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Thread: Newbie taking on the RCA-4 challenge

  1. #1
    Member Julozoy's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2015
    Epping, NSW

    Newbie taking on the RCA-4 challenge

    Hi Guys,

    I have been watching the posts and getting inspiration from this forum while waiting for my kit to arrive.
    When I ordered it end of August, I thought the backorder would be fine since i'm not in a hurry (which I think is the right mindset looking at other builds, it will just take however long it takes) but i'm now hitching to get started. I really hope the extra wait for the Ash body will be worth it.

    I'm generally not good at building stuff and never really worked with wood, so this could get very interesting. Just hoping I won't make too much of a mess out of it, and really looking forward to learn heaps in the process. Patience and proper research would be key here, along with some support from this group

    So, RCA, Rick looking bass. Finish-wise I've just ordered the Wudtone Surfer Girl, which i find stunning with silver accents. Big change from all my purchased basses which have always been black or dark tinted but I want this one to be a fun and bubbly thing - so that tint would work perfectly. Not sure about how to go about it but I would like to incorporate some glitter (yes, really!) into the binding - we'll see about that. Apart from that, being a first build, I think keeping it simple and stock standard is probably wise, and I can attempt get fancy on future builds.

    More to come when the kit arrives!
    In the meantime, i'm off to practicing my sanding....


  2. #2
    Mentor Rabbitz's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2015
    Mount Colah, NSW
    Welcome Julo.

    As a bit of noob myself, the best advice I have seen is:
    Slowly slowy, stop, look and think about it.

    When you are at a crossroads - ask. The guys here are very helpful and will take the time to help you get it done and get it right.
    (Sometimes I think they can be too helpful )

    I'll leave it to one of the gurus to talk about sanding...

    Most of all, have fun with it.

    I admit that I am an agent of Satan, however, my duties are largely ceremonial.


  3. #3
    Member Arzi's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2015
    Vantaa, Finland
    Welcome Julo and good to see another RC coming together. Can't wait for it. As Rabbitz said - take your time and ask. I hadn't done any woodwork since age of 15 ( 24 years ago) and I managed to get a nice piece of my RC-4 with the help of everyone here.

    Good luck with your build!

  4. #4
    Moderator Brendan's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2013
    Perth, WA
    Welcome along Julozoy great start in terms of starting a build diary and an RC bass. Still to get to mine .

    Main recommendations are:
    * Take your time - rushed builds can end in tears. If you get the sense that something's not right - take photos - put it on the forum, have a cup of something - generally someone helpful will be along pretty quick;
    * Do a mock build as soon as you get the kit - while the QA / QC is generally pretty good, there have been the odd occasions that a tuner has been missed out, etc. Last thing you want is to get to putting everything together and find you're short a tuner...;
    * And as Rabbitz has said - ask questions - another thing that can save a lot of heartache...
    If you haven't read it yet, the how to guide ( is essential reading!

  5. #5
    GAStronomist stan's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2013
    Geelong, Vic
    welcome Julo, enjoy the build and lots of help here

  6. #6
    Overlord of Music Fretworn's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2013
    Hornsby Area, Sydney, NSW
    Welcome Julozoy! Which part of Epping are you in? I used to live over on the Carlingford side, and I had relatives who lived on the Eastern side of the railway when I was growing up. Now I'm just up the road in Thornleigh.

    Hope you enjoy the ride!

    First Act ME276 (resurrected curb-side find)
    Scratchie lapsteel
    Custom ST-1 12 String
    Scratch Lapsteel
    Meinl DIY Cajon
    Cigar Box lap steel

    Open D/Standard Double 6 twin neck

  7. #7
    GAStronomist wokkaboy's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2012
    Perth WA
    welcome Julozoy, great kit the RC's and I think it's worth waiting for the ash version.
    As others have said start a build diary and do a mock build and ask lots of questions. The forum is here to help you get the best build possible
    Current Builds and status
    scratch end grain pine tele - first clear coat on !
    JBA-4 - assembled - final tweaks
    Telemonster double scale tele - finish tobacco burst on body and sand neck

    Completed builds
    scratch oak.rose gum Jazzmaster - assembled needs setup
    MK-2 Mosrite - assembled - play in
    Ash tele with Baritone neck - neck pup wiring tweaks and play in

  8. #8
    Member Julozoy's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2015
    Epping, NSW
    Thank you all for the warm welcome and advice. Definitely will take my time and start with a mock build, check and double check everything is right, etc... while having fun with it.
    I can see that the new stock has arrived now, so just a matter of days...

    @Fretworn, I'm on the Carlingford side, close to Midson.

  9. #9
    Member Julozoy's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2015
    Epping, NSW

    Red face

    Alright, the Kit is here! Took a bit to arrive as Australia Post for some reason felt that it should visit Brisbane after a brief stint in Sydney before coming back... Anyway.

    So, following the advice on the forum I thoroughly checked it and all looks good. All parts are here and appear correct, no glue spots or other nasties. I was concerned about what looks like a machining / screw mark on the front but then realised and 1- it would be covered by the bridge and 2- all other pictures I have see have the same, even on PB's website so it probably is normal.

    I did a quick mock putting all parts roughly where they are supposed to be. Looks exciting. Love the wood grain, particularly on the to part which luckily won't be covered by the pick guard.

    I do have one concern / question with the neck. Is it supposed to be pushed back all the way into the cavity? It fits quite nicely but the the start of the fretboard appears to be too low and the pickup / pick guard don't seem to fit properly if setup this way. Looking at other builds of the same model though, the last fret seem to be in line with the top part of the body (per the last picture) which would suggest that the neck is not pushed all the way but it doesn't seem quite right.
    Is this normal? if so should the neck be all the way in (per pic 2) or pushed up a bit (per pic 4). Sorry if it is a silly question - I did say I was a total newb - but if someone could share their views that would be a great help!

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  10. #10
    Member Swanny's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2015
    Morayfield, Qld
    Glad your kit arrived! I think one way you could check the neck position is by measuring from the nut to the 12th fret, and then to the bridge. The 12th fret should be the halfway point.

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