Thursday 17th January ’08
One of the joys of being a luthier is that half of the time you have to make your own tools..
here I glue sheets of cork tile and MDF together, when dry I’ll be able to cut them up into any size sanding block I need.. this little lot will probably keep me in blocks for the next four or five years!!!
Inlay.. I love the look and endless variety you get with abalone.. the required block is etched onto the material
and cut to size with a jewelers saw and then tidied up with a file
the cavity is then recessed carefully with a sharp chisel
and then the inlay is glue in.. this time held at the correct depth with some tape
the brass nut was supplied part prepared by the customer.. it obviously needs some serious cleaning though
the string slots are cut and the brass polished through the grits with wet and dry paper and then good old brasso!
and there she is…
and, after a bit of cleaning up, the inlay is also done.. a good start to the day..
and on to something that has been slightly frightening me all week.. due to the experimental nature of these perspex guitars I’ve been expecting the odd problem, and here it is. The acrylic continues to cure for about six months after it has left the factory.. in this case the neck moved a little too much during that process.. therefore the frets need to be removed.. since they were glued in each fret has to be slowly heated up with a soldering iron to melt the glue underneath.. carefully though so as not to melt the perspex!!
another truss rod is what is required.. (next time around I will only need one rod instead of having the two cast in the neck at the supplier..)
again since the acrylic is soft it tends to melt onto the end of the router bit which has to be scraped clean every 30 seconds or so… so another slow job, but worth it..
the truss rod is in place now, but..
it is now time to experiment with the epoxy that will seal it in eventually.. a crimson pigment is added and then set aside till tomorrow to make sure that it will cure properly.. slow going but if I had just put it straight into the channel and it didn’t cure it would take days to clean up!!!
the rain sets in with a vengeance.. this is just after the three horses in the paddock race at full pelt into their stable!!!
on to Charlies bass.. the bridge needs earthing.. and this is how we do t..
a section is routed out of the bass of the bridge and a metal covered earthing wire glued in so that as each screw passes through the bridge it will touch the wire.. and therefore earth each string!! Yay!! (I’ve been wondering how to do this for about six months!!!)
here’s the end result…
the masking tape marks out the line that I need to take with the long drill bit to cut the hole for the earth wire
the barrel jack socket hole is drilled out as well and the socket itself installed…
and this is what it looks like, I wish there was a wireless way in which to ‘wire’ up these clear guitars… one day I suppose?!?
Charlies pickups.. another first.. these are the only clear cast pickups I’ve ever seen! Good on Andy at Wizard!
Bud finds a chunk of wood and wants to play.. I oblige him of course!
the two pickups are wired in
and then Jasper gives me those puppy-dog-eyes.. he just want cuddles!… all the time!!
the nut is polished up
and then she’s finally stuck together.. strings on, pickups in and almost playable! I’ll set her up after she’s had time to settle in to the tension of the strings!
lovely.. it’s now dark outside.. I like the reflection..
and here we have an almost complete project, unlike most this has taken over two years to come to completion!!
but I’m very very happy with how she’s looking and feeling!
and Andy’s pickups are the justified focal point! .. she’ll be wired up and playing in the next few days!
All my best,
Crimson Guitars HQ