It's been another busy month in the workshop, we've been luck enough to work on some truly lovely guitars.
Some of the guitars that didn't get a blog post, purely down to too much choice were, an extremely rare BC Rich Acoustic in for a mini restoration, a lovely Charvel in for a setup, a custom shop USA Fender Stratocaster in for a setup. Also a bespoke handmade vintage acoustic in for a pickup fitting, a Freshman in to have a K&K mini pure fitted, plus lots of other guitars too!
We're never to busy to repair, customise or restore your guitar, so please get in touch and we can arrange booking you in!
This Fret King Super T and Vintage semi acoustic were brought in by the same customer who earlier had his Fret King DBC modified including having the finish removed on the back of the neck. Both guitars were in for the same treatment, as the customer hated the feel of a high gloss neck when playing for long periods.
First up the Fret King Super T, this had a very chunky 50's style neck but got thicker the further you played up the neck. This made it very uncomfortable for the owner as he found his hand cramped after playing it for any length of time.
The solution was to reprofile the neck to an even feel, with the lacquer removed, the neck was carefully scraped with luthier scrapers, with the neck profile constantly checked, until the neck felt more comfortable. You can see how much wood was removed as a 'volute' was created where the neck blends to the neck heel.
The neck was then finished with a light oil finish, before being refitted and the guitar restrung, ready for the customer to collect.
The second guitar was a semi acoustic made by vintage, the neck profile was chunky but even, so it was decided to wait and see how the neck would feel with the lacquer removed, before doing a reprofile if needed.
There was a lot, and we mean a lot of lacquer on the neck, as you can see from the photos. This was the culprit that was making the neck feel extra chunky and this would of affected the tone too!
Once all the lacquer was removed, the neck was finished with a light oil finish, and then setup along with a few other tweaks to improve it's playability, before the customer collected his guitars
This ace Yamaha Pacifica, believed to be one of the first in the UK, was in the workshop for some much needed TLC after years of playing, the main job was a fret recrown due to worn frets.
Interestingly this model Pacifica had a slightly different body carve relief and weight, along with a stamped serial number on the headstock rather than a decal on the newer models. It dates around the mid 90's.
The photos below show the wear on the frets and the change of the fret profile during the recrowning.
Once the frets had their new crown profile filed into them, the frets were had polished to a shine
Once the fretwork was complete, the guitar was setup along with all the wiring having a service, before the guitar was ready for the customer to enjoy again!
This lovely vintage Epiphone J200 was in for a setup and an end pin jacksocket fitted, it was extra special as it had been signed by Bert Jansch of Pentangle! Another guitar too nice not to share!
This ace stratocaster was purchased by one of our regular customers for a good price, as he knew it had issues with fret wear on it's lower frets. From the photos we'd been sent, it was possible that a recrown would sort the issues.
When it was brought in the workshop, the worst fret was recrowned to see if it could be salvaged. Even after an aggressive reprofile of the fret, the dings were still so deep that the strings buzzed and sounded dead when played.
The custom didn't want to go for a full refret, as further down the neck the frets were almost completely untouched. The decision of a part refret of the first 6 frets would be the way to go.
First the worn frets were removed, then the fingerboard was prepped for the new frets. After measuring and ordering in a matching replace wire, the new frets were installed.
The next step was our 2 stage levelling of the frets, fret dressing and recrowning the frets, the challenge with any part refret is getting the new frets to blend in with the existing ones, so it is not apparent that a part refret has been done
Finally the frets were hand polished to a shine before the protective tape was removed. The board was treated to a much needed lemon oil, then the guitar was reassembled, restrung and then setup for the customer!
This awesome Wylde Audio Viking was signed and used on stage by Zakk Wylde at Download 2018! It was brought in for a restring and was way too cool not to share, we even kept and bagged the strings that he played for the customer as a keepsake! In case anyone is wondering, he uses skinny top heavy bottom gauge strings!
This lovely and unusual headless bass was hand carved by the customer for his daughter. It was brought to us during it's final stages for some advice, including brain storming on the best place to locate the controls.
The drop D shifter bridge was imported from the USA and is one of the only few in the country, plus all the stone inlay was hand cut too!
Once the final parts had been done by the , the bass was brought back to us for finishing touches, mainly to be fully wired and setup before it was ready to be gigged!
The new owner of this Ibanez JS100 wasn't happy with the stock tremolo, it had been mistreated by it's previous owner and wasn't functioning correctly. The customer had purchased an upgraded Gotoh tremolo, which he had read was a straight swap. However it wasn't and the tremolo cavity had to be enlarged to house the aftermarket tremolo. He also wanted the posted changed to the ones supplied with the Gotoh unit.
First job was fitting the new posts, as this would determine how much wood would need to be removed to increase the cavity size.
The cavity was then lined with felt to give the factory look before the tremolo was fitted, restrung and balanced. Ready for the customer to collect and set his guitar to his liking!
This ace custom reliced Dimebag Dean M L was in to have it's pickups changed for EMG's solderless circuit. The challenge was the control cavity was very small to house all the loom and battery, with some careful planning it all fitted in!
This lovely PRS Custom 22 was brought in for a setup, it's owner had own it for 15+ years and it was really starting to mature as an instrument, too nice not to share!
Hi, I'm Lewis, Ive been repairing guitars since 2004, I learnt my craft at Totnes School of Guitar Making!