Ultimate Burst Replica Build?

closed_PaulSlack

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Hi Chaps.

It's time to get cracking with a guitar I've been working toward for a long, long time now. I had a dabble with a 59 replica a few years ago and since then, have been learning and building up tools to make good the mistakes I've made along the way and put in to practice a lot of things I've learned mostly from this excellent forum.

My last finishing job on the Precision build got me motivated again and so I'm keen to finish off my collection of parts to try to build my most accurate 59 Burst to date.

I have some superb figured Maple and a lovely chunk of mahogany for the body and neck, which is already underway. Pics to follow.

Now, as I've never seen a 59 Les Paul in the flesh, let alone hold one, I have only managed to source parts using references from pictures I've seen here and elsewhere on the net. My hope, is that you guys can help me correct any parts that are not right or close enough, so that I can make any changes or replace parts for the build as I go along.

Here is a list of parts I have so far and your feedback on them would be greatly appreciated.

There are more to come, but these are all I had time to shoot last night.

Thanks for reading.


Here is a vintage correct scratch plate bracket with the accompanying screw set complete. I am told this version was used on most early models up to and beyond the 59. Though obviously not any longer.


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This is the underside of the same piece:

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Next up is a vintage correct jack cover in the correct material with the older stlye, more square corners than modern counterparts:

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Here we have a "Bumblebee" (I have a few of these). Again, I can only go from photos, but the banding colours and size are exactly right with 59 shots I've seen.

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Now, this might be where I need a bit of help. I've seen 59's with all kinds of knobs, but mostly top hat style. I have two sets. One is an aged set of clear amber top hats and the other is this. Almost identical in every way except for the silver cap with writing on. Which do you think is most accurate?

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Switchcraft switch, which will be getting the age treatment.

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And the amber tip, which again, requires a little finishing to smooth out a casting mark. Not sure what it's made of but it's not plastic. It's hard as rock!

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closed_PaulSlack

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The truss rod cover, which is meant to be historic spec:

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These are really, really old MOP inlays. So the colour is nearly right as they are.

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The poker chip. Not sure at all about this bit. Does it look OK?

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This is a bone nut I have already started on but as of yet, is slightly oversize. Needs final shaping to flush when the neck is done.

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The pots. They are plain bottomed, which I think is right from the pics I've seen and are 500's

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Pointers:

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These are the closest I could get with the pickup surrounds without going daft and buying real top end replicas. I think they don't look too bad and the colour is perfect.

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Nickel bridge. I actually have another bridge en-route too but this is what I have so far:

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This, believe it or not, is real capacator wire cover I've had a few years now. Two little pieces of it cover the bare wire either side of the capacator when it is soldered. Should be enough for mistakes there? LOL

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And finally, for now, my braided wire covering. Also, as far as I'm aware, the correct style.

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Looking forward to any helpful feedback to confirm or otherwise and I hope you enjoy the build as it comes along.

Thanks.

Happy building

Paul
 

Freddy G

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Best of luck on your build Paul!

One thing I did notice is that the braided wire is not vintage correct....if you're going to be OCD about it. That wire looks like it has 3 wires per braid not 2.
 

Big John

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If you're going for anal-vintage-homo levels of realism, then you need different plastics...just an opinion.
 

closed_PaulSlack

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OK. Thanks for the feedback fellas. I'll check the braid. I will also look into the PU covers and the poker chip. The chip doesn't look right at all to me and I know there are some VERY good covers made by a forum user too. Hopefully, as I continue with the "buildy" bit, I can source closer parts to finish it.

Spot on. Just checked mine compared to my references. Should be 2 wire braid before the late 60's/70's. If you have a link where I can get hold of 2 wire braid I'd be really gratefull. Also, if there are any suppliers of decent plastic, I'd also be happy to put in an order. I just did a quick search for braid and came up empty.

Thanks for the heads up thus far.
 

closed_PaulSlack

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Thanks again for the help so far. Quick update:

I have now ordered vintage correct 2 wire per braid harness wire as well as a length of NOS black tubing for the insualtion.

img2651.jpg


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ARandall

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Ok, for real 59 spec you're not really that close....but it all depends on your level of OCD

Nylon nut for 59 spec.
TRC isn't right. The black section is only on the top face, not halfway down. Plus there are rolled marks in the originals.
Reflector knobs you have pictured are 60's spec.
Switch should be long not short, and you need to get the coarse knurled nut.
ABR should have the right circular tooling marks on the adjustment washers
You'll also need to invest in the Catto or Bartlett plans to build from. Ex-Nihlio also has carve templates (an updated version too) for getting the right contours including the re-curve.

Checkout Wizz pickups site for truly accurate looking plastics. The prices might scare you though.

Are you planning to get a proper Brazilian R/w fretboard, royalite and cellulose nitrate bindings, holly veneer, accurate logo inlay and frets installed with fish glue, screenprint for the headstock, aniline dyes and non-plasticised nitro, PF and hide glue??

If yes for all the above, then the prices for proper plastics, M69 rings etc will not be that hard to swallow, either will the accurate PAF reproduction pickups. If not, stick with trying to create an R9 replica and don't sweat the details.
 

Pete M

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Hey can i start by saying if all your photos are going to be uploaded at 3088x2056 then youre going to turn a lot of help away as this thread already takes an age to load. :shock:
 

'59_Standard

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Ok, for real 59 spec you're not really that close....but it all depends on your level of OCD

You'll also need to invest in the Catto or Bartlett plans to build from. Ex-Nihlio also has carve templates (an updated version too) for getting the right contours including the re-curve.

Checkout Wizz pickups site for truly accurate looking plastics. The prices might scare you though.

If we're being OCD... As great as it was for Ex to do the carve templates (and it was) are these taken from a real '59. There's correct. And then there's an opinion. Just sayin'.
 

closed_PaulSlack

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Thanks chaps for the further help. For those with slower connections, I can certainly upload pics to a smaller dimension. No problemo.

So far, it looks as if I will have to invest in a new Nut blank and truss rod cover then. I already have an aged set of non reflector knobs which I will upload later on. I also have a selection of switches but the deeper nut is another item i shall have to buy.

As for plans, I have the ones mentioned and more besides that I've been collecting over the years. For small details, I have a folder full of pics to go by and will replicate those too.

ARandall, thank you for the recommendation for plastics. I will definitely look in to it and as I need some, may just have to bite the bullet. It's cost enough already, so I might as well go the whole hog.

I have I think, about 4 BR fingerboards and one is standing out for me right now. I also have yards of binding that I know is correct and the holly veneer. I'm not sure about fish glue though. I've never used that before, so that will be another thing to look at. Dyes and lacquer is also ticked.

This might get expensive. LOL
 

closed_PaulSlack

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Hey can i start by saying if all your photos are going to be uploaded at 3088x2056 then youre going to turn a lot of help away as this thread already takes an age to load. :shock:

I dropped each pic down to 1200 pixels wide so they are each under a meg. Hope that is better buddy.

:thumb:

Cheers, Paul
 

closed_PaulSlack

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For the cover, I bought standard Gibson parts. I'm not sure much has changed in the way of these two parts?:

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Here is the pickguard:

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closed_PaulSlack

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Just put in an order for a bunch of new parts that will be arriving soon. when they do, I'll post up pics of them too. They include:

1959 LP Nylon Nut
Historic Spec Gibson Truss Rod Cover
M69 Pickup Rings
Full set of Kluson Delux Tuners

I received some tuners today but they are only waffle back with greenish type coloured pegs. I'm not keen.

I will sell off the parts I don't use on this next build as the build after that is going to be something different for a change.
 

closed_PaulSlack

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wheres the body and neck? isnt that kinda important?

In time mate. In time.

I already posted images of some of the body and neck parts on another thread, but I've yet to choose which pieces to use. I'm settled on the body and one of two necks I have roughed out, also I think i have a preferred fingerboard. All those bits will come in time without all the usual router shots we've seen a million times.

My priority posting here was to ensure the experts among us had the opportunity to critique the parts I'm adding to it to ensure it's as close as possible. Hopefully, between us all, we can get this right and it maybe a good resourse for future replica builders?

I hope I can do it justice.

Regards, Paul
 

'59_Standard

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The back plates are a strange thing for me. Its not like someones out there selling correct ones from what I've seen.

Gil Yaron mention on his thread IIRC about 5 layers of plastic joined together?


I wish someone would clear it up - I need some myself!
 

closed_PaulSlack

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The back plates are a strange thing for me. Its not like someones out there selling correct ones from what I've seen.

Gil Yaron mention on his thread IIRC about 5 layers of plastic joined together?


I wish someone would clear it up - I need some myself!

You're right, whilst we get fiddly over small details here and there, the covers are mostly forgotten. As far as I'm aware, they seem to be the same as now. Hopefully anyway!
 

ARandall

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With the backplates you'll be ok....I've just taken off the covers made to the Bartlett plans, and they fit onto a 2012 Trad+:thumb:

The pickguard is a different kettle of fish. I think the pickup spacing may be different, and the originals I think had a loose fit about the neck pickup. Mojoaxe has great pickguards, in both aged or nonaged.
You also need to be very careful with colour. Typically the more modern pickguards are way more pink and won't match with M69 rings.
 

ARandall

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If we're being OCD... As great as it was for Ex to do the carve templates (and it was) are these taken from a real '59. There's correct. And then there's an opinion. Just sayin'.

Well, the guides are just that...a starting point. Not only do you have to take off a fair bit more wood (I know, as I've just done 2 of them), but the recurve and the waist/switch area is certainly open for much interpretation.
They get you to a point where you can do a carve that perhaps represents one of the 200+ possibilities of 59 carve (one slightly different carve for each guitar that came off the line in that year).
And while we're there.....the Bartlett plans are an average of a lot of 59 bursts, so we are technically less accurate than we were if we want any specific guitar to clone. However it will be accurate to a very close approximation of most.
 

'59_Standard

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Well, the guides are just that...a starting point. Not only do you have to take off a fair bit more wood (I know, as I've just done 2 of them), but the recurve and the waist/switch area is certainly open for much interpretation.
They get you to a point where you can do a carve that perhaps represents one of the 200+ possibilities of 59 carve (one slightly different carve for each guitar that came off the line in that year).
And while we're there.....the Bartlett plans are an average of a lot of 59 bursts, so we are technically less accurate than we were if we want any specific guitar to clone. However it will be accurate to a very close approximation of most.

I mean no offence - if we're being OCD. Regarding the templates: a starting point to what though. If they're not from a genuine '59.

Each '59 had a standard carve shape (the carve is the consistent thing) and was then sanded (where the inconsistency is). If the carve templates aren't (OCD) accurate to what the '59 carve is, you have an interpretation...
 

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