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New bass in the works, shop pics, new press & more!

Discussion in 'Luthier's Corner' started by Scott French, Nov 19, 2005.

  1. Scott French

    Scott French Dude

    May 12, 2004
    Grass Valley, CA
    I got this dude in the works for a friend of mine. The body is spruce, top is book matched black limba, fingerboard is acrylic impregnated birdseye maple (top and fb from Larry), the neck is 11 piece wenge/maple/bloodwood, the headstock/heel/bridge/pickup covers are wenge and everything will be bound/faced with black fiber/maple/black fiber. It's a SF3 carve top hollowbody 4-string with wide spacing all around, a thin neck and shooting for about 7 pounds.
    cody1t. cody4t. cody2t. cody3t.

    My shop was actually clean a few weeks ago so I got some pics of the updated arrangement. These pics go in counter clockwise order > Setup/Electronics zone > Sanding/Routing/Downdraft zone > Buffer > Jointer and De/Humidifier > Bandsaw and Edge Sander > Clamping zone > Lay about zone > Oscillating Spindle Sander, FB Slotting Saw, Drill Press, Disc Sander, Mini Lathe > Thickness Planer and Sander.
    shop01t. shop02t. shop04t. shop05t. shop06t. shop07t. shop08t. shop09t. shop10t.

    I posted this in another thread but I think it got buried. I built this little press thing with two Grizzly items. Now I'm just using it for small laminating tasks but in time I hope to figure out some kind of caul system so I can so body/top glue-ups and other large jobs.

    One more thing for anyone that is interested in binding the face of their instruments, LMI is offering sheets of "fiber" material. It comes in black and white in a lot of thicknesses. My first experience with this stuff was in the very tiny b/w/b purfling used for the face of acoustic guitars but it works very well for any kind of binding. I'm using it now because it's a little less artificial than plastic (its a wood/paper product) but much easier to bend than ebony for complicated shapes, and is pure black without any grey streaks or white flecks like a lot of ebony seems to have.

  2. Skelf

    Skelf Supporting Member

    Apr 15, 2005
    Moffat D&G Scotland
    Builder AC Guitars.
    I am now suffering from a bad case of workshop envy not to mention the equipment or for that matter the bass. I will now not look at this thread again as my wife informs me that turning green is not a good look for me.
  3. JSPguitars


    Jan 12, 2004
    Grass Valley
    Wow, great post. Very....organized, much like your shop. I think I just shot a big load in my pants looking at your setup there... :bassist:
    Your shop is cleaner than my bathroom, and I'm by no means a slob. I think I'd need more pictures on the wall though, or else I'd go insane.
    On a more serious note, the bass looks to be coming along great! Interesting idea with the spruce body...I've been wanting to do a spruce guitar after reading about some of the Klein guitars that players like Bill Frisell use. I'm still really diggin' your shapes and designs. Hopefully we'll be seeing more pics of this one. :hyper:
  4. :spit:

    Ahhh, it's obvious no work actually takes place there. This is probably the "front" shop that he shows his clients and friends. Out back there's a little shack or room containing pile upon pile of wood scraps, tools, and rags with blowing drifts of sawdust to fill in the gaps - more like MY shop :D

    As usual Scott, you have my respect and admiration.
  5. FBB Custom

    FBB Custom TalkBass Pro Commercial User

    Jan 26, 2002
    Owner: FBB Bass Works
    Yeah, really Scott. Did your mother come by to tidy up before you took those pictures or what?

    Looks good. Did you buy that downdraft table or make it yourself? I just upgraded my dust collection situation and downdraft is next on my list.
  6. Scott French

    Scott French Dude

    May 12, 2004
    Grass Valley, CA
    Its a shopfox downdraft table from Grizzly.

    Secret of the clean shop... I take pics of my shop every 6-8 months which is just about how often I really clean it. At the moment the place is a mess. :(
  7. Geoff St. Germaine

    Geoff St. Germaine Commercial User

    That bass looks awesome and so does the shop. Thanks for sharing!
  8. Concerning the press - I guess your next step is to get a platen that will cover an entire body blank or close to it without deformation? I picture the piece you need as being fairly heavy aluminum with strong reinforcement all the way to the edges and a flat bottom. A good category to look in to find something like that is all of the tools, machinery, vehicles, and stationary but portable structures that use large outrigger type leveling pads. Perhaps the type seen under semi trailers is large enough. I would research the manufacturers and suppliers of these things because the pads are expendable and could need replacing. It would be a simple matter to adapt it to your press.
  9. Scott French

    Scott French Dude

    May 12, 2004
    Grass Valley, CA
    I've got a flat 1/2" thick metal plate that matches the size of the granite slab right now. I haven't messed around with it much yet but I might try to find a rubber "pad" to mount on the underside like you are talking about or possibly just body shaped cauls out of something less spongy.
  10. Even that 1/2" will flex considerably across 24" when your load is so concentrated in one place. Weld a pipe in the middle of the plate and gusset it with 1/2" stock all the way to the edges to keep it flat.

    A square of shock flooring - which you could use in your shop anyway - would be an excellent pad for the press. It's got great "body" and is impervious to just about every :D thing I've spilled on it
  11. tjclem

    tjclem Supporting Member Commercial User

    Jun 6, 2004
    Central Florida
    Owner and builder Clementbass
    Nice shop! It might be a little bigger than my 10 X 16 Shed :bawl:
  12. Scott French

    Scott French Dude

    May 12, 2004
    Grass Valley, CA
    I think I'm packing about 450 sqft.

    Here's some fingerboards I cut today. There's a long story behind this wood about it being brazilian rosewood found in a funny place and bought by my friend's dad 30 years ago. Once I got it cut and really saw the color (and smelt the dust) it ended up being bocote (pretty darn sure). Still pretty cool since this was the last board of an old stash and a gift to me.

    Here's how it looked when I got it then how it looked after the sander with and without naptha:
    brf1t. brf2t.
  13. tjclem

    tjclem Supporting Member Commercial User

    Jun 6, 2004
    Central Florida
    Owner and builder Clementbass
    I think I'm packing about 450 sqft.

  14. once again....i hate you.

  15. Hot Dang!
    why is it that everytime I'm getting my building confidence up, in comes Scott French with a great post. You are the envy of every dude in here! Shop AND work.

    Last time I cleaned up my garage/shop was ...umm, this time last year :spit:
  16. I've got a 16 x 20 freestanding shop with a 19 x 19 adjoining open shed with about 15' headroom. Of course, of that 320 sq.ft. of shop space, I have calculated that I have exactly 14.9 sq.in. of walking room (fortunately it's all in a line, whew!) and about 8.2 sq.in. of free benchtop! :hyper:
  17. Scott French

    Scott French Dude

    May 12, 2004
    Grass Valley, CA
    Thanks for the love and hate!

    I'm going down to Sam's Club to check on those shock floor pad things tomorrow.

    Here's a guitar I am finishing up this week. Sorry, all I've got to work on for a while is guitars. The first one of many (all?) that will be hollow with no back panel. It's also my first being finished with McFadden's Polyester finish. Even with these stupidly heavy Planet Waves tuners and brass bridge the final weight will still be just 5.1lbs.
    steph1. steph2. steph3. steph4.
  18. JP Basses

    JP Basses

    Mar 22, 2002
    Paris FRANCE
    Very NIce Scott,

    so how do you change a pot ???
  19. Scott French

    Scott French Dude

    May 12, 2004
    Grass Valley, CA
    I'm running everything thing through the bridge pickup route. I learned how to do it at school for hollow bodies and archtops. I also watched my boss do it at my old job on a guitar we built for the Yeah Yeah Yeahs. All of those instruments had f-holes which made it a little easier but I've already done a test run and it's still pretty easy to do.
  20. Geoff St. Germaine

    Geoff St. Germaine Commercial User

    Now that's a cool guitar. Love the design of this one... sort of like an attractive version of the Warwick Dolphin body.