Added a new guitar to the collection. I’ve been itching for a Tele for a while, but I didn’t want to spend big bucks. I built a kit from Solo Guitars, and I’m happily surprised. They did a great job of pre drilling everything, and the neck fits very well in the pocket with just a touch of fiddling. Honestly, the hardest part is finishing the body, but I’m fine with a “rustic” look. It needs a few minor adjustments, but all in all it’s a nice guitar with a little sweat equity invested.
Looks pretty good. How does it play and how does it sound?
I have a relatively cheap tele copy (London City - a guitar forum ‘secret’ here in the Netherlands), and also owned a Fender (Mexican built). I never actually liked the Fender (which I swapped for a classical guitar that I never quite got the hang of). The previous owner replaced the 3 way switch by a 5 way switch and I think he messed it up. The sound was not a nice chime/ twang but a terrible piercing sound. My London City falls just a bit short when it comes to twang, but it’s got a great bluesy sound on the neck pup. I can always eq a bit more twang if needed
Still working on the setup. It definitely needs a new nut, the one it came with is probably plastic and is pinching. The tuners are functional but cheap. It plays well other than that. At some point I’ll probably change out the bridge with a six saddle setup, but I’m trying to not turn it into an expensive cheap guitar.
All in all, I’m happy with how it sounds and plays, and I can keep working on dialing it in.
That came out really sweet. You did a nice job with that burst, that deep blue is perfect.
Having built a handful of kit guitars myself, it’s actually quite amazing how decent you can get them to play and sound for very little effort.
As you mentioned, the plastic nuts are terrible, and easily replaced, and in my experience a fret level is essential, but otherwise, you can build yourself a reasonable instrument for very little money, and just a bit of elbow grease.
This is a Tele I built quite a few years back, but ended up going a little crazy with the mods including the double-cut, pearl binding, tune-o-matic bridge and string-through-body etc.
Knowing I can tweak it and keep improving it is part of the kick of building it. The neck and body are pretty damn good, so the bones are there. I have since switched to brass barrels and better tuners, and dropped a Tusq nut in, which was almost a direct fit. Big playability improvement. Lots of other stuff maybe in store down the line. Maybe an LP Junior in honor of Leslie West.
You have my interest. Sounds like fun:) Updates on your progression thru this would be appreciated.
If you know which end of a screwdriver to use you’ll be okay. I set my guitars up for myself, so the part that takes patience is the finish, and waiting for the stain and Tru Oil to dry enough to sand down and recoat multiple times. It is a good distraction, and the guitar is starting to play really well. My only complaint is the high E string is noticeably flat at the 21st fret, but fine everywhere else. Either the fret is mispositioned, which I doubt, or a little high, so I’ll get that figured out. Realistically you can build a decent guitar for under $350 with a little patience.
I taught auto mechanics, welding, woodworking etc in HS. My garage is fully equipped. Our lead singer has been doing this and he is not mechanical, so there you go. I don’t think he does these finer points however. Gets my mind goin this stuff. have a good one