#1
Hello Guys and Gals!

I would like to re-introduce myself and give you a little background since I not a very active user on this forum.

My name is Eslam Batal and I play Guitar and Drums mainly. Please don’t let the name beget any kind of prejudices and negative associations, it’s not related to the religion and I’m actually agnostic/atheist. I turned 30 years old this year, and like all of you (I suppose) I’m an avid music lover. I fell in love with music because of Michael Jackson. I’ve been a big fan of his since very early age (still am! R.I.P) as I got a little older I got turned into Metallica and Guns. Later on as the child of the 90’s obviously Nirvana, Alice in Chains and the rest of the Seattle folks were really popular back then so I got turned into them. Then later as I went into my teen-angst phase I was turned into much heavier music from grind-core to death, you name it. So my sense of rhythm has been developed from the get go so to speak. In my early 20’s is when I started actually “listening” to music more seriously and developed better hearing and analytical hearing skills when I got into fusion jazz, funk and etc. To cut a long story short, my point is that I love all kinds of music. I am a self-taught musician by the way and I’ve picked up guitar only relatively recently, like 6 or so years ago, been drumming for much longer though. As far as technicalities go, I’m not a tech guy in terms of playing, I never bothered shredding scales and whatnot I just play whatever sound and “feels” good to me. Given my early musical influences and since I’ve never studied classical music or theory, I just mainly play rhythm cause as a drummer that’s what I hear in my head first of all and I like to bust out groovy riffs and stuff.

So that’s that. And now guys and gals I would like to bring you to the main topic at hand. Recently, I came into my friends’ barber shop which he have decorated with all kinds of junk and scrape yard stuff hanging on the walls (T.G.I. Fridays-style) and behold I see this guitar (of some unknown origin) hanging on the wall, it originally belonged to his friend and he stopped playing it at some point and gave it to him to decorate his shops’ wall with it. When I took the guitar in my hands, I just like it, just something about the weight and neck and everything just felt like it was mine. The guitar is a little beat up with no pick-ups or strings and no bridge, no tuners, no nothing. It might make you wonder, why would you decorate your shop with such a beat-up old guitar? The thing is that the guitar had painted drawings on it made by its’ original owner and it looked kind of cool. I convinced my friend to take it off him and try to get it back to life. Now the guitar is totally stripped down you might as well call it a piece of wood that could be a guitar with some work. Finally, I need your help with options to rebuild it!

I took off the drawings (and the rest of the finish) with soft sand-paper and it looks like the guitar is made of Swamp Ash body, Mahogany neck and Rosewood fret-board. Considering these factors in mind, based on your experience, I need your help to combine the needed hardware to get a decent tone out of it.

Again: Swamp Ash Body, Mahogany neck, Fret-board-rosewood.

Help me pick the missing parts, which are:
-Tune o matic bridge
-Pick-ups (this is my main concern here)
-1 volume / 1 tone controller / 3 way switch
-Tuners (locking or not?)

Now if you were to ask me what I wanted to play, my answer is I am looking for versatility because I want to play funk percussive stuff to pounding heavy riffs and I do drop D sometimes. So what do you say folks?

Let’s start with pickups. Anyone know a good pickup with ash body combo?



#2
Well, with about $400 in hardware and 30 hours of labor you will end up with a guitar that might be worth $100 and who knows if it will play well or stay in tune. Is that really what you want to do?
"Your sound is in your hands as much as anything. It's the way you pick, and the way you hold the guitar, more than it is the amp or the guitar you use." -- Stevie Ray Vaughan

"Anybody can play. The note is only 20 percent. The attitude of the motherfucker who plays it is 80 percent." -- Miles Davis

Guthrie on tone: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zmohdG9lLqY
#3
ebay if you're on a budget , a stoptails a stoptail , the bridge i'd check the posts to see which kind your guitar needs. If you find out which kind of bridge works one suggestion is the schaller roller bridge.

for quality tuners I'd go with grovers, schaller or sperzel. Check and see what the holes are if they are 10mm this is going to be a breeze

pickups are up to you, it amazes people that certain cheap pickups sound good when they go beyond marketing and advertising or the wow factor. I'll let everyone else decide usually i put high output in the bridge and medium in the neck or try to fuse two bridge pickups like Michael Romeo of Symphony X uses an X2N and a tone zone pickup. I lean more towards seymour duncan myself.

CTS pots - B500k volume and tone full sized, regular sized shaft length. Not tall pots
the cheap 3 way selectors work fine I think
switchcraft input jacks
24 AWG wire
60/40 lead solder (not lead free) is way easier to work with
the tone knob you can use a metalized polyester capacitor , 0.047uf is what you're after , however some guys like orange drop or USSR surplus like paper in oil. It's up to you.

schaller strap locks are a good investment as well


wiring is below
#4
Quote by inbred


My name is Eslam Batal and I play Guitar and Drums mainly. Please don’t let the name beget any kind of prejudices and negative associations, it’s not related to the religion and I’m actually agnostic/atheist.


No worries, we don't do that stuff here.
Say something nice about a Line 6 Spyder, however, and they will be on you like flies on...

Quote by inbred


Help me pick the missing parts, which are:
-Tune o matic bridge
-Pick-ups (this is my main concern here)
-1 volume / 1 tone controller / 3 way switch
-Tuners (locking or not?)

Now if you were to ask me what I wanted to play, my answer is I am looking for versatility because I want to play funk percussive stuff to pounding heavy riffs and I do drop D sometimes. So what do you say folks?

Let’s start with pickups. Anyone know a good pickup with ash body combo?


If it were me, I'd go with a Suhr Aldrich bridge pickup and maybe a Gibson Burstbucker in the neck position.
#5
Before you wade to deeply into this, you might want to check out the frets; make sure they're level and that the truss rod is working.

I built a guitar based on cheap used Warmoth parts that looks very much like this one.
#6
That my friend is an 80's Aria Pro II ZZ Deluxe Explorer. From the Matsumoku factory in Japan.

Info...
Aria Pro II ZZ Deluxe 1980s Explorer-type Matsumoku-made guitar
Body : Alder
Neck: Maple
Fingerboard : Rosewood w/ 22 frets
Scale : 25.5
Pickups : Protomatic V Black humbucking X 2
Controls : 1 Volume, 1 Tone, 3 way P.U. selector
Bridge : Tune o matic and tail piece.
Tuners : Gold plated die cast
Nut : Bone

That's what it used to have on it pretty much. If that's any help.

Entwistle do a good selection of pick ups at very cheap prices.
My gastronomic rapacity knows no satiety.
Last edited by crackerjack123 at Jun 3, 2015,
#7
www.guitarfetish.com
This site has decent hardware and pickups that are reasonably priced. Probably $100-$120 for all the parts from them (shipping included)

The Fat Pat and VEH pickups are pretty nice, I have the Fat Pat in an old LP clone and it sounds nice.

www.guitarheads.net is another site to checkout for cheap but decent parts/pickups

www.dragonfireguitars.com is also worth a look
2002 PRS CE22
2013 G&L ASAT Deluxe
2009 Epiphone G-400 (SH-4)
Marshall JCM2000 DSL100
Krank 1980 Jr 20watt
Krank Rev 4x12 (eminence V12)
GFS Greenie/Digitech Bad Monkey
Morley Bad Horsie 2
MXR Smart Gate
#8
Quote by crackerjack123

Entwistle do a good selection of pick ups at very cheap prices.


Can confirm. The X2s were a big upgrade to the stock pickups in my old Ibanez GIO and I still have the neck one in there in combination with a DiMarzio in the bridge.
#9
indeed, get that neck sorted out or you are wasting your time. if it can't hold an adjustment, is cracked, warped, and/or the frets are wrecked, you'll sink a lot of time and money into it.

Help me pick the missing parts, which are:
-Tune o matic bridge
try allparts

-Pick-ups (this is my main concern here)
any of the usual suspects. imo, stick to passives on this one. i would consider basic sd's for this app. nothing too hot. ime, cheap guitars sound terrible with over torqued pu's.

-1 volume / 1 tone controller / 3 way switch
simple stuff. get a wiring kit. allparts, stew mac, etc..

-Tuners (locking or not?)
schaller's, gotoh's, anything quality with a high ratio (numerically). stay basic on this one. you are not going to use a trem are you? if you were you should use a locking nut anyway. imo, locking tuners add weight, and are a band aid for those who can't wrap a string on a post so it doesn't slip.

in addition,
-strap locks. i'm partial to dunlop dual designs.
-shield the control cavity. cheap insurance.
-toss that budget nut and get a graph tech.
-keep it simple -paint it black.
-you'll need some basic luthier/set-up tools and some electrical kit as well.
Last edited by ad_works at Jun 3, 2015,
#10
Quote by crackerjack123
That my friend is an 80's Aria Pro II ZZ Deluxe Explorer. From the Matsumoku factory in Japan.

Info...
Aria Pro II ZZ Deluxe 1980s Explorer-type Matsumoku-made guitar
Body : Alder
Neck: Maple
Fingerboard : Rosewood w/ 22 frets
Scale : 25.5
Pickups : Protomatic V Black humbucking X 2
Controls : 1 Volume, 1 Tone, 3 way P.U. selector
Bridge : Tune o matic and tail piece.
Tuners : Gold plated die cast
Nut : Bone

That's what it used to have on it pretty much. If that's any help.


Great info!
I didn't spot the pedigree so it is a reasonably well built JP guitar. All focus is now on the frets and neck to see if it is worthy of a full restore. If the neck is sound, she could be a nice player. Don't cheap out on the hardware though.
"Your sound is in your hands as much as anything. It's the way you pick, and the way you hold the guitar, more than it is the amp or the guitar you use." -- Stevie Ray Vaughan

"Anybody can play. The note is only 20 percent. The attitude of the motherfucker who plays it is 80 percent." -- Miles Davis

Guthrie on tone: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zmohdG9lLqY
#11
i remember when those things came out. seemed popular in galleria keyboard shops.
#12
Quote by Tallwood13
ebay if you're on a budget , a stoptails a stoptail , the bridge i'd check the posts to see which kind your guitar needs. If you find out which kind of bridge works one suggestion is the schaller roller bridge.

for quality tuners I'd go with grovers, schaller or sperzel. Check and see what the holes are if they are 10mm this is going to be a breeze

pickups are up to you, it amazes people that certain cheap pickups sound good when they go beyond marketing and advertising or the wow factor. I'll let everyone else decide usually i put high output in the bridge and medium in the neck or try to fuse two bridge pickups like Michael Romeo of Symphony X uses an X2N and a tone zone pickup. I lean more towards seymour duncan myself.

CTS pots - B500k volume and tone full sized, regular sized shaft length. Not tall pots
the cheap 3 way selectors work fine I think
switchcraft input jacks
24 AWG wire
60/40 lead solder (not lead free) is way easier to work with
the tone knob you can use a metalized polyester capacitor , 0.047uf is what you're after , however some guys like orange drop or USSR surplus like paper in oil. It's up to you.

schaller strap locks are a good investment as well


wiring is below


Awesome! i will take this into serious consideration. Much obliged.
#13
Quote by crackerjack123
That my friend is an 80's Aria Pro II ZZ Deluxe Explorer. From the Matsumoku factory in Japan.

Info...
Aria Pro II ZZ Deluxe 1980s Explorer-type Matsumoku-made guitar
Body : Alder
Neck: Maple
Fingerboard : Rosewood w/ 22 frets
Scale : 25.5
Pickups : Protomatic V Black humbucking X 2
Controls : 1 Volume, 1 Tone, 3 way P.U. selector
Bridge : Tune o matic and tail piece.
Tuners : Gold plated die cast
Nut : Bone

That's what it used to have on it pretty much. If that's any help.

Entwistle do a good selection of pick ups at very cheap prices.


Waow amazing that you actually recognized this piece. Thanks for the info. I guess i got the wood all wrong.
#14
Quote by dspellman
Before you wade to deeply into this, you might want to check out the frets; make sure they're level and that the truss rod is working.

I built a guitar based on cheap used Warmoth parts that looks very much like this one.


Actually the 5th, 6th and 7th fret are a bit bent sideways! I tried to take a picture but its just not apparent from my phone camera. I hope this isn't TOO BIG of a problem. And i haven't tried adjusting the truss rod yet as there is little point without having any strings on.

Unfortunately, where i reside, we dont have any custom shops around to replace the frets!
Last edited by inbred at Jun 3, 2015,
#15
Quote by Cajundaddy
Well, with about $400 in hardware and 30 hours of labor you will end up with a guitar that might be worth $100 and who knows if it will play well or stay in tune. Is that really what you want to do?


That's actually the opposite of what i want to do. I want to bring it back to life on a minimal budget and see if it's worth a better upgrade later on. I know i might as well just look for another guitar all together, but something about this one and the neck just feels good in the hand. And the problem is, where i live we only have literally a couple of music shops that only sell stock fender squires (which are terrible for the price the sell them, everything is insanely expensive around here) and the rest is Dean guitars which im not a big fan of.. and they're not cheap.

Just for your amusement, would you believe me if i told you that the local fender retailer here sells a shitty chinese fender squire for over $800?? yes, can you believe it.
#16
Quote by dspellman
No worries, we don't do that stuff here.
Say something nice about a Line 6 Spyder, however, and they will be on you like flies on...



LOL Line 6 Spyder is the worst combo amp i've ever played! i owned one for a brief time before i sold it. For some reason it sounded good at the shop but when i played on it for like a month i realized what a piece of shit it was (in my experience anyway).

Speaking of little combo amps, I was always fond of the Roland Micro Cube, cute little things and sound rather punchy for their size i highly recommend it for anyone looking for a little amp that works on batteries
#17
Quote by ad_works
indeed, get that neck sorted out or you are wasting your time. if it can't hold an adjustment, is cracked, warped, and/or the frets are wrecked, you'll sink a lot of time and money into it.




The whole guitar seems to be in good shape, i don't see any cracks on the neck or body not even little ones. And the neck seems to be straight as well. But some frets (namely the 5th 6th and 7th) are a bit bent sideways towards the bridge of the guitar! No big deal, right?.. right? RIGHT?
#18
Quote by inbred
The whole guitar seems to be in good shape, i don't see any cracks on the neck or body not even little ones. And the neck seems to be straight as well. But some frets (namely the 5th 6th and 7th) are a bit bent sideways towards the bridge of the guitar! No big deal, right?.. right? RIGHT?


calm down. bent frets aren't good. post a sharp picture of your bent frets. your other pictures of the neck are just too blurry.
Last edited by ad_works at Jun 3, 2015,
#19
Quote by ad_works
calm down. bent frets aren't good. post a sharp picture of your bent frets. your other pictures of the neck are just too blurry.


I'm calm. I was just joking

I will try to take some pictures tomorrow (its 12.13 am here) with some sun light perhaps i will get better shots.