Thursday, April 6, 2017

2 and 3 way switches for single coil switching


A question led to drawing out the schematic for switching 2 single coils with a 2 & 3 way slide switch . . . here it is.


Monday, March 20, 2017

A better? picture


Well here she is in natural light . . . the quilting in the pick guard just doesn't seem to want to be photographed well from ANY angle though . . . . this was the best of the bunch.


Monday, February 27, 2017

All's good . . . . . .

Well the electronics are still subject to revision but here she is . . .

The pick guard contains an (unintentional) Esher like joke though. Better picktures once the weather lets up here.

Changing out the pick guard was relatively easy once I figured how the screw holes lined up . . . the only 'problem' was 2 solder joints on the rotary switch 'broke' . . . bad soldering on my part I guess. I first thought I had a ground fault on the bridge PU as it barely made any sound . . . turns out the grond lead AND the hot lead came off the switch. The ground was an easy fix but I initially soldered the hot to the WRONG PIN . . . and was wondering why it was so clean (no solder on it what so ever) when I did it . . . it was only after the PU still failed the tap test that I figured that one out . . . .

Friday, February 17, 2017

OK it's NOT a guitar but . . . it holds guitars


After 2 years . . .  yes I actually looked up when I originally purchased the first pieces for this . . . it's done. The guitars have a place to hang and the light takes care of a dark corner in the living room. But now I have to clean up the case next to it ... ... ... sigh ...

Sunday, January 15, 2017

Forming the guard

It's been a while, the neck got a GOOD Tusk nut courtesy of the local guitar wrangler and is now really a playable instrument, although the intonation of the G still leaves something to be desired but I haven't looked into that yet . . . the other stings are (close to) perfect although once I start fudzing with the truss rod (the relief is still a little large) I expect I may have to do some more adjusting. And I need to do . . . something . . . as the low E it buzzes ONLY when played open despite the fact that the height over the 1st fret is larger than over the 2nd when fretting on the 1st . . . . ??

In the mean time here is a longish post on progress with the 'proper' pick guard.


First drilling the mounting holes and then, drilling the countersinks . . . no easy recovery for mistakes now . . .

At least it looks good with the screw in place so the diameters are correct . . .

The tools for shaping, sandpaper would have been OK but a scraper makes less of a mess even if it's a little harder to keep in 'fighting trim'. I always keep a a small sanding block handy too (or is that one o . . . ) because once you've got a divot a scraper just makes it worse, especially around the edges next to the holes. And those countersunk holes make the creation of divots REAL easy.

Needs some more work but it's getting there . . . the edge at the round over especially is a bit thick.

The signs of a well sharpened scraper . . . shavings, not dust . . . so much easier to clean up, and it doesn't 'get everywhere'.

Ready for the pickup holes . . . turns out that one in the right bottom went REAL close to the edge but fortunately ended up OK. And my jig for sanding the edges in with a Dremel . . . WITH the new centering measure, it makes lining up the jig so much easier. One of the finished pickup holes is visible behind it.

Drilling control holes in the upper bout for the coil selection switches . . . and the holes for the pickup height screws . . . . . . a humbucker mounting ring makes a nice template . . . 

And here we are with most of the holes drilled and the shaping pretty much complete.

And then I had the BRILLIANT idea of recessing the pickup selection control knob . . . . 

Measuring and shaping the 'mounting plate'

And here it is with the required 3/8 hole <=> BTW ALWAYS clamp polycarbonate plastic down when drilling or sawing, or doing pretty much anything else involving any kind of force, if it moves around - especially small pieces or pieces with holes - they have a tendency to crack <=> . . . so now we need a 3/4" hole in the guard . . .

Measured . . . and cut. I used a punch to mark the center and drilled a 3/16 pilot hole (the size of the center spike on the spade bit) and then a 3/4 freshly sharpened spade bit with VERY little pressure from the back to the front and got very little tearout fortunately. Why from the back as tearout is always worst at exit holes, WELL . . . . . the front is already shaped and thus NOT FLAT making starting the bit exactly vertical that much harder. I SHOULD have done this before starting the shaping process. SHOULDA, COULDA, WOULDA I only came up with the idea later so . . . . 

AND blogger is throwing me for a loop once again . . . now it doesn't want to remove the 'align to center' from the text ... and ... even when the options show it IS removed it still . . . arrggghhhh . . . oh well I'm not getting a prize for layout anyway.

And then I produced some locating pins from a medium size nail . . . 


With some cutting, filing, grinding and fixing them into the plastic with some superglue the results are . . . quite good . . . as far as I can tell things are pretty much exactly centered with very little play . . . and the test knob (same size as the actual ones) fits correctly.


I believe we can glue it in place check all the other holes (I think the holes for the pickup height screws need to be drilled out 1/64 larger) and proceed with the finish (the guard has 1 coat of danish oil now and the quilt on the maple is nice, not 'master grade' - and it has some mineral streaks (some visible above -, but nice) and assembly . . . . . yes assembly . . . . Oh and the cutout for the neck pocket . . . need to cut out the neck pocket . . . . 

Monday, December 12, 2016

Progress . . . .

Well, some anyway, rough shape got cut with the jig saw. NOTE, rotary cutters and curly maple do NOT play nice together, you get an awful fuzzy cut so if you must, stay well away from the final line. AND, I found a great use for that vacuum driven Dremel I got initially, with a rotary sander it makes for quite a nice edge finishing tool and, here is the great thing, most of the dust created disappears directly into the shop vac . . . perfect.

And the edges are getting thinned . . . here the edge is down to 1/16 - 3/32 . . . . 1/16 is the goal all around but this is the first pass with some 60 grit EZ lock sanding disks on the dremel for quick removal of material and it already went a (tiny) bit quicker than I really wanted . . . . . . nothing disastrous but . . . . . . and yes it will be evened out by hand . . .

Also considering some ideas to reinforce the joins, with the cutouts for the pickups going through all four joins (reducing the total area) that may not be a terribly bad idea . . . . . . .