Design Revisited, & Lessons Learned


This very moment is the first I’ve had in almost a month to pick up where I left off. This moment also marks a second attempt at building a bass guitar. In hindsight I needed some time to regroup, come up with a design I truly loved, and the ever critical decision of wood selection. As before this bass is made from multiple pieces of wood, starting with a body core, and neck of Mahogany. The top plate is still somewhat a question, as I’ve worked on a piece of book matched Tiger Maple, and this wood is definitely exhibition grade material. The only hesitation in employing this species is that Tiger Maple can be found on so many guitars, both factory and custom.

With all that being said, I spent the better part of the last hour gluing up the core blank, with two inlay strips of Maple/Walnut/Maple, that will fall on either side of the center line. Gluing up solid body guitar blanks is much for stressful with the race against adhesives that feature superior strength and little patience. The term “open time” is a myth, glue is glue as far as I can tell. In order to ensure a flat blank I clamped from every angle that matters, and since my vise has yet to find a home in my new home/shop, part of it serves as the perfect weight to hold everything down. Now that time is once again on my side, I’ll be able to consider the Tiger Maple as the top plate or is there a better choice? Chances are it will be the Tiger Maple as my checking account is boss in this area.

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