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Custom Build 4 string PJ for Richard Turner

Discussion in 'Luthier's Corner' started by bassmanhamilton, May 28, 2012.


  1. bassmanhamilton

    bassmanhamilton Supporting Member Commercial User

    Nov 21, 2007
    Georgia
    Owner, J. Hamilton Guitars
    I'm working on a new project for Richard Turner. Richard is the Bassist for Blackberry Smoke. Really talented player and a heck of a good guy.
    After several conversations this is what we decided on:
    4 string HJ Classic model
    Swamp Ash body with figured Maple top
    Maple neck
    Rosewood fingerboard with inlays to be determined
    P J configuration wound by Curtis Novak
    Passive, wired with 2 Vol and 1 Tone
    Red, White and Blue finish...think Buck Owens...except with translucent finish to show the grain.
    Chrome Hipshot Bridge
    Chrome Hipshot UL Tuners with D tuner
     
  2. bassmanhamilton

    bassmanhamilton Supporting Member Commercial User

    Nov 21, 2007
    Georgia
    Owner, J. Hamilton Guitars
    This is the maple that I am using for the top.
     

    Attached Files:

  3. bassmanhamilton

    bassmanhamilton Supporting Member Commercial User

    Nov 21, 2007
    Georgia
    Owner, J. Hamilton Guitars
    After resawing and thickness sanding the top, I glued everything up and rough cut the body.
    001Mapletoponswampashbody.jpg

    002Bodyshaperoughedout.jpg

    Roughed out the routes with my drill press.

    003Roughingouttheroutes.jpg

    Cleaned up the routes with my templates and a straight cutting bit on my router.

    004BodyRouted.jpg

    Contoured the body and routed in control cavity. This is a standard cavity route that I am using that allows for room for a preamp and battery.

    0045bodyshapedandcontoured.jpg

    Wooden cover made. If this bass were going to be active, I would use magnets to secure the cover. Since he should rarely ever need to access the controls, I decided on screws.

    0046.jpg
     
  4. bassmanhamilton

    bassmanhamilton Supporting Member Commercial User

    Nov 21, 2007
    Georgia
    Owner, J. Hamilton Guitars
    I inset two 1/8" x 5/16" carbon fiber strips in the neck. Set these in epoxy. Routed for a two way adjustable truss rod.

    005Neckconstruction.jpg

    006Neck.jpg

    Slotted the fingerboard on my table saw. I use a stewmac blade and one of their indexing guides along with a shop made sled to cut my slots (Sorry no pics of that). Radiused the board and glued it up to the neck. This is my all inclusive method for clamping the fingerboard while gluing.:D

    007Neckfingerboardglueup.jpg
     
  5. bassmanhamilton

    bassmanhamilton Supporting Member Commercial User

    Nov 21, 2007
    Georgia
    Owner, J. Hamilton Guitars
    I want the figure to really come to life so I taped off the body in to three individual sections and dyed the maple. I mixed a transtint golden color to use underneath the white. White on white trans tint on maple doesn't show up to good.
    The others are transtint bright red and blue.
    I applied the stain and sanded back once it dried.
    This is the result...
    009PreliminaryDyeofquiltedmapletop.jpg


    I shot the white over the golden undertone first. I tinted the sealer so I can just build with the clear nitro finish. These pics are with my phone so its hard to see the figure in the white.

    010TransWhitesealerwithgoldundertone.jpg

    011Backwithtranswhitesealer.jpg


    Then I masked off and did the same with my red sealer.

    012TransRedsealer.jpg

    Then the same process with the Blue.

    013TrandBluesealer.jpg


    All together, this is the final sealed body.

    014RedWhiteBluetranssealer.jpg


    015RWBtranssealerback.jpg


    Each of these colors was achieved by two cotes of sealer to get this depth.

    Next I will sand back slightly with 320 grit and start building clear nitro.
    I plan to do this and then carve the neck while the body cures for buffing.
     
  6. I almost stood up and saluted that.

    Nice job!
     
  7. andrellucz

    andrellucz

    May 10, 2012
    bassmanhamilton, beautiful, what measures used in this eletric bass, you have plans to send to I build my eletric bass?

    andrellucz@gmail.com

    thank you
     
  8. bassistjoe93

    bassistjoe93 Supporting Member

    Sep 14, 2011
    That's hot man. Very hot.
     
  9. bassmanhamilton

    bassmanhamilton Supporting Member Commercial User

    Nov 21, 2007
    Georgia
    Owner, J. Hamilton Guitars
    Thank you Sir! I'm working on the inlays and neck carve. I'll post some pics of the process soon.
    Trying to have this wrapped in time for him to break it out on a 4th of July gig!
     
  10. bassmanhamilton

    bassmanhamilton Supporting Member Commercial User

    Nov 21, 2007
    Georgia
    Owner, J. Hamilton Guitars
    Finished up the neck carve.
    I use a series of rasps, a spokeshave and sand paper.
    N3NeckRasp.jpg

    Neckfinal1.jpg

    NeckHeelCarve.jpg



    We decided on star inlays for this bass. I ordered some nice Black/White MOP stars that give a 3D appearance. Very fitting for the color scheme.

    StarInlay1.jpg

    Starinlay2.jpg




    Polished out the Mohawk nitro lacquer. Wet sanded 600 through 3000 grit then started with 3M rubbing compound followed up with Finesse-It.




    DSC_0066.jpg

    I LOVE this Lacquer!

    Polishedoutfront.jpg

    PolishedoutBack.jpg
     
    Dadagoboi likes this.
  11. Big B.

    Big B.

    Dec 31, 2007
    Austin, TX
    Pimpin' in action. That finish is hot. If that wont make an eagle stand a little straighter I dont know what will.
     
  12. Praxist

    Praxist

    May 28, 2010
    British Columbia
    Wow, thats making me feel sentimental and patriotic, and I'm a canadian! :D
     
  13. UpperBout

    UpperBout Supporting Member

    May 15, 2008
    Near Chicago Illinois USA
    Webmaster, Muckelroy Basses (GetAMuck.com)
    I believe I heard this bass in front of nearly some 20 thousand people last night. (Blackberry Smoke opened for Zac Brown Band at the Midwest Bank Amphitheatre in Tinley Park IL).

    Sounded great, although the sound guys were still figuring out how to turn on FOH all the way into Blackberry Smoke's second song. It was funny because I was looking at the band and thinking "something is missing". Then the sound guys routed the bass to the actual PA and it was like - "Yeah, that's what was missing"

    Richard looked very comfortable with your bass on stage. Great looking and great sounding bass!
     
  14. bassmanhamilton

    bassmanhamilton Supporting Member Commercial User

    Nov 21, 2007
    Georgia
    Owner, J. Hamilton Guitars
    That is too cool! Thanks for sharing.

    I realize that I never uploaded finished pictures of the bass. I will do that this evening.
    Richard got the bass a few months ago. He is really enjoying it. I've got some cool shots of him playing it live too.

    Thanks again, Joe
     
  15. bassmanhamilton

    bassmanhamilton Supporting Member Commercial User

    Nov 21, 2007
    Georgia
    Owner, J. Hamilton Guitars
    Here are a few finished shots.
    Sorry for the delay in posting these!!

    Joe



    Finished1.jpg

    Finished2.jpg

    Finished3.jpg

    Finished4.jpg
     
  16. bassistjoe93

    bassistjoe93 Supporting Member

    Sep 14, 2011
    Very nice!
     
  17. Big B.

    Big B.

    Dec 31, 2007
    Austin, TX
    I'm not a Fender man but thats a sexy bass. I'd rock it onstage. I particularly like the lines on the headstock.
     
  18. Gord_oh

    Gord_oh Midtown Guitars: Ulyate Pickups & StringJoy Supporting Member

    Oct 4, 2008
    Michigan
    wow....
     
  19. Stealth

    Stealth

    Feb 5, 2008
    Zagreb, Croatia
    Looks really great. :D Love the trans tint.
     
  20. Dan B

    Dan B

    Oct 19, 2008
    Pittsfield, MA
    Out of curiosity, is Richard Turner of Dutch origin? :D

    I jest; it's a beautiful instrument. Love the tint job!
     

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