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criticism please?

Discussion in 'Luthier's Corner' started by mahrous, Jan 31, 2006.

  1. mahrous


    Aug 13, 2005
    so my first two basses that are made up to standard to be sold


    also my first preamp is on there but very poor quality picture, the preamp is quite cool.the treble band needs tweaking but bass is hawt!

    cerruse/zebra finish attempt. i have better samples than those that i made. will be doing it on my next bass.

    anyhow, the basses:
    matched swamp ash bodies
    maple necks. one maple fretboard. one padauk fretboard. ebony and bone nuts.
    fretting job done by me. EMG Select pickups. control cavity matched cover wooden plate.
    passive basses.
    the headstock and neck are my own designs 100%. the profile is a bit chunky. next set of necks will be flat like MTD and Ken Smith.
    finishes are kerosene based finishes. natural earth dirt colors. dont know the correct name in English. colors i mix myself.
    side dot inlays. no front dots.
    what do you think then?
    what do i need to improve?
  2. Cool work and great looking finishes.

    My only issue would be with the edges of the Jazz body. IMO, the body would look better by rounding them a bit more. The Tele style is fine like that - it's sort of like the bodies were anyway. But I've always equated (right or wrong) slabby style J bodies as being cheap.
  3. mahrous


    Aug 13, 2005
    i agree hambone

    but these are sold for less than $300 here in Egypt. i can not make them cooler than that at this price.

    i also think slab bodies are inferior to well contoured and curved ones. my next bass will be a concave body neckthru. too bad school starts tomorrow morning.

  4. ArtisFallen


    Jul 21, 2004
    i agree with hambone on the J-style body needing a little wider rout on the edges. if it's not too late, i know you've already put your finish on it so it might be too much of a pain in the butt to do that, but if you think you can pull it off without having to do much of a re-work on that finish, then I'd say it would be well worth it to take hambone's advice.
  5. You are obviosly a luthier talent! Nice work.
    Agree with the others. A little more "female" thinking will
    make these extremely fine.
  6. klocwerk


    May 19, 2005
    Somerville, MA
    The finishes are absolutely beautiful!

    Again though, I'm not huge on the slab shapes with hard edges. A little shaping with a rasp or micro-plane would go a long way in my mind.
  7. :confused:

    C'mon, 2 minutes and 13 seconds of routing and it would be done!

  8. for YOU, maybe...It would take me a WOPPING 6 minutes and 23 seconds!!!! :p (not including the coffee break between flipping sides :D)
  9. fookgub


    Jun 5, 2005
    Houston, TX
    Is the preamp board a custom job or did it come as part of a kit? Care to post a schematic?
  10. mahrous


    Aug 13, 2005

    the preamp is made from a schematic that i came accross. a friend of mine is an electronics engineer graduate and will be doing some modifying work on it ... especially that treble band.

    as for sharing schematic. i can show you the original only. the modified, if it works well, i will keep it to myself.

    hit me with a PM reminder. i am off to classes in a short while and will definitely forget.

    how do you guys file the edges of ur basses? using a router machine? thats weird, someone cares to post a brief explanation.

    i will be using a CNC soon to make these more accurately. and i just file the edges by hand using a rasp/filer (whichever the correct term is). thus it takes me way over 6 mins and 23 seconds. more like couple of hours of work. these two i finished in roughly 10 days + 2 days for the fretjob (it was my first).

    i had to do setup a fretting template. my sanding machine took away a piece of my finger and nail, which slowed me down a little etc etc. i bled too much in the making :(

    again, thanks for all the comments. more is always welcome
  11. A 1/2" roundover router bit is about all you need. You can get the inexpensive HSS bits without a bearing for around $10-$15 or you can get a good carbide tipped with a guide bearing for under $25. It literally takes just a few minutes and you've got perfect, even relief of all the edges.
  12. mahrous


    Aug 13, 2005
    i used to do that with a shaft moulding machine in my previous basses (these are # 2 and 3). its perfect. almost flawless but wont go inside the cutaways. i just rely on my file and rasp these days.

    i have come to the fact that file/rasp are the most funs things to control ... but get my mighty tired at the end of the day.

    one day, i will buy an inverted router machine and a sanding stick (dont know its real name ... but its that thing i saw in the Ken Smith factory tour to round the edges in the cutaway).

    by the way, how do you your necks?
  13. Mahrous, the bit I'm using is only about 1-1/4" in diameter - I don't have any problem getting into the cutaways on my Jazzes. You shouldn't either.

    Ditto on the rasps - I have a bunch in all varieties and they are one of my favorite shaping tools.

    You don't need to "buy" an inverted router machine. Simply cut a 2" diameter hole in a table top and mount your router upside down underneath. We use this setup in our interior manufacturing division in a production environment. It works well for simple things like you are doing.

    Here's a tip - I just saw a new router patterning bit thats become available. While a standard pattern bit has a bearing on top of the cutter and a laminate trimming bit has the bearing on the bottom, this new cutter has a bearing in both places allowing you to use a template mounted blank either template up or template down without changing the bit. This means you can change the direction of your cut (climb to mill) to avoid tearout with woods like ash and walnut. I can't remember the manufacturer offhand but they make bits that are red.
  14. ArtisFallen


    Jul 21, 2004
    word to the wise, Dont go cheap on router bits. the cheapies are cheap for a reason, they can be dangerous. the extra ten bucks for a quality roundover will be worth it.
  15. mahrous


    Aug 13, 2005
    i will be outsourcing the bodies to a CNC router here. he does them for relatively expensive ... but thats till i get my own 6-axis machine (if you remember in my first introduction, we own a large furniture business and buying CNC for that).

    as for the inverted router, we have done that before in our factory. i might dig it out of our warehouse and find it. will look for it again.

    couple of questions about neck thru constructions. since i will outsource those bodies. should i send it completely glued neck and body wings together? because if i dont, my neck will be 3 separate pieces (beacuse of the pup routings). and i believe this will be impossible to put together with accuracy along with wings.

    my current stock of maple is all 1". my bodies are 45mm (2" = 50.8mm). so its even difficult to glue another maple center block to the neck because even then, it wont reach the required thickness. this way, my neck wont stand higher than the body top which makes me wonder if the action will be too high. i use 7.5mm completely flat fretboards.

    and this same bass will be concave bodied. so it makes it even more annoying to figure out how to blend the square neck to the curved body top. i would appreciate it very much if someone posts picks of their own curved tops with neck joints or original Warwick/Spectors pictures.
    a brief explanation is mighty appreciated too!
  16. teej


    Aug 19, 2004
    Sheffield, AL 35660
    Who was it that did the post about a router bit or something explode while they were working?