Workshop: Speedball Sea Green Finish Tele

Earlier this week I took apart my recently-finished Reso Tele to start tinkering on version 2 of the design. That left me with a spare neck and hardware to put this quick little project together. There's a fella on eBay who sells pine "prototype Broadcaster" bodies complete with a black (made from old records) pickguard and aluminum control plate. I thought it was too funky-cool to pass up and purchased one a couple weeks ago intending to store the body for a while and use it later.

It turned out that on Wednesday I had 5 minutes here, 5 minutes there to spare between work on customer instruments and that gave me enough time to get the body colored and finished. I say "colored" because the "stain" here is Speedball printing ink. You may or may not know this but the wifey and I are surely "art kids" -- I used to do a lot of sculpture and painting -- and so I have supplies like this hanging around. It worked just as I wanted it to and I could mix it to the color I desired really easily. I have a feeling it will fade slightly over time but that's "all plus" to me. The inspiration for doing a trans finish are those new "Rustic Ash" Fenders.

I've never had a pine guitar hanging around and the experience is pretty cool: it's definitely a different sound. I'd call it smoother, more semi-hollow or hollowbody in tone.

Lipstick and warmish-sounding twin-rail bucker... this sounds really sorta vintage in practice. I used this at the jam yesterday and it performed perfectly for twangy rockabilly/surfy lead work.

As someone who's not into knobs... this bare-minimum approach is perfect. There's a 3-way and series/parallel switch for the bucker. With the bucker in parallel all the settings are balanced volume-wise but if I set it to series you get a sort of "stepped" volume: quietest and most acoustic-sounding is just the lipstick... slightly fatter is both... and then a little fiery for lead work and loudest is just the bridge.

The body is purposely left with exposed grain and finished in a few coats of wipe-on poly. This gives it a sort of natural, textured feel (and it doesn't slip on your leg, hah hah).

Eventually this will get a fancier neck and switch roles to a baritone guitar for low and growly. I've always wanted one of those! It's currently tuned down to an open C -- CGCEGC low to high.

Unwanted string-through holes are easily blocked up with some screws...!

No comments: