Hywel's Home Depot Challenge 2016 Build - Semi Hollow Baritone

Discussion in 'Luthiery, Modifications & Customizations' started by Hywel, Jan 24, 2016.

  1. downburst82

    downburst82 SS.org Regular

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    Just slap a strictly 7 logo on it...naaa even with the flaw no one would ever believe stictly could put out something that nice :lol:


    Seriously though things are looking amazing so far, great work! :yesway:
     
  2. pondman

    pondman Build Whore.

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    Looking great :yesway: If you turn that bevel into a curve on the back you'll get rid of the router damage.
     
  3. Hywel

    Hywel SS.org Regular

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    Cheers guys. :)

    I'll have a go at making it disappear with some carving but if I can't get it hidden enough, I think I'll stain the back black. Hopefully that should hide it nicely and look pretty good with a burst top. :yesway:
     
  4. Hywel

    Hywel SS.org Regular

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    After a superglue/dust fill, deeper bevelling and a quick sanding the damage actually came out ok. It's still visible but nowhere near as bad as I thought it might be. A quick wipe with mineral spirits showed it blends in fairly well with a finish on.

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    I got the top marked up for carving but I thought I'd better do the controls next while the top's still flat.

    I drilled recesses on the face for the 3 main control knobs and recesses for the mini switches and blade switch in the control cavity. Used a 2.5mm router bit for the blade switch which was scary stuff but it came out fine. I'm going to mount it with screws inside the cavity rather than through the top so it should look a bit neater.

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    Finally I trimmed and flattened the fretboard ready for slotting. Mockup time!

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    Maple-y! Not bad for old flooring :D
     
  5. Serratus

    Serratus SS.org Regular

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    Looking really great! :)
     
  6. thinkpad20

    thinkpad20 plays guitar??

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    Looking pretty amazing! Curious as to whether you considered painting the guitar after the few wood-related mishaps.
     
  7. Hywel

    Hywel SS.org Regular

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    Cheers!

    My current plan is to try a natural back/side and tobacco burst top with the thought that if it doesn't work out I can just stain everything black (which was actually the original idea anyway!).

    I don't currently have the gear or knowledge to do proper solid colours and clear coats so I'll stick with oils, waxes and stains for now. :yesway:
     
  8. Hywel

    Hywel SS.org Regular

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    I've not done a bevel or carved top before so today was a fun learning experience.

    I got the depth limits marked on the sides and top and started joining the lines with the Shinto saw rasp on the convex surfaces and a half round microplane on the concave bits. The Shinto was way easier to use but I don't think they make half round ones sadly.

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    Once I'd got the shape roughed in all the way around I switched to planes, scrapers and sandpaper to get everything smooth.

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    I'm really happy with how it came out. It wasn't actually as hard as I thought it would be and it's much comfier than a flat top. :D

    Got the fret slots cut as well in preparation for radiusing and binding when I get around to it. I printed the template off from fretfind2d, stuck it on over masking tape and used the ruler and knife to mark the slots. Once they were all done I switched to the fret slotting saw and got the slots cut properly. It's a neat saw that keeps a constant 2.5mm depth (even with a radius) but I really think I should get a mitre box if I'm cutting many more boards.

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  9. Hywel

    Hywel SS.org Regular

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    Spent some time getting the neck finished this weekend. It needed binding and I was going to use the black bucket I picked up from Homebase but it's proven useful as a bucket and I didn't fancy straightening it out to use as inlay blocks so I picked up a cheap seed tray instead.

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    A quick pass on the bandsaw and trimming with a sharp chisel and it's ready to use as binding. I thought I'd try a blank board and two tone binding as markers since that would save me buying anything to use as dots. :D

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    Finished the binding and scraped it flush. I finished the board with danish oil and wax before fretting it.

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    I found some nibblers for £8 from Rapid Electronics and I converted them to a fret tang nipper with a groove filed in the top. They worked great!

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    Got all the frets glued in and bevelled.

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    Finally I did the neck carve. I trimmed the excess off on the bandsaw and set to work with the Shinto and Microplane rasps.

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    It came out at 22.5mm@1, 24.5mm@12 with very soft V shape. I tried the blend the heel nicely.

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    And I gave it a wipe with some mineral spirits so see how it looks.

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    And that's most of the woodwork done. I still need to make the bridge and cavity cover though. :yesway:
     
  10. BlackMastodon

    BlackMastodon \m/ (゚Д゚) \m/ Contributor

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    Looking great, man.

    Could you give some more info on the homemade fret nippers? I'd love to know how to convert a pair of sheet metal nibblers into a very useful tool instead of Paying StewMac more than $60 for a pair and having them break on me in a year.

    Was this the original tool you used? http://www.amazon.com/Hand-Sheet-Metal-Nibbler-Cutter/dp/B000T5FV4Q
     
  11. mnemonic

    mnemonic Custom User Title

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    I really like that binding/fret markers. Fingerboard looks really nice too. I'm a big fan of blank boards.

    I also like how you blended the heel to the body. Most manufacturers seem to leave a lip of about 1/4" and I think it looks kinda meh. Flush looks nice.
     
  12. Hywel

    Hywel SS.org Regular

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    Thanks. :D

    RVFM HT-204 Nibbler Tool | Rapid Online is the tool I bought but your link looks pretty much the same. All I did was file a groove in front of the cutting jaw thingy for the fret crown to sit in. I used a triangular diamond file which seemed to work well but the Stew-Mac one has a square groove so I don't think shape is too important. If you feed frets in from the labelled side on mine and cut about 1/2 the jaws width at a time it cuts cleanly. Here's my modified version vs. an unmodified version of the tool.

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    Cheers! It almost got the 1/4" lip but it got in the way of my thumb at the highest frets so flush it was. :yesway:
     
  13. MoonJelly

    MoonJelly a subtle stinging sensation..

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    [​IMG]


    Dat heel :eek::cool:
     
  14. Hywel

    Hywel SS.org Regular

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    Time for another slight change of plans. My budget is super tight at the moment ($99.89) so I've dropped rewinding the middle pickup for the moment since I can't afford the wire. :lol:

    Not particularly exciting but I made a truss rod cover from some maple off cut and a jack plate from some left over seed tray binding (nothing but the finest materials here! :ugh:).

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    Told you it wouldn't be exciting.

    I got the neck finished with danish oil and some stain on the headstock. I also attached the worlds worst tuners. Seriously, they wobble like crazy and stop turning occasionally. They were however £4 for 6 so I'm not suprised. :squint:

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    Added the TRC and my sticker to make me feel like I've actually managed to finish something. Sadly the white binding doesn't melt in acetone so I couldn't make any gloop to hide the joints.

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    Made the bridge but not before breaking 2 taps. I'm not sure if I suck at tapping or my taps suck at tapping. Either way, it's done now. It just took a lot of swearing. :rolleyes:

    4mm mild steel plate left over from my 8 string build and some Wilkinson saddles I won on eBay for £3.50. Bargain!

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    Got all the mounting and string though holes drilled. Everything actually lined up first time!

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    I made a string ferrule template since I got bored of wonky ferrule holes and it only cost £10 to have it laser cut. certainly got the job done here nicely.

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    Finally, I routed the slot for the piezo transducer. I have no idea it this is going to work but I'm going to have some neoprene rubber pushing an acoustic under saddle transducer into the bottom of the bridge plate to hopefully pick something up. I kinda doubt it'll work well but it might be a laugh finding out. I'll stick some piezo discs in the pickup cavities if it doesn't work. :yesway:

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  15. MoonJelly

    MoonJelly a subtle stinging sensation..

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    This build looks better all the time.
     
  16. ROAR

    ROAR oaf tobar

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    This is absolutely incredible.
    I've been contemplating getting wood and what not from a Lowe's or something
    just to build something for fun and learn about luthier work.
    You have inspired me with your build, and I look forward to future updates!
    Great job m8!
     
  17. Serratus

    Serratus SS.org Regular

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    Looking great m8!!
     
  18. Hywel

    Hywel SS.org Regular

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    Thanks for the kind words guys. I'm glad people are enjoying the build thread. :D

    The last couple of days haven't quite gone to plan though.

    I spent a day or two researching hand rubbed burst finishes, watched a few Youtube videos, practised a bit on some scraps and decided to give it a go.

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    It didn't go well. I'm not sure if it was the dyes I tried using or just a lack of experience but it wasn't working for me. I tried a couple of times but the end result always looked shoddy. I think the water soluble dye I had was more like a paint than a dye so it produced very uneven results and was really hard to properly blend.

    So that was the first set back. Luckily the dyes didn't penetrate too far and were easy to sand off so I got everything back to it's original state fairly easily. Before I found the maple, I'd originally planned to have a black front and natural back (hence the white binding). I thought I'd give that a try. I borrowed a leaf from Pondman's book and tried Dylon fabric dye which was much better than the Liberon stuff I had.

    The Dylon worked really well and produced a good solid black that still showed the grain and birds-eyes if you looked closely but I was undecided whether I wanted to keep it solid black or go for all natural or a black burst. I tried some sanding but the black dye had sunk much further into the grain than the other stuff and had gone into some patches of end grain, looking like the issue I had with the F holes earlier in the thread. Basically, unless I wanted to see black streaks around every piece of end grain on the body, it now had to be a fairly solid dark colour. So back to black it was.

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    I do actually like the black front look, it just seems a bit of a shame to loose a bit of figuring one of the planks had. You can still see the bird's eyes but only if you're up close.:shrug:

    Anyway, I finished it with a bit of Danish oil and Briwax.

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    The last couple of jobs left on my list are a cavity cover and the knobs. I cut up an offcut on the bandsaw and sanded it roughly to shape for the cavity cover. I had to glue some extra blocks in the cavity for the cover screws to bite into since the lip by itself was too thin. Normally I'd use magnets and templates but since Homebase don't really sell magnets, this builds getting screws.

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    I switched to maple for the knobs so I re-cut them and drilled 4mm holes roughly near the centre and glued in a dowel. Hopefully I can use the dowel in my drill press chuck so I can sand and shape the knobs on a sort of lathe style arrangement. Once they're sanded and shaped I'll dye them and re-drill the centre hole for the pot shaft.

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  19. Spicypickles

    Spicypickles Sweeps & Mops

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    Quite the skillset sir, looks clean!
     
  20. pondman

    pondman Build Whore.

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    Who'd believe this is a Home Depot build :eek: Absolutely excellent work.
    I really like the black finish :yesway:
     

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