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My First Attempt at Constructing a Bass... (With Bass Porn)

Discussion in 'Luthier's Corner' started by Cerb, Mar 16, 2005.


  1. Cerb

    Cerb

    Sep 27, 2004
    Indiana
    Well, I've just created my first blog, and I'm sure glad I did. They are mighty useful. Anyways, for any of you who enjoy looking at progress pics, here it is. Leave a few comments if you would, as I'm extremely bored and need something to read.

    - Cerb

    P.S. I was just wondering how old you were when you started your first bass project. I'm glad I've gotten a nice head start at the age of 15 :cool:.

    P.P.S. I will also be posting the updates here in this thread for those of you that would like to follow the progress but don't want to look at the blog more than needed.
     
  2. It reminds me of Rickenbacker meets a Warwick Fortress. In a cool retro way. I dig.

    Oh, and it looks like you're doing a banner job. I look forward to seeing the progress pics.
     
  3. Cerb

    Cerb

    Sep 27, 2004
    Indiana
    I've actually had more than on person say they saw the Warwick Fortress in it. The back portion was actually meant to be an exagerrated J bass shape with the horns being my own design. I really love it. It took me a good 4 or 5 months to settle on that particular one. Thanks to this new found obsession I have a folder with about 60 bass sketches setting in it :p.
     
  4. Cerb

    Cerb

    Sep 27, 2004
    Indiana
    Update: New control knobs made out of maple - 1 picture.
     
  5. JSPguitars

    JSPguitars

    Jan 12, 2004
    Grass Valley
    Not bad for 15, my friend. I've only completed one bass, and that was at 27 yrs old. There will be more in the near future. I really like the body design and looks like yur neck glued together nicely. I'm with you on the newfound obsession.....
    How'd you make the knobs?
     
  6. Cerb

    Cerb

    Sep 27, 2004
    Indiana
    For the knobs I:
    1) Clamped the bit of maple with a piece of plywood under it to the drill press.
    2) Drilled the center hole with a small bit that fit the pots I've got. The size escapes me at the moment.
    3) Countersunk that hole with a larger bit.
    4) Used a plug cutter to cut out the basic shape of the knob.
    5) Reinserted the smallest bit used (the one for the post) into the drill press once again, and twisted the roughed out knob onto it. It should hold tight enough so as not to move.
    6) Turned on the press and start sanding.

    They take anywhere from 5 minutes to 15 minutes per depending on how close your plug cutter and block of wood were to the correct depth/width. If you plan on making any, my best advice would be that once you have the wood clamped down with the first hole drilled, don't let it move until after step 4. The knob can be off center by less that a millimeter and still shape incorrectly. Have fun ;).
     
  7. CamMcIntyre

    CamMcIntyre

    Jun 6, 2000
    USA
    Looks good so far. I built my first and thus far only project last year. It turned out to be a nice thing to look at.....once i buy some guitars i know that will sound like what i have in my head [jazz 5w/rosewood board], i'll give building another try.

    Side note-you're from Indiana? I'm a senior @ Laf. Jeff High School.
     
  8. Cerb

    Cerb

    Sep 27, 2004
    Indiana
    Yes, it has been a while since the last update. I've just had so little time with school and such. The basic body shape has been cut out and is waiting for gluing.

    7 Pictures have been added to the blog.
     
  9. Phil Mailloux

    Phil Mailloux

    Mar 25, 2005
    Brisbane, Australia
    Builder: Mailloux Basses
    Hi Cerb,

    Very nice work, I like the bass. To answer the first post, I built my first bass at age 32, i'm now 34 and building my second.

    Have you visited projectguitar.com and it's forum? Best place on the net to learn about building guitars. You can see my ongoing thread about my 6 string bass build too! :smug:
    http://projectguitar.ibforums.com/index.php?showtopic=14859
     
  10. Basschair

    Basschair .............. Staff Member Supporting Member

    Feb 5, 2004
    Stockton, Ca
    That looks great man, especially the neck materials! What kind of reading/research did you do?

    BTW...I'm twice your age and just now thinking about building my own. You've definitely timed it right!
     
  11. Cerb

    Cerb

    Sep 27, 2004
    Indiana
    The neck actually came out better than expected except for one <sarcasm>minor</sarcasm> detail. It developed a bit of a bow after drying. So, the neck blank you see will not be the one in the finished product. Luckily I have enough of the neck woods left to build a new neck. The bowed one will most likely be used for my second bass while experimenting with a bolt on. That way, in case it bows more once attached, or even worse, snaps in half, I won't have lost much.

    Regarding the research, most of it came straight from these boards. I'm at school at the moment and don't have my library of bookmarks on hand, but once I get home I can post some links.
     
  12. Basschair

    Basschair .............. Staff Member Supporting Member

    Feb 5, 2004
    Stockton, Ca
    Thanks, I'd appreciate it...I plan on picking up the few books recommended already in other posts, but am always looking for new info.
     
  13. Cerb

    Cerb

    Sep 27, 2004
    Indiana
    It's funny you mention that, as I had actually been looking for that exact thread for a few days now. Nice work!

    The only book I've bought is Make Your Own Electric Guitar & Bass by Dennis Waring and David Raymond. It has some nice pointers, and I would recommend it, just not as your only source of information. It leaves a bit to be desired.

    As for the links I promised:

    Step by Step Builds
    JP Basses "How We Build a Bass" on Bunnybass.com
    A Guitar Build, but Useful None the Less
    Phil Mailloux's Thread from the Above Post
    Phil Mailloux's Bass on a Non-Forum Site

    Random Information
    LED's Anyone?
    BuildYourGuitar.com - A very nice resource for info
    Jon Tirone's Music and Electronics Page - If you are interested in Pickup winding, there is a neat tutorial on making a coil counter from a calculator.
    ProjectGuitar.com - This site has just about everything you could need: Tutorials, Gallery, Forum, Etc.

    Parts/Wood
    Gilmer Wood Company - I have not bought from them myself, but they seem to have quite a nice selection for fairly decent prices.
    Luthiers Merchantile International - Once again, I havent bought from them, but they are recommended quite regularly around these boards. They have both wood and hardware.
    Gallery Hardwoods - Regularly suggested on these boards. Larry seems to have built up quite a following.
    StewMac - Parts, Parts, and More Parts

    Well, it seems as though I had fewer links than I thought I did. Oh well, that's a nice start. I must say, though, that the great majority of my research was done right here on these boards.
     
  14. Basschair

    Basschair .............. Staff Member Supporting Member

    Feb 5, 2004
    Stockton, Ca
    Geez, man...now I'm seriously back to considering making my own :)
     
  15. Cerb

    Cerb

    Sep 27, 2004
    Indiana
    Heh. If a child such as myself can do it, I'm sure you can pull it off. ;)
     
  16. Basschair

    Basschair .............. Staff Member Supporting Member

    Feb 5, 2004
    Stockton, Ca
    Let's not jump to conclusions :D

     
  17. Phil Mailloux

    Phil Mailloux

    Mar 25, 2005
    Brisbane, Australia
    Builder: Mailloux Basses
    Dude! You're quoting my website! :eek:
    That's pretty cool, first time that happens :D I'm pretty happy people actually find it and take the time to read it too. I hope it'll help or give the building bug to some guys out there.

    I know in the months before I started building my first I spent hours every day reading as much build sites as I could find... and read them over and over again.
     
  18. Cerb

    Cerb

    Sep 27, 2004
    Indiana
    I believe I actually found your site through google. The part that interested me the most was the bit about pickup winding. That was the first good source of information I found about the building of them as a whole as opposed to just the winding of them. Thanks to your site I may take a whack at it myself.
     
  19. Cerb

    Cerb

    Sep 27, 2004
    Indiana
    It's been a few days since the last update, and it's finally here, though not extrememly thrilling. I was able to glue up the top body wing with the clamps I have. I'm now waiting for that to dry so I can glue the lower body wing.
     
  20. Cerb

    Cerb

    Sep 27, 2004
    Indiana
    2 (3, sorta) Small Updates: 5 new images
    The top body wing was unclamped and trimmed up. It's now ready to be routed with a flush cut bit around its edges. The bottom wing is now clamped and drying. I also made a simple Fenderesque logo for the headstock (back, most likely).