It’s as done as any mass-market instrument you’d buy in a store, only more expensive and lower quality. Materials info after the jump.
Amazingly, it does actually produce sound through an amp. And a lot of fret buzz, but I haven’t really done a setup on it yet. I did part of one, but I’m pretty sure I turned the truss rod nut the wrong way.
The mostly-wood bits:
- Body: Khaya, probably. Whatever got labeled ‘African Mahogany’ that day
- Neck: Maple I had lying around from someone else’s project that was abandoned
- Fretboard: East Indian rosewood (I bought it preslotted and curved from LMII)
- Headstock veneer: Padouk
- Nut: bleached bone (yeah, it’s not wood, but it isn’t metal, either)
- Fret markers: mother-of-pearl, 3/16″
- Side markers: plastic, 1/16″
- Finish: badly done French polish, garnet shellac (probably from Rockler but maybe Woodcraft)
The mostly-metal bits:
- Pickups: Guitar Fetish ceramic J-bass style OEMB005
- Bridge: Grizzly Industrial H5642
- Tuners: Grizzly Industrial T23636
- Pots: Alpha 250K audio taper long shaft
- Tone capacitor: .047 uF I had lying around in a box, looks like Mylar
- Knobs: Stewart-Macdonald #0169
- Fretwire: LMII FW57110
- Output jack: Stewart-Macdonald (Switchcraft) #4652
- Jack plate: Stewart-Macdonald #0070
- Strap Buttons: Stewart-Macdonald 4983-SB
- Truss rod: Stewart-Macdonald low profile #2557
- various screws and bushings from Guitar Fetish, very small magnets from Grainger, wire from my box of electronic junk
Total materials cost was about $200, which leaves me with another body blank.
Lessons learned (at least the ones that occur to me at the moment):
- It’s way cheaper, easier, and faster to just buy one.
- Surface preparation is critical for French polish. It will show every flaw in the wood.
- Don’t use cheap screws.
- Don’t drill the screw holes too small.
- Leave enough room around the pickups.
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