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2014 Builds

Discussion in 'Luthier's Corner' started by Geoff St. Germaine, Mar 7, 2014.

  1. Geoff St. Germaine

    Geoff St. Germaine Commercial User

    I've recently returned from a 7 month deployment and I'm itching to get started on some new instruments. In between finishing up two archtop guitars, I've started cutting woods for several basses. Specs will be posted shortly, but for now here's the bulk of the neck wood cut and planed:


    That picture shows:
    (8) 3/4" maple
    (9) 1/8" maple
    (2) 1" walnut
    (7) 1/4" walnut
    (4) 1/8" walnut
    (3) 1/4" flamed maple
    (3) 7/8" flamed maple

    I've got a bit of mahogany to cut and then all of the neck laminates will be done.
    Splods likes this.
  2. Beautiful..what are you using to cut and size this up?
  3. pilotjones

    pilotjones Supporting Member

    Nov 8, 2001
    Cool! so what are your plans for this batch?

    Also, naming the boards from right to left...is that a Canadian thing?
  4. Geoff St. Germaine

    Geoff St. Germaine Commercial User

    LightGroove, the planks were first ripped to rough size on a table saw and then cleaned up with a thickness planer.

    PJ, maybe right to left is some artifact from having been overseas for so long. ;)

    Here is my collection of tops/backs for this batch.


    Clockwise for the top left I have:
    Figured claro walnut
    Curly Port Orford cedar
    Redwood burl (though I was told birdsye redwood, which I don't know to be accurate)
    Flamed maple
    Flamed maple
    Figured claro walnut

    Missing from the picture is a curly koa top/back set I have that was left from a build I had intended to start about 8 years ago.

    What I can tell you so far is:
    Two 5 strings
    Three 6 strings
    Two singlecuts
    One fretless
    One multiscale
    One Kahler bass tremolo
  5. Geoff St. Germaine

    Geoff St. Germaine Commercial User

    Here are the fretboards for the builds:


    Pau ferro - 6 string
    African ebony - 6 string
    Macassar ebony - 6 string
    African ebony - 5 string
    Macassar ebony - 5 string

    Here are the pickups:


    All Bartolini. P4, X5, X5, P5 and G6.
  6. Love your notes on the bottom of the necks..great idea
  7. Geoff St. Germaine

    Geoff St. Germaine Commercial User

    I can't take credit for that. I get my boards preslotted from LMII (except the multscale board) and they come with the stickers on them from them. I agree that's it's a great idea.
  8. pnchad

    pnchad Supporting Member

    Nov 3, 2005
    pre-slotted FBs is a nice luxury

    thanks for the infio
  9. Mahataru


    Apr 7, 2013
    Any progress on these?
  10. Geoff St. Germaine

    Geoff St. Germaine Commercial User

    Progress has been quite slow as I'm finishing up two archtop guitars. Here's one of them hanging with the finish sprayed:


    I've made progress on two of the bodies:


    The front body is maple/bloodwood/walnut/bloodwood/maple and will get top and back caps of claro walnut. The body in the background is walnut/maple veneer/walnut/maple veneer/walnut and will get a burl redwood top with another maple veneer layer.

    I've used Forstner bit to remove body wood for weight purposes before, but seeing what Maurizio does got me thinking about using different size bits to better cover an area. As these two will have extensively carved tops, I have to keep the weight reduction holes fairly far from the body edges.
  11. Your weight reduction holes look nice enough to be a feature of the basses!
  12. mapleglo

    mapleglo Gold Supporting Member

    Sep 7, 2013
    phoenix, az
    I was going to say the same thing!
  13. Subbed!
  14. collins81


    Jul 29, 2011
  15. Geoff St. Germaine

    Geoff St. Germaine Commercial User

    Not a lot of progress, but I plan to have a fair bit to post this weekend. All of the hardware has arrived. Here are the bridges:


    Two Hipshot Ds, a Kahler 7416 and a Dingwall bridge plate with Kahler saddles. I actually had the Dingwall plate from back when I swapped the stock aluminum one with a Pau ferro one that Sheldon made for that base. I didn't even realize I had the bridge plate until after I got the saddles, but since the fretboard setup I'm using is the same as a Dingwall 6 string (scale lengths, string spacing and perpendicular fret) it makes sense to use it.
  16. Marcury

    Marcury High and Low

    Aug 19, 2007
    Mid Hudson Valley, NY
    I'd love to see more of those archtops too
    mikezimmerman likes this.
  17. Geoff St. Germaine

    Geoff St. Germaine Commercial User

    mikezimmerman likes this.
  18. Marcury

    Marcury High and Low

    Aug 19, 2007
    Mid Hudson Valley, NY
    Geoff, that's some beautiful work.
  19. Geoff St. Germaine

    Geoff St. Germaine Commercial User

    Thanks a lot guys. I really love building the archtops, but there's something a little more special to me about building basses... I guess the fact that I started playing and building them. I have plans for two more archtops before I branch out into other areas. I guess that's the really cool part about this hobby - there are a lot of places to go with different build styles and related instruments (cough... violin... cough).

    I've been trying to wrap my head around matching the archtop with the bass, but every time I do I just wind up at "that's a double bass". I know archtop bass guitars exist, but I have yet to see or come up with something reasonable in size that isn't quite compromised acoustically.