My First Build 2020

Discussion in 'Luthier's Corner' started by tobascovodka, Jun 2, 2020.

  1. tobascovodka


    May 14, 2020
    Hey, just starting my first build. Starting this build log as well. Suggestions and advice are welcome!
    Last edited: Jun 9, 2020
    turindev and enzodm like this.
  2. tobascovodka


    May 14, 2020
    The skinny, AKA... in way over my head.

    The idea:
    5 String
    27 fan fret +0 fret
    brass nut
    neck thru
    headless (I will be designing and making my own headstock/string lock)

    Woods so far:
    purple heart
    black walnut
    redwood burl veneer

    Components so far:

    Fishman 5 sting bass set
    Aguilar 25k concentric bass treble pot to replace the two separate from the kit
    rotary voice switch to replace the toggle included with set
    link: Fishman Fluence Bass Wiring Question
    ABM headless single bridges
    fiber optic/led side dots
    Volt meter display
    Neutrik locking jack
    Ernie Ball strap locks
    Stewmac 24" truss hotrod
    carbon neck rods
    medium/jumbo stainless fret wire
    stainless hardware where possible
    latching master power switch
    latching illumination switch
    momentary voltage check switch

    Last edited: Jun 2, 2020
  3. Beej


    Feb 10, 2007
    Vancouver Island
    Sounds exciting! :thumbsup:
  4. 5tring


    Sep 16, 2018
    Looking forward to this, sounds awesome!
  5. Jon Clegg

    Jon Clegg Fueled by caffeine and snark. Supporting Member

    Feb 9, 2015
    Northern Virginia
  6. tobascovodka


    May 14, 2020
    So... I ordered Luminlays on eBay from Japan back in April, unfortunately they are MIA due to the pandemic... This is one of the reasons I chose to go the difficult route and do fiber-optic side dots. The Luminlays were actually for my Ibanez guitars, well before I decided to build a bass.

    My ABM headless bridges are at a standstill with US customs as well.

    Oddly enough I've gotten several packages from over seas including China.

    Had to order another 3way rotary switch, cause I didn't read all the dimensions and got a 54mm instead of a 30mm, huge difference lol.

    In the meantime I am finishing up my plus sized Roubo style woodwork bench (9ftx2ft), waiting on my vise's to come in. Its 9 ft cause I plan to build a 12ft dinning table as well. Once that is finished I will do the laminate glue up.

    Would you guys recommend sanding the mating surfaces first or is a fresh planned surface preferred?
    Matt Liebenau likes this.
  7. tobascovodka


    May 14, 2020
    Not sure how it will all fit but here's a preview of the design, lots of electronics to squeeze in.

    Attached Files:

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  8. Arie X

    Arie X

    Oct 19, 2015
    quite ambitious.

    "cut" mating surfaces: planed, joined, machined, scraped, etc.. are best.
    tobascovodka likes this.
  9. tobascovodka


    May 14, 2020
    Ambitious is an understatement, hahaha , this is my first major wood project other than the work bench, and few random things around the house. I guess worst case it'll be a display piece from afar, or with any luck an amazing bass experiment. I'd like to think I'm half decent at making stuff, but we will find out together how well I can mimic a real art like luthier! As long as it comes out playable I'll be very happy with the attempt.
  10. Arie X

    Arie X

    Oct 19, 2015
    it could work out. pay attention to the details and you'll be fine.

    i noticed titebond liquid hide glue on your bench because i'm nosy and i notice things :) -that stuff sucks for instrument work. stick with the titebond original or if you absolutely must use hide glue for some reason, mix it up fresh.

    fwiw, franklin titebond has a date code on the bottle. i tend to give it away or use it for non-important stuff when it approaches 1 year old.
    TerribleTim68 and Beej like this.
  11. tobascovodka


    May 14, 2020
    I was going to use the Titebond hide on the fretboard only, I guess I can use original there too, or order a small amount of dry hide granulated, the original is 2020 production I checked that before I bought it
  12. Arie X

    Arie X

    Oct 19, 2015
  13. tobascovodka


    May 14, 2020
    glad you noticed it, honestly cause it sounded like a good idea... If it's not the right adhesive I'll skip it. It does say musical instruments on the back lol
  14. Arie X

    Arie X

    Oct 19, 2015
    i suspect you wanted a back door into the neck in case the wiring went bad for some reason? aside from oddball glues like fish, etc.. you have three basic glue choices:

    -PVA glues. the modern choice. removable. can impart moisture issues at glue up time but this can be alleviated easily with a local room dryer. moderate working time. extremely strong bond if done right. can creep under heat.

    -Hot Hide glue mixed fresh. old world traditional, removable, smells most disgusting. needs to be applied in a heated up room (100F) with heated up woods to work best. has a very short unforgiving working time. decent bond, can bust loose under heat like in a hot car in the summer.

    -Epoxy. water free, easy enough to mix and apply, select-able open times, can leave a dark glue line, really hard to take apart cleanly -heat, acetone, brute force, etc... can creep slightly.
    Last edited: Jun 3, 2020
  15. tobascovodka


    May 14, 2020
    I saw a few necks with LED's, but that seemed to me like a terrible idea since LED diodes can go bad long before their lifespan. For this reason I chose the fiber optic route instead. Then if any of the diodes die, they are easy to replace via cavity in the body with all the other electronics.

    So, neck won't have electrical wiring, just fiber optic lines (15 total) 1mm each. I was thinking to have the option to remove if I used hide glue, that's all.
    ArtGuy9516 likes this.
  16. Arie X

    Arie X

    Oct 19, 2015
    do mix it up fresh then. get crystals and a hot glue pot. do some research and practice first. hhg isn't a beginner adhesive. that stuff in a bottle is not so good.
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  17. dwizum


    Dec 21, 2018
    IME it depends a bit on the cutting process and the wood species. Some hardwoods will end up with a burnished surface from some cutting operations. For instance, maple sometimes will burnish on a typical jointer or thickness planer. The result is a shiny, almost polished-looking surface where all the pores in the wood have been smashed closed. That's not really good for gluing. In those cases, it can help to open the pores back up with very light sanding with medium to coarse sandpaper (say, 100 - 80 grit). Of course, you want to be careful that you're just doing a few light passes with the sandpaper on a dead flat surface so you don't push the surface out of true.

    Other woods and other cutting operations don't tend to be a problem. For instance, I've never seen maple end up burnished off a table saw (when set up with a good "glueline" rip blade) or after router planing.

    And speaking of glue, our own @Bruce Johnson turned me on to LMI's yellow instrument glue. I've found it to be superior to any of the other common woodworking glues for making instruments. It dries fairly quick and is very workable after drying (it cuts and sands easy, as compared to some other yellow glues that tend to stay gummy or hard to work). And it doesn't creep or cause ugly dark glue lines like TB II and III can.
    tobascovodka likes this.
  18. Arie X

    Arie X

    Oct 19, 2015
    yeah, the lmi pva glues are nice. lmi white was pretty good also.
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  20. thisSNsucks

    thisSNsucks I build Grosbeak Guitars and Basses Supporting Member Commercial User

    Dec 19, 2004
    Yonkers, NY
    Grosbeak Guitars
    Looks like a fun build. I have a Fishman Fluence pickup build in the works too.

    In regards to the glue, yeah the LMI glue is better than Titebond. I have a few older instruments where I used Titebond and you can definitely feel the seam of the fretboard after time due to the creep. No such issues with the LMI glue.