#1
This will be my first guitar build. I'm a newbie with everything from wiring to painting to installing a trem, so some help along the way would be much appreciated. I'm building an Ibanez Destroyer, because I like the shape, and because Phil Collen and Adrian Smith are among its users, both of whom I admire and have seen live, the latter I will be seeing a second time in Toronto on Saturday. Psyched. Photos are off of my cellphone and are a bit more blurry, which is odd because my Omnia II has a 5.0 mp camera. Anyways...


I chose a poplar body off of eBay for $120 US plus ~$50 shipping/customs to Canada. Not too bad, it looks badass and is all good construction-wise minus the fact the neck I bought doesn't fit in the pocket, so I will have to shave off a bit.


The neck was quick decision. Searched Ibanez neck on eBay and this popped up with less than an hour to go and I always liked the vines, and I like the Wizard neck on my Iceman, 24 frets, good to go. It's a Jem555 and I also got it for $120 plus $20 shipping and no customs at my door either. The fewer vines and dots combination I really like as well, because I like having visible fretmarkers on the upper frets, so that's a bonus. Don't really listen to Steve Vai but he's obviously incredible, so I don't mind having his sig on the 24th fret, although I may cover it with something custom.


Pick-ups were a no brainer, although I would have liked some nice colored ones DiMarzio offers. It's an F-Spaced Super Distortion for the bridge and Air Norton for the neck. Got them off of craigslist this time, for you guessed it, $120 for the pair. All my favorite guitarists use them and I've heard great things about them, so I should be happy with these.




I went to Rona for my painting supplies, picked up a Maple Veneer, got like 8 feet of it for about $40 bucks which was a bit of a ripoff considering I don't need nearly that much, but I had few other options and wanted maple so at least I got what I wanted. This particular veneer is 'pre-glued'. It is meant to iron on, don't know how well that will work but I'll give it a try. It came in a big roll, and it is currently all curled up and awkward. I got blue water-based stain, a can of oil-based clearcoat, a can of black laquer, and carpenters glue for the veneer that I might not even need if the iron-on application works. I'm set to start painting soon. I'm following very closely a few videos on YouTube, this guy built a guitar close to what I'm aiming for -> http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CE2TJxlEXcg He did a lot of extra sanding and clearcoating for the finish he achieved, so his should be a good method to follow. Not sure if I'm going to paint the headstock as well, I like the Ibanez logo and sanding it off might make me cry, plus it is extra work, so that's another decision I have to ponder.

Hardware-wise, I'm not entirely sure of everything I need but don't have to worry about it immediately. I bought what I thought was an Edge Pro off of eBay from China, but a fellow eBayer alerted me it was listed wrong and I'm probably going to get an Edge III in the mail that is going right back. Paid over $200 for it with shipping and it isn't going to fit anyways so no way I'm keeping that junk. Hope I won't get any troubles seeking a refund. I was hoping all gold hardware anyways, but gold trems are a little more expensive and definitely harder to find, but I'm going to try anyways. IbanezRules offers them for like $275 which is more than I was hoping to spend for it, and Gotoh's are available for ~$185 and the seller of the body said they'd fit but the sustain block would stick out the back. I don't know how much of a problem that is, could someone tell me if they'd work okay? I hear they're great quality so one of those would be my best bet.

So, my next step is to sand the neck pocket a bit for the neck to fit, hopefully I don't mess it up and take off too much because I'm betting that would be a problem. Once I figure out what trem I can get, I'll order all of the hardware. Any suggestions? I'll get to staining/painting, my procedure will be as follows: Glue on veneer, sand/cut electronics cavities/body, stain veneer, tape top, spraypaint back and cavities(yes, I know not to paint the neck pocket) and sand and clearcoat the crap out of it so it's nice I'm thinking about adding a burst or painting a binding around the edge in beige probably for some contrast. How the previous steps work out will determine that. I'll get to work now. Bye.
PRS SE Custom 24
Ibanez Iceman IC-200
Jackson RR3
Epiphone FT-120
BC Rich Mockingbird Bass
Crate Blue Voodoo 60
Marshall 1960B
Markbass CMD 102P
Dunlop Original Crybaby
EHX Stereo Memory Man
Voodoo Lab Sparkle Drive
Ibanez AF2
Last edited by IcemanSOAD at Jul 21, 2010,
#2
Planning on an Iceman build in the not too distant future. Adrian Smith used it on the Live After Death album and tour. Really starting to like the loook as I get older.

Since the trem is already routed, you will need to make sure that the scale length is measured correctly. I would also recommend putting the trem in place and clamping the neck in place to make sure that the strings line up. I put a different neck on a crappy guitar body and had to shift the neck pocket to make it line up with the bridge.

Good luck
#3
w00t Destroyer for teh winning!

Should e completely badass with the locking trem, looks cool already dude good luck!
"If you're looking for me,
you better check under the sea,
because that's where you'll find me..."
#4
So I began working on this again. Started with putting on the veneer.


I traced an outline of the guitar on the veneer. I had 8 feet to choose from and found a pattern I thought would work well. Had to pick carefully to try to avoid the seams in the roll, I drew the centerline of the guitar and matched it with the middle seam.


The veneer was pre-glued, so I ironed in on with aluminum foil to protect the veneer. Let it sit for a while to dry and had to reheat a couple areas to make sure it was all glued down.


Now the difficult part. Cutting out the excess and all of the cavities. I used a sweet art knife that I got in a whole set for $5, it must have been priced wrong because its awesome. Did a pretty good job with few errors or chips, and the couple I did make I filled in with stainable wood filler. Finally I sanded all of the edges and top smooth and it was ready for stain.




Didn't bother wetting the top first, just dabbed on the stain and rubbed it in. I like the color, it isn't very deep after only one coat, I'll see what it looks like when it dries and probably add another. The seam in the bottom right corner of that last picture is a bummer, but there was no escaping it because the body is so damn big...and awesome.

I also ordered all of my parts from www.guitarpartsresource.com, everything in GOLD and it should arrive early next week which is when I hope to be finished painting and I can put it all together. Excite.
PRS SE Custom 24
Ibanez Iceman IC-200
Jackson RR3
Epiphone FT-120
BC Rich Mockingbird Bass
Crate Blue Voodoo 60
Marshall 1960B
Markbass CMD 102P
Dunlop Original Crybaby
EHX Stereo Memory Man
Voodoo Lab Sparkle Drive
Ibanez AF2
Last edited by IcemanSOAD at Jul 22, 2010,
#6
Quote by jscomposer
*scratches head* Isn't there some wood missing between the neck pocket and the neck pickup cavity? Is that kosher?


Plenty of guitars have this. Often the bit of wood left between neck pickup and the pocket can snap during routing anyway.. I have to remove that bit of wood in my build because it ended up cracking. As long as the pickup ring covers the gap between pickup and neck then it's all good.
[quote="'[BurnTheDusk"]']Better than my plan, look at those perfect little dick suckin' lips!
Kid's a natural I tell yah!Orange Rockerverb 50 MKII
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#7
Quote by Steve Holt
Plenty of guitars have this.

Not my Destroyer? Oh well, no matter, it looks killer dude.
"If you're looking for me,
you better check under the sea,
because that's where you'll find me..."
#8
Day 3 working on it. Another tedious job of taping the top after I added another coat of stain. Used my trusty pen knife and did a decent job, not worrying too much about straight lines because the pickup rings cover it anyways, and I'm likely doing a burst around the edge also.


Hung it up in the backyard off of a tree and gave 'er a few coats of black. I didn't sand it so you can still see the wood grain but that's okay. The clearcoats will make it all nice.



There's a few small dents around the edge of the veneer that could use a fixin' before I clearcoat. I'm not certain of any methods other than sanding sealer which I don't have and have never used either. It's turned out pretty much as I expected so far, and I think the all-gold hardware will really bring it together.
PRS SE Custom 24
Ibanez Iceman IC-200
Jackson RR3
Epiphone FT-120
BC Rich Mockingbird Bass
Crate Blue Voodoo 60
Marshall 1960B
Markbass CMD 102P
Dunlop Original Crybaby
EHX Stereo Memory Man
Voodoo Lab Sparkle Drive
Ibanez AF2
#10




Just a few more pictures of my progress. Black is a bit splotchy in areas (still not fully dry in the picture however). Some sanding should even it out. Lines came out pretty clean so I might not do a burst now. Don't want to ruin the stain job on the veneer. I included a picture of my test piece with the clear coat on it, looks pretty nice even after only one coat which is still tacky at the time of the shot. I think it's a polyurethane finish which will probably use up a few cans. I hear that a nitrocellulose lacquer finish would allow the wood to breathe easier but be somewhat harder to maintain. Overall, I just want a nice, shiny, long-lasting finish that will keep me proud of my hard work. This thing isn't going to be stored in a case, it's going to be played. I really hate dings, I try to baby my guitars but it's not going to be in a museum afterall.
PRS SE Custom 24
Ibanez Iceman IC-200
Jackson RR3
Epiphone FT-120
BC Rich Mockingbird Bass
Crate Blue Voodoo 60
Marshall 1960B
Markbass CMD 102P
Dunlop Original Crybaby
EHX Stereo Memory Man
Voodoo Lab Sparkle Drive
Ibanez AF2
#11
sweet build man.
Quote by envoykrawkwar7


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Keeley ds-1
#12
Quote by Steve Holt
Plenty of guitars have this. Often the bit of wood left between neck pickup and the pocket can snap during routing anyway.. I have to remove that bit of wood in my build because it ended up cracking. As long as the pickup ring covers the gap between pickup and neck then it's all good.



or a little plate like on an SG
#13
So I messed this up a few times and took a break on it. When clearcoating, it either ran, stuck to something, was splotchy, flaked off, or I sanded right through in a bunch of areas. So, it will be far from perfect when I finally finish.

I fixed a few areas and continued working on it after about a 4 month break, I got a different type of clearcoat, same brand but water-based, so it doesn't smell and I can do it indoors without killing myself. I got a 1L can and have been brushing it on with a foam applicator so it goes on thicker and I don't have to worry about runs, although there's brush strokes so I got a spray can as well for the final coats. I'm at like 8 or 9 coats over the past 3 days I believe, roughly 3 a day, every hour or so, I've had it hanging up, or layed flat sometimes to really cover it, and it still isn't as thick as I'd like it to be, sanded right through today in the middle area between the pickups where the veneer raised on me. Can't do anything about it now so whatever.



There it is now just after another coat, the back is a lot worse, but pfft, no one sees that anyways. It's a little disappointing but hey, it's to play, not to admire, although I bet when it's all put together will all gold hardware it'll be pretty gnarly.

So as I continue clearcoating the crap out of it, could someone tell me how to PROPERLY sand it.
I've been wetsanding it in between coats, and I still go right through. I have 600, 800, 1000 and 2000 grit. I'm not even going to touch the 600 or 800 again because if I ruin it anymore it's going to be firewood. I soak the paper, and either use a small square by hand or go over it with a block. As soon as I start sanding I lose the glare as seen in the picture immediately, even with the 2000 grit, and yes, it is the proper wet-use sandpaper. I guess I've never had enough clearcoat on it, although I've gone through more than a full can at a time before and still get it looking like crap. I've wasted 3 full cans of the oil-based stuff, breathed it all in to no avail.

My plan right now is to do as many coats as possible, and with the final coat, spray it nice and light so I don't get any runs and maybe even skip the sanding, go right to the swirl remover and compound. If anyone has some good tips for me, I've invested a lot of time and money in this project and I'm left frustrated still, so I'd really appreciate it. Thanks.
PRS SE Custom 24
Ibanez Iceman IC-200
Jackson RR3
Epiphone FT-120
BC Rich Mockingbird Bass
Crate Blue Voodoo 60
Marshall 1960B
Markbass CMD 102P
Dunlop Original Crybaby
EHX Stereo Memory Man
Voodoo Lab Sparkle Drive
Ibanez AF2
#14
the finish will be matt and not shiny at all after the 2000 grit, so you were doing it right. You have to buff out those tiny scratches with some kind of rubbing compound/ swirl remover and a lot of elbow grease (or a buffer wheel). Looks sweet man, dont give up!
#16
Soak the paper for at least 15 minutes before using if you aren't already. The proper way to sand is to use a block (as big as possible) for consistency, and let the paper do the work. The more pressure you sand with the more likely it is to leave gouges and scratches in the surface. Just remember to take it easy and take your time, you'll have all the time in the world to play it so no rush to finish it quickly

ps: I really like that blue it's pretty kickass, almost like a blue jean finish.
Last edited by Shashing at Jan 5, 2011,
#17
To clarify where I am with this build, there is clear on it, looks similar to the last pic, but I made a lot of mistakes and just want it over with so I can put it together and play it already, but hold on...

So I saw Rush again yesterday, and couldn't believe the acoustic sounds coming from Alex's new sig. Conveniently uploaded on UG today was him talking about his new rig, and I appreciate his playing so much I felt like looking into giving my build some "Life-O-Sound". It appears he has these installed right in his floyd, they're expensive, and I already bought a new gold floyd so I may not go for it after all, but it's an idea.

http://www.graphtech.com/products.html?SubCategoryID=93

Then I thought about how bad I butchered this build and thought about really spicing it up.

http://www.fernandesguitars.com/sustainer/sustainer-kits.html

The way Phil Collen uses this thing is so damn cool, I think it'd be a nice addition. I could route a single pickup slot in the middle, and fool around with the control cavity and it might fit right in, as the controls are already 3 in line. Would I be able to wire both my DiMarzio pickups along with the sustainer in the middle?

I don't know if I'll go for either of these mods, if I do I'd likely have to sand and start fresh, but this thread will be active for the next little while as I'm gonna need help working on this.
PRS SE Custom 24
Ibanez Iceman IC-200
Jackson RR3
Epiphone FT-120
BC Rich Mockingbird Bass
Crate Blue Voodoo 60
Marshall 1960B
Markbass CMD 102P
Dunlop Original Crybaby
EHX Stereo Memory Man
Voodoo Lab Sparkle Drive
Ibanez AF2
Last edited by IcemanSOAD at Apr 21, 2011,
#18
Great so see this still going, that blue is just killer. I recon the sustainer would be awesome and the piezo saddles too, but the electronics for both though look like too much to fit in.
#19
Continued this build recently. Just sanded with 600, 1000 and then 2000. I see a reflection and I think I'm almost at buffing. Almost all of the shiny spots are gone, but I've sanded through a few areas around the edge. What would be the best way to fix this. I'm thinking just dab some stain, let it dry, then dab some clear coat over that with a Q tip. Good idea?

Also, with the remaining shiny spots, they're all located on the sides or near the edge. Can I sand without a block to get into the grooves and around the corners and such? I'm worried about wrecking it any more. I think the clear is pretty thin at this point. I just want it done so I can move on to putting it together.

And as I go to the hardware store, I already have Nu Finish Scratch Doctor from Canadian Tire. Is this all I'll need or something else. I've heard compound and then swirl remover. Which is this? Meguiars Ultimate Compound is probably what I'll pick up.
PRS SE Custom 24
Ibanez Iceman IC-200
Jackson RR3
Epiphone FT-120
BC Rich Mockingbird Bass
Crate Blue Voodoo 60
Marshall 1960B
Markbass CMD 102P
Dunlop Original Crybaby
EHX Stereo Memory Man
Voodoo Lab Sparkle Drive
Ibanez AF2
#21
Quote by IcemanSOAD
Continued this build recently. Just sanded with 600, 1000 and then 2000. I see a reflection and I think I'm almost at buffing. Almost all of the shiny spots are gone, but I've sanded through a few areas around the edge. What would be the best way to fix this. I'm thinking just dab some stain, let it dry, then dab some clear coat over that with a Q tip. Good idea?

Also, with the remaining shiny spots, they're all located on the sides or near the edge. Can I sand without a block to get into the grooves and around the corners and such? I'm worried about wrecking it any more. I think the clear is pretty thin at this point. I just want it done so I can move on to putting it together.

And as I go to the hardware store, I already have Nu Finish Scratch Doctor from Canadian Tire. Is this all I'll need or something else. I've heard compound and then swirl remover. Which is this? Meguiars Ultimate Compound is probably what I'll pick up.

You need to lay a thicker clear coat down and gently hit any hard lines and you'll be fine.
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MXR Smart Gate
#23
So I've probably sanded for like 5 hours to get all those damn shiny spots out. It takes forever. I'm just fixing the sanded through areas (there's a lot), and then I'm gonna try and polish this mother. I've got a nice foam pad on the drill ready to go just like Sully's Guitar Garage told me to do. These are the videos that instructed me on the wetsanding stages.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jHItXOsbS9k
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4tS06BUbg_M

I don't know, I felt I loaded on the clear. I've got 6 empty cans to prove my struggling. Maybe I just spray unevenly, or it's the type of clear. The important thing is I'm learning but the goal right now is to just finish it cause I wanna play it! It isn't a hard finish either, quite soft.
PRS SE Custom 24
Ibanez Iceman IC-200
Jackson RR3
Epiphone FT-120
BC Rich Mockingbird Bass
Crate Blue Voodoo 60
Marshall 1960B
Markbass CMD 102P
Dunlop Original Crybaby
EHX Stereo Memory Man
Voodoo Lab Sparkle Drive
Ibanez AF2
#24
well sanding soft paint is a no no; this could be the cause of the sand through.
Due to either; poor quality paint, or not being felt long enough to dry before sanding.

The stain looks nice though, and good luck with the buffing
#25
I definitely let it dry for weeks after spraying before sanding it. And the finish was hard after it dried, but currently after I've sanded it it does not feel like a hard finish like my other guitars, but easy to scratch. It is a water based clear coat in a spray can, Varathane Diamond Wood Finish in Gloss.
PRS SE Custom 24
Ibanez Iceman IC-200
Jackson RR3
Epiphone FT-120
BC Rich Mockingbird Bass
Crate Blue Voodoo 60
Marshall 1960B
Markbass CMD 102P
Dunlop Original Crybaby
EHX Stereo Memory Man
Voodoo Lab Sparkle Drive
Ibanez AF2
#26
i gotta ask, because i never saw it mentioned, did you check scale lenght on neck vs body?
both are premade so they have to match.. i hope you did =D

looking good! looks like its taking you a while, get it done so you can rock out!
#27
The seller I bought it from said 24 fret Wizard II necks will fit. I had to do some minor sanding of the neck pocket for it to fit. Neck is 25.5", 44mm at nut.

I think I'm going to tackle the electronics myself, my Jackson has the same setup, 2 volume 1 tone, so I figure I can try and copy it, look at some diagrams, watch some videos.

As for installing the floyd, I have limited knowledge of doing this, never adjusted intonation, so I'll take it in for that part. I got the Gotoh one and I know it fits.

Another thing is the locking nut attaches by 2 screws that I do not have, the ones supplied screw into the neck but there are already holes there, so I either have to fill it, or find the ones that work.

Haha, the back of the guitar is a disaster too, you won't see me taking any close-ups of this when I'm finished!
PRS SE Custom 24
Ibanez Iceman IC-200
Jackson RR3
Epiphone FT-120
BC Rich Mockingbird Bass
Crate Blue Voodoo 60
Marshall 1960B
Markbass CMD 102P
Dunlop Original Crybaby
EHX Stereo Memory Man
Voodoo Lab Sparkle Drive
Ibanez AF2