Considering buying a basket case 65 SG

Discussion in 'Luthier's Corner' started by tigger, Aug 5, 2017.

  1. charisjapan

    charisjapan Senior Member

    Messages:
    1,564
    Likes Received:
    1,500
    Joined:
    Jul 10, 2011
    Hey @tigger, I think it looks fine. Surely better than a lot of other alternatives ... if there's something radically better than that, I sure hope someone tells us both!

    But, might be a good idea to tape up close to where you're filling. You wouldn't want to "grain fill" that gorgeous old fretboard.

    Cheers!
     
    tigger likes this.
  2. tigger

    tigger Senior Member

    Messages:
    432
    Likes Received:
    465
    Joined:
    May 6, 2017
    The filling only happens where the CA glue is (I put glue first, then push dust in). But you are right and getting the glue accidentally into the grain elsewhere would be annoying!
     
  3. tigger

    tigger Senior Member

    Messages:
    432
    Likes Received:
    465
    Joined:
    May 6, 2017
    Inlays are done. I used the CA glue - dust method, but only did one iteration to make the filling less perfect than the example above. I made sure that the sides where filled and flush though since that could technically interfere with string bending.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    The fretwire is Jescar FW51108, fairly close to the original in size I think. It fits right in, I feel like I shouldn't even need to glue the frets in but I'll probably glue them with fish glue anyway.

    [​IMG]
     
    kasu, w666, dickjonesify and 7 others like this.
  4. 61LPSG

    61LPSG Senior Member

    Messages:
    1,695
    Likes Received:
    458
    Joined:
    Oct 31, 2007
    tigger,
    The inlays turned out nice. I'm anxious to see the finished project. Having said that, take your time and keep up the good work.
     
    tigger likes this.
  5. slug_maine

    slug_maine Senior Member

    Messages:
    1,325
    Likes Received:
    2,865
    Joined:
    Dec 11, 2012
    Great job on the inlays!
     
    tigger likes this.
  6. Craig Sock

    Craig Sock Seen my keys?

    Messages:
    532
    Likes Received:
    720
    Joined:
    May 20, 2015
    Thank you, this is great.
     
  7. slug_maine

    slug_maine Senior Member

    Messages:
    1,325
    Likes Received:
    2,865
    Joined:
    Dec 11, 2012
    Any progress tigger?
     
  8. tigger

    tigger Senior Member

    Messages:
    432
    Likes Received:
    465
    Joined:
    May 6, 2017
    Sadly not really. Today I got a package with some old mahogany bits, fish glue, holy veneer and other stuff. But I'm deprevied of both time and a place to work on it for a few days.
     
  9. tigger

    tigger Senior Member

    Messages:
    432
    Likes Received:
    465
    Joined:
    May 6, 2017
    It took some time to get back on track but I'm slowly progressing. I got all the wood together and it's incredibly light old growth honduran. It seems a very good match in color and texture to the existing wood. I didn't really expect that.

    I stripped the paint to reveal the neck breaks:
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]

    One of the breaks is fine, but the main one was really patched up with a ton of glue as you see, and a bit of perhaps different wood, though it too looks like mahogany.
    I'm not sure what to do with it to be honest. I almost wondered if I should try removing the thin layer and filling it in with mahogany dust and glue but I'd have to try that elsewhere first.

    I drilled out the two headstock dowels and ... there are metal screws or something inside. That is a surprise.. they don't offend or anything, and I managed to drill right through them.
     
  10. tigger

    tigger Senior Member

    Messages:
    432
    Likes Received:
    465
    Joined:
    May 6, 2017
    This next part may be somewhat controversial. I decided I want to put in a thin (1-2mm, 0.04-0.08in) flat piece of wood between the fretboard and the neck, and possibly between the headstock and the headstock veneer. I have two reasons to do this: First, the neck is too thin for my taste, and second I think some of the wood has been removed, albeit from the other side, during repairs. Now I need a perfectly flat and trimmed slice of mahogany. I was too lazy to go to an actual workshop with a planer so I used a japanese flat saw to slice off a ~4mm thick flat part and then I am planing it down with a cute little plane.
    [​IMG]
    (There is a thin fretboard sized wood lying on the big plank)

    [​IMG]

    I am hoping that doing this will be virtually invisible, and make everything somewhat more stable and better playable. Possible risk is to neck action but I am hoping that the uniform grain of the splice-in coupled with low thickness won't really change anything.
     
    Gmal, Britbender and dickjonesify like this.
  11. timfred

    timfred Senior Member

    Messages:
    139
    Likes Received:
    159
    Joined:
    Feb 27, 2014
    This is awesome and thanks so much for documenting this, um.... autopsy?

    Why do you think this neck is worth saving? Seems like a lot less work just to make the neck you really want and believe in.
     
  12. tigger

    tigger Senior Member

    Messages:
    432
    Likes Received:
    465
    Joined:
    May 6, 2017
    Not that much progress, but I've been nibbing at it.

    In addition to the neck layer I made one for the headstock. I think it's been thinned down somewhat while Mr. Dowel was working on it, and I need the headstock to match the neck veneer thickness. So I cut off another bit of wood and planed it down with the small plane. It's a miracle tool.

    [​IMG]

    In parallel I started working on the frets.
    [​IMG]

    Long story short, I'll need to re-make quite a few. I wasn't using enough glue and hammering them in and clamping after wasn't a good strategy, the ends tended to lift as I wasn't pushing down. The second half I simply put a generous amount of fish glue, placed the frets in, clamped them down with force, unclamped to check that it was sufficient, and then placed the clamp back for 24 hours. The results there are perfect, while the first half has a few frets I can almost slide a piece of paper underneath.
     
  13. tigger

    tigger Senior Member

    Messages:
    432
    Likes Received:
    465
    Joined:
    May 6, 2017
    Good question. I don't know but it seems to be working out so far..
     
  14. tigger

    tigger Senior Member

    Messages:
    432
    Likes Received:
    465
    Joined:
    May 6, 2017
    Cutting the neck tenon extension:

    [​IMG]

    And very carefully cutting it to fit.

    [​IMG]

    It now almost fits all the way, (no pic yet) and I'll have to glue it. Anyone has any opinions on titebond-vs-epoxy here? I don't want to use hide glue as I hope it won't ever come apart. I'd prefer titebond, but the fit won't be 100 perfect like two planed boards and there will be tiny gaps.
     
    jkes01 and slug_maine like this.
  15. tigger

    tigger Senior Member

    Messages:
    432
    Likes Received:
    465
    Joined:
    May 6, 2017
    Here is my dowel cutting jig, don't laugh:
    [​IMG]

    And here is a mahogany dowel. I accidentally rotated the wrong way (i.e. scraping, not cutting), and it turned out to be the only way the jig works.

    [​IMG]

    Here is the glued tenon. Obviously doesn't fit yet..

    [​IMG]

    The angle here is about 2.5 degrees. (Between the extension and the neck) So, clearly, that's less than the customary 4, but as far as I could figure out, the neck angle on 60's SGs was less, perhaps around 2.5 degrees (famously it dropped to 0 by early 70's). So I think what I have to do is build everything I can without setting the joint and then clamp it down and check whether this gives me appropriate bridge height.

    [​IMG]

    Mixing what's supposed to be walnut aniline dye. I'm not really convinced:

    [​IMG]

    It's much more amber than walnut. I'll let it dry first..
     
  16. ARandall

    ARandall Senior Member

    Messages:
    12,275
    Likes Received:
    7,828
    Joined:
    Apr 16, 2012
    SG's always have a lower angle than LP's. They just mimicked the Jr angle - another slab body guitar.
     
    tigger likes this.
  17. w666

    w666 Senior Member

    Messages:
    1,945
    Likes Received:
    485
    Joined:
    Nov 25, 2009
  18. moreles

    moreles Senior Member

    Messages:
    3,009
    Likes Received:
    1,653
    Joined:
    Apr 16, 2011
    Good advice above. I would offer a price that works for you. (I wouldn't touch this for way, way less than $2K, and maybe not even $1K.) I may be wrong, but to me it appears as though the seller is looking for a vintage price that disregards the level of destruction present in the instrument. If he really had great offers (suckers?) the guitar would be gone. It is not satisfying to work with unrealistic, confusing sellers, so I would make my offer and then never look back if he passes. It's not as though an SG (which iI love) is a tricky build or particularly wonderful in vintage form. In these cases, the buyer, not the seller, should be advantaged. For thrashed guitars, the value is not there until you provide it.
     
    tigger likes this.
  19. tigger

    tigger Senior Member

    Messages:
    432
    Likes Received:
    465
    Joined:
    May 6, 2017
    Thanks. I have seen it before but I feel like either the neck pocket has been very modified here, or the "lip" neck pocket of the 64-65s is different to the 63 and earlier ones and in the jrs which, I think, don't even have the lip. In particular - the lip area of the neck pocket is at an angle, and so the simple approach of having a box joint with 2.5 degree neck angle doesn't work. I'll take a side pic once I get it to align properly. If I do it right the joint should be much stronger than the original.
     
  20. tigger

    tigger Senior Member

    Messages:
    432
    Likes Received:
    465
    Joined:
    May 6, 2017
    That's a very valuable advice. I'm afraid it is somewhat late and I am also maybe a touch thick headed.
     

Share This Page