#1
For my senior project I am going to build a guitar. I want a 6 string Gibson Explorer-esque neck through body with two humbuckers, a single coil, an angled neck, floating bridge, string through body, 1 volume, 1 tone, 1 5 way pickup selector, 24 frets and a 27 inch scale for my fat fingers. Can anyone suggest any sites I could go to or who I should talk to so I can make this happen? I will be buying all the electrical components and the bridge, tuners, pickups, etc. I just need to know the critical things like what woods to use, how to space the frets, what metals to make frets from, how to attach the wings to the neck and so on and so forth. Thanks for reading, if you got this far.

I play alot of death metal, metalcore, thrash and usually tune to drop c.
#6
DeVries could do it!

Go ask around in the forum link posted above.
#7
Ambitious project! Your choices increase the difficulty in many ways though. Floating bridge is easy...but you'll regret it. It kinda defeats the purpose of a neck thru body. Two humbuckers thru a 5-way, with a single vol and single tone means a very unusual wiring harness. Custom ordered? Body routing may also have to be altered for bulky wiring. Any neck is hard to build but an extra long one must be an extra strong one. Angled? Uhhhh...okay. Extra extra strong! Pay particular attention to the grain. If that angle causes the grain to be lost you again lose any benefit of a neck thru design. >:-| Anyway, it's gonna be a big chunk of wood! And you're gonna be taking most of it away. Got tools? Measuring for the fret spacing is just a math calculation and the easiest part of the build problem but precision is key here, so again the floating bridge will be a regret. Good luck and post some pics.
#9
When you're putting that neck together you're gonna want it to be straight or slightly back bowed (The string tension could pull it out of the back bow, Read more into it...) And by the way, A 27 inch scale is very uncommon. It can be done but I'm not sure which direction to point you in. And I thought I understood you when you said string through with a floating bridge seeing that people get the bridge mixed up with the tailpiece but now I'm not so sure. Could you please explain this?
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#10
You do realise that 27" scale length is pretty much a baritone? and you're probably going to have to measure the spacing between the frets yourself since i don't imagine a template for a 27" scale is going to be easy to come by, and this takes an incredible amount of precise measuring and even the slightest error can render the guitar pretty much useless.

I'm planning getting into building guitars and i think the best way to start off is to get a kit guitar or 'do a frankenstein' and make a monstrous guitar (whether i mean that in a good or bad context depends on the results!) from pieces of other guitars or something. Starting from scratch if this is your first time even considering building a guitar is very ambitious and will probably not have great results..
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#11
Senior project? Like in a wood shop class? Doesnt your teacher know anything about wood and stuff like that?

And

projectguitar.com
#12
Are you allowed to buy the neck? That would make it sooo much easier. If memory serves Warmoth sells necks.
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#13
Quote by Gargoyle2500
And by the way, A 27 inch scale is very uncommon.
What? It's actually quite a common scale length.

TS How are you planning on cutting your fretboard? You may have to get a custom builder to cut you a 27" board if you are not confident with the accuracy with which you can cut it to.

This thread elongs in GB&C so ima report it for the move, ask any questions you have on building in there in the future.


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#14
27 is a baritone scale length, yes. I want bigger frets, and a little more tension on the strings. I will probably build it myself. I dont think they sell a 27 scale guitar with a neck through body. I used an online site and got the fret spacing down. What is wrong with a string-through body? well a string-through neck. haha. Would that not work? Should I buy a tail piece of floyd rose? And could someone suggest how to do the wiring for 3 pickups, and what kinds of knobs and selector I should have?


Thanks for the help and thanks for moving the thread to the right section.
#15
Quote by VanTheKraut
Are you allowed to buy the neck? That would make it sooo much easier. If memory serves Warmoth sells necks.

A neck isn't that hard. I don't see why so many people dread building necks, while if you work methodically and do some research it is really fun to build one. Especially since you can build one that fits your hands just right.

As for your project, I do think you're a little ambitious, unless you have a great deal of wood working experience. You stray from the normal guitars and that makes it a lot harder to get templates and information.

My 2 tips:
*Start tradional. E.g. a 25.5" bolt on with a top loader bridge. Why? Cause it's so much easier. It will save you a lot of trouble and disappointment. You can just get the templates off eBay and start routing. E.g. an angled neck means you will need to make a jig for this, while a bolt on is really straight forward. Neck through is something most people screw up the first few times (to align the holes properly). Templates are very very important if you want to save yourself a lot of hassle.
*Buy some books. E.g. Hiscock's guitar building book. You ask a lot of questions that are answered in pretty much every guide available. While you neglect some of the more vital ones.

Anyway, I don't mean to be ruining your enthusiasm, but guitar building isn't something that you can learn on a forum by asking 'YO teach me how to build one!'. It's something that will require a significant amount of research. I built my first one after reading books and guides for over 40 hours (I started by searching on google with 'guitar building', reading the tdpri.com forum, this forum and so on). Before I even touched my router I was a able to completely build the guitar in my head.

Some minor points:
*Pretty much everyone just buys frets. I have yet to meet a luthier that makes his own, that can compare to stock ones.
*Wood is pretty much up to you. Will you paint it? Do you want a top? What type of wood are the guitars you like made of? Seeing as explorers are pretty big you'll likely use multiple pieces of wood, which would mean painting is a safer option.
*Fret sizing: http://www.stewmac.com/FretCalculator
*Have you thought about all the tools? Not all workshops have the tools required (e.g. ball bearing routing bit). They can also add to the cost.
Last edited by Parad at Jan 7, 2010,
#16
TS, it's obvious from your posts that your not quite ready to build an extended range neck through guitar with a floyd rose (or a string thru floyd rose at that )

Start off with something more simple, like a more common scale which you can buy pre slotted fretboards. And try a bolt on or a set neck, It'll be much easier for a first build. And if you want a trem, go for something more simple then a floating trem.

For your woods you'll want something like Alder or poplar for the body and maple for the neck. For the fretboard, maybe indian rosewood? It depends, what are you looking for?

For the frets, buy them, unless you have CNC machinery and a whole lot of time just buy the frets. It's only like $10 for enough for a guitar and making your own is not worth it.

I honestly think that your not ready for this and you need to do a whole heap of research and practice.
#17
Floating bridges are used on hollow-bodied guitars to allow the soundboard to vibrate. I assume a neck thru body design is intended to REDUCE vibration. Why make an extremely solid guitar just to have a relatively unstable part that has a direct effect on sound?
#18
thanks for all the tips, help, etc. I decided im going to build a solid body guitar with a floating bridge. I dont like set bridges. D: And I will buy pre made frets. thank you. Im really set on making this guitar built for me though. I want a bigger scale, an all access neck joint, and a floating bridge with string through, tailpiece in an explorer fashion. Im sticking to 2 Seymour Duncan Blackouts which will give me four pots and a 3 way switch. I have chosen the wood types and i will have a bolt on neck but all access like an ibanez or or Rusty Cooley's Dean signature. And my school has all the tools i need. Thank you. I have been doing tons of research and will continue.
#19
Quote by ryanb9213
floating bridge with string through, tailpiece in an explorer fashion.

good luck dear sir!
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#20
Quote by ryanb9213
thanks for all the tips, help, etc. I decided im going to build a solid body guitar with a floating bridge. I dont like set bridges. D: And I will buy pre made frets. thank you. Im really set on making this guitar built for me though. I want a bigger scale, an all access neck joint, and a floating bridge with string through, tailpiece in an explorer fashion. Im sticking to 2 Seymour Duncan Blackouts which will give me four pots and a 3 way switch. I have chosen the wood types and i will have a bolt on neck but all access like an ibanez or or Rusty Cooley's Dean signature. And my school has all the tools i need. Thank you. I have been doing tons of research and will continue.

Ok, well, you go ahead with your plans and show us your masterpiece when your done...
#21
Quote by guitarcam123
Ok, well, you go ahead with your plans and show us your masterpiece when your done...

yeah man, any mockups done yet?
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You deserved this, Matt.
#23
Dude, a string through floyd rose doesn't exist, and you can't do it. I don't know why other people haven't said it straight up yet.

You can't do it, a floyd doesn't have the capability to have the strings go through it, this isn't an issue of you not knowing how to build a, but even just how certain parts work.
#24
Quote by guitarcam123


And try a bolt on or a set neck, It'll be much easier for a first build.




Neck thru's are no harder to build then a set or a bolt on. I've built all 3, and it's all just a matter of preference really.

TS, if you want a neck thru, and dont want to slot the board, carvin sells neck thru blanks with the fretboard glued on and slotted already, and possibly fretted? Don't remember.
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#25
Quote by metalwarrior40
Neck thru's are no harder to build then a set or a bolt on. I've built all 3, and it's all just a matter of preference really.

TS, if you want a neck thru, and dont want to slot the board, carvin sells neck thru blanks with the fretboard glued on and slotted already, and possibly fretted? Don't remember.

There's less margin of error though. And it's easier to work with 2 pieces. Plus bolt on means you swap necks easily or just buy a shelf one.

I still stand by my recommendation of going bolt on first.
#26
ill load a mockup soon. Thanks everyone. Does Carvin sell Mahogany or Maple necks? an in 27 inch scale? Im srry for the mixup with the bridge/floyd rose mixup. I meant something along the lines of a tune-o-matic bridge wth a string through body or tailpiece. like on my dean vendetta. another example would be here:

http://www.zzounds.com/item--ESPF100FM

Sorry for any mixup I may have caused. Am i thinking of the wrong description?
#27
That's not a floating bridge.
It's a fixed bridge.

Look up Carvin necks yourself. You can't expect us to do everything for you.
Last edited by guitarcam123 at Jan 10, 2010,
#28
the reason i asked is i looked it up and couldnt find where to get custom necks. haha i must be doing somethign wrong. oh its called a fixed bridge. whoops. Sorry guys. ^^ Well my plans are almost complete and ill have a rough sketch up soon, then i can post pictures if anyone is up for looking.
#30
You Seriously need to do WAY more reaserch on this if you expect to come out with a decently playable instrument. I dont mean to shoot you down and im sure your woodworkign skills are good enough but many of the measurments and fine details in guitar building can make or break the instrument. Especialy with fret spacing. Is this guitar ment to be a baritone with the 27" spacing? If so try to get quarter sawn wood for your neck. Longer scale = more tension = greater chance or neck bow/warp over time.

Lookign forwrd to the resukts though.