David Díaz.

Project Log: Some Sort of Guitar

I was lucky enough to be gifted an old, broken guitar.

An image of the guitar's body"

It was in pretty rough shape. The bridge had been bolted to the body so when it started lifting it broke through the top.

A closeup of the guitar's lifted bridge"

I felt that it wasn’t really worth restoring it and that I’d rather try building something new on top of it. I was thinking that just adding a pickup would make it a bit more interesting.

I started by removing half of the top. Since I don’t care too much about the quality, I was able to remove the lower half quite easily with a utility knife.

A ruler on the guitar showing where I cut it through"

The lower half of the guitar's top removed from the guitar"

I used this lower half to create a template to create a new lower half.

The paper template I created"

I used this template to cut a thin sheet of plywood to replace that piece. It’s a bit oversized but I will be sanding it down to size.

The guitar with it's new plywood top"

The new plywood was a bit thicker than the rest of the top so I had to plane the outer wall down so that both parts would be somewhat flush together.

January 22nd

Here’s the not-so-fun part. I started prepping the guitar for painting. I am thinking I want to paint the entire thing in a solid color, a dark one should make the entire thing easier to match.

I started with the body. I needed to make sure all edges were as neat as possible. There’s an upper bound to how good I think I can get it to look so I am trying to cover the basics at least.

I didn’t have a chisel on hand so I had to use a utility knife. It made the process rather slow but I got it done.

After cleaning the edges, I sanded the body.

The guitar with is freshly sanded body"

Next I had to do the neck and fittings. I started by removing the old fittings, I don’t intend to buy new ones so I’ll have to clean these.

The guitar's tuners"

Luckily disassembly is pretty straightforward.

The guitar's tuners dissambled"

Next I prepped the neck. Some light sanding…

The guitar's neck after a light sanding"

and some light scrapping…

The guitar's neck after a light scrapping"

and it was ready to be painted.

The guitar hanged from a wire to be painted"

We applied a primer, to hopefully even everything out a bit.

The guitar with it's white primer"

Now it only needs a second coat of primer and we’ll apply it’s final color.

January 24

In the meantime, I’ve gone ahead and cleaned up it’s original hardware. I left it all submerged in a cup with 1 part of distilled white vinegar and 1 part water overnight.

The next day I had a go at it with a scotch pad and some steel wool under running water.

All the parts cleaned up"

After letting it dry and having it reassembled, it all looked great.

The tuners reassembled"

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