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17/03/1964 a day of birth Precision bass build

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9 hours ago, rubis said:

Next question is about the aluminium pickguard shield. 

The red lettering on the back appears to say 'ALCLAD' but I can't make out what the rest of it says 

 

Can anyone help please?  

Once again thanks in advance for any help, advice, opinions or criticisms 

 

 

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"Alclad" indicates that you have a sheet of aluminium alloy that has a thin layer of pure aluminium rolled onto its surface for corrosion resistance.  If you scratch the surface deeply enough, the underlying alloy will be exposed to atmoshere and it will start to corrode if the scratch is left untreated.

The partially obscured number, possibly 2024, indicates what alloy of aluminium the sheet itself is.  It is one of the "2" series of aluminium alloys and as such, it is heat treatable.

Detailed document

You needn't worry about the heat treatment bit unless you intend to work the sheet into a 3D form but I'd advise you to consider a coat of tough lacquer to preserve a highly polished finish on the pure aluminium surface.  You can repolish the surface and go without a top coat but only so many times.

 

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Wow!

I see what you mean about the 2024 numbering, and I understand the heat treatment information (my first job on leaving school in the 80’s was as a blacksmith)

There is some more lettering on the lower horn part in the photo, maybe part of a word or name, it looks like ‘.....AISE.....’

Any ideas what that might mean?

 

Thank you kindly for your excellelnt response 👍

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5 hours ago, rubis said:

Wow!

I see what you mean about the 2024 numbering, and I understand the heat treatment information (my first job on leaving school in the 80’s was as a blacksmith)

There is some more lettering on the lower horn part in the photo, maybe part of a word or name, it looks like ‘.....AISE.....’

Any ideas what that might mean?

 

Thank you kindly for your excellelnt response 👍

You are welcome.

I don't recognise the partial spelling but it might be the manufacturer's brand.

I should have mentioned.  With Alclad, any cut edges are exposing the underlying alloy to air.  I'd want to sweat proof the edge of a pickguard for that reason even if I was going to leave the surface with a polished finish.

PS;  My apologies.  On taking the time to read this topic again, I realised that you wanted the ally as a hidden shield to go behind the existing pickguard.  Ignore my ramblings about it being polished or sweat proofed.  Next time I will refrain from responding to posts until I have woken up.

Edited by SpondonBassed

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10 hours ago, rubis said:

To the rescue again😌

Thanks again sir

Where are you based? I could pop over for a few hours with it and you can photo/measure whatever you like?

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On 22/07/2018 at 22:03, rubis said:

I'm contemplating how to go about getting an aluminium shield that goes underneath it. 

you can get them in USA at reasonable cost, but I can't find a UK supplier. 

I will have to wait and see if I get stuck-on for import taxes on the pickguard, it seems a lottery whether you do or don't, and if I could I would rather source parts here. 

I could always make the aluminium guard, I used to be a blacksmith years ago! 

I think they are 14 gauge aluminium sheet, and I will have a template to use!

be aware that lovely Royal Mail add an £8 handling charge too. Far in excess of the actual work needed to process your item. 

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2 hours ago, Bridgehouse said:

Where are you based? I could pop over for a few hours with it and you can photo/measure whatever you like?

That’s very kind of you but I live in Plymouth, which I imagine is out of  the way from you 😟

Edited by rubis
Spelling mistake

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Just now, rubis said:

That’s very kind of you but I live in Plymouth, which I imagine is out of  the way drom you 😟

It is a little ;)

 

If you want specific photos of certain bits then just ask ;)

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2 hours ago, Geek99 said:

be aware that lovely Royal Mail add an £8 handling charge too. Far in excess of the actual work needed to process your item. 

Yes you’re quite right, however I was lucky enough to find one on the German Ebay site, it is used...even better, as it will need to  look 50 years old and no import taxes!

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2 minutes ago, Bridgehouse said:

It is a little ;)

 

If you want specific photos of certain bits then just ask ;)

I most certainly will, thanks

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I began the relic-ing process on the body by following this article from Guitar magazine, which was very clear, useful and pretty much tallied with all the other articles I had read or watched online. 

https://www.theguitarmagazine.com/diy/relic-nitro-finish/

It's easy to get a bit carried away when dropping keys onto the finish and picking bits off with a nail file and dentist's style pick, and the paint chips very easily. 

I didn't want it to look pristine, but I also didn't want it to look like Rory Gallagher's Strat!  

I tried to stick to areas which would naturally get worn, like the forearm contour, and places that always seem to chip and damage from the dozens of photo's I have looked at!

 

 

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Next step was the hot and cold treatment. 

I used a heat gun and plumbers pipe freezing spray because the freezer is full of food and the wonderful long hot British summer seems to have ended. 

One fairly small area at a time seems to be the best way with this, and as in the article the cracks and crazing seem to emanate from the little dings and dents, moving off in a random pattern, which is how it would go naturally I should imagine?

I used the recommended wood dye, but it seemed a bit too thick and dark for my liking, so I diluted it with white spirit and it went in the cracks nicely and is still quite visible. 

 

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24 minutes ago, rubis said:

Next step was the hot and cold treatment. 

I used a heat gun and plumbers pipe freezing spray because the freezer is full of food and the wonderful long hot British summer seems to have ended. 

One fairly small area at a time seems to be the best way with this, and as in the article the cracks and crazing seem to emanate from the little dings and dents, moving off in a random pattern, which is how it would go naturally I should imagine?

I used the recommended wood dye, but it seemed a bit too thick and dark for my liking, so I diluted it with white spirit and it went in the cracks nicely and is still quite visible. 

 

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That is VERY authentic looking.  Greatcwork :)

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Wow, thanks gents, praise indeed, that’s very kind of you

The next step I suppose, which I’ve been putting off because it will be a challenge for a ‘garage enthusiast’ with very limited facilities, is making a neck with the proper curved veneer fingerboard rather than a slab board.

I know you might be able to get one made by Musikraft but by the time you add import taxes to the purchase price it can get a bit silly

I also thought of taking a neck and fingerboard blank along to a local firm with a CNC machine and have them do the radiusing work, but I’d prefer to do it myself if possible.

The idea that occured to me lately was to make a router jig using those clever linear bearings and rails which are used on 3D printers for the lengthways movement

https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/2Pcs-8x300mm-Linear-Rail-Shaft-Optical-Axis-4x-Bearing-Blocks-3D-Printer-CNC/152600768642?hash=item2387b6f082:g:JiQAAOSw5T9aveVS

and the some version of this kind of thing to give the sideways movement at the appropriate radius, and set to either  a convex or concave radius to achieve the veneered fingerboard curve?

https://www.google.co.uk/search?q=guitar+fingerboard+radiusing+jig&ie=UTF-8&oe=UTF-8&hl=en-gb&client=safari#imgrc=FZMgdEXEOuBLwM:

I hope that makes sense, it does in my head but that’s by no means always a good thing!

As always I would love to hear any thoughts, suggestions, warnings or  ideas for this 

thanks in advance again

Harry

 

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1 hour ago, rubis said:

Wow, thanks gents, praise indeed, that’s very kind of you

The next step I suppose, which I’ve been putting off because it will be a challenge for a ‘garage enthusiast’ with very limited facilities, is making a neck with the proper curved veneer fingerboard rather than a slab board.

I know you might be able to get one made by Musikraft but by the time you add import taxes to the purchase price it can get a bit silly

I also thought of taking a neck and fingerboard blank along to a local firm with a CNC machine and have them do the radiusing work, but I’d prefer to do it myself if possible.

The idea that occured to me lately was to make a router jig using those clever linear bearings and rails which are used on 3D printers for the lengthways movement

https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/2Pcs-8x300mm-Linear-Rail-Shaft-Optical-Axis-4x-Bearing-Blocks-3D-Printer-CNC/152600768642?hash=item2387b6f082:g:JiQAAOSw5T9aveVS

and the some version of this kind of thing to give the sideways movement at the appropriate radius, and set to either  a convex or concave radius to achieve the veneered fingerboard curve?

https://www.google.co.uk/search?q=guitar+fingerboard+radiusing+jig&ie=UTF-8&oe=UTF-8&hl=en-gb&client=safari#imgrc=FZMgdEXEOuBLwM:

I hope that makes sense, it does in my head but that’s by no means always a good thing!

As always I would love to hear any thoughts, suggestions, warnings or  ideas for this 

thanks in advance again

Harry

 

There's a lot of stuff here!  

To try to pin down the options, you could:

  • Buy a quality built, radiused and fretted unfinished maple P bass neck for around £120 to £220.  The £120 would be someone like Northwest Guitars.  The £200 ish would be someone like Allparts UK, Fender-licenced and Made in USA or Japan (bought one very recently and it was SUPERB quality).
  • Buy a second hand one on ebay.  Anything Fender will be hugely overpriced.  There are then good ones and there are bad ones.
  • Build one yourself.  Big, big learning curve if you haven't done one before but perfectly feasible with a Workmate and an array of tools to thickness, rout, carve, slot, fret.  But we are looking at quite an array of tools...

The simplest and cheapest way of radiusing a fretboard blank itself is a radius sanding block (wooden one £20 or so).  It takes quite a long time and there are tips and techniques to keep everything even, but perfectly feasible.  You can make a radiusing jig, but it would be a lot quicker to just sand a one-off with a block (even with a jig, you still need to finish off with a radius block).

Slotting the fretboard, you need a decent saw - but then can, with care, get away with hand measuring and using the radius block clamped at each fret position as your 90 degree saw guide.  But you can buy a ready slotted fretboard blank (David Dyke charges £10 to slot one of his unradiused blanks)

 

I have photos and good experiences and bad experiences on all of this stuff, but of the above options, not sure which approach meets your needs.   Let me know and I would be happy to expand on any of those aspects ;)

 

Edited by Andyjr1515
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Hi Andy 

                thanks for your thoughts, most welcome from a man who knows about these things 🤔 

I have scratch built necks in the past, but they have been slab board ones, where I did a 10" radius board with a sanding block.

They came out quite well, which was one of the deciding factors in favour of starting this project, because getting the double curved fingerboard to mate up neatly with the radiused neck blank will undoubtedly be a challenge, but then I do like to push myself with each new build! 

The other thing in favour of making a router jig, and I think you will identify with this, is that I could use it again for future projects, which are already buzzing around in my mind (I fancy making a 60's spec, lightly relic'd, 12 string Tele 😋)

 I also have a couple of other builds in varying stages of completion, so I could use a jig to help with these and I have a vague plan to keep this hobby going into retirement (I don't play golf or go fishing!) so it wouldn't be something that would get used once

I might be answering my own question here !!

Thanks again for your kind offer of advice, I will try not to be too much of a pest, it's only wood after all  :facepalm:

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1 hour ago, rubis said:

Hi Andy 

                thanks for your thoughts, most welcome from a man who knows about these things 🤔 

I have scratch built necks in the past, but they have been slab board ones, where I did a 10" radius board with a sanding block.

They came out quite well, which was one of the deciding factors in favour of starting this project, because getting the double curved fingerboard to mate up neatly with the radiused neck blank will undoubtedly be a challenge, but then I do like to push myself with each new build! 

The other thing in favour of making a router jig, and I think you will identify with this, is that I could use it again for future projects, which are already buzzing around in my mind (I fancy making a 60's spec, lightly relic'd, 12 string Tele 😋)

 I also have a couple of other builds in varying stages of completion, so I could use a jig to help with these and I have a vague plan to keep this hobby going into retirement (I don't play golf or go fishing!) so it wouldn't be something that would get used once

I might be answering my own question here !!

Thanks again for your kind offer of advice, I will try not to be too much of a pest, it's only wood after all  :facepalm:

Ah - OK.  You are - and based on the quality and attention to detail of the body, of course you are :)  - talking about recreating the original Fender 60's neck with a thin fretboard glued to a radiused neck.

In which case disregard pretty much everything I said! 

And - in addition to the associated original method that Fender used of sliding in frets from the side - it's probably the only two aspects of necks I've never tried! :lol:

Are you aiming for 7.25" radius or 9.5"?

My understanding is patchy and maybe wrong - I'm sure yours is greater than mine.  But to put forward some thoughts.

I think that the original necks were:

  • blank neck without fretboard radiused to 12"
  • thin fretboard glued - probably using radius blocks - bending it to the 12" radius
  • finish to final fretboard radius

What I am absolutely not sure, is the "bending to the 12" " bit or whether the underside of the fretboard was concave radiused.

Ignore most of what I say - but if I personally was doing it  (but I'm a pragmatist not a perfectionist) I would consider the following:

1.  Cheap and 'one-off' assuming it's a bent board

  • Radius the top of the neck blank using a 12" radius block
  • Thickness the fretboard to as thin as possible while retaining enough thickness to maintain decent edges with the increased radius of the final sand
  • Glue the fretboard, using a series of 12" radius blocks as clamping cauls all along the fretboard length.  We're talking serious G clamps here!  And lots of them
  • Radius the top of the fretboard using a 9.5" or 7.25" radius block

2.  Cheap and 'one off' assuming it's a concave backed board

  •  Make up a simple rig of a line of 12" radius blocks, making up a length 6" or so longer than the fretboard length
  • Turn the neck blank upside down and sand the neck on the static radius blocks
  • Using the same radius blocks jig, make a 12" convex radius block using a suitable piece of pine or similar 3x3 timber
  • Use the convex pine radius block to radius the back of the fretboard
  • Glue - again using the 12" radius blocks as cauls
  • Radius the top of the fretboard using a 9.5" or 7.25" radius block

3.  Radius jig

  • I would make a modified version of my home-built radius jig:

_MG_6431.thumb.JPG.416f26f138b089cd76aee32d383fdaba.JPG

  • The modifications would include: a set of end guides which curve the other way to be able to rout concave; a set of 7.25" ends (bear in mind that the radius of the guides is LESS that the finished radius because you have to allow for the length of the radius cutter too).
  • You would still need to tidy up the radii with sanding blocks
  • I would still radius the neck itself using blocks in any case - it's just too difficult in my view to clamp a neck as accurately as these types of jigs need to be.  I would use the above jig, using the two sets of ends, for the fretboard blank, starting with the 12" concave, then flipping it over and doing the 7.25" top radius

With some careful thought and a much bigger rig, you could actually use varying lengths of router bit projections to get both convex radii out of one set of ends...but that's too much thought for my little brain.

 

Hope that helps get your head round some possibilities but, as always, feel free to disregard :)

Andy

 

 

Edited by Andyjr1515

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Interesting. All of the talk of different radii and other such matters piqued my curiosity and I went and looked at my 64..

Zgcyx9h.jpg

Ignoring the fact that the corners are pretty much worn down from years of something.. it does look a bit like the board is 7.5" radius top and a similar radius bottom, and thus the neck top is not far off 7.5".. but it is quite difficult to tell. If you follow the lines of the frets vs the bottom of the board then to me, there doesn't seem to be a huge difference in radius - but again it could be less scientific than that. Having measured it, the board (at the frets) is definitely 7.5" but to me, I'd be surprised if the bottom of the board is as much as 12"

Having said that, my understanding was the rosewood board was cut to 1/4" or so, the underside then curved appropriately, then the top of the neck pin routed for truss rod, which was then fitted, and then the board glued to it, and then the top of the board radiused to match. It's more than possible that a standard radius was used for the bottom of the board and presumably it was determined by the channel required for the truss rod. 

I also believe that the logic behind this wasn't to save rosewood and thus cut costs, but to enable the truss rod to be mounted slightly higher in the neck and thus deliver more power and stiffness. 

This pic of some mustang necks clearly shows the truss rod higher in the veneer board on the right:

slab_veneer.jpg

I've seen some P slab boards where the truss rod nut cuts into the slab board as well which suggests Fender wanted the rod higher but it compromised the board in some way.

 

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Mmmm - I think you are right, looking at those. 

So @rubis would be probably talking only one set of radii  :)  

Looking just how thin that rhs fretboard is, I would be very surprised if the bottom of the fretboard had to be concave carved.  Dunno - whether it could be just clamped?

 

 

Edited by Andyjr1515

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