Now I wanna build one!

twst1up

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Ive been thinking I'd like to buy a tele body and try some relief carving in the top. Then it came to me: I really think I could build a tele body. I have some tools, moderately handy. I wouldn't try to build a neck by myself at this point

Where do I buy wood? Should I look at reclaimed lumber near me?
 

Ripthorn

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For your first, I recommend using relatively inexpensive lumber. Something like knotty alder or poplar would work well.

Google hardwood lumber in your area. Woodfinder is also a decent site for finding suppliers. Tons of resources online. Google often and freely.
 

Freddy G

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See....I'm from the other school of thought. For your first....use good wood. Spend the money. It might just make you more careful and cause you to plan and think about the job more than some "who cares if I screw it up" piece of wood.

Knowmasayin?
 

fatdaddypreacher

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are you located near a lumber yard that may have some hardwood in the rough? i'm blessed enough to have one in town. I can get most anything i want, including swamp ash occasionally. you don't have to order online and pay high prices and freight if you have something like that available. I agree with freddy. my first attempt from scratch was an lp style build and i used 3 pc alder body. it wouldn't have cost much to buy something in mahogany, and the guitar turned out fine. it's paint grade, though. good luck
 

failsafe306

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See....I'm from the other school of thought. For your first....use good wood. Spend the money. It might just make you more careful and cause you to plan and think about the job more than some "who cares if I screw it up" piece of wood.

Knowmasayin?
That’s exactly what I did!
 

Skyjerk

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See....I'm from the other school of thought. For your first....use good wood. Spend the money. It might just make you more careful and cause you to plan and think about the job more than some "who cares if I screw it up" piece of wood.

Knowmasayin?
100% agreement :)
 

twst1up

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See....I'm from the other school of thought. For your first....use good wood. Spend the money. It might just make you more careful and cause you to plan and think about the job more than some "who cares if I screw it up" piece of wood.

Knowmasayin?
I think I'm with you there, although I'd like something easy to work with as well. What species do u suggest
are you located near a lumber yard that may have some hardwood in the rough? i'm blessed enough to have one in town. I can get most anything i want, including swamp ash occasionally. you don't have to order online and pay high prices and freight if you have something like that available. I agree with freddy. my first attempt from scratch was an lp style build and i used 3 pc alder body. it wouldn't have cost much to buy something in mahogany, and the guitar turned out fine. it's paint grade, though. good luck
I think there's a couple in the Nashville area....I'm pretty sure its the kind of thing I'm looking for. Any tips on what I'm asking for, ie how to talk to these folks, the jargon, parlance??
 

fatdaddypreacher

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well, that depends on what you want actually, as teles have used a wide range of wood species along the way. The most popular for the body is swamp ash, which is basically common white ash, except where it grows and where it is cut from the tree makes it lighter and much more desirable for guitar bodies. standard white ash will make a fairly heavy build. Pine is used often for bodies, and i have even build one out of reclaimed fir construction timber used commony years ago. Poplar would be good, but has no great grain features, but would be an excellant paint choice. I have spanish cedar, so i've build a couple with that, and it too works great. You will need a blank starting out 2" thick in the rough for the body (called eight quarter in lumber terms) Maple is a popular choice for the neck, figured, or plain. a plump 1" (4 quarter cut in the rough) should work well for the neck. pick a nice flat straight board. hope this gives you a start.
 

Tweaker

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What tools do you have or are available to you?
 

twst1up

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What tools do you have or are available to you?
Table saw, circ saw, palm orbital sander, another sander with the loop of paper, chop saw, compressor. Couple of pipe clamps.



I think next on the list is a router
 

nuance97

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Either a band or jigsaw would be necessary to cut the curves.
 

twst1up

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Ah, yeah I do have a jig saw, kinda crappy old b&d (it's one of the older blue ones) but better than nothing i guess

So, what kinda tools u guys have? I see it can get xpensive... where do u buy? What do u suggest? Buying used ok?
 

twst1up

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Oh...here's another...I gotta angle grinder as well as a bench grinder

Cheap set of dado blades from the depot

Couple wood chisels from lowes
 

nuance97

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The power tools I have found most useful/applicable to building guitars are:
Bandsaw
Drill press
Router (and a table to mount it in or a separate router table)
Jointer
Spindle/belt sander combo (Ridgid)

Then the smaller hand power tools like r.o. sanders, drills...etc.

A table saw isn’t very necessary for building guitars...cabinetry absolutely, but not guitars really
 

nuance97

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I did use my table saw a time or two building jigs and fixtures, but not to actually build the guitar itself really...
 

Skyjerk

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I did use my table saw a time or two building jigs and fixtures, but not to actually build the guitar itself really...
Table saw is necessary if buying rough-sawn boards from lumber yards, etc.

If buying pre-cut body or neck blanks a table saw is just taking up space :)

I do use mine to slot fretboards though,
 
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failsafe306

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Go to YouTube as well as search out build threads on this forum. Many of your tool questions will be answered. You will get a feel for what you need as well as the overall process by doing some research.
 

nuance97

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One tool I use a lot that I forgot is my thickness sander, but they’re an extremely expensive luxury. You can perform the same tasks with router-rails.
 

Kennoyce

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Nuance's list is pretty much spot on as far as useful tools, and someday I hope to be able to afford a thickness sander!
 

twst1up

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Go to YouTube as well as search out build threads on this forum. Many of your tool questions will be answered. You will get a feel for what you need as well as the overall process by doing some research.
YouTube is probably what prodded me to think it was doable. I've been digging crimson guitars alot. Couple other guys...any recommendations??
 


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