Page 1 of 2
EDIT: plans have changed, its gonna be semi-neck through normal electric(most likely tele shaped), fretted and whatnot and be a 100GBP build once all is said and done... first post left unedited for consistency sake.

and if a mod can change my title to have 100 GBP in it, that'd be sssssuuuuper

this is my first attempt at a build, so bear with me.

The idea:

i was wandering around home depot today and fount a 12x.75x1.75 piece of maple for 50 cents a foot. so i bought it and have a plan for it, shouldnt be too hard, but time will tell.

i've cut it into 3 ft sections, and am going to make a neck through little cigar box type guitar. im going to make it map/map/?/map/maple flipping the grain each time to make it stronger since im not planning to put a truss rod in it. im more or less doing this to practice gluing, and shaping a neck, since i want to make my own for a build sitting on the back burner while i learn. if this turns out good, im going to ditch this plan and make it my neck, route a truss rod and by a real fret board.

right now im gluing 2 3ft sections together(pics to come), then im going to do the other, and goto home depot to browse their wood selection again.

The Plan:

for the ? im thinking of maybe putting a 1/8 inch of dark red oak, maybe another dark wood they have at home depot(no good lumber yards close and i want to do a project today).

now for the body: The plan is to make it a little cigar box slide guitar. The neck is only 36 inches long and measuring against my other guitars its a few inches short of them, but it has the room for the pickups and bridge and a few more inches on the neck. i want to create a little body thats going to fit inside the cigar box, secure it and have the pots and input jack coming out of the box.

im going to worry about the nut later since its gonna be a slide guitar, but i have laying around a set of fender MIM tele pickups, 4 or 5 pots, a 3way and a 5 way selector switch machine heads from a low end RG, and a trem bridge and 2 HBs and 1 SC from same guitar.

i dont know if im going to use the bridge, i might go buy a cheap top loading hard tail for simplicity. i think im only going to have 1 pickup, 1 tone, 1 vol. simple. im not sure how im going to shape the head, maybe like a strat/tele. im not sure what pickup i want to use, or where im going to put it. however i have time to figure that out.

fret board im not really worried about. i'll measure and make dots with wood inlays for spacing, but its going to be a slide guitar and the strings wont ever really touch the wood. if it turns out good(the neck shape/construction) i'll plane it down, route truss rod, buy a fret board and abandon this project.

i have a router, drill, tons of bits for both, sand paper, oils, stains, files, c-clamps etc. laying around from other projects. i think i can get by trying to do this.

this could end in absolute failure as ive never actually shaped a neck, but hey.. its a learning process.

the goal for this project is to make it as inexpensive as possible(kinda in the spirit of the 100gpb builds)right now im at:

$6.00 for 12 ft maple
$2.77 for bottle of tight bond.

im going to pick up batteries for my camera when i go out for pictures.

well, here goes nothing. i'll update in a few hours or when i get the pictures taken.
Last edited by chris024 at Feb 6, 2009,
My tightbond bottle says half an hour but i leave it 2 or 3 or more depending on if i forget about it or not
Quote by Dr. House
Nice vibe you just put out there. Its like daddy just hit mommy at the dinner table and we all still want to eat.
i believe that adding a different type of wood to the neck will also make it stronger, as it will have different resistance levels - altho if your set on solely maple then its a strong wood anyway. (gives a good look having different neck colours too.)

sounds like a good idea tho - the first cigar box guitar i think is being made for this comp.
im gonna put at least one darker stripe down the middle. im thinking red oak since its cheap and theres tons of it up at homo depot. i got the 2 pairs of maple glued together last night, started cleaning up the seams where a little glue still was. dont wana put too much arm into sanding it until i get all 5 pieces together so it will be level
update: i did this a few days ago, but finally got the pictures off my camera.

neck wood glued together. its maple/maple/red oak/maple/maple its gonna have a tele style headstock, probably gonna use one humbucker one single coil for the pickups. unsure of how i want to do the body. i went to homedepot and lowes today hoping for something that caught my eye, but nothing did. heres the wood, i'll get pictures of my hardware i got laying around here in a few mins.

i think im going to take it to a local woodshop and have them plane it and depending on the price, do a rough cut to save me the hassle of trying to use a jigsaw or router to do a rough shape before taking a rasp/file/sandpaper to it.

anyways, im gonna search craigs list and other resources for cheap scrap wood that i could use to fill out the body
little update:

i picked up 2 fingerboards off ebay for $6, and $5 shipping, so i'll say $6 for the one i using. ones ebony, ones rosewood. i like the rosewood grain and its the thickness i want, so im using it. it has a tiny crack where the nut is, nothing that glue and a clamp wont fix when gluing down.

i rough cut the neck with a router, fun and funny to try to do. its about 7/8 inch thick from the head to the 15th fret, then 1.5 inches thick after that. rough shaped, probably 1/8 inch breathing room around the fret board to file it down.

i began my most feared part, shaping the neck. and im supprised at how easy its going. i check my depth, make a file to about where i want it then do the same thing a few inches up, and connect the thicknesses. im around the 7th or 8th fret now and its a fat neck, but it feels damn good. i still might not use a truss rod, as its 5 pieces of wood laminated, and the fingerboard ontop. it looks strait, and the neck will be near an inch thick most the way down, so its no wizard neck.

i'll get pics when im done for the night, but it got cold out and i needed a break


cost invested: $15
Last edited by chris024 at Feb 5, 2009,
pictures of fingerboard, and a few of the neck profile so far. the idea has changed, its gonna be a pine body(cheap, easy to find wood), with a set neck that includes the bridge/pickups on the neck. and since i got a fingerboard thats slotted, im going to fret the thing and make it a halfway real guitar.

im a little disappointed when drawing out the neck shape i centered the head on the center, not the middle of the neck, but oh well, learning process, you'll see in the pictures. however the neck is rounded pretty well, its fat, but feels real good so far. needs some sanding, ive jsut hit it with a rasp and 40 grit paper briefly to get a feel for it.

for the pickups... i have a MIM telecaster pickup set, a neck humbucker, a MIM bridge and middle strat pickup, and a low end RG middle SC pickup laying around, so im now at a loss on my pickup config, maybe SH with the strat SC, and the HB in the neck. im not sure. i have a tele pick gaurd i might use, but i wana kinda route it without a pick gaurd and jsut pickup rings.
Last edited by chris024 at Feb 6, 2009,
Very good looking fretboard
Gear: Warmoth Soloist / Hondo Acou. / Ibanez AS73

Hardwire TL-2 / Boss GE-7 / Electro Harmonix Small Stone Nano / Boss DD-3 / MXR Smart Gate / Ibanez TS9 / Unknown Tremolo

Bugera V55 / Home Made Cab w/ Celestion Speakers G12M & G12T
Quote by SG310user
Very good looking fretboard

yeah i was honestly supprised at how good it looks. the flash made the grain look a little brighter but not too much. its only 20 frets, but i got 2 of them for 6 bucks. its already radius-ed and has the dots drilled in at 3 5 7(double) 9 12(double) 15 17.
couple of questions... im leveling the wood the fret board is going to be glued onto and was thikning:

whats a good filler or something to use on the dot inlays thats cheap? like a puddy that wont look like crap or some sort of easy to install cheap cost dot inlays?

also once i attach the fingerboard whats a good way to get the neck wood to the same width as the fingerboard? im thinking i could use my router, but i dont know if theres a easier way that has less change of things going wrong.

im still shaping the neck down so im gonna do the final profile once the fingerboard is onjust to be sure the curves feel right(godda have the good curves.. haha) thanks guys.
what? You wanna use a filler instead of inlays?

For the fingerboard to neck thing, a router or bandsaw is good
Proper dot inlays are not expensive, you really dont have to cheap out with wood filler.

Quote by dogismycopilot
Absent Mind, words cant express how much i love you. Id bone you, oh yea.

Quote by lumberjack
Absent Mind is, as usual, completely correct.

Quote by littlemurph7976
Id like to make my love for Neil public knowledge as he is a beautiful man
dont mean to be over-bumping this but i have updates... made my order through LP addict to all parts, kinda made me make decisions on what im doing. heres what it looks like..

S(bridge) H(neck) pickups (MIM tele bridge, low end RG neck)
no pickgaurd
Top loading 6 saddle tele bridge
250k pots
MOP inlays
Bone nut
medium frets

im gonna start browsing the lumber yards for a cheap bodywood, probably pine. i think im gonna try to do a sunburst it cause i think i have the stains i need, and why not... if i fail, sand it down and do something easier.

so i have all the parts i need to finish. i had the pickups, and i have the tuners laying around. i need to goto radioshack for a .047uF cap, then i think minus cost of wood im good to go for a while till final finishing.

i spent $70 today on parts

total invested: $85

tonight im going to try and finish the neck to the heel and work on the heel

also, i know im trying to keep this cheap, but im still unsure if my no truss rod idea be a bad one.. its 5 opposing grains for the wood.. i should be ok? someone push me off the fence. im going to get it machine planed/leveled at this place up the street for free, so it will be strait
Get a truss rod.

Quote by dogismycopilot
Absent Mind, words cant express how much i love you. Id bone you, oh yea.

Quote by lumberjack
Absent Mind is, as usual, completely correct.

Quote by littlemurph7976
Id like to make my love for Neil public knowledge as he is a beautiful man
i think i will... im putting more work into this, and its coming out "better" than expected, so i might as well have it last for the long haul.


i bought some pine today, its gonna be slightly ghetto since they had 1"x8"x8' boards of pine on sale, and i wana be done(which i think i am now... yeyeah) spending money on this. its gonne be 4 pieces, 2x2 stacked boards, im gonna TRY to sunburst it and have the edges black or at least very very dark stained so you cant see the stacked boards, and the center joint it going to be mostly taken up by the neck through-ish idea by it. might not resonate as well, but oh well.

heres an attached mock up of what i got in my head... excuse my awesome paint skills i tried to add in my neck throughish idea to it as you'll see, the brown centerline is the oak, and it will be a cleaner burst(hopefully) i just couldnt quite capture it with paint.. lol. also the bridge is 6 saddle vintage looking, instead of 3.
Last edited by chris024 at Feb 8, 2009,
Another builder of a Pine tele!

Are you using pine to cheap out though?
Fender Thinline Telecaster Deluxe

1983 Aria Pro II XX Deluxe Flying V

2007 S101 EGU34

1963 Kay Vanguard

1964 Kay Vanguard

AXL Badwater SRO

Hondo Strat

1974 Acoustic(brand) 134 4x10 combo

Epiphone Valve Jr.
Quote by chuckflan333
Another builder of a Pine tele!

Are you using pine to cheap out though?

yes and no... yes in that i didnt want to buy something expensive, the pine was $9, and i was kinda set on buying it at home depot/lowes since this is my first build and am learning how to do all this. but also i wanted to make sure i got a decent wood. my only real complaint is im stacking the boards, which is not ideal.. almost plywood. but other than that, the wood looks decent, i should be able to get the grains looking close to seemless, and it should sound alright. im happy with how its coming along and i got leftover wood to practice routing pickups and make templates on before trying on this.

im down to the heel on the neck, so im gonna prep the boards for gluing and get the stacks glued together today. i hope it goes well.
truss rod.


do it.

or ill snap your guitar in half.

or wait for it to bend
Quote by Deliriumbassist
Antisocial Behaviour Order. A chav's equivalent of GCSEs.
ok i decided on a truss rod, adding another $12 to the build. total being at a generous $107, its probably closer to $95, but im rounding up to keep me from spending money.

so i have a delema.... and idea. before gluing my 2 pine blanks, each about 8 inches across, i need them smooth and flat on the joint. they are i'd say 95% to where i'd like em to be, but its not 99%, which is my margin on error(im not gonna lie and say this is going to be 100%). but i was thinking, i have sticky 40 grit sand paper, if i made a.. say.. 2 ft stretch of it on a flat surface and rubbed em back and forth to get it uniformly even, then that would be good no? either way, thats my plan, thats what im doing..

the neck heel has its first shape on it. i need to bring it back about 1/2 to an inch(2-3 frets), but i wanted to try to shape it first with room to spare to kinda get a feel for it. it came out good, and i think tonight the blanks get glued and depending on the time it takes i might start to cut and set the neck in. also i have a blank extra piece of pine that im going to start playing with the stain and see what kind of burst i can get out of it.

heres some new pictures of the neck, and the front and back of the blanks. 1.75 inches thick:
Last edited by chris024 at Feb 10, 2009,
truss rod showed up at my door yesterday. i have an idea about installing it, but dont really know enough to wing it. its a doeringer duel action truss rod. it looks to be 1/4 inch wide. marked as 18 inches long. how long and deep would i make my route? and i assume 1/4 wide.

other update, ive been working on how i want to do the finish, im proboably going to do a red mahogany stain, sand most of the middle of it off, lay down a light walnut stain, sand a bit in the center, then i have a "classic pine" which is kinda yellowish that im going to do over it after that, giving it sort of a worn/sunburst look. i may use the rattle can method to do a black burst around/on the edge and cover the back in black. ive got a test board that ive been playing with and it came out alright, then even better the second time, on the back side. so i feel pretty confident going at it for the 3rd time on the body once its done.

also im leaning towards scratching the neck through-ish idea and making it a normal bolt on for a few reasons:

A) practice making a bolt on neck pocket and neck
B) if the neck comes out good, i might swap necks around with another guitar of mine
C) i didnt line my template up very well and its a hair off center, making the cut i'd have to do tricky

D) the body and neck are only 1.75 inches thick and need to be planed down so its gonna be closer to 1.7 or even 1.65 once its ready, and i happen to have a 1/4 birds eye maple bookmatched top i was going to use on the mahogany body blank i have, but kinda want a nicer top than this, and it was paid for ages ago and just sitting around in my apartment, so pine body, maple top, bolt on maple/oak/maple neck is the current plan. brings the body to more of a thickness i want, and uses a top i think i'd be unhappy with on my next project.
last i checked, semi neck thru was called set neck...
I play Lacrosse, you should too
Quote by reeses
heed this man's suggestion, for he is wise.

Aww shucks...

Quote by Tom 1.0
Oh and wait for the Schecter fan boys, if you listen real hard you can already hear them coming.
Quote by Metalfan41
last i checked, semi neck thru was called set neck...

well, the neck was going to include the bridge and pickups on the neck wood, then a few inches after the bridge, before the strap button, it would turn to body wood. my neck blank is ~36 inches long, where i'd need about ~40 inches to have a true neck through. a set neck has, at most, the neck pickup on it. it was an idea i had, that i had not seen before, and wanted to give it a go, i just think its smarter with what im working with, to veer away from it, and go a bit more traditional.

edit: can anyone give me guidance on routing a truss rod? i searched and didnt find anything.
Last edited by chris024 at Feb 18, 2009,
ok, I guess I just miss-interpreted what you had going on, the neck part is the depth of the body, I was thinking of just a really deep pocket set neck
I play Lacrosse, you should too
Quote by reeses
heed this man's suggestion, for he is wise.

Aww shucks...

Quote by Tom 1.0
Oh and wait for the Schecter fan boys, if you listen real hard you can already hear them coming.
ok after a day of searching around i found an install guide for single action truss rods, it was on the stew mac stew(i have no idea how i missed it before), however i have a duel action from doeringer, and was wondering if anyone has installed one of these before and can give me the exact dimensions for my route? i assume everything else as far as technique for putting it in is the same? its going to be installed under the fingerboard, not a skunk stripe, if that helps.

im gonna get the birds eye top sanded and ready to glue today and finish cutting/routing the body out. im 95% sure im sticking to a standard bolt on now. the other idea was cool, but i jsut think its gonna complicate things a hair.
Last edited by chris024 at Mar 14, 2009,

neck is cut to size, its gonna be a bolt on. i need to finish the heel, but its set aside for the time being.

im scraping the birds eye top idea. too involved for this build. im gonna put that work into the next one. i'd need to buy more clamps and have the pine blank planed, this was ment to be semi-cheap, and im not going to do unnecessary things if i dont have to. i might do a double cut tele, but im gonna make that decision in an hour or so once my neighbors wont be pissed im using power tools.

but i got a package in the mail yesterday... thanks LP Addict. today im going to try to get a bulk of the work done.
Last edited by chris024 at Mar 14, 2009,
slow progress, but i got the inlays in, got the fret board on, have it sanded to 400g, neck profile is mostly done, just have to finish the heel. body is rough cut, gonna route it this weekend i think. i ended up not using a truss rod. i know, i shouldnt have, but i dont care. its 5 piece laminate, and its a real fat neck, like a classical almost. its only 20 frets and i dont really see me having this be a main guitar of mine, ive got a 2nd build im starting in a few weeks that will get the proper attention.

well, no one seems to be following this, but im gonna keep putting up my progress. i got the body 99% done cutting/routing today. these are just photos with the pickups placed on there, nothing screwed in yet except i made the pilot holes for the bridge. i still need to work on the head stock a little, and fret the neck. other than that, its finish, electroics, and im done.

you can see i still need to shorten the neck pocket about 1/4 inch, but i wanted extra wood to work with incase **** went bad. also i made the pocket extent to the neck pickup instead of having it be short under the fret board or half way and look odd where the maple/pine met.

full shot of it, you can see i havnt started working on the headstock yet.

and the "neck test" everyone loves posting. tight as a... its tight. you can see the extra wood again that i need to route off.

overall im real happy with my work today. i have it sanded to 150g right now, might take it upto 400 then start staining it a little. i need to route the control cavity about 1/16-1/8 deeper since i cant get the bolts on the pots and the knobs are just holding them right now. also i need to figure out how im going to cover it in the back. i might leave it open, since its not high on the "need to learn" list.
nice looking guitar so far

bet your pleased with the work
cant wait to see it finished
you gonna paint it?
I shouldn't post when drunk..

15 Jackson SLATHX-m 3-7 Slime green
Squier std tele (modded to hell)

Engl Powerball
Laney Ironheart 60h
Zilla Superfatboy 2x12 v30's

please don't tell me thats a pine neck.

And why no truss rod!?!? You will regret it, even if its not your main guitar it still has to be able to play. Don't come complaining to us that your action is too high
Quote by guitarcam123
please don't tell me thats a pine neck.

And why no truss rod!?!? You will regret it, even if its not your main guitar it still has to be able to play. Don't come complaining to us that your action is too high

Read the whole thread before making claims. The neck, its maple/maple/red oak/maple/maple. He said he was going to add a trussrod
and then he said he didn't put the truss rod in - read the whole thread before making claims
heh, i know i know, i should have but i didnt use a truss rod. im gonna get it set with decent action(i hope) then hope the neck dosnt warp over time. and yes, its a maple/oak neck.

its gonna get a mild burst on the front, i might have the sides/back painted black and have a black burst creeping around on the first 1/2 inch of the outside of the front
what if he has a big ass bow in his neck? The action will have to be nice on frets 1-5 and high as hell past that or resting on the fretboard buzzing like crazy in the lower frets and nice on the upper frets.

Theres no adjustment you can make if your neck is bowed to make your guitar play nicely
it "looks" alright as far as strait goes. it might be way off, but thats something i'll deal with when it comes up. i did a good job getting it flat and level, so hopefully that transfers to good action. i have the truss rod sitting in my room, so if its really an issue, i'll do a skunk stripe style route like on fender 1 piece necks.
when you put strings on the neck will want to bow up, and without a truss rod you can't prevent that
Page 1 of 2