I saw Paul Craig's pic of a steel bar truss rod install from the other day, and recoiled in recollection of my first attempt at a truss rod. Had a good plan, install under fret board, cover it up, no problem. I proceeded to cut the slot through the back of the neck, exposed to the world! Bottom edges of neck already carved for the curve. Oops. Scrambling to recover (it was a nice neck!), I epoxied the flat bar into the neck. The next day, after curing, I filled the slot with Durham's Rock Hard Water Putty. That'll do it. Except for the cracks in the dried product. O.K., a little DAP wood filler into the cracks, and I'll stain 'er tomorrow. All prepped up, dried to a creamy yellow hue, as described, and sanded smooth as a baby's backside. What's the on the can? DOES NOT TAKE SURFACE STAINS. #%$&! That beautiful red oak neck got two coats of Krylon black.
There's always a way.
Cut the headstock beautifully. Neck fitted to box, exquisitely. Lovingly applied stain, followed with a glossy poly topcoat. Began to fit the tuners, nice black ones. Compression nut bottomed out before the tuners were tight to the headstock. Uh oh. Headstock too thin, by 1/8". Rifle through the hardware bin, looking for METRIC washers, and luckily find three with correct inner diameter (10mm?). Doesn't matter, they fit snug. Pull out that same black Krylon, painted 'em up, installed carefully under the factory washers, and saved another one.
There's always a way.
Built my first three string bass using a very long box. Cruised along in a snappy manner. Neck, tuners, tailpiece, fretting, bone nut, electronics, finish...all falling right into place. Yowzaa! The day arrives to string it up and get to thumpin'. ^%#$! The long scale bass strings are not long enough to run up past the nut to the tuners. Many phone calls and interweb searches provide no solution. Then, at the end of my rope, it hits me. Stand up Bass strings. Those sumbitches are LONG! Called a rockabilly bass and cello shop, and he set me up with some "take off" strings for $15.00 per set (I bought three..I'm a slow learner). We matched up the stand up bass strings pretty close to standard bass guitar strings, I split, and got home and strung 'em up. Nice roundwound strings, play nice, real easy on the fingers.I had to pry open the "E" string tuner to wedge in the fattest string, but a few twists on the tuners and I was cookin'!
Funny how you start a build, and, as least in my case, somewhere along the way you have to call an audible. Sometimes I have to just put it down for a bit, and look for a "Eureka moment".
Lord, I love buildin' gits.
It looks great Granpa. We learn along the way how to do it different the next time right? I bet it sounds nice.
Oh good! It's not just me. :D
I'm a firm believer in learning from my mistakes so I tend to do everything wrong the first time. lol
Also I don't have a shop, had never done any woodworking or anything "crafty" before September 2017 and don't have drawers full of screws, bolts, miscellaneous cool hardware junk like my dad did. So every build I take a couple of runs for to the local music supply stores (some folks call 'em hardware stores). Someday I hope to get enough junk stockpiled so I can build instruments that don't cost me $50 in gas. lol
Yup! Always a way. Occasionally the kindling box is the way but that's not happening quite as much as it once did!
Yep. Scrap pile does get smaller with experience, Jim.
looks great, I'm jealous....
an idea for the next time the strings are too short and you have a very generous amount of space between the tail and the bridge, a flying trapeze tail piece to give back about 3/4 of the string beyond the bridge...
Hey JL. I recollect that you offered up that solution back when I first posted my bass guitar pic's, and tail of woe, a few months back. Thanks again. In fact, I went to Amazon, bought a bass trapeze tailpiece, thinking that would save my build (prior to the rockabilly place). There was some kind of prospective problem....I thought the tailpiece would have landed too close to the bridge, or right on it. Anyway, as the picture shows, there was plenty of room for the trapeze tailpiece, so the suggestion is filed for future use. I still have the bass trapeze tailpiece, so I'm good to go on a future build.
So here we have JL commenting a second time on an issue a builder had months back. Since the first time JL commented, a lot of new builders have entered the forums. Many, probably most of these new pals wouldn't ever see the original post, and wouldn't see JL's solution to the problem. When old posts and previously discussed problems and solutions are re-entered into current forums, new members get the benefit of past experiences. Thanks to members that engage, and keep offering up their experiences, successes, and failures.
an easy answer to the commercial tail pieces sizes is one of gitty's stainless steel tail pieces, unbent, and a loop of bailing wire through the lower screw holes, :-)
It ain't the mistakes we make, but how we fix them that matters.
Ha on the familiar story. Love that long bass.