Building a Beautiful Vintage Tele or Strat type

Growing up in the 60´s left a profound mark on the way I look at music and guitars.

I set out to recapture the spirit of that era and put that lost beauty into my guitars.

Imagine playing a guitar on stage where the audience is fascinated and can´t take it´s eyes off of it. "Wow, what is that" or "cool guitar"they say.

Or a guitar that you lovingly hold in your hands again and again just staring in loving wonder.

Building such a guitar is our goal. I will not take a good guitar and scrape off the paint and stick it in liquid nitrogen to make it look 50 years old. Only honest old-school craftsmanship - no BLING and no "fake" roadworn effect. Read on to see how I go about it.

Step 1:

The finest woods and lumber

All lumber is dry and aged. Some lumber is very old!

Tapping and testing the tone using a stethoscope.

 

The Abalone and pearl layers add a very musical, percussive quality that add to that dry tele twang.

I start matching the necks to the bodies.I work on a balanced tone. Bright bodies get a more midranged sounding neck. Pine bodies sound mellow and profit very much from the hard abalone layer,it gives them that percussive snap that is sought after.

Necks have to fit perfectly and be correctly aligned.

The final sanding and shaping and priming with nitro.

Light nitro priming and sanding.These are the same bodies.Light and pretty red alder.

I start choosing the abalone for the top. I then reshape the body.

 

applying the shell pieces takes days and numerous steps.

Final sanding and shaping of the shell top and sides. Rounding the joints.Letting the shell blend with the wood. The layer must be thin and hard to add a musical bell-like quality.

 

Staining and preliminary Airbrushing of the back and sides. You can´t see this effect in the final guitar but it adds the needed depth.

Final Airbrushing - many steps and layers go into this phase. A cavalcade of Colors, hues and ideas. An avalanche of layers and abstract shapes all blending to make a statement.

Airbrushing the flamed and flameburst top-

Before the Blue Flame Burst

The same bodie after Blue Bursting

Before final sanding and Blue Bursting and then the final product a harmonius blue burst body. The orang body has gone through the same process.

The finishing process begins. Carefully sanding the urethane coat to a fine thin polished coat. I wet sand with 500 grain to 2500 grain. It then is polished on the polishing wheel.

Preliminary polishing and the cutting out of the pickup pockets. You can´t use a router here.

Final polishing after cutting out the pockets.

Painted but unfinished

finished bodies

Lumber

Necks

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