My 1st Guitar Build: A Les Paul... (duh)!

Discussion in 'Luthier's Corner' started by nuance97, Jul 6, 2011.

  1. nuance97

    nuance97 Premium Member

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    Well I have been hanging around here for years...at least one before I joined. I feel like I've have learned more here than I could have anywhere else, and I say THANK YOU to all of the ridiculously talented luthiers that post here. It is my turn to add something to the forum of some entertainment/educational value.

    I was willed a fully outfitted wood shop by my late father-in-law who passed two years ago due to cancer. He knew that I had interest in guitar building even though I have never built anything before. The shop is full of a lot of hobbyist-grade tools, but if you are careful I've found that they'll do a more than adequate job. The power tools I am using are:
    9" band saw (bench top)
    Floor mount drill press
    Miter saw
    6" bench top jointer
    router table
    fixed base router
    Cheapo plunge router (used only for pickup 'Legs')
    Just bought a Ridged oscillating spindle sander AWESOME TOOL!
    Two laminate trim routers

    Though I have no real-world wood working experience I have been obsessed for years with the topic. I have watched every episode of The New Yankee Workshop along with every other show on the subject I could find. I have also read several books, dozens of magazines, and other internet material concerning woodworking. I had a good understanding of the tools and how to use them safely. THIS IS A MUST!

    Lets get to the build! I chose to go with the Bartlett Plan because is it the most accurate. I had several copies made and glued the various parts to 1/4" hardboard with spray-on adhesive
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    rough cut on the band saw
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    sand to the lines.
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    I use the hardboard template to make templates out of 1/2" or 3/4" MDF. I like to make templates for my templates so I can have a backup when I ruin one.
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    I ended up remaking these with the Bartlett update with revised headstock and pickup routes
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    My Templates were designed to be used with template bits that have shank mounted bearings.
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    Last edited: Nov 15, 2017
    n32, CaptainT, gplayer and 11 others like this.
  2. fatdaddypreacher

    fatdaddypreacher V.I.P. Member

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    well, nu. glad to see you take the pllunge. i ain't much of a bettin' kinda guy, but by the looks of the neatness and precision of your work on jigs and templates, i bet we're fixin' to see one of the best first builds we have seen. you first timers kill me with you passion and tenacity. best of luck and stay safe. count me in.
     
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  3. nuance97

    nuance97 Premium Member

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    Glad to have you along FDP!!!!!:thumb:
     
  4. nuance97

    nuance97 Premium Member

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    This beast was fun to make. It was inspired by Fletch/preeb.
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    Last edited: Nov 11, 2017
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  5. dickjonesify

    dickjonesify Senior Member

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    Sweet :dude:
    Excellent jiggery and templatery! You're gonna do just fine. Nice to see you throwing your hat in the ring. :h5:
     
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  6. nuance97

    nuance97 Premium Member

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    Thanks Daniel!:slash:
     
  7. Bruiser74

    Bruiser74 Senior Member

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    Great so far, love that neck jig.
     
  8. 52trapeze

    52trapeze Senior Member

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    Your going to do a awesome job man! When i get the cash i want you to finish my other replica body!
     
  9. nuance97

    nuance97 Premium Member

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    Time to cut some real wood...
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    Rough cut on bandsaw
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    Attach template #1
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    End result
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    I could mention that I am not just building one, but three:wow:WTF am I thinking?!?


    Got some tear-out on one of them (Damn!) I couldn't find the chunk that flew out so I dug out the waste piece from the rough cut and cut a piece from the same spot so the grain would match and glued 'er in. This is the one and only spot that gets anything but Hot Hide Glue.
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    It will be invisible in the end.:fingersx:
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    Last edited: Nov 11, 2017
    n32 and Udonitron like this.
  10. Bob1

    Bob1 Senior Member

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    Looking good!
     
  11. nuance97

    nuance97 Premium Member

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    Thanks man. Your build is splendid!:applause:

    Thanks. You know where to find me. ;)

    Appreciated! BTW I'm liking the Skylark.
     
  12. Claymore

    Claymore Senior Member

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    Nice progress!
    Not your first go-around with wood-working tools, methinks!
    Show us your nude tops!
     
  13. captcoolaid

    captcoolaid Senior Member

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    Wow the tear out repair came out amazing.
     
  14. Barnaby

    Barnaby Premium Member

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    Wow! :applause:

    This is going to be a brilliant guitar. Like FDP, I'm not a betting man, but I'd bet on this one turning out beautifully for sure. :thumb:
     
  15. nuance97

    nuance97 Premium Member

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    Drill out control cavity/toggle waste with drill press and forstner bit.
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    then clamp template to it.
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    Looks good.
    Next template
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    Looks good. Definitely good to have full body outline on each template. There is no problem lining everything up. It's foolproof.

    Sand out router marks
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    Round over with 3/16" round over bit.
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    Remember that tear out?
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    Last edited: Nov 11, 2017
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  16. dickjonesify

    dickjonesify Senior Member

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    Man! These are perfect, Dan. You've been holding out :dude:
     
  17. fatdaddypreacher

    fatdaddypreacher V.I.P. Member

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    crisp, clean, neat, precise...this is gonna be fun!
     
  18. nuance97

    nuance97 Premium Member

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    Believe it or not it is my first go-'round...with almost all of these tools. I've used a skill saw and hammer before doing some real rough carpentry work, but nothing even close to this...
    Thanks. See the above photo.;)

    Thanks Barn! I really hope you're right!!:laugh2:
     
  19. nuance97

    nuance97 Premium Member

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    I've been piddlin' on these for a while.
    It has been thus far...
     
  20. nuance97

    nuance97 Premium Member

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    Edit** I did find a few progress shots of my necks.

    Re-saw a blank to get the least amount of grain run out.
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    Rough cut neck outta one side
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    Flip and repeat.
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    Here you can see one of my neck after the neck fixture.
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    After rough cut clamp to side 1 of fixture route 17* headstock angle smooth, clean up at jointer, then route side 2 of fixture to get back profile of the neck.:thumb:
     
    Last edited: Nov 11, 2017
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