Les Paul Rough Lumber list

allmodcons

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Hello to all. This is a fantastic forum. I am planning a Les Paul build,and although I have done two Telecaster builds,the Les Paul will be a great challenge. However, being that I am in the materials gathering stage,I can't seem to find a simple list of rough dimensions that I can use when shopping for wood.Especially the neck. Interested in the insights of the knowledgeable builders here. THANKS.
 

pshupe

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Wood should be slightly larger than the guitar you are building! :rofl:

Do you have plans? A Les Paul body is about 13" x 18" x 1 3/4", so you would need a couple inches bigger than that and 8/4 (2") thickness will be fine.

Maple top - same size but thinner. It has to be about 5/8" finished so 4/4 is usually good. Sometimes it is book matched so you could buy a billet that is 8/4 x 8" x 20" and re-saw. Or just a couple pieces of 4/4 that you can blue in the middle.

Neck - one piece neck should be about 3" x 3" x 30". That is typical neck blank. There is lots of extra there.

Cheers Peter.
 

allmodcons

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Thanks Peter, my plans(Bartlett) havent arrived yet so your information was just what I was looking for.:cool:Although I will be using maple for the top, I have been contemplating different woods to use for the body ....Sapele or yellow cedar(old growth YC here in B.C.),or maybe just stick with a mahogany ... Thanks for any and all info.
 

pshupe

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I used some white ash I had laying around for my first build. Learned a lot. African mahogany can be a great substitute at about half the price and easy to get. You can use anything you like. Sapele is good. Never used yellow cedar, I assume it could be quite soft though?

Awesome plans BTW. ;) Seeing as you only have 2 posts, you may not know that I drew those. Working on some more, as we speak! Shhhhh. Don't tell anyone. :naughty:

Cheers Peter.
 

allmodcons

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Well,thanks for your detailed drawings--from what I could see,there is nothing else out there that has that level of quality.
Yes yellow cedar is soft,but not too far from mahogany,but its so stable and malleable.

This is my building progression as I dream it,lol:

Telecasters -> Les Pauls -> Gretsch Duo Jets -> Rickenbacker 330's

(....wonder if anyone has plans to draw Duo-jets and Rickenbackers.....) :cool:
 

ARandall

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Yep, plans are a real essential item to have before you start the shopping list. You will find every dimension you need there.

We are always happy to assist in the finer points of either interpretation or 'best practice'.
Plus there are a lot of great threads here which detail the step by step method from go to whoa. In short, you could very well get every detail you need from info already in threads cross referenced with the plans.

Someone has done both Rick and Gretch builds on this forum IIRC.
 

pshupe

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I might be able to hook you up for Rickenbackers.

Capture3.JPG


I haven't looked into Gretsch guitars but definitely something I would love to build someday.

Cheers Peter.
 

Kennoyce

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pshupe

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I have downloaded quite a few pdfs and drawing files for different Rickenbackers. I have also modelled up a few different styles.

Rick 660 - Tom Petty
Capture.JPG outline.JPG mock-up05.jpg

Rick 325 Capri - 1960 Rick 360 Capri - Rick 380 -
Rick-325 - 12 string.JPG body_outline.JPG Capture.JPG Capture2.JPG

Cheers Peter.
 
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pshupe

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That's no surprise. What's the weight?

Another tip would be - body weight. When I build a Les Paul I try and keep the body under 3 lbs / b.f. I do have some S.A. Mahogany that is about 2.3 - 2.5lbs /b.f. that I am saving for a possible replica build at some point.

So any wood you use you may want to get the body wood about that weight. Here is a graphic I made up a long time ago related to wood weights and chambering.

Gibson weight relief_3d.JPG


This initially stemmed from someone saying that a heavy piece of mahogany was too heavy even to be chambered and make a decent weight Les Paul. Going by this research you could use rosewood and fully chamber to get down to the same weight as a light body with no weight relief.

Cheers Peter.
 
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Kennoyce

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Another tip would be - body weight. When I build a Les Paul I try and keep the body under 3 lbs / b.f. I do have some S.A. Mahogany that is about 2.3 - 2.5lbs /b.f. that I am saving for a possible replica build at some point.

So any wood you use you may want to get the body wood about that weight. Here is a graphic I made up a long time ago related to wood weights and chambering.

View attachment 501934

This initially stemmed from someone saying that a heavy piece of mahogany was too heavy even to be chambered and make a decent weight Les Paul. Going by this research you could use rosewood and fully chamber to get down to the same weight as a light body with no weight relief.

Cheers Peter.
As an engineer by trade, you would think that I would have done some actual calculations on what the weight would be when I started building the guitar, but no, I just sort of winged it and did something similar to the traditional weight relief pictured above. Oh well, it's a great guitar for sitting down, and I played it standing up for over 3 hours at band practice last week and it didn't kill me!
 

allmodcons

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That chambered body version is similar to the Gretsch Duo Jets. Several years ago,Gretsch had a special-run of the Jet that was solid like some Les Pauls--and it was heavy.I had a typically chambered DuoJet and although its look and size were as a Les Paul,it sounded very different.

I am looking at my shop wood,and am seeing 2"x 10" Maple , 2"x7" poplar,1"x8" cherry,1"x8" birch,2" x 3" yellow cedar,some padauk fingerboards....... but am also realistic of this being a first go at a LP. A Spruce Paul maybe...:cool:
 


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