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  1. cmjohnson

    If you have painted with bronze powder, talk to me.

    One thing I do is make high quality reproduction front and back panels for Marshall amps made in the 60s and 70s, and I've been making many variants of metalface panels (late '69 and newer) for a while now, and they've sold well enough that I keep doing it. But now I'm branching out into...
  2. cmjohnson

    Tone control static but not like you'd imagine.

    I just got done doing some speaker swaps in my Marshall cabinets (putting some Greenbacks in...) and went to play for a while, and noticed something VERY odd. Setup: Playing one of my own PRS-style double cutaway guitars (basically a Custom 22 derivative). Two humbuckers, one volume, one tone...
  3. cmjohnson

    I may regret taking on this refin job...

    So I was at the Orlando guitar show this past weekend, January 29th and 30th, 2022. I had two tables full of stuff to sell, mostly various amplifiers, and I had a good show, got rid of a nice pile of stuff, made some money, and bought something just on a whim from my "partner" at the show. We...
  4. cmjohnson

    Weirdest fret buzz I ever experienced.

    I encountered this today. A friend brought over his Les Paul which had suddenly developed a fret buzz, fifth fret, A string. No other buzzes. But at that spot, it buzzed worse than any sitar. He was thinking maybe a fret had lifted. So I took a look at it. Checked the frets...clean...
  5. cmjohnson

    Awesome 1 piece quilt top...but it's slightly warped. Usable?

    I'l post a photo later. I've got an awesome, 7/8" thick quilted maple top, and a one piece top, much the better, for a future build. It used to be very warped when it was still moist. I just set it aside and ignore it. Over the years it has flattened out considerably but as of now its...
  6. cmjohnson

    Help me choose the neck wood. (Singlecut)

    I've returned to working on one of my body projects I started a number of years ago. I've got to start a neck for it. But I'm undecided on whether I want this one to be a maple neck or a mahogany neck. Either way it gets an ebony fingerboard, or African Blackwood, or maybe Cocobolo. I've...
  7. cmjohnson

    To restore or not to restore....?

    I have come into possession of a 1959 Gibson Melody Maker, in sunburst finish, which unfortunately has been hacked out by an idiot with a dremel tool, to fit two humbuckers into it, quite a few years ago. The "routing" is as bad as you can imagine. The guitar currently has no pickups of...
  8. cmjohnson

    Two hundred and fifty two scales to learn.....

    Now that I have finally grasped the concept of modes (the seven church modes, as they are called), I have gained a greater understanding of music in general. And frankly it's just made me realize how much more there is to learn. There are seven modes based on the Western major scale...
  9. cmjohnson

    Annoyed by Floyd (Rose)

    I have generally avoided working on Floyd Rose equipped guitars over the years. Not by any concerted effort to avoid them, I just haven't sought them out. But a few days ago a trade offer came along that I couldn't pass up. And now I've finally got a Charvel with a Floyd. Actually a...
  10. cmjohnson

    Les Paul fingerboard replacement: What would you charge?

    An acquaintance reached out to me to let me know that one of his friends has a Les Paul that was slightly butchered. Somebody scalloped the fingerboard. I haven't seen it but the assumption is that it's bad. What would you say is a fair market price for fingerboard replacement if you were...
  11. cmjohnson

    Pick the color of the LP Studio I'm going to refinish.

    A good ten years ago, or more, I bought a Gibson Les Paul Studio that someone had sanded all the finish off, and whoever did it, did a BAD job of it. The sides had been rounded off, and in the wrong direction. But I judged it to be salvageable. I did some work on it, got the sides...
  12. cmjohnson

    Anybody got a Hamer Steve Stevens (1984 or so) guitar?

    If you do, could I ask you to remove the electronics cavity cover, and take a photo of the wiring, and post it here, please? I'm in the final stages of a restoration of one of these guitars and I want to confirm that the wiring is not only electrically right, but is even cosmetically arranged...
  13. cmjohnson

    Recovering old acrylic lacquer...can it be done?

    I was going through and cleaning out my paint shelf and found that my prized vintage stash of a specific tint of SEM acrylic lacquer, a color that's discontinued now, at least as lacquer, has dried to the consistency of gum. The can lid wasn't fully sealed. I want to salvage this paint...
  14. cmjohnson

    Finishing practice on the cheap

    If any of you want to practice your finishing, polishing, finish repair skills, etc, I just want to point out that guitarfetish.com has a huge assortment of factory seconds bodies and necks of several types and they're as cheap as 30 dollars each. Get a few of their bodies and there's a few...
  15. cmjohnson

    Need a source for cheap S style bodies in primer or sealer

    I realize, yes, we usually build our own, but I'm looking for a source for some cheap S type bodies in primer or sealer that are ready for painting as packed. Reason is that I want to use a stack of them for finish samples and finishing practice. I don't want to go to the effort to make a...
  16. cmjohnson

    HSS routing template/dimensions (CNC, G code)

    Does anyone have the data (even better, the G code) for CNC routing an HSS pickup set into a body? This would be for a back routed guitar with no pickguard. As per this: I'm going to sub out the routing on this guitar if I can get accurate code to hand to the CNC programmer.
  17. cmjohnson

    Waterslide decal application

    I've completed the color coats on a Hamer Steve Stevens model that I'm refinishing to its original Fuchsia with black headstock face. It's MAYBE time to apply the Hamer logo waterslide. Before I do, I want some advice on the best practice. Should I apply it before applying any clearcoats...
  18. cmjohnson

    Neck wood choice makes a big tonal difference.

    For years I've had a favorite bridge pickup. A Seymour Duncan JB. SH-4. I have them installed in three of my guitars. All three guitars are ones I've built over the years. I'm going to resist the attempt to deliver a dissertation on each guitar and focus on what I found regarding how neck...
  19. cmjohnson

    Nitro lacquer newbie requests instruction

    I've got a fair amount of experience with other finish types, but really none to speak of with nitro lacquer. I'm doing a restoration on a 1984 Hamer Steve Stevens model, and it's got to be done in nitro lacquer. I understand that nitro typically is applied as a relatively high number of thin...
  20. cmjohnson

    Can any of you scratch build "skunk stripe" type necks?

    I have a very special project in mind. I have a solid billet of Rosewood that I want to make a TRUE one piece neck out of for an upcoming build. By TRUE one piece, I mean it. No separate fingerboard. I want to carve the complete neck out of this billet. This will, however, require a truss...

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