Lungs / Adventures in MDF

Talk about modding or building your own guitar from scratch.
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epizootics
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Re: Lungs / Adventures in MDF

Post by epizootics » Fri May 24, 2019 3:20 am

Shadoweclipse13 wrote:
Fri May 24, 2019 1:55 am
Finished it looks amazing, but what really draws me (beyond the bridge) is the headstock shape. It's like a perfect amalgam between a Gibson non-reverse Firebird and Fender, but still unique.

Cheers! I think I got inspired by the old Vox version of the Guyatone LG-50 (which takes us back to the original build!), which I always found supercool and underused:

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antisymmetric
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Re: Lungs / Adventures in MDF

Post by antisymmetric » Fri May 24, 2019 4:45 am

Is it going to be a surprise for your brother? I'd love to be a fly on the wall when you give it to him. Nice work and nice gesture. 8)
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Amon 7.L
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Re: Lungs / Adventures in MDF

Post by Amon 7.L » Fri May 24, 2019 11:17 am

You did an amazing job, mate.
Your brother is gonna love it to pieces!!

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Re: Lungs / Adventures in MDF

Post by solfege » Fri May 24, 2019 5:39 pm

My Goodness that is beautiful. I've wanted a Bobcat for awhile, but that is kind of at an entirely different level.

In other news, this is making me wish I had the scratch to buy this knotty pine tele body that's on sale at Guitar Mill right now.

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Re: Lungs / Adventures in MDF

Post by epizootics » Fri May 24, 2019 9:05 pm

Go for it! If I learned anything during this build, it was that going for a relic finish is a good idea when you're making a body entirely out of Douglas fir. That thing dings so easily. However, it is a very stiff wood overall and feels perfectly suited for guitar making. I just drilled my pilot holes a bit smaller than I would have in harder woods. It is also a good idea to crank up the speed of your drill press, otherwise the harder part of the growth rings tend to pull the bits to the softer, whiter wood in between.

I made a Bobkat template a few weeks ago if you're interested, those are nifty little guitars:

https://drive.google.com/open?id=1ko8Mc ... d7tFp0ML_I (LEFTY VERSION)

SILVERTONE BOBKAT (REGULAR) - https://drive.google.com/open?id=1ZC3om ... _eYk3T1ycS
antisymmetric wrote:
Fri May 24, 2019 4:45 am
Is it going to be a surprise for your brother? I'd love to be a fly on the wall when you give it to him. Nice work and nice gesture. 8)
Not entirely - I saw him a couple of weeks ago and asked him if he would prefer a bass or a guitar, and he went for the latter. I took him shopping for a bass on his thirtieth birthday, he's primarily a photographer but he and my other brother (both older) were the ones who got me into cool music when I was in my teens (he also gave me books by Charles Bukowski, Rick Bass, Jim Harrison and Richard Brautigan - I felt like I was in good hands). I see it as a way to thank him for being a positive influence on the strange creature I was then :whistle:

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Re: Lungs / Adventures in MDF

Post by solfege » Sun May 26, 2019 2:48 pm

epizootics wrote:
Fri May 24, 2019 9:05 pm
Go for it! If I learned anything during this build, it was that going for a relic finish is a good idea when you're making a body entirely out of Douglas fir. That thing dings so easily. However, it is a very stiff wood overall and feels perfectly suited for guitar making. I just drilled my pilot holes a bit smaller than I would have in harder woods. It is also a good idea to crank up the speed of your drill press, otherwise the harder part of the growth rings tend to pull the bits to the softer, whiter wood in between.

I made a Bobkat template a few weeks ago if you're interested, those are nifty little guitars:

https://drive.google.com/open?id=1ko8Mc ... d7tFp0ML_I (LEFTY VERSION)

SILVERTONE BOBKAT (REGULAR) - https://drive.google.com/open?id=1ZC3om ... _eYk3T1ycS
antisymmetric wrote:
Fri May 24, 2019 4:45 am
Is it going to be a surprise for your brother? I'd love to be a fly on the wall when you give it to him. Nice work and nice gesture. 8)
Not entirely - I saw him a couple of weeks ago and asked him if he would prefer a bass or a guitar, and he went for the latter. I took him shopping for a bass on his thirtieth birthday, he's primarily a photographer but he and my other brother (both older) were the ones who got me into cool music when I was in my teens (he also gave me books by Charles Bukowski, Rick Bass, Jim Harrison and Richard Brautigan - I felt like I was in good hands). I see it as a way to thank him for being a positive influence on the strange creature I was then :whistle:
Cool! For some reason those template links aren't working for me. I'd love to grab them.

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Re: Lungs / Adventures in MDF

Post by epizootics » Sun May 26, 2019 8:53 pm

solfege wrote:
Sun May 26, 2019 2:48 pm
Cool! For some reason those template links aren't working for me. I'd love to grab them.
Ooops - I just copied and pasted the links from the other thread but forgot they got truncated for the sake of readability. Here they are:
https://drive.google.com/open?id=1ko8Mc ... d7tFp0ML_I (Lefty)
https://drive.google.com/open?id=1ZC3om ... _eYk3T1ycS (Regular)
(those are in millimeters and meant to be printed on A2)


My brother loved it - he didn't think I'd have enough time to build it before his birthday! A friend of his had brought his Princeton copy (modified to accommodate a 12" speaker) and I must say it sounded pretty gorgeous through that little amp (but then again I'm pretty sure a hairdryer would sound awesome plugged into that kind of amp). The combination of low wind / alnico II magnets is something I've done for a few customers before when they wanted wide dynamics but non-ice-picky highs.
My other brother turns 40 in two years, that'll leave me a bit more time to think about his guitar :whistle:

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Re: Lungs / Adventures in MDF

Post by solfege » Mon May 27, 2019 5:13 am

epizootics wrote:
Sun May 26, 2019 8:53 pm
solfege wrote:
Sun May 26, 2019 2:48 pm
Cool! For some reason those template links aren't working for me. I'd love to grab them.
Ooops - I just copied and pasted the links from the other thread but forgot they got truncated for the sake of readability. Here they are:
https://drive.google.com/open?id=1ko8Mc ... d7tFp0ML_I (Lefty)
https://drive.google.com/open?id=1ZC3om ... _eYk3T1ycS (Regular)
(those are in millimeters and meant to be printed on A2)


My brother loved it - he didn't think I'd have enough time to build it before his birthday! A friend of his had brought his Princeton copy (modified to accommodate a 12" speaker) and I must say it sounded pretty gorgeous through that little amp (but then again I'm pretty sure a hairdryer would sound awesome plugged into that kind of amp). The combination of low wind / alnico II magnets is something I've done for a few customers before when they wanted wide dynamics but non-ice-picky highs.
My other brother turns 40 in two years, that'll leave me a bit more time to think about his guitar :whistle:
Cool, thanks!

Agree re: Alnico II magnets. I have a set of Pickup Wizard Alnico II JM pickups that StevenO commissioned, and which are easily my favorite pickups on any guitar. I'm this close to getting someone to make me a set of Alnico IIs for my Jag, but I'm trying to find the sweet spot with the Fender AV 65s before I totally give up on them.

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Re: Lungs / Adventures in MDF

Post by epizootics » Mon Jun 03, 2019 6:43 am

After some (very satisfying) noodling in the 'What's your OCD causing you to do today?' thread (we should start a dedicated topic about that, Amon 7.L. !), back to my little MDF sandwich...

We have a pickguard! And pickups!

Image

The neck got his nitro sprayed on too. I don't have much left to do ('famous last words') - making room for the ginormous Switchcraft pickup toggle, drilling holes for the electronics, routing a very slight roundover...Then onto covering the poor thing in vinyl...

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Re: Lungs / Adventures in MDF

Post by Rgand » Mon Jun 03, 2019 7:42 am

That's looking good. I like the way the fret extension directs your eye right into the pickups.

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Re: Lungs / Adventures in MDF

Post by Amon 7.L » Mon Jun 03, 2019 8:05 am

This is coming along pretty nice, man!
I'm sooo looking forward to see the vinyl wrap-up evolution, please take loads of picture, I'm very interested in the process.
epizootics wrote:
Mon Jun 03, 2019 6:43 am
After some (very satisfying) noodling in the 'What's your OCD causing you to do today?' thread (we should start a dedicated topic about that, Amon 7.L. !)
:fp:
I think at this point we HAVE TO.
I wonder, is it possible to co-host a thread? Moderators, can we?

(you know that playing with your lovely Minotaur design I've started seeing reverse firebirds of all sorts and I went drawing another baby shaped one... :fp:
I think that my first entry in said thread would be:

"My OCD today has brought me to the shrink. Yes, I went shrinking guitar bodies".)

P.S.:
Just because the shape of the pickguard (and the fretboard pointy heel, as Rgand catched as well), make a convergence... I had to do this for my own personal curiosity. It's a very crude 5 minute job on photoshop but you get the idea
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Re: Lungs / Adventures in MDF

Post by Rgand » Mon Jun 03, 2019 9:16 am

That was a cool idea, Amon. It inspired me to do another quick and dirty PS job. This looks good as chrome or polished stainless.
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Re: Lungs / Adventures in MDF

Post by epizootics » Mon Jun 03, 2019 9:09 pm

Yup, those do work! I debated whether this one should have a trem or not, but since it is a crude-ish prototype that will probably end up as one of my gigging guitars, I gave in to my trem-maniac instincts. I would consider both of those options if I made a non-trem version of it, though.

I have started to experiment with the vinyl wrap on scrap pieces. One thing I have noticed so far is that it doesn't stick too well to bare MDF. Sanding to a fine grit and removing the dust thoroughly seems to help, but I think I'm going to give it a few coats of shellac until I get everything smooth. The internet seems to be telling the truth - the smoother the surface, the better the adhesion. I'll give it a topcoat too, just in case. I'll see how the solvents in nitro react with the vinyl today.

Side note on the pickups - those unplated nickel-silver covers look really nice in the flesh, they're a nice change from the chrome/nickel/stainless steel/aluminium that usually end up on my guitars. I wound them to vintage specs, not something I do very often (the temptation to do something weird usually takes over) but I used screws with a higher carbon content to give them an extra edge. We'll see how it all sounds together...

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Re: Lungs / Adventures in MDF

Post by antisymmetric » Mon Jun 03, 2019 9:43 pm

epizootics wrote:
Mon Jun 03, 2019 9:09 pm
Yup, those do work! I debated whether this one should have a trem or not, but since it is a crude-ish prototype that will probably end up as one of my gigging guitars, I gave in to my trem-maniac instincts. I would consider both of those options if I made a non-trem version of it, though.
I think I'd always succumb to the trem-mania too. Just as another thought, carrying on with the tailpiece options presented, how about making a new top plate for the trem that works with your pickguard shape? That mirror-image tailpiece idea could be a pretty nice starting point for a trem design. (IMO of course :wacko: )
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Re: Lungs / Adventures in MDF

Post by Rgand » Tue Jun 04, 2019 5:31 am

antisymmetric wrote:
Mon Jun 03, 2019 9:43 pm
epizootics wrote:
Mon Jun 03, 2019 9:09 pm
Yup, those do work! I debated whether this one should have a trem or not, but since it is a crude-ish prototype that will probably end up as one of my gigging guitars, I gave in to my trem-maniac instincts. I would consider both of those options if I made a non-trem version of it, though.
I think I'd always succumb to the trem-mania too. Just as another thought, carrying on with the tailpiece options presented, how about making a new top plate for the trem that works with your pickguard shape? That mirror-image tailpiece idea could be a pretty nice starting point for a trem design. (IMO of course :wacko: )
This is a good idea. Either look can be carried into that plate nicely.

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