On this page we illustrate the steps we take in designing and building one of our guitars
Using a template attached to the body blank as a guide, the body is cut out, sanded and the cavities for the pickups, electronics and neck joint routed. The holes for the bridge, tailpiece and controls are also drilled.
The neck template is checked against the body for a correct fit and alignment of the body and eventual neck center lines. The neck is then cut out and the peghead scarf-jointed to the neck. Following that the slot for the double action truss rod is routed and the truss rod checked for a correct fit.
The body and neck, exclusive of the fingerboard, are sealed with either a water based or an epoxy primer. After that we previously applied up to 12 coats of nitrocellulose lacquer to all faces and edges, exclusive of the fingerboard, using a spray canister (as for the black guitar, above). We now instead use a water-based color and clear lacquer applied with a brush (as for the amber / wood grain guitar above); this product is easier and safer to use than nitrocellulose and produces a superior finish. When complete the finish is left to cure for 10 days before surface sanding and buffing.
The neck is shaped in width and cross section and the root adjusted in width and shape to fit the neck cavity in the body. Then the fingerboard and peghead face veneer are glued on and shaped to match the neck, and the tuner holes drilled in the peghead. The fingerboard is slotted for the frets, the frets cut and pressed into the slots, and then the fingerboard and frets sanded to be level and the fret ends rounded off. The whole neck, exclusive of the fingerboard, is then finished as described below for the body.
Finally we add the tuning mechanisms, nut, pickups, bridge, end stop, electronics and strings to complete the finished instrument.
The fully cured surface finish is wet sanded with increasingly fine grade sandpapers to remove all surface blemishes and produce a smooth finish, following which the sanded surface is buffed with several grades of buffing compound, using a rotary buffing pad, to produce a smooth and shiny finish.