#1
So I'm going to take on my first build and thanks to member's suggestions I'm going to Bo doing a strat (over a LP Jr.). I'm looking to start with just a cheap guitar (hence the Squier HSS Strat vs Epi LP Jr) that way if I screw up oh well. I plan on building more guitars in the future (I really wanna do a nice bluesy strat build), but for this one I want to do a no frills straight up punk rock guitar. I figure it'll go with the aesthetics should I screw up so it's a good first project style. It's mainly going to be a fun guitar for home practice, I'm not planning on gigging or recording with it, just wailing away to some good ol' punk rock. Now that you have what I'm trying to achieve here, I have some Q's for my first Frankenstein:

1: Is it easier to swap a neck or route an HB slot out of the bridge slot on an SSS config body? I ask because I'm only looking to spend $200 MAX (lower is posdible) on the guitar itself (not counting part swaps, just the initial guitar purchase) and I'm looking at Squiers. The issue is, I want a maple neck, not rosewood. Well turns out, either I can pick an SSS strat and have neck options, or I pick an HSS one and only rosewood necks, no matter if it's the cheaper or more expensive models. My first ever guitar was a MIM strat and it had a maple neck. Only guitar I ever had with one, and I've always loved the maple neck look. So I want this guitar to have one, but it also needs an HB. Do I get the one with the maple neck and route the HB myself, or do I get HSS and try and find a maple neck and fit it? Keeping in mind I've never modded before, BUT, I'm not a moron lol, I can follow instructions/learn from tutorials pretty well.

2: this is probably a very dumb question, but I'm gonna ask it anyway. To make the strat just a single bridge HB and nothing else, would I just buy a single HB strat pick guard and it covers the other cavities, or are you supposed to fill them in?

3: how hard is rewiring pickups/switches/pots? I know how to solder wires, and follow wiring diagrams, so I do have some experience, just never on guitar electronics.

I greatly apologize for the length of the post, I'm just new at this and figured I could ask all my Qs at once instead of multiple posts and waiting multiple times for replies. Lol I'm super excited to start this, just waitin to order guitar until I'm clear on which way I'm goin.
#2
just make it a single humbucker in the bridge position, you can buy pre cut pickguards for this, or blanks to do it yourself. do not fill in the body cavitiy....the wiring is pretty straightforward if you know how to solder and follow a diagram you should be all set.
#3
Last edited by dennisshad at Oct 20, 2011,
#4
Quote by dennisshad
just make it a single humbucker in the bridge position, you can buy pre cut pickguards for this, or blanks to do it yourself. do not fill in the body cavitiy....the wiring is pretty straightforward if you know how to solder and follow a diagram you should be all set.


So if I pick up say a Squier Affinity Strat, which is SSS (but with maple neck) then I could take pick guard off and underneath the body would already be routed for a bridge HB? All I'd have to do is swap out the pick guard and pickup (and rewire) to have a single HB strat? Conversely, if I bought a single HB strat (see a few cheap ones on eBay) underneath would still be routed for the other 2 pickups, so should I choose to switch it up later down the line I could?

As far as going full component, down to piecing together necks and bodies, I don't want to get into that for this project. This is my first one, so I want an already fully assembled guitar to tinker with that way I have in front of me what a finished guitar is supposed to be, if that makes sense. I want to use it to look inside and see how it all works and such, so that later on when I am ready to do a more in depth project I know what goes where and does what. Right now I can play the heck out of guitars, but as far as maintenance or customizing? The extent it string changes for me lol. I don't know how to adjust necks or bridges or action or intonation, and I've always been too scared to learn it on my nice guitars to be honest. Hence the punk rock project. It'll be a mean little guitar for my main music style but also, I can learn that stuff and if I screw up, not really many consequences with a $120 Squier Strat lol.
#5
Quote by Agent51
So if I pick up say a Squier Affinity Strat, which is SSS (but with maple neck) then I could take pick guard off and underneath the body would already be routed for a bridge HB? All I'd have to do is swap out the pick guard and pickup (and rewire) to have a single HB strat? Conversely, if I bought a single HB strat (see a few cheap ones on eBay) underneath would still be routed for the other 2 pickups, so should I choose to switch it up later down the line I could?


as long as it's a Fender, or Squire body, then yes. I can't speak to how any aftermarket bodies are routed, but pretty much all genuine Fender bodies are either routed like the ones in the pictures, or what's called a "swimming pool" route, which means the entire area is routed underneath the pickguard in a rectangular (hence swimming pool) shape.
#6
Excellent, thanks for the info man. I'm definately gonna snag a Squier Affinity with Maple neck and just swap an HB into the bridge.

While on the topic, any recommendations for a bridge HB good for punk rock tones? Think more Green Day punk (early days, like Dookie-era), that really clean warm-but-punchy overdriven sound as opposed to heavy, crunchy, squealing distortion like hardcore punk/metal. I was originally thinking p-90, but that's when I was going to do an LP Jr build, never heard of a p-90 in a strat style body. And as a side note I just scored an Epi LP Jr with a p-90 swap on Craigslist for $50 during the course of this thread lol, so I don't need 2 p-90 equipped guitars. The guy at GC said an SD Invader, but I think it's too "metal-y" sounding for what I want. To much squealing highs and muddy crunchy lows, where I want the warm and punchy mid-tones. It's gotta have enough kick for punchy palm mutes, but not too much that it sounds metal-ish
#7
Quote by Agent51
Excellent, thanks for the info man. I'm definately gonna snag a Squier Affinity with Maple neck and just swap an HB into the bridge.

While on the topic, any recommendations for a bridge HB good for punk rock tones? Think more Green Day punk (early days, like Dookie-era), that really clean warm-but-punchy overdriven sound as opposed to heavy, crunchy, squealing distortion like hardcore punk/metal. I was originally thinking p-90, but that's when I was going to do an LP Jr build, never heard of a p-90 in a strat style body. And as a side note I just scored an Epi LP Jr with a p-90 swap on Craigslist for $50 during the course of this thread lol, so I don't need 2 p-90 equipped guitars. The guy at GC said an SD Invader, but I think it's too "metal-y" sounding for what I want. To much squealing highs and muddy crunchy lows, where I want the warm and punchy mid-tones. It's gotta have enough kick for punchy palm mutes, but not too much that it sounds metal-ish



sorry, man...I don't really know what works for punk rock. I'm more bluesy/funky. since most punk guitarists i've seen seem to favor older Gibson models or hollowbodies...my guess would be any low output humbucker.

I sent you a PM of where you can find more info. I didn't think the mods would want me posting links to other sites on the forums. I'm sure you can find plenty of info there.
Last edited by dennisshad at Oct 20, 2011,
#8
Thanks I'll definately check it out. One more question (for now lol). Is refinishing a guitar, like stripping off current finish and re-doing it a different color, a difficult task or is it something easily done at home? I haven't fully decided on a color yet but there's only 3 options for the ones with maple necks and none of them are the color I'd want my project.

Is it as simple as sanding it back down to just the wood then repainting it? Also, what paint would I use? For this guitar I'll probably just do a single color since its a barebones punk rock guitar, so would a basic spray paint work (applied properly without runs and such) with maybe a clear coat over that? Or is there special paint I should use?
#9
If you wanna go hardcore punk you could sand it down to the bare wood and then paint it with a brush (like EVH did!) or you could use spray paint which if done properly looks quite nice, If you have the patience to redo a messed up job you should be able to get quite a nice finish! THis will be extremely useful!
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Oq1FGsh1dkI&feature=mh_lolz&list=FLQ2MDkKvA2l8V9LUVN_mVlg
Good Luck! BTW for Pups consider the seymour duncan "Duncan Distortions" I actually think they give you a great clean tone as well as a more dirty sound...
#10
Not all Squiers are routed for HSS. My 20th Ann. Squier is only routed for SSS, I use a Single Size Humbucker at my bridge.

I am pretty sure most Squiers are HSS routed these days, but I can't say it for sure.

In my opinion, it would be best to piece one together. Buy a body on Ebay or from GFS (I don't know anything about GFS bodies, but they seem to be of good quality and are HSH routed). Get all the hardware from GFS, just get their higher qualitty stuff, and one of their pickguards. Get some CTS pots and the pickup of your choice. For the neck, you could go off ebay or you could look at a medium-high quality neck from Mighty Mite. I really love their necks, I have had 4 now and never had a bad one, they all play awesome.