Monday 8th September ’08
Headstock veneers, and recessed truss rod covers, are preparted for Nevio and Jonathan’s bespoke guitars.. doing it this way is not very economical with either time or timber.. but it does end up looking much better than your average piece of guitar..
the veneers are glued and clamped in place..
on to Jonathan B’s guitar.. the lacquer has been polished up and we’re ready..
for some fretwork.. it’s been a while since I’ve done this.. guitar building, like any other intersting job (or the economy for that matter), goes in cycles! I’m not saying boom and bust is a good thing, but it sure does keep life interesting!
once the frets have been leveled and profiled the fingerboard is cleaned up and oiled..
the excess lacquer is reamed out of each tuner hole.. carefully..
and then the Sperzel tuners are installed.. nothing says sheer quality in a guitar more than a really good set of tuners!
the compensated, stepped, ebony nut is made.. another time consuming but neccesary piece of the luthiery puzzle!
here she is.. ebony nuts might wear down slightly quicker than others but it adds a stunning new dimension to the tonality of the whole..
zebra pickups are installed as is the Kahler trem system.. one of the great things about this trem is the fact that it can be either left or right handed with no problems..
strings in place and then the pickups are carefuly lined up and screwed in place..
she’s now ready for wiring and a final setup in a week or so.. any new guitar needs a while to settle in to the tension of the strings.. up to or more than six months in most cases, though in order to get her into playable condition a few weeks is generally all that is needed, especially when the guitar has a multi-laminate rosewood neck like this beastie!
the excess headstock veneer is removed prior to rasping and sanding everything flush with the headstock..
the tuner position holes are drilled and the nut slot chiseled clear..
..the suns out a bit and everyone here enjoys it!..
Jonathan’s slimline is carved..
..looks a bit uncomfortable now..
but after a few hours work she feels like a …(use your own analagy.. anything very very sexy will do!!)
the control cavity is drilled to level out the thickness of the top.. each hole stops 4mm from the curve of the top..
and then the excess is gouged out..
the final little bit of carving is performed with these thumb planes
and then the whole guitar is sanded through the grits.. I’ve been waiting for some sunny weather for a while, it makes sanding a guitar down much easier, but I’ve just realised that, even though I’m still waiting for it to arrive, summer is well and truly over for this year.. bummer!
puppy pile! …
the ‘Crimson’ logo is cut out of a piece of ebony..
a sharp knife is used to mark around the inlay..
which is then recessed and the inlay glued in..
back plates are cut roughly to size..
and then rasped and filed to fit the guitar..
.. like so..
and then everything is carved in to fit the ergonomic contouring of the guitar..
the edges are sanded down with my bobbin sander (a very handy piece of kit..)
and then we’re on to fittings.. in this case a very exciting Graph tech/tonepro’s piezo bridge!
the through-body stringing holes are drilled on the pillar drill
the inlay is chiseled flush with the headstock..
we’re on to the template making process again..
and here you see my solution for the myriad of wires.. the recess is a perfct fit for the bridge and the individual piezo pickup wires will slide invisibly through to the control cavity..
the whole instrument is sanded through the grits
and it’s time for staining..
and the application of the first coats of wax finish..
here we see why I recess the truss rod cavity.. very attractive..
the back is oiled and then waxed..
as is every other guitar going through the finishing process..
The next diary update will be on Wednesday.. ’till then..
All my best, Ben
Crimson Custom Guitars UK