Monday 10th November ’08
We get back into the swing of things with a bit of work on the third incarnation of Charlie Jones custom perspex bass guitar.. this time round with a timber neck..
the bottom of every cavity has to be etched..
to create this stunning effect..
at this point the neck fit is checked.. and I decide to carry on with the etching.. with a creation like this every single detail counts!
and she’s starting to look like a million dollars..
and she still has five bolts for extra stability! ..
and i open the post to discover half a kilo of raw abalone shells!! .. this bag represents countless hours that will be spent inlaying! .. fun fun fun!
Dave’s custom right-handed Vanquish.. she is in need of some electrickery.. somewhat akin to the lightning bolt shot into Frankensteins dead brain!! mwu-ha, mwhahaha!!
the first job is the shielding of the control cavities..
..As ever an interuption.. (the wiring can be done while looking after three week old Jasmine.. while the repairs are in the workshop.. and environment she has yet to be introduced to!).. as part payment for my next epic tattoo this beat up Walden acoustic needs a revamp.. and it is long overdue..
the broken off pieces are drilled out..
and the saddle seriously reduced in size… there is some sense in the big companies leaving wiggle room on store bought guitars.. but 2mm is just excessive.. the average guitarist wouldn’t know that the saddle should be taken down and, sadly, the average guitar shop can’t be bothered to uphold their part of the bargain..
the frets are cleaned and the fretboard polished with lemon oil..
before an even more drastic renovation.. the bridge is still too high and is planed down to give us a useable action..
and here she is.. a very playable guitar flies out of the ashes of despair!! (can you tell I’m writing this at 1 in the morning with a crying baby in my arems..)
..this beauty then arrives in the shop.. a £4000 ’59 reissue Gibson Les Paul.. the customer has made the age old mistake of buying a very expensive guitar but using a £5 stand.. the rubber on the feet of the stand has reacted with the finish on the les paul and a chip of lacquer and stain has come away..
the rest of the finish along the whole bottom edge of the guitar has bubbled and is rough to the touch..
first off stain is applied to the chipped area..
and while this dries I have a closer look at this guitar.. it costs way more than anything I build.. and this doesn’t look very nice..?
but the stain overspray on the binding is just sheer idiocy (I am very much a Gibson fan and the quality of their work sometimes really saddens me!)
still.. I have a repair to do.. over the next couple of days layers of finish will be dropped into the hole and then she will be polished and returned to sender.. (re..for ‘finish’ in the above sentence read ‘clear nail polish’! .. it has the same basic makeup as the lacquer Gibson uses and works a treat!:)
Back to Dave’s Vanquish.. the shielding is complete and all the hardware is now in place.. including the Fernandes Sustainer PCB..
..and without MIDI this cavity looks remarkably tidy.. mmm
the easy access battery compartment has a recess cut into the maple control plate
and is fitted..
and finally she is playable
and ready for her final setup.. followed by a road trip on Wednesday to a large service station somewhere on a large road in the wilds of England.. (I sometimes feel like a drug dealer..only I provide a fix for hundreds of guitarists using their mid-life crisis as an excuse!!!)
ALL MY BEST TO YOU AND YOURS!
Crimson bespoke guitars UK