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Homage to Devastator: "Arachnophilia"

Discussion in 'Luthier's Corner' started by Rôckhewer, Dec 25, 2016.


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  1. Rôckhewer

    Rôckhewer Supporting Member Commercial User

    Feb 28, 2015
    Phoenix, Arizona
    Owner/Builder- RockHewer Custom Guitars LLC
    Winter 2017 Build Off - Challenge yourself

    With the "challenging" theme of this build off... this one should fit in fairly well I'm thinking.

    My wonderful repeat client from NY submitted this challenge to me a couple months ago, for his third commission.
    He wanted me to put my style of building into a homage to Jerry Only's bass (Misfits) ...
    "Devastator"
    20161224_144742.
    It will resemble said bass in body shape only. He knew I would not be into doing a "copy" & painting it black.... so he let me run with it.
    I'm not a huge fan of this bass anyway...so I was happy to morph it into something I would enjoy.
    After a few ideas from me and a couple of mutual brainstorming sessions...this is what we came up with. Given its sorta "spidery" visage ...we have dubbed it - ARACHNOPHILIA.

    Specs:
    9 lam. Neck-through 34" scale.
    8 string (Dual course -octave tuned).
    7 layer "hippie sandwich" body.
    Grover 'Titan' tuners- gold...
    BCR - 'Widow-ish" headstock, with 4 fund. tuners & ferrules for the octave strings . Then 4 small tuners on body behind bridge.
    At first, the plan was to go with 2 sets of DiMarzio split P pickups... and a Badass bridge, modified for 8 string (ala- BCR). But once the top wood bookmatch was seen, it bacame obvious that it was far too ...glorious ...to obscure.
    So I suggested that I could create a minimal footprint acoustic style bridge, with an under saddle piezo transducer as the sole pickup.
    (Me & my big mouth):confused: I mean, ...I have no doubt I can pull off the bridge itself ....but making an 8 string sound good...piezo only? Will surely prove somewhat... challenging. I might attempt to embed a magnetic pup... somewhere, as well.

    The woods:
    For the body I had a vision of this instrument being clad in a sort of "demon hide" of bloody flesh & sinew.
    Behold this amazing slab of Red Mallee burl from Australia:
    20161224_191134. 20161224_190929.
    From which I have hewn these: 20161224_192145.
    These dry pictures don't do these justice...and they will obviously darken up when finished. drool
    20161224_192448.
    So, yeah... covering/ cluttering any of this up... would amount to a mortal sin, in the eyes of the gods of luthiery. :angel:

    The fretboard is going to be BirdsEye maple ....and will transition nicely, out of the burl sapwood figure in the center of the body.
    * There will be an inlay of a somewhat tribal-ish spider at the twelfth fret area ...as big as I can fit on the fretboard. Where the 'x' is in the following picture.
    Inlay material TBD ...(thinking about using ebony, redheart, & maybe a little abalone for sparkle)
    20161104_115931.


    These neck of the woods..... :rolleyes:
    20161120_122255.
    Center out: Redheart - Gaboon Ebony - Redheart pinstripes - Curly Maple - Bubinga.
    20161120_122042.

    The body core is Bubinga ... and will have curly maple and ebony pinstripe layers on either side.
    20161224_221347. 20161224_221158.
    Core pieces w/opposing grain orientation.
    Cut & sanded together with double sided tape for maximum symmetricality ;)
    20161201_155806.
    Ebony & curly maple resawn & planed thin for accent pinstripes.

    Headstock template, modeled loosely after a BCR Widow peghead. (That's what he wanted)
    20161129_172859.

    Thats all I got for now...

    Oh yeah, I forgot to list the challenges outside of my comfort zone.
    • 8 string
    • well...the body shape is gonna be a challenge for several of the steps involved.
    • Piezo only... although it looks like I am not the only one attempting this...within this challenge alone.... so maybe we should compare notes?;)
    •Acoustic style bridge...never done one...let alone one for an 8...and a piezo.
    • The spider inlay....the only inlay work I've done has been my logo.
    • The Red Mallee burl is providing its own special challenges. :meh:

    Another challenge will be getting this build done by March... as it is actually currently in limbo having been placed on hold.
    And I have TWO other commissioned builds going on right now as well.

    Looking forward to getting back on this one:thumbsup::cool:
     
    Last edited: Dec 25, 2016
    Sartori, wraub, CatSquare and 10 others like this.
  2. mapleglo

    mapleglo Gold Supporting Member

    Sep 7, 2013
    phoenix, az
    Sub'd! That Red Mallee burl looks like slices of brain tissue. I love it!
     
  3. charlie monroe

    charlie monroe Gold Supporting Member

    Feb 14, 2011
    Buffalo, NY
    Ohh! This one is sinister looking.
    You may have to register as a deadly weapon upon completion.

    I wish I could see what a piece of that lovely redheart would look like as fingerboard against that burl.

    Nice work, Rock. I'm coming along for the ride.
     
    Rôckhewer likes this.
  4. moonshinegtrs

    moonshinegtrs Gold Supporting Member Commercial User

    Jan 28, 2009
    White Bluff,Tn.
    Owner: Moonshine Custom Guitars
    This is going to be so cool!


    Moonshine :bassist:
     
    Gopherbassist and Rôckhewer like this.
  5. Be careful!! You could put an eye out with that bass..:blackeye:
     
    Rôckhewer likes this.
  6. Gilmourisgod

    Gilmourisgod

    Jun 23, 2014
    Cape Cod MA
    Another Rock build, I'm in! Luthiery as Spectator Sport, work at this level is like a free college course for rest of us. Pointy!
     
    Rôckhewer likes this.
  7. PDX Rich

    PDX Rich

    Dec 19, 2014
    Portland, OR
    Nice scroll work!
     
    Rôckhewer likes this.
  8. Anachronism

    Anachronism Supporting Member

    Nov 17, 2014
    MO
    In Arizona? I'm pretty sure you're allowed to carry battleaxes that shoot 50 BMG there.
     
    Rôckhewer and Will_White like this.
  9. Will_White

    Will_White

    Jul 1, 2011
    Salem, OR
    ...
     
  10. Five String

    Five String Supporting Member

    Looks cool sub'd
     
  11. Rôckhewer

    Rôckhewer Supporting Member Commercial User

    Feb 28, 2015
    Phoenix, Arizona
    Owner/Builder- RockHewer Custom Guitars LLC
    That's awful nice of you to say Alex....but it's kind of a stretch. I've learned way more from others here who are truly masterful, than I have personally contributed. That's how I see it anyway. But thank you.:)
     
    Gilmourisgod likes this.
  12. michaelwayneharwood

    michaelwayneharwood Builder of the Wastelands Commercial User

    May 1, 2014
    Colorado
    Owner Melodious Resonance Constructs
    I am with @Gilmourisgod - anything you put your hands (and tools) on ends up being epic in all aspects.
     
    Rôckhewer and mapleglo like this.
  13. MPU

    MPU

    Sep 21, 2004
    Valkeala Finland
    While I would never see myself playing this kind of bass it sure is going to be a mean axe! Real eye-puncher if not treated right.
     
  14. Rôckhewer

    Rôckhewer Supporting Member Commercial User

    Feb 28, 2015
    Phoenix, Arizona
    Owner/Builder- RockHewer Custom Guitars LLC
  15. pilotjones

    pilotjones Supporting Member

    Nov 8, 2001
    US-NY-NYC
    For all its extremeness, that's a pretty cool shape. And I imagine the air content of it will allow the bubinga body without it being too heavy. Although you could chamber the halves if you wanted.

    I'm curious as to why you did a final shaping of the outline before gluing the pieces together. I'd hate to have to do the re-matching-up sanding after the glue up. Or am I misunderstanding it?
     
  16. Definitely following your build, because I'm actually in the process of building one myself!!

    A friend plays in a Mosfits tribute band, and commissioned me to build him a replica a few months back. Crazy build. Carving those tight curves has been "interesting", to say the least.
     
    William Shafer likes this.
  17. Rôckhewer

    Rôckhewer Supporting Member Commercial User

    Feb 28, 2015
    Phoenix, Arizona
    Owner/Builder- RockHewer Custom Guitars LLC
    Yes I was still planning on doing a bit of "swiss cheese" chambering to help with the weight....that burl is dammed heavy.

    I have taken to doing it that way because I like having just the single thickness piece of core wood (typically about 3/4" or even less) to cut out & spindle sand to the final shape & then I will rough cut all the other laminations about 1/8" over using the core as a pattern. Then glue it all up & trim off the excess from either side with a flush cut router bit...running the bearing on the edge of the center of the core.
    On this particular design, I only cut & shaped one side to final, then attached the other side to it & routed it flush & did a final sand with them both together. (Only because both sides are identical.)

    Obviously there are several ways to go about skinning the same cat though.... ;)
     
  18. Rôckhewer

    Rôckhewer Supporting Member Commercial User

    Feb 28, 2015
    Phoenix, Arizona
    Owner/Builder- RockHewer Custom Guitars LLC
    Cool.
    Yeah, I'm not looking forward to carving the bevels on either side....I typically never use a chamfer bit at all because I like bevels to flow differently as they make their way around a body... but on this I might make an exception....?
    IDK yet.
     
    Rip Topaz likes this.
  19. yoshi

    yoshi

    Jul 12, 2002
    England, London
    Amazing neck laminates!

    Cracking shape too. What a project!
     
  20. Yeah, those bevels are gonna be the death of me. I don't have a chamfer bit the right size so I've been doing the carving the bevels by hand. Files and scrapers all the way.
     
    wraub likes this.

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