Ok guys, I'm psyched. I had this idea to build my own 540R with a custom paintjob and everything I liked about the Radius but they never built. I've wanted a seafoam strat forever but my playing just isn't suited for a strat. 540's are my thing. I have always loved the fountain blue, almost Turquoise 88 540R's and thought that since I cant find one that I would build one in Seafoam green. Before I could get it done though, Jack Secret beat me to the punch with his 540P (shakes fist) but it did allow me to see how darn cool this is going to look. http://www.jemsite.com/forums/f18/ne...en-107729.html
After first looking at the numerous dings in the body, I started to doubt myself until I saw Buckshots S series thread and figured if he can do what he did with that horrible trench, I could do what I wanted to do. http://www.jemsite.com/forums/f21/bu...ct-102001.html
I picked up a SSH body from Frank and traded for an Ultra neck. The first pic is what I started with.
A body that had some dings, most of which did not make it through the wood, some did. For x-mas my father in law got me a multitool that just happened to have a nice sander on it and made quick work of the paint and primers on the body. I had to be careful and move slowly though because there are no sharp angles on this guitar. I did not want to change a curve trying to get the paint off. After taking off the paint, I have started and am almost done hand sanding the body to take out any imperfections and clean off any high spots. I started with a 220 grit to get the big stuff and have worked my way up to a 600 grit to really smooth it out. When I find some 1200 and 1500 grit, I'll finish it off.
An interesting thing about this body, like JS
's, most of the curves of the body are hand finished from the factory meaning there could be subtle spots here and there that maybe the factory worker did not take the time to really go over the body like I will. I have gotten the curves very smooth all over the guitar. There are a couple of low spots that may need to be filled yet. I also had to fill an strap hole that someone had added and while I was at it, used the old wood glue/toothpick trick to fill the original so I can redrill it since I suspect it may have been stripped out, hence the second hole. I filled some of the other dings that made it through to the wood with either wood filler or wood glue, depending on how deep they were. They sanded smooth nicely.
So right now I'm here:
Still have some sanding to do and am trying to figure out if I need to buy a bandsaw because I would plan on filling the middle pickup cavity and having a SH version of a 540R. I just don't use the middle pickup and figured since I dont use, why leave it? Finding a piece of basswood may be a little difficult here locally but I dont need a huge piece, just enough to cut a filler block since I've been told to both use a block, epoxy it in, bondo the cracks and to make sure that I use the same type of wood for the filler block if possible.
While I was waiting for some of the filler to dry, I sanded the headstock of the Ultra neck I have because I want a matching headstock. Normally I would feel bad for doing this but the headstock had paint dings that were not going to sit well with my perfectionistic OCD.
As far as painting? My original idea was to have a friends brother paint it but after talking to Alaskabat, he talked me into to doing it myself. Including the 25 coats of clear!!!
I have already picked up a nice black Edge trem and I might try and find an original backstop as I once even thought about making this thing a hardtail but decided I wanted the trem. It would be nice to lock it out.
So....I will continue to update as I progress. Any tips on filling that cavity would be much listened to!!!!