#1
So, I've had a Silvertone SG for a couple of years now, used it as my first guitar for a while until I got a nice acoustic and have since ditched the SG. I've been planning to do a strat build soon to fulfill my electric needs, but instead of jumping in and looking for stuff I won't have the money to buy nor tools to work with, I figured I have a golden opportunity to make this pup into a good guitar first, start collecting some tools, and gain some valuable experience in the process. And honestly, I believe any guitar can be made into something that sounds and plays decent, as long as it's not plywood and is at least moderately well-built. Maybe I'm crazy?

So, let's get down to what we have here.

SG Body, not sure of the wood but from what I've read it's probably anything from nato to basswood or poplar. I'm about to run out and get sandpaper so I'll have it down to the wood in a wee bit an I'll go from there. I've measured it and it's pretty darn close to Gibson specs.

Bolt on neck, I'm assuming maple with rosewood fretboard. Neck is two piece, joined right under the third fret. It looks nice, feels nice, and feels a little small compared to my Seagull but that is a rather fat neck so maybe it's just me.

Electronics are out, pickups are out but can be put back in until pup-grade time.

Hardware and tuners are fine from what I remember, but I haven't played it in ages so we'll see.

Now, what I want to do.
  • The neck joint is not tight at all when not bolted on, and since it's probably a lighter wood, I want to redo the neck pocket so I can get a tight neck joint to help with sustain, but keep it bolt-on. I'm thinking fill it with a piece of wood, then re-route the neck pocket.
  • I'll be rewiring it and putting some new pups in it (pups will come later, stock for now). I'll get to choosing pups when I get that far, but I'm interested in either humbuckers with a coil split or P90s. I currently have no amp, but am leaning to a Classic 30. I play bluesy stuff, rock (Hendrix, SRV, Zep, GnR, Clapton, etc.), hence why I want a coil split or P90s.
  • Obviously I want to repaint it, either with a transparent finish (the grain looks nice actually), or do something crazy like Clapton-ize it. I'll have that figured out within the week, hopefully
  • New nut, as the plastic one is shite.
  • Probably dress the frets, and MAYBE pop out the dot inlays and try my hand at block inlays. VALUABLE EXPERIENCE GUYS!


That's it for now. I'm off to get sandpaper so we can figure out what wood this is (not that it really matters but I'm curious and might do a transparent finish), and I'll go from there. Wish me luck. Hopefully I'll have a decent guitar when all is said and done.

Questions before I go.

Does my idea about redoing the neck pocket sound logical? First of all, would it help with sustain, and second of all, would that be the way to go about doing it? I'm guessing my first tool I'd need for that would be a router, so I'll get to looking.

Any precautions before I go on? Seems to me like I could make a decent guitar out of this, but I'm open to any warnings you vets want to throw at me. If all else fails, I'll have learnt a lot, so why the poop not! ha

Thanks dudes, and here's some pics in case someone sees some stuff I don't. I'm super pumped to start my first "build." Okay, not a build, but just let me have my little moment, okay?

Picturessssss. (Click for bigness)


Last edited by cjmabry at Apr 11, 2011,
#2
I wouldn't mess with the pocket. Yes you may get a tiny bit better sustain, but most of the tightness comes from the bolts, so all you're doing is running a big risk for only a small potential gain. Plus I'm assuming it's not horrifically loose, so for any piece of wood to be structurally sound once you've put the pocket in, it would have to be significantly bigger than the pocket, so you'd have to cut a lot away to do it.

Otherwise have at it! Happy Modding =]
#3
I would just shim the neck. Fill the screw holes in the neck/body using the "toothpick" (or dowel it) method. This should tighten the neck.

Classic P90s won't fit in those routes. "P90s" in a humbucker housing (P94s) will.
Last edited by _LoveFuzz_ at Apr 12, 2011,
#4
Quote by cjmabry
If all else fails, I'll have learnt a lot, so why the poop not! ha

Excellent attitude!
#5
So I gave sanding a go, and I'm definitely gonna need a cheap palm sander. Maybe it's because I used 80 grit, but geeze I worked for a while and barely reached where I could start seeing wood in some places. Maybe I'll pick up some 50 grit and/or a cheap palm sander somewhere. Hand sanding is kind of freaking hard lol

Quote by lozlovesstrats
I wouldn't mess with the pocket. Yes you may get a tiny bit better sustain, but most of the tightness comes from the bolts, so all you're doing is running a big risk for only a small potential gain. Plus I'm assuming it's not horrifically loose, so for any piece of wood to be structurally sound once you've put the pocket in, it would have to be significantly bigger than the pocket, so you'd have to cut a lot away to do it.

Otherwise have at it! Happy Modding =]


Well, bolted down it's fine, but if you mean you're assuming it's not horrible loose when it's not bolted down, well... haha. It really is hardly a pocket at all. The neck kind of just sits on the slab of wood. It's very loose. Loose as in you lay the neck in there and it falls out. I've been told, on a strat at least, that if you can pick up the neck without it being bolted down and it doesn't come apart from the body then that's good. Maybe the design of the SG pocket wouldn't allow for that, though.

Quote by _LoveFuzz_
I would just shim the neck. Fill the screw holes in the neck/body using the "toothpick" (or dowel it) method. This should tighten the neck.

Classic P90s won't fit in those routes. "P90s" in a humbucker housing (P94s) will.


Hmmm... I'm not quite sure what you mean by shim it? Could you explain a little more? Or by shimming do you mean the toothpick/dowel method?

As for the doweling, just fill the holes with dowels and then redrill them to make them tighter?

Quote by RebuildIt
Excellent attitude!


Haha. Thanks for the support broski.