Self built and self assembly ;)

Moderators: Slowy, Capt. Black

BY 04CJ
#862964
Hi all. I'm keen to put a basic tele-type partscaster guitar together for a bit of fun. I'm a novice at guitar but an expert at getting carried away with projects.

I'm very aware that my enthusiasm is writing cheques my skillset will struggle to cash, so I'm keen to minimise the harm I'm about to cause to innocent maple and ash via research if possible.

I have seen reference to a Haynes manual for telecasters, but I'm not sure if this is more of a gimmick than a useful guide?

Is there any general reading about partscasters, or assembly you would recommend before I get into it? Or am I overthinking it, and should just crack on and rely on forums, YouTube etc?

Thanks!
User avatar
BY Molly
#862969
Crack-on. There are a few pitfalls and I guess folk will chime-in by way of a heads-up.

Mine, off the top of my head:
Don't use staggered-height vintage style tuners in a headstock of regular width as the indented part that the string wraps around on the B and E strings will be partially sunk into the collet and look crap.
Don't inadvertently buy a neck designed for a modern, contoured heel body and try to fit it to a regular body.
Depth of neck pocket varies. Sometimes the neck seems to sit high an sometimes it needs shimming.
Not Tele-related but on Strats there can be spacing issues between Mexi and US dimension trems. callahamguitars.com has a useful pdf to help with this.
User avatar
BY hamo
#862971
I sold a cheap strat to a guy once who wanted to get into luthiery and just wanted a practice guitar. I guess that's an option to pull a cheap one apart and also try refinishing it as a first step? Otherwise just go nuts, you're a braver man than I.
User avatar
BY Slowy
#863414
Safe way might be an SX Tele. Strip it and reassemble with good metal and plastic. This will give you a taste and a high probability of ending up with something very good.
User avatar
BY Bg
#863423
Slowy wrote:Safe way might be an SX Tele. Strip it and reassemble with good metal and plastic. This will give you a taste and a high probability of ending up with something very good.


There isn't much actually wrong with an SX Tele so it is an awesome base to start from. Fretwork is usually pretty good but they can benefit from a minimal fretdress. Tuners aren't bad, pickups aren't the best. Change everything out if you want but be aware that you have spent cash you won't regain if you sell it whole.

I've even reshaped SX Headstocks, its fun practice :) My SX P-Bass owes me virtually nothing other than the bits and pieces I've added and punches way out of its league.
BY Candeevr4
#863426
I have an sx strat, that is pretty good overall, just i have issues with it having a painted neck and the bridge/pickguard not working with am stuff. Its currently go Precision Drives and a blender kit from Tone lounge, which cost more than the guitar... i do like it, just need to set it up correctly, fix up sc's mess of it..
User avatar
BY Bg
#863427
Candeevr4 wrote:I have an sx strat, that is pretty good overall, just i have issues with it having a painted neck and the bridge/pickguard not working with am stuff. Its currently go Precision Drives and a blender kit from Tone lounge, which cost more than the guitar... i do like it, just need to set it up correctly, fix up sc's mess of it..


Yeah don't expect a pickguard to ever fit without making one from a blank ;)
BY Candeevr4
#863428
Bg wrote:Yeah don't expect a pickguard to ever fit without making one from a blank ;)

Im tempted to get rob to make me an hss one with am control spacing when i get him to setup the guitar.
BY 04CJ
#863443
Thanks all for your thoughts and encouragement. I do like the idea of upgrading an affordable guitar, but I've already got a cheap neck I'm keen to tinker with so may as well do it the hard way.

I fully accept that this will probably mean my next post will involve me asking for recommendations for a local tech to undo some desperate mess but hey. Gotta keep the economy moving.
BY 04CJ
#863643
I genuinely never even thought about finishing a body myself. I'd been looking at bodies from an outfit called northwest guitars in the UK - the prices and postage seemed very reasonable - and was considering blowing the budget entirely at Stratosphere.

Is there NZ production of this sort of thing?
User avatar
BY Molly
#863652
I looked at those bodies last year. What I've realised is that there are quite a number of outfits buying bodies from the East and finishing them well or building entire guitars with bits from Warmoth or (who's that other one? Can't remember). Nash guitars is a good example. They make well regarded guitars but the necks and bodies are bought-in just as you could buy them yourself. It's all down to how well it's put together.

Point being that you could source the bits for yourself likely for a lot less and have the satisfaction of doing it to your own taste.
BY ChAoZ
#863673
04CJ wrote:I genuinely never even thought about finishing a body myself. I'd been looking at bodies from an outfit called northwest guitars in the UK - the prices and postage seemed very reasonable - and was considering blowing the budget entirely at Stratosphere.

Is there NZ production of this sort of thing?


Yes
Attachments
49612786_1934024963383458_7902076879257993216_o.jpg
49612786_1934024963383458_7902076879257993216_o.jpg (285.22 KiB) Viewed 135 times