Other Guitars

Made a 5 ply bound ‘guard for a ‘55 Gibson L-5.

1

I got my dream Jazzbox last year, however I noticed that the plain strings would rust really quickly, adjacent to the 'guard. I figured that it was being caused by the Celluloid 'guard gassing off, so I thought I'd have a go at making a replacement out of plastic & keep the original in the case. Also the original is rather delicate & I didn't want it to crumble. Here's the original. louis 001

3

So I got some dark brown tortie & some black/white binding. dano guard 001

4

I traced round the original onto some MDF, reduced it by the thickness of the binding & cut it out for a router template. dano guard 002

5

Stuck on with double sided tape. I'll leave the protective film on as long as I can.dano guard 003

6

I made a little jig & put some release paper (like on sticky back printer paper) to stop it sticking to the wood. First layer of white 0.3 mm binding going on.dano guard 004

7

Same again for next 4 layers. I had 3 types of glue, thin CF which normaly takes ages to dry, CF Gel, which I normally use for binding bodies. Lastly acetone, which melts the plastic together. Acetone was fine on flat bits but when I tried to bend it round, it just snapped. The thin CF dried immediately, leaving no wiggle room. So CF Gel it is. The last layer is thicker (2mm) so I heated it up & taped it to a former overnight.dano2 019

8

The layers are; 0.3 mm white, 0.5 black, 0.5 white, 0.5 black then 2 mm white. The straight bits were easy.dano2 020

9

I used a sharp chisel for the mitres.dano2 021

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I used a Dremel with a drum sander bit to get most of the plastic excess off, then a scraper blade.dano2 022

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Getting there, just needs a bit of ageing.guard2 001

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Very nice job so far! Can i recommend that you don't keep the original in the case, it will still off gas and can cause all sorts of bad things to happen ( rotten binding, pitted plating, funky smell). Wildeman

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Rub down with micromesh & some pine wood stain.guard2 002

14

For the stiffeners on the back I cut up an old Squier Tele 'guard. Doubled up for the bit with the retaining nail. White on the B side, never mind.guard2 003

15

Just superb! When the tortoise guard on my '57 Roundup began off-gassing, I removed it immediately and placed it in a Ziplock bag. 6 or 7 years on and it seems to have completely arrested the deterioration.

16

Something like that.guard2 004

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Very nice job so far! Can i recommend that you don't keep the original in the case, it will still off gas and can cause all sorts of bad things to happen ( rotten binding, pitted plating, funky smell). Wildeman

Thanks for the advice. The guitar lives on the wall, not in the case. I was going to wrap it in something, not sure what, I was going to avoid anything plastic, maybe a duster.

21

Just superb! When the tortoise guard on my '57 Roundup began off-gassing, I removed it immediately and placed it in a Ziplock bag. 6 or 7 years on and it seems to have completely arrested the deterioration.

– James Brown

Thanks James. What's a ziplock bag, is that plastic? Also, does celluloid gas off immediately or just after a period of time?

22

Wow. That’s a great job. And I love the guitar and photos.

What’s not to like.

23

Great work again, Tony!

25

Thanks James. What's a ziplock bag, is that plastic? Also, does celluloid gas off immediately or just after a period of time?

– tonyb

Yes, a Ziplock bag is a plastic sandwich bag that can be sealed airtight. There's a lot of disagreement about what causes the deterioration and how to stop its progression. What I can tell you is that I caught mine very early and have seen zero further deterioration since I sealed it in the bag. As for your second question, I imagine it might begin immediately under the right (or in this case, wrong) conditions with regard to temperature, humidity, etc.


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