From the ‘what is your next guitar’ thread one of my ideas is to build a telecaster, inspired by that walnut tele build but no way I have the skills or equipment to go from scratch.
Exactly how much I do I am not sure, and I know there are a lot of parts out there with a range of difficulty in building. I’m ok with a soldering iron and decent diy’er but dont currently have much in the way of guitar focused tools or woodworking stuff etc (just typical home stuff , drill, sander etc).
Aesthetically I am looking for a dark wood with a steampunk/Victorian kind of aged vintage look like these. No time frame for this but would like to start looking at parts etc, I’m in New Zealand so most things would probably end up being imported (we have local suppliers and wood but…)
Sounds like a fun project, Rob, though rather you than me I have enough trouble playing and changing strings
Like the look over the body adorned with a dragon. The dark wood and grain, right up my aesthetic alley.
On pickups, perhaps also worth considering P90s, either for both or perhaps a P90 and an SC? But I’m no wiz when it comes to guitar electronics and options. Might also depend on the music you may want to play on it eg a 5 string tele intended to play in open G
I had been looking at building a cheap kit, but painting the body kept putting me off.
The trigger for my build was a UK retailer posting up some relic’d bodies he’d had commissioned, which set the build in motion.
I’ve just had a look at what my build cost, and this is the rough breakdown from 2017/8-
Body - £340
Neck - £285
Gotoh bridge + various generic bits (neck plate, jack/socket - £63
More little bits + pieces - £25
Schaller machine heads - £65
Oil City Masterwound SOL67 pickups + loom - £165
The total for parts was just under £1000, plus I paid a tame luthier to give it a once over and make sure I hadn’t made any faux pas.
I have no regrets about building it, as I still love how it looks, plays, and sounds, but it certainly wasn’t a budget build.
I do have an unpainted Strat body, and roasted maple neck (it’s not flamed, so is a lot less figured than the one on my Tele) for another project, but I’ve still never decided how I want the body finished
Find someone with a CNC mill and then you could have any timber you like for the body? Glue up a blank from reclaimed timber or something? I’ve never looked into it but would be surprised if there aren’t CAD designs for nearly-teles and nearly-Strats in the public domain.
Hello mate. I’ve also built my own guitar (offset Tele), which probably cost about £1000GBP, maybe more. I was thinking what I could have bought for that money but then it wouldn’t be unique or mean as much to me.
I saw a Limited Edition Fender Tele based on a 52 but with a roasted ash body/roasted maple neck and couldn’t afford one, so thought I’d try and build my own, thought it would be fun. I tried to use as many Fender parts as I could, to try and closely match the guitar that inspired me.
Anyway, I’m glad I took it to a luthier to do the final setup as a neck I had fitted had maxed-out on the truss rod so had to be returned. I’ve had so many issues with this build, usually down to parts suppliers or the parts themselves, so I’ll be glad to finally get it back and play it!
Most of the risk can be mitigated by doing lots of research, and asking the right people, the right questions.
Thankfully when I built mine, I made use of the extensive knowledge of various TheFretboard members, to ensure everything I bought was suitable for what I wanted it do. Plus they provided help when I wasn’t sure about anything.