Building a guitar with what I've learned here. Walnut/Maple/Ash/Eastern Red Cedar

Discussion in 'Luthier's Corner' started by lbridenstine, Sep 28, 2012.


  1. lbridenstine

    lbridenstine

    Joined:
    Jun 25, 2012
    Location:
    MI
    The bass I'm making is almost done, so now I'm starting on a guitar. I hope you guys don't mind that I post it here. This will be the first guitar I've made and the majority of what I now know about building instruments came from this forum.

    Here's what I have so far for specs:

    -6 string guitar

    -Neck thru

    -Wings will have walnut on top and bottom, ash and a stripe of Eastern red cedar in between

    -Neck will be 5 pieces: maple, red cedar, walnut, red cedar, maple

    -Neck through section will show on the front, but the back will have a tone block made of red cedar and maple (these will show on the heel contour area), covered by a walnut backing, so the back of the guitar will be solid walnut, unless I put thin veneers between the pieces since they won’t have the same figure/grain

    -Scarf joint with a veneer in between that will probably be red cedar, maple, red cedar side by side
    *Changing the layout of the veneers

    -3x3 tuners, headstock shape will be the same as the bass

    -String through body

    -Gold hardware (tunematic roller bridge, ferrules, jack plate, frets)

    -Cosmo black mini Gotoh tuners

    -Possibly black mother of pearl dot inlays
    *Changed to walnut dot inlays
    *Only on 12 and 24

    -Possibly three piece fretboard (maple, rosewood, maple)
    *Changed to maple fretboard
    *Changed again to Indian Rosewood

    -Vertical wooden side markers made from walnut
    *Changed to maple

    -Probably EMG pickups (61-x and 85-x is what I'm thinking for now) with an ivory finish

    -Knobs made from zebrawood

    -Thinking about maybe chamfering the front
    *Maybe archtop

    -5/8” roundover on the back (front too if I don’t do the chamfering)

    -All finished with Tru-Oil, satin finish with open grain look



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    I didn’t glue the back piece of walnut to the bottom wing yet because I’m going to route the control cavity first, then cut the cover shape out of that piece of walnut and make the cover out of it so it’s a continuous piece of wood that will slide off. Then I can glue the part that isn’t the cover to the back.
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    I'll update more once I get some work done on it.

    I really like how the walnut looks, so I already can't wait to see it finished.

    Any input, suggestions, "you're doing it wrong"s, etc are welcome.


    -Lisa
  2. crazygtr

    crazygtr

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    Along for the ride.
  3. lbridenstine

    lbridenstine

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    Location:
    MI
    Thanks!
  4. aronnes71

    aronnes71

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    Nice, I'm looking forward for the rest of the build!

    Chess
    Tore
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  6. suraj

    suraj

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    Im in ;) keep em coming..!!
  7. lbridenstine

    lbridenstine

    Joined:
    Jun 25, 2012
    Location:
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    Thanks guys! I almost wish this was going to be a bass too, but I already bought the guitar hardware and the wing pieces aren't long enough for a bass. So, maybe if I feel like it I'll try a walnut bass next year or something. I'm going to have plenty of neck wood leftover. :)
  8. lbridenstine

    lbridenstine

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    I should probably point out that I've never had a guitar without a Floyd Rose bridge, so I have no idea how tunematic bridges are supposed to be installed. I'll have to look into that.
  9. Smilodon

    Smilodon Supporting Member

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    Location:
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    Subscribing to this one as well. :)

    Looks good so far. I'm really interested to see how the walnut and maple will look together since that's what I'll use in my next build. (If I can find any, that is...)

    Is there any reason why the tuners and the rest of the hardware have different colors?


    Oh, and that bridge doesn't have anything to do with the Floyd Rose bridge. That's a tune-o-matic. ;)
  10. abarson

    abarson

    Joined:
    Nov 6, 2003
    Location:
    Santa Cruz
    From what I've been able to understand. the Tunematic bridge is taller than a regular bridge that mounts flush on the solid body. I believe that this means you need to introduce some angle between the body and the neck to compensate. If you draw this out from a side perspective, you'll probably be able to suss this out.
    Another thing to consider is whether the string will clear the back of the bridge on its way to the ferrule anchhors.
  11. TheEmptyCell

    TheEmptyCell Dingwall ABZ Player Supporting Member

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    Yes, most of the time, TOM's are installed on posts and 'float' about 1/2" from the top of the body. This requires a back-angled neck pocket. OR you can route a little pocket in the body for the TOM to rest in. Interesting choice to install the tuners backwards, but it looks like it'll match the headstock.

    Reminds me of some Ibanez SA shapes. Very cool.
  12. lbridenstine

    lbridenstine

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    I just liked those tuners better than the gold.

    I meant that my guitars have Floyd Rose bridges, so that's why I don't know how to work with this type, because I haven't played any with this type of bridge.


    Thanks for the info about the bridge and angle, I'll have to look into this more before I do the neck, I guess. Although making a pocket for the bridge sounds like the best option since I'm not doing a bolt on.

    The tuners being backwards are just me not paying attention when I laid them out for the picture. :)
  13. lbridenstine

    lbridenstine

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    Also, they didn't have fretboard sized rosewood at the lumberyard and they did have walnut dowel rods, so I'm switching to a maple fretboard with walnut dot inlays.
  14. Nidan

    Nidan

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    Looks good so far
  15. lbridenstine

    lbridenstine

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    Is this what you meant, TheEmptyCell?

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    So, if I did this, I wouldn't have to angle the neck? That image is on stewmac.com and it says that normal Gibson tune-o-matic type guitars have necks angled between 1.5 - 4 degrees, which doesn't seem like much, but I don't know exactly how I would be able to cut the angle.
  16. TheEmptyCell

    TheEmptyCell Dingwall ABZ Player Supporting Member

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    That's exactly what I meant. TOM's normally need a big angle because they end up being so high off the body. Without an angled neck, the strings would be way high off the fretboard. It's the same idea as shimming the neck when your bolt-on bridge saddles just can't go low enough.
  17. lbridenstine

    lbridenstine

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    One thing I'm wondering, would I want to drill holes for those posts to sit in, so that way I could adjust the height of the bridge if needed? Or would it be screwed in? I think I saw some pictures with the posts below the surface, but this one looks like they're completely taken away.
  18. LGT

    LGT

    Joined:
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    According to Melvyn Hiscocks book, Tune-O-Matics and Floyd Roses both have a 3/4" bridge height. So you might not have a problem.
  19. lbridenstine

    lbridenstine

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    That might be a different type of Floyd Rose, I guess. Mine is 1 cm high, the neck is straight, and the strings are 1.5 mm higher than the 12th fret. (I like very low action on guitars). The one I have currently and the last two I had were the trem types of Floyd Rose (except I never use the trem on it), I guess there are also fixed ones if I remember right.

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  20. crazygtr

    crazygtr

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    "One thing I'm wondering, would I want to drill holes for those posts to sit in, so that way I could adjust the height of the bridge if needed? Or would it be screwed in? I think I saw some pictures with the posts below the surface, but this one looks like they're completely taken away."
    I'm not sure if I understand that question the way you mean it, but, if you want to go recessing the bridge, I would advise to use this kind of TOM, the one with studs and bushings. That way no matter how deep you reccess it, you can adjust the action with a screwdriver from the top.
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  21. lbridenstine

    lbridenstine

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    I think that was what I was trying to ask, if those get recessed in there too or if you just take them off and don't use them.
    This has that, right?

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