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The Les Paul Twins

Discussion in 'Luthier's Corner' started by Christine, May 22, 2018.


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  1. Thought I'd start a thread on my next builds, a pair of Les Paul like basses or my take on them.

    They will be made entirely from quarter sawn African Mahogany (FSC sourced) painted black nitro and both using Rocklite finger boards, one in Ebano and the other in Sunadri or ebony and Indian Rosewood substitutes. Other items to be used will be Mojo Thunderbird pickups (UK make) for at least one of them, dual action truss rods, Warwick 2 piece bridge and Hipshot ultralite tuners. There will be mother of pearl inlays on the fingerboard and headstock along with Rocklite Ebano veneers.

    I'm not in any great hurry to finish these so i may take a while but so far other than buy some bits I have started wood preparation. The neck laminates have been ripped and stacked and will be left for a while to relieve stresses, the body timbers have been rough planed to an oversize dimension again to allow it to settle a little before planing to size and gluing together. So they are currently sat resting on top of my bench until I'm ready to plane the neck laminates and glue them.

    As that seems a very poor start let me introduce you to my tiny workshop and a basic list of what's in it
    Most importantly my bench, 10" Saw bench, 14" band saw, 10" planer thicknesser, router table, drill press, 12" disc sander, oscillating bobbin sander. Beyond that there are power tools, loads of hand tools hidden away and a dedicated sharpening station tucked away in the corner behind the bench.

    Being so small it's very difficult to keep clean and tidy so I apologise for the dust and the mess

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  2. Nice workshop you have there, Christine! How many basses have you produced in there and do you have pics to share of your builds?
     
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  3. In this tiny shop, only 5 or 6 in the last few years but in my old shop probably about 20 but that was primarily a furniture shop guitars were very much a sideline. My last build was a Fenderbird, I posted that in the Thunderbird club a while back along with the build
     
  4. Gaolee

    Gaolee Official leathers tester and crash dummy Supporting Member

    I'm still having shop envy. Aside from less than 7 feet of headroom in my shop, I don't have the electricity or room for things like a shaper or drill press. Plus, I don't have your skill. The workbench with clamps is a beautiful piece of work all by itself.
     
    Last edited: May 22, 2018
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  5. The bench is beautiful, I actually made it myself to suit my needs. It's 8' long and about 40" deep made from solid Welsh beech 4" thick. The frame is 4" English oak with a low front stretcher to allow for chair legs etc to be clamped down without interference. The clams (dogs in the UK are made from Lignum Vitae with Yew springs and hornbeam pads. It takes 4 people to move the top and 2 to move the frame. It's one of my most precious belongings as I could never make another or be able to buy anything like it. The top needs a clean and wax again, it's filthy but it's still dead flat, I checked it this morning
     
  6. Gaolee

    Gaolee Official leathers tester and crash dummy Supporting Member

    It's a real testament to your woodworking abilities. I meant clamps, not clams, but you got the idea. Also known as dogs here. I need to build a bench down in the basement, where my shop is. It won't be that big, and it sure won't be that nice, but I'll take the inspiration and say thank you.
     
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  7. Efficient use of space. I need to come up with a better vise system on my bench outside.
     
  8. Bruce Johnson

    Bruce Johnson Supporting Member Commercial User

    Feb 4, 2011
    Fillmore, CA
    Professional Luthier
    Aw come on, Christine, by most Luthiers' standards that's a nice comfortable size shop, kept very clean. Very suitable for building instruments.
     
  9. I know Bruce, I got used to our old workshops from our furniture making days, we had 2 rooms about 50 x 30ft, one for the machines and the other for benches, more importantly I had a very good dust extraction system fitted which kept the place spotless. I miss the space and the clean environment. It has most things I could need so I'm not complaining
     
  10. Bobro

    Bobro

    Feb 22, 2018
    Making your own bench is one of the highlights of woodworking. I grew up working on the olde-schoole oak bench my grandfather made, very similar to the beauty you built, and designed and built the one I use now, which is smaller and higher and lighter but still solid enough.
     
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  11. Englishman

    Englishman

    Apr 26, 2017
    Detroit
    Very cool. I had to look up "Record Power" as I'd never heard of them before.
     
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  12. I think they are just ubiquitous made in some far off land things with some minor changes specified by Record but they just suited my purposes better than other tools in the UK. They have cast iron beds which helps keep vibration down. I could have bought second hand Wadkin machines for less money but I just wouldn't be able to drag them out to use them :(
     
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  13. Englishman

    Englishman

    Apr 26, 2017
    Detroit
    The first thing that popped into my mind was that you scored a Record Power credit card and went nuts lol. I need to stop leaping to conclusions. About half my power (small p) tools are Taiwanese, but they get the job done if you look after them.
     
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  14. I know, I got the planer and the bandsaw as a special deal, discount and a free wetstone grinder (my old Tormek rusted away :( ) so I ordered the two sanders (disc and bobin) at the same time because I got free shipping which made it worthwhile. The saw bench is a Bosch site saw, it's a bit rubbish but until I can get more space again it will have to do, it's OK with a good quality blade but I won'y be cutting any joints on it like I could with my old Wadkin AGS
     
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  15. Today's update, hold onto your socks!

    Not a lot gone on, i worked out the neck angle etc with the bridge I'm using. I drew it out on a piece of paper (wall paper! :roflmao: ) and it worked out a 4.35 degrees which is good, I think a Les Paul is 4.5 so I'm pretty close. The Warwick bridge is quite high and will need setting into the top to bring the pickups somewhere close, the tail piece will also need setting in a bit too but I'm happy with that, it should look very nice recessed in. I'm going to have to make a couple of spacers to fit under the pickup rings to allow for the curved of the top but that should be easy enough using black acrylic (I hope)

    The only issue I can see will be the edges of the bridge recesses will be unprotected during carving and might break out so Ill dry fit a Mahogany filler piece in there to support it and pull them out after sanding.

    So that was today along with lots of sitting in the sun. I might start drawing the plan of the body tonight or maybe tomorrow depending on the weather, then I can make a start making the templates in readiness to start making the twins next week
     
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  16. I've just had a message from @JJR58 with a picture of a Les Paul with a Warwick bridge set in just like I worked out. That is very reassuring that I'm on the right track so a huge public thank you for that J :)

    This is the picture so you can visualise what I'm wittering about

    maxresdefault (1).
     
  17. Bobro

    Bobro

    Feb 22, 2018
    Nice! I like that burst, I guess it's called something like a "pub urinal burst".
     
  18. Are you taking the P1ss? :roflmao:
     
  19. Gilmourisgod

    Gilmourisgod

    Jun 23, 2014
    Cape Cod MA
    Always liked an LP bass, though the only one I’ve played is the “recording” model ( I think that’s the right name?) which was very body heavy. I have the use of a bigger shop, but spend 90% of my time in one little corner, so the size isn’t a big handicap. I like having everything in arms reach anyway. Lovely bench, I now have bench-envy. You can build anything on that. Sub’d
     
  20. I had I think a recording LP back in 77 either that or a Triumph, it had a special lead to play through an amp and another to plug into a desk or something as I remember? Anyway I broke it after just two weeks, it was a beautiful thing, I loved it and it took me months to save for it too :(

    The bench is overkill these days LOL Our house is up for sale, the Lord alone knows how we're going to get it out of there now :roflmao:
     

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