#1
This was my first guitar, so I really want to make it special to me. I've stripped the whole thing down. I'm going to repaint it, I think like a white/black EVH or like the Synyster Gates custom, but white with black stripes. Black hardware, including locking tuners and a TOM with large saddles. I'm going to stain the fretboard so it's very dark. I just have a few questions.


1. If I buy a regular Les Paul pickguard and bracket, will I be able to mount them to the Special II? I feel like the volume knob might get in the way, or it will be too small due to the Special II having a flat top.

2. Will tele barrel knobs fit on regular 500k pot shafts? I found a very beautiful pair that I really want on this build, but I'm not sure if I'd need to buy long-shaft pots.

3. What pickups? I was looking at these. They have a decent output, and are a very nice price.

4. The neck contour on this thing is HUGE. Would I be able to give it a much thinner, T shaped contour with just sand paper? And if so, how could I finish the neck then? White paint and alot of laquer?


That's all for now. Thanks for any answers. And don't try to dissuade me from this project. I don't care if it's not a good guitar. Sentimentally, it's worth it to me. Besides, once I'm done, you can't say it isn't a decent guitar. I'll make it good.
Guitars:
Epiphone Les Paul Special II [Heavily Modded]
Hand-Built Jem Copy
Rouge RA-100

Amps:
Crate VC-50
Epiphone Studio 10

Pedals:
DigiTech Bad Monkey
MXR 10 Band EQ
Boss Noise Suppressor
Electro-Harmonix Metal Muff w/ Top Boost
#2
All that work for the Special II? As far as those humbuckers...you get what you pay for.
Your Signature:
#3
Honestly, that "You get what you payed for" comment makes me want to blow my brains out. I play through an amp I payed $400 for, and my lead guitarist play's through my uncle's $1300 fender super reverb. Even my cousin admits mine sounds better. So don't bother with your trolling. I want half-way thought out responses, thanks.
Guitars:
Epiphone Les Paul Special II [Heavily Modded]
Hand-Built Jem Copy
Rouge RA-100

Amps:
Crate VC-50
Epiphone Studio 10

Pedals:
DigiTech Bad Monkey
MXR 10 Band EQ
Boss Noise Suppressor
Electro-Harmonix Metal Muff w/ Top Boost
#4
fully rewire the LP is worth having decent components. I did that to mine and it sounds better than my other guitars.
GEAR:
Epiphone LP special model 2 (Heavily modded - killswitch and custom midi X-Y touch pad).
Digitech Whammy, Zvex Fuzz Factory, Boss Dynamic Wah, Electro harmonix Little Big Muff, Zoom G7.1ut, Digitech Grunge, Korg KP2.
Marshall AVT 50x
#5
I was planning on it. I'm getting a whole rewiring set from stewmac.
Guitars:
Epiphone Les Paul Special II [Heavily Modded]
Hand-Built Jem Copy
Rouge RA-100

Amps:
Crate VC-50
Epiphone Studio 10

Pedals:
DigiTech Bad Monkey
MXR 10 Band EQ
Boss Noise Suppressor
Electro-Harmonix Metal Muff w/ Top Boost
#6
Quote by justinrobbins7
All that work for the Special II? As far as those humbuckers...you get what you pay for.


Pretty true...
Gear
Fender Thinline Telecaster Deluxe

1983 Aria Pro II XX Deluxe Flying V

2007 S101 EGU34

1963 Kay Vanguard

1964 Kay Vanguard

AXL Badwater SRO

Hondo Strat

1974 Acoustic(brand) 134 4x10 combo

Epiphone Valve Jr.
#7
I personally don't see the problem with it. I want to redo my first guitar. Can you get over the whole "Special II's Suck" deal, and help me out?
Guitars:
Epiphone Les Paul Special II [Heavily Modded]
Hand-Built Jem Copy
Rouge RA-100

Amps:
Crate VC-50
Epiphone Studio 10

Pedals:
DigiTech Bad Monkey
MXR 10 Band EQ
Boss Noise Suppressor
Electro-Harmonix Metal Muff w/ Top Boost
#8
1. Your best bet with the pickguard is to buy a blank, then cut-out a new pickguard from that. I think that some of the LP style plates come bent slightly, so they don't lie flat on a flat body. Also, the only point in the bracket for mounting, is to give you a face that's parallel with your strings, compensating for the carved top.

2. As long as you check the shaft diameters, and get knobs for the right shaft type (split/solid), they should work fine.

3. As for the pickups, I've never tried GFS stuff, so I don't know tbh. Don't buy pickups just based on their output, as they could be voiced terribly, then sound like crap. Also, the "Bridge pickups is a whopping 14K, Neck 10K" is the internal resistance of the coils.. NOT the inductance, which is the actual 'output' of the pickup. Resitance of a coil is not directly proportional to its inductance, so this can be misleading.

4. Yes, you should be able to just sand the neck back. I'd recommend using a rasp set, spokeshave, lots of sandpaper, and a cabinet scraper. Try to match the profile of another guitar that you have, and don't go any thinner than about 16mm.
#9
1. I can't exactly buy a blank, because I've got no way of cutting it. At least, no way other then a hatchet or a hand saw.

2. Thanks. It should work then

3. So what would you reccomend, then? My budget's not very high considering my shabby soldering skills. No more then $70.00 for now, unless I can find someone to do it for me.

4. Having few tools, would this be doable with just sand paper? Should I find something round to wra it around if I want a T-Contour, or something square?
Guitars:
Epiphone Les Paul Special II [Heavily Modded]
Hand-Built Jem Copy
Rouge RA-100

Amps:
Crate VC-50
Epiphone Studio 10

Pedals:
DigiTech Bad Monkey
MXR 10 Band EQ
Boss Noise Suppressor
Electro-Harmonix Metal Muff w/ Top Boost
#10
Quote by Afyum
1. I can't exactly buy a blank, because I've got no way of cutting it. At least, no way other then a hatchet or a hand saw.

2. Thanks. It should work then

3. So what would you reccomend, then? My budget's not very high considering my shabby soldering skills. No more then $70.00 for now, unless I can find someone to do it for me.

4. Having few tools, would this be doable with just sand paper? Should I find something round to wra it around if I want a T-Contour, or something square?


Hmm.. I still don't understand what shape you mean by a 'T-contour'.

It really depends on the neck wood. If the neck is made of maple, it would take you days to sand it back by hand. You can get a spokeshave for about £3, and scraper for £2.50. If you honestly can't afford to get any tools, just wrap some 80 grit around a block of wood, then settle down for a lot of work
#11
I'm fine with alot of hard work. It makes it seem all that much more worth it. And a "T" is like a thin neck with curved sides and a flat bottom.
Guitars:
Epiphone Les Paul Special II [Heavily Modded]
Hand-Built Jem Copy
Rouge RA-100

Amps:
Crate VC-50
Epiphone Studio 10

Pedals:
DigiTech Bad Monkey
MXR 10 Band EQ
Boss Noise Suppressor
Electro-Harmonix Metal Muff w/ Top Boost
#12
Quote by Afyum
This was my first guitar, so I really want to make it special to me. I've stripped the whole thing down. I'm going to repaint it, I think like a white/black EVH or like the Synyster Gates custom, but white with black stripes. Black hardware, including locking tuners and a TOM with large saddles. I'm going to stain the fretboard so it's very dark. I just have a few questions.


1. If I buy a regular Les Paul pickguard and bracket, will I be able to mount them to the Special II? I feel like the volume knob might get in the way, or it will be too small due to the Special II having a flat top.

2. Will tele barrel knobs fit on regular 500k pot shafts? I found a very beautiful pair that I really want on this build, but I'm not sure if I'd need to buy long-shaft pots.

3. What pickups? I was looking at these. They have a decent output, and are a very nice price.

4. The neck contour on this thing is HUGE. Would I be able to give it a much thinner, T shaped contour with just sand paper? And if so, how could I finish the neck then? White paint and alot of laquer?


That's all for now. Thanks for any answers. And don't try to dissuade me from this project. I don't care if it's not a good guitar. Sentimentally, it's worth it to me. Besides, once I'm done, you can't say it isn't a decent guitar. I'll make it good.



i love inexpensive guitars. theyre perfect for modding. and as for the special II i only have 2 problems with it. #1 that ugly ass headstock epiphone uses and the layout of the controls. other than that its the perfect guitar for modding, and you can make it sound and play as good as its high dollar counterpart for a whole lot less.

as far as the pickguard is concerned heres what id do...id get a pickguard and modify it to work and screw it to the guitar. get rid of that bottom bracket, its for the carved tops. if it interferes with the volume control plug it and move it to where the pickguard wont interfere

pickups? you have too many choices but check out guitar center online and look for humbuckers by lace. last i saw they were only $30 a piece and supposed to sound good, if it were me id by carvin M22's


the neck is where youll have the most work. shape it however you want and finish it with a satin finish. gloss finishes make your hands stick when they sweat.

and i have always been partial to the bell knobs
#13
yeah ive modded my epi special II also. yeah the volume knob gets in the way of the pickguard. i had to cut outa half circle in it. I took that off after a while though. i put a Bill Lawrence L500-XL/L500-R combo in mine. i lov those pickups! I also put new grover tuners on it. Ive got to something with the neck though, its really bowed and warped. ive adjusted the truss rod a bit and still nothing. either i buy a second hand one or I build one myself. anyway good luck with your modding!

edit: oh yeah i put the tele style knobs on mine too and they work fine!
Fender American Standard Stratocaster
Ibanez TS-9
EHX Big Muff Pi
Companion Fuzz Box
EHX Pulsar
Boss DD-6
Fender Hot Rod Deville 212
#14
Quote by Afyum
I'm going to repaint it, I think like a white/black EVH or like the Synyster Gates custom, but white with black stripes.
Black hardware, including locking tuners and a TOM with large saddles. Go with GFS for the locking tuners. Spring for an import-sized tonepros bridge and get a graphite nut. You'll be astounded by the difference.
I'm going to stain the fretboard so it's very dark. I'd dissuade you from doing this, seeing as rosewood is fairly dark and the stain you can buy has the potential to make the neck either ugly or unplayable without EXPERT skill used in staining.


1. If I buy a regular Les Paul pickguard and bracket, will I be able to mount them to the Special II? I feel like the volume knob might get in the way, or it will be too small due to the Special II having a flat top.
No, the normal LP pickguard is raised, it would be rather awkward to use on a flat-top guitar. For an awesome look and fit, go for something closer to a SG pickguard, if you could find a '61 Big ol' style one, that'd be downright sexy.

2. Will tele barrel knobs fit on regular 500k pot shafts? I found a very beautiful pair that I really want on this build, but I'm not sure if I'd need to buy long-shaft pots.
The stock pots are junk, and seeing as you're going EVH or gates on the paint job, I assume your friend plays metal. When you wire your humbuckers, I suggest you bypass the tone and hard wire it. It'll be like the tone's constantly at about 12/10(since being connected to the tone pot sucks treble off the top no matter what). This way, you can use the 2 knobs for indicidual volume knobs per pickup, and that will make the selector double as a killswitch.

3. What pickups? I was looking at these. They have a decent output, and are a very nice price.
Output(on non-active pickups) means two things. A. How loud they are (and how hard your pickups can drive the amp) and B. How poorly they pick up your strings.
This is because on passive pickups, the number of windings designates output, but that higher number of windings means you can't mount your pickups as close to the strings, without them dampening the vibrations noticeably. This means lack of tonal clarity.

The reason active pickups are so great for pinch harmonics and clean tones even through walls of distortion is that they are actually much lower in number of windings, and the signal is instead boosted by a battery to get the higher output, without the expense of tonal depth.

Anyway, your choice in pickups is EXTREMELY poor.
My suggestion would be a GFS vintage 59 in the neck.
The vintage 59 has vintage output, lower output(windings), and is a really great pecreation iof vintage PAF pickups.
EVH actually used a vintage PAF in his frankenstrat, pulled from a gibson 335.

For your bridge pickup, It's higher price but worth it for more modern metal styles.
The rockfield fat ass.
These just rock for cutting through distortion and screaming on harmonics. They're not SD expensive, a midlevel 50 bucks.

Output isn't too far apart on the two, and the bridge is higher, good for soloing, plus, if you do what I suggested earlier, you'll have individual volume anyway.


4. The neck contour on this thing is HUGE. Would I be able to give it a much thinner, T shaped contour with just sand paper? And if so, how could I finish the neck then? White paint and alot of laquer?
Well, if you're used to fenders(which it sounds like) I'd say try first going over the neck with some steel wool. It'll take off the gloss and make the neck feel alot faster, as for if you're going to sandpaper and actually make the neck THINNER, I'd say go to the headstock, take a pocket knife and a ruler, cut a nice upside-down V shape that ends(has two points) the the first fret. taht's where you sand. DO NOT refinish the neck after sanding it. DO a fine sand after the general shape and feel is right, with a finer sandpaper. This is effectively the neck on the zakk wylde les pauls.



That's all for now. Thanks for any answers. And don't try to dissuade me from this project. I don't care if it's not a good guitar. Sentimentally, it's worth it to me. Besides, once I'm done, you can't say it isn't a decent guitar. I'll make it good.

The les paul special II is a great guitar for what it is. A good bolt-on neck, a solid basswood body, set up and inspected in the USA, crafted in china.


Good luck on the project! Remember to post pics when you finish.
(oh, and by the way, I'd suggest you go to forum.epiphone.com , sign up and post this same thread , the guys there know a whole lot about modding epis and how to use to make it a top notch axe.





You like how I did it all with bold and quotes? ^_^

P.S. I personally actually like the epiphone headstock. Plus, bigger headsocks contribute to better sustain.
...
Please do not insinuate anything sexual from that.

Quote by cobain_is_king
If your friends don't like your guitar, cover it in stickers and it'll be teh rawks!
Last edited by Iansmitchell at Jun 23, 2008,