My HEAVILY modded 5122 (not finished yet)


Hey guys! Love this board. There's some really cool stuff going on here. For those of you from the BGC, this is ric325 AKA Adam. This is my Harrison 5122 project. I wanted a Gent, didn't have the cash and all of the ones within the 1000 dollar range were the pre FMIC ones that aren't too accurate. So I went with a bit of a challenge. Here's where I am right now. The new top is being held on with masking tape and has been for about a month now. It's not completely flat to the rest of the body quite yet. There's areas around the horns and cutaways were it doesn't fit perfectly, but I've got a feeling that with careful clamping and lots of titebond, it'll fit perfectly. I can post some progress pictures if you'd like.



Yes, please do post as you go. We love this sort of thing.


is that a completely new top or a veneer over the original top? very interesting build! keep us posted


noice, this'll be interresting. Welcome to the board!


Are you closing the top completely (no f-holes)? If so, how are you going to access the electronics? Top looks gorgeous BTW!


I'm closing it completely. It's going all out Harrison. I bought a back pad and there's a gaping hole in the back for access, as on the originals.


Here is the guitar after I received it from the eBay auction. Got it for a song, and you can probably see why.


Before I go on let me say that I have had experience repairing and refinishing guitars as well as building scratch guitars from the ground up. You shouldn't just take your Gretsch to the chopping block on a whim. Lots of prep went into this project and I've worked on guitars before. Now, onto the fun stuff:

I re-stained the fretboard ebony after removing the frets. They themselves were pitted already (2008 guitar) which made me skeptical of the quality. I decided to replace them completely.

Here is the guitar with the binding removed:

Removing the top:

Here's the guitar. This was before I cleaned anything up. I didn't leave the remaining ply there. It's all been scraped and sanded away.

Braces and the top prior to being cut:

Why, hello.


Another view of all the new parts laid out on the guitar. I got them from various sources and I'm pretty happy with them.

My next steps are to glue the top on and then binding. I'll have to prep the binding channel and then adhere the binding using superglue. I'm really happy with the way this is coming out so far. Can't wait to finish it off.


Whoops. I didn't realize my captions wouldn't line up with my photos. Well, I guess you can kind of figure out which caption goes with which photo.


Nice work Adam but sometimes it's easier to start from scratch.


Crazy !!! Can't wait to see its future !!! 8-)8-)8-)


What was wrong with the guitar? Other than the neck being sanded? & what is your goal for the finished product?


Man this cool. Thanks for posting the pictures. It seems as if you know what you want and what you are doing. Keep us updated.


Ireally enjoy threads like this, and welcome to the GDP family.


Adam, you continue to amaze with you playing and now with your guitar-building prowess. You are wise beyond your years and I look forward to what the future has instore for you. Great project here.


did you buy that top from the guy on ebay? if so i bought one too with the intentions of making my 5120 into a 6119. i couldnt bring myself to do so but after seeing how you did it i might go through with it. im not saying it looks easy but i guess it can be done. thanks and good luck with your project:D


Thanks guys for all your comments and complements! It's so much fun to build guitars. RattleCat, I'm not sure how to send PM messages here. Can someone enlighten me? If you can do that, RattleCat, send me a message. I can help you out. To shed some light on Randy's great complement, I've been building guitars since about 2009. I'm 18 years old now and have evolved from the small beginnings Randy probably remembers.


That looks fantastic so far! Can't wait to see more. Love these build threads.


Love the way you're going about it. Sorry I didn't see this thread earlier or I would have recommended that you widen the Tone Post to the full width of the Bridge. I needed to do it because I didn't Cap the F-Holes. Here is mine that I did 2yrs. ago.



partsman, Not sure what you mean by that. I removed the tone post and the old top altogether. This is getting parallel bracing.


As I'm sure you know, The type of bracing used effects tonality. Some builders use a type of trestle that lets the sound vibrate to the guitar's back through the braces, others use 2 sound posts(one on either end of the bridge), Gretsch uses a single 1inX1in block right in the middle of the bridge. I replaced the Gretsch block with a 2 1/2inX1in block to increase resonance. Better explained Here: http://gretschpages.com/for...



My g5125 has a less than 1/2 x 1/2" post. The g5122 has a 1 x 1/2" aprox. :|


Just removed the clamps and inspected the guitar. The top went on great. The next step is to prep the binding channel and adhere the binding. It's coming along great so far!

Thanks, Curt, for all your help thus far.

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