work.
     
  11. Wade10987

    Wade10987

    Joined:
    Sep 27, 2011
    Location:
    Tallahassee, FL
    I have started to sand away and I already found a joint between two slabs. The wood is a little blondish/tan. How will I know if it is agathis vs alder? I don't have a camera so I can't show you.
     
  12. ghostdog93

    ghostdog93

    Joined:
    Jul 27, 2010
    Location:
    Washington, USA
    More than likely it's agathis, if it's an Affinity series made from 2000-to the present.
     
  13. Wade10987

    Wade10987

    Joined:
    Sep 27, 2011
    Location:
    Tallahassee, FL
    Do you happen to know how agathis stains?

    Thanks
     
  14. SurferJoe46

    SurferJoe46

    Joined:
    Feb 22, 2010
    Location:
    The Bitterroot Mounts, Montana
    I HEAR that agathis takes stains in a very poor and unpredictable way. It might color in one area and resist any colorization in another.

    @ Wade10987:::

    Thanks.

    It was a treat to build and I really think anyone worried about woods and the differences in it in a finished product, take a look at the first few pixs in that folder I posted.

    That's all scrap 2 x 4s and 2 x 6s in either Douglas Fir or Hemlock from a house remodel I worked on a year ago or so.
     
  15. ghostdog93

    ghostdog93

    Joined:
    Jul 27, 2010
    Location:
    Washington, USA
    That depends on the cut and the grain, and it could take the stain well. However, agathis usually requires a good amount of grain filler and/or sealer, so if the body does take the stain, be prepared for multiple coats of clear finish.

    Or, if you decide to paint, you might need to apply a few different coats of grain filler and sealer before the primer and color coats.
     
  16. Wade10987

    Wade10987

    Joined:
    Sep 27, 2011
    Location:
    Tallahassee, FL
    So I spent about an hour in the wood shop today. I am really happy about the shape I made the bass body into. It looks pretty sweet!
    This is going to take a while to sand. A while....

    I had a hard time utilizing the belt sander. The sanding strips were too thin on the vertical running one. There was a horizontal sanding belt or two, but it was hard to angle the horns (the main part I cut on the bass). Since the horns are curved, it was hard to provide a smooth sanding because the belts are straight.

    So I guess I am sanding the horns down by hand.
     
  17. arsie

    arsie

    Joined:
    Jan 19, 2011
    Location:
    Singapore
    Work in progress pics!
     
  18. JonahTheAmazing

    JonahTheAmazing

    Joined:
    Dec 19, 2010
    I really like the picture posted above. That's really something, makes a fender style look crazy neat, even though the change is quite minimal. Totally looking forward to the finished project, sir!
     
  19. Waterpilot

    Waterpilot

    Joined:
    Jun 13, 2009
    Location:
    North of Seattle
    +1 That really does look cool. I like the controls.
     
  20. SurferJoe46

    SurferJoe46

    Joined:
    Feb 22, 2010
    Location:
    The Bitterroot Mounts, Montana
    Thanks - I had one of my 2AM epiphanies and that's what happened.

    Somebody told me it was a NACA scoop from a car of some sort - and I guess it was - but I didn't know it until it was pointed out to me that was what I had designed.
     
  21. darkstorm

    darkstorm

    Joined:
    Oct 13, 2009
    That came out very nice for shape
     

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