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Does anyone cut custom bodies?

Discussion in 'Luthier's Corner' started by NewtoBass33, Jan 7, 2012.

  1. NewtoBass33


    May 25, 2011
    I am interested in building myself a bass, however i want to get someone to cut the body for me. It would be a jagstang shape and I would need it routed also Split P and Neck pups with a Might Mite Jazz bass neck (so Fender neck pocket, 4 bolt). What should this cost to get done, I was going to have my HS wood shop teacher do it but he said he was worried about the equiptment they have messing up and did not want to risk it. I am wondering because I want to save my money to get this done! Thanks, Darron
  2. Beej


    Feb 10, 2007
    Victoria, BC
    Hey Darron, that sounds like a cool bass actually. I'd actually suggest exactly what you already did, which was to find someone local to help you out. I suspect your teacher has never made an instrument before and probably thinks that it's more precise than it really is. Precision is key, but it's not the end of the world if he buggers a few things up here and there. I'd suggest getting some inexpensive wood and making two of them with him so there is more wiggle room if the first one has problems. Poplar and basswood are both cheap and plentiful, plus they are easy to work with and take finishes easy as well.

    To pay someone to make this for you will be expensive, likely more expensive than buying an off the shelf bass, so that's why i'm recommending going with the woodshop teacher idea.

    You need to get the neck, pickups and bridge first so that you can use their dimensions to build from. Cutting the body and routing it are the easy parts, it's all the calculating that will be more of a challenge for a newb. I'd suggest picking up a copy of "Make Your Own Electric Guitar" by Melvyn Hiscock, its an invaluable resource and will inspire you to great heights.

    One thing to consider is that if you want the jagstang body style with a full scale (34") neck, you'll need to make the body a bit bigger than a guitar jagstang, or you'll end up with bad neckdive. For starters, get a big honkin piece of paper and draw out your bass full scale, this will help sort things out greatly and will eventually become the template when you and your teach start to cut some lumber.

    My last advice is to read all the stickies at the top of this forum and ask lots of questions. Keep this thread rolling along as well and as long as you keep posting, we'll keep helping. Good luck, this will be a blast if you stay patient...
  3. NewtoBass33


    May 25, 2011
    I have a regular sized template pasted on my wall right now drawn out with all of the stuff I want to do written on it and so that I can look at it everyday and think about if I like it for a long period of time. It has been up for 3 months and I am still loving it more each day. How much larger would you suggest making the body? Also you said it would be more expensive than a off the shelf bass, that is why I like this because it is not off the shelf it is custom (obviously a stolen shape but still custom to the bass realm. I wish my dads friend still lived here, hes cut like 20 bodies for people and they were nice quality. Sadly we have lost contact with him over the years.
  4. Stumbo

    Stumbo Wherever you go, there you are. Supporting Member Commercial User

    Feb 11, 2008
    the Cali Intergalctic Mind Space
    Song Surgeon slow downer software- full 4 hour demo
    There's this new thing called the interwebz where you can search for people and stuff. :D

    Try a couple of these:
    People-Finders.ws This one uses more info to start with so you limit the number of hits.

    For full service, they're not free, however, you can come up with a lot of info w/o paying. I've used them all plus a few more. I paid for a couple and for the most part, you really can find your old friends.most anyone.

    Note: I have no financial interest in any of the above web services.
  5. Nev375


    Nov 2, 2010

    edit: they can do a jaguar shape, but not the jag-stang.
  6. BogeyBass


    Sep 14, 2010
    You might like the Warmoth Bass6 style body

    or you can order a blank with the neck pocket and pickup pockets already cut, you would just have to cut and shape the rest.

    otherwise do a search in the Luthier's Corner i'm sure many would be willing to do that for you.
  7. pudge

    pudge Supporting Member

    Sep 13, 2008
    I remember you posted your drawing a ways back.Any woodshop teacher should be more than qualified to make a bass body,if you can make a birdhouse you can make a bass body!Nothing about it is space shuttle precison work.I'm going to send you a pm.
  8. Musiclogic

    Musiclogic Commercial User

    Aug 6, 2005
    Southwest Michigan
    Owner/Builder: HJC Customs USA, The Cool Lute, C G O
  9. jumbodbassman

    jumbodbassman Supporting Member

    Dec 28, 2009
    Stuck in traffic -NY & CT
    Born Again Tubey
    do you have a website??
  10. Musiclogic

    Musiclogic Commercial User

    Aug 6, 2005
    Southwest Michigan
    Owner/Builder: HJC Customs USA, The Cool Lute, C G O
    Hey Jumbo, I have a facebook page that is way behind because I lost my hard drive on my old computer, just started a new website should be up in a few days. You can pm me and I'll pass along the details but not in public until we get it fully done.
  11. funkingroovin

    funkingroovin Conquering A-D-D,and all the other notes as well!

    Apr 19, 2009
    Here's a quick pic of the "JazzRay" that TFM53 made for me,and how it was before the re-route..
    DSC00308.JPG DSC00055.JPG
  12. Marton


    Sep 20, 2005
    Wow I had a Warmoth exactly like your 72 P Bass before. That's almost scary :).
  13. funkingroovin

    funkingroovin Conquering A-D-D,and all the other notes as well!

    Apr 19, 2009
    It may have been yours,I just received it today! From what I know,it started life as one of Nino Valenti's early builds. Then it show up as a body F/S,then it became passive with a Warmoth Tele neck,and two people later,it showed up at my place :D Like I said,it JUST got here,but I love it so far..It's going to practice Wed.,and I'll get to open 'er up then!!
  14. Marton


    Sep 20, 2005
    Defintely not mine though, mine was finished by Dan Atkinson and reliced, and I sold it locally. Anyway, good looking bass !
  15. NewtoBass33


    May 25, 2011
    Thanks to everyone whos responded so far!!
  16. Arx


    Jan 22, 2008
    You could have a look at my build as well.

    Nick's First Bass Build

    It was my first build, and really first significant woodworking project, so you can see some of my beginner mistakes, and know what kind of things to watch out for.

    But I would reiterate, It's probably nothing that a high school woodshop teacher couldn't help you with.

    I think the main things that aren't immediately obvious to people are the placement of the bridge, which should be very close to the same distance from the 12th fret, as the 12th fret is from the nut (scale length of your neck) when it's adjusted with the intonation set to 0 (saddles all the way towards the neck), and as already mentioned, a small body will make the neck dive. aim for a body size that puts the strap button somewhere above the middle of the neck (12th fret is probably a goodish spot).

    beyond that, just make sure everything is straight and your strings line up with the neck properly, and you should be good to go.

    Mine turned out nice, in spite of several mistakes. I expect with some skilled assistance you should be able to do it.

    Also, don't waste a lot of money buying high end wood or parts on your first go. Basswood or Alder will make a really nice light body, and won't cost you an arm and a leg.

    In the event that you do screw up, blowing a $40 blank will hurt a lot less than a nice figured hardwood sandwich heading for the scrap bin.

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