Other Guitars

It starts with a slab of mahogany…


I did something a little crazy today.

After sanding the nitro flat, I decided I would much prefer a surf green guitar to another wood colored guitar.


This color is hard to photograph!

Actually part of the reason is that I had I had some tear-out on the edges that was too deep to sand, and the filler wasn't hiding as well as I wanted. After the coats yesterday, it stuck out like a sore thumb to me, and I couldn't sleep last night thinking about it. Luckily I had this surf green reranch nitro. The world doesn't need another boring maple/mahogany sandwich, it needs more surf green!


Time to make some pickguards! These will be similar to Gretsch pickguards: clear acrylic (Lexan in this case) backed with metallic paint.


Chomp chomp! The shavings look like rice (or lice)


We leave the plastic film on both sides of the Lexan so none of our shiny surfaces get scratched. This is three guards: two for the guitar (one is a backup in case I mess something up) and one for the bass.


Hopefully "Any Surface" includes Lexan


Peel the backing and paint!


While waiting for various paints to dry, I used the spare pickguard as a template to do my wiring.


And done!

1 Volume, 1 Tone, 3-way Switch, nice and simple.


So people recommend waiting 1-4 weeks to let the nitro cure before polishing and assembly... I lasted 6 days.

After wetsanding with 800 and 1500 I buffed it with this stuff and then a squirrel remover​. Finished with SC Johnson Paste Wax.

Because I didn't wait long enough, the finish is going to continue to shrink in the coming weeks and sink into the spots where I didn't do a good job of filling in the grain. We'll see what happens. I can always spray more clear later on and give it a proper cure, but I want to play it tonight.


Shined it until I could read the fine print on my beer. It's way more reflective than this photo shows. I think the overhead light saturated the photo.


One final step before assembly was drilling a channel for the ground wire.. This is a really long drill bit


With my favorite Tele neck and a set of 11s, very satisfying. The neck pickup is to die for, warm and glassy. I've definitely learned a lot in the process, and I think the next one will be even better.



It's a cut-off Tele bridge with compensated brass saddles. I'm top-loading the strings to keep a little bit of the Danelectro "thunk" rather than the Tele "twang". I'm tempted to add a Bigsby, but I've never gotten along with the B5. I might could chop up a B16 to fit


Nice job otter. I love the surf green with that shape and the pickguard looks really cool too. Not such a fan of the knobs and black switch tip though

After a few years of through body stringing on my La Cab I changed to top loading and I much prefer the tone and feel. I have no idea why, but top loading makes the guitar feel slinkier and it seems to chime more.


Otter- That looks great! I dig the surf green. Awesome job! Shuggie- Funny what you say about the top loader. I find my Cabronita not as slinky as I'd prefer, and I think the top loader may give less break angle than what I have, with the bridge I'm using and the through body stringing.


Shuggie, the knobs are just what I had around. I think they look fine, but I'm not terribly attached to them. What would you suggest?

Here's the rest of my knob stash:


I recorded a quick demo. This is plugged into a Silvertone-style amp I made, with a WGS Green Beret speaker, close miced with a Peavey dynamic mic, recorded in Ardour with a Behringer USB interface (yeah I spend thousands on guitar stuff, but I cheap out on recording equipment).


And here is the bass, awaiting electronics and strings.


Am very late to this thread, but Surf Green's my favorite solid color for electric guitars, and your finished product both looks and sounds terrific -- congrats!

Oh, BTW, I vote for the cream-colored, "chicken head" knobs...


The off-white Fender cup-cake amp knobs would look great on this. Like the knobs you see on a blonde Bassman.


This guitar looks and sounds awesome. I also vote for the chicken head knobs. They compliment the lipstick pickups.


Haha, it's hard to do volume swells with a chicken head. I might look into the blonde Fender cupcake knobs.


I think ivory Harmony cupcake knobs would look awesome on that, but the set I got from allparts are much too yellow for the surf green and silver

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