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Thread: My PRS-1TS build

  1. #1
    Member Asphaltwings's Avatar
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    My PRS-1TS build

    Hi all, I have recently been thinking of getting a second guitar and after shopping a little bit, and having nothing else to work on in my spare time I decided to build one. Enter the PRS-1TS kit, My desire for a second guitar stemmed from my other guitar being somewhat unsuitable for heavy music, it being a hollowbody guitar with jazz pickups.

    My rough plan for this guitar is to whack in an EMG 81/85 set, grab myself some locking tuners (an option I missed on the Pitbull Guitars shop,) upgrade the bridge, boutique knobs and then tip it off with a lovely deep blue flame maple finish. However, unfortunately my neck doesn't quite fit properly with the end being quite roughly cut/broken (I will include pictures) and I am unsure how I should fix this as just cutting it off may cause problems and I am not an experienced guitar builder nor a particularly skilled woodworker. Thankfully this seems to be my only issue with the kit, the veneer is nicely centered, holes are all the right size and there's no noticeable cracks and very few dents or glue spots.




    This is the neck in the pocket with the bottom sitting flat against the floor of the pocket, with a noticeable gap between the base of the neck and where the pickup cavity begins.



    This is the neck sitting comfortably with the base against the back of the pickup cavity. Clear gap between the neck and the floor of the neck pocket.



    The base of the neck, the imperfection here doesn't need explanation, hahaha.

    The neck fit also isn't tight enough to stay seated on it's own, but not loose enough to cause an issue when glued in my opinion. Any feedback and advice is greatly appreciated.

    Thanks all, Mik.
    Last edited by Asphaltwings; 12-10-2018 at 11:50 AM. Reason: Embeds didn't work.

  2. #2
    Overlord of Music Sonic Mountain's Avatar
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    Hey Mik, you need to put (img) before the link and (/img) after the link - but use the square '[' brackets - to make the pics show up. I'f you reply with quote to this comment you will see what I mean.

    Last edited by Sonic Mountain; 12-10-2018 at 11:46 AM.
    Build 1 - Shoegazer MK1 JMA-1
    Build 2 - The Relliecaster TL-1
    Build 3 - The Black Cherry SG AG-1
    Build 4 - The Sonicaster TL-1ish
    Build 5 - The Steampunker Bass YB-4
    Build 6 - The Howling Gowing ST-1

    "What I lack in talent I make up for with enthusiasm"

  3. #3
    Member Asphaltwings's Avatar
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    Thank you, I don't use forums all that much and I missed the sticky thread somehow, hahaha.

  4. #4
    Overlord of Music Sonic Mountain's Avatar
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    All good man, it's a common issue. Kit looks good, there are always a few things to sort out. That bit off the neck heel isn't really a problem, you can just tidy it up a bit if it bothers you. A gap between that and the back of the pick up route is completely normal. You may find the neck has to come further out of the body to ensure the scale length is right. That will probably help with the gap you have between the bottom of the heel and the cavity as well, I don't think the neck is in the right spot atm.

    You will need to temporarily install the bridge (don't push the post receivers in, just tape up around the posts or use a bit of hose or something so you can sit it in the right spot) and then measure from the inside of the nut to the bridge to find the right neck placement. Is it a fender scale length? If so you want the bridge to be ~648mm from the nut. Usually the high 'e' is closest to this measurement with the rest of the strings ending up slightly longer for intonation. So move the neck so that you have adjustment available for the thicker strings to go back toward the tailpiece.

    Looking forward to seeing where you go with it.

    EDIT: just looked and i can see its the Gibson scale so 628mm from inside of nut to bridge saddles.
    Last edited by Sonic Mountain; 12-10-2018 at 12:15 PM.
    Build 1 - Shoegazer MK1 JMA-1
    Build 2 - The Relliecaster TL-1
    Build 3 - The Black Cherry SG AG-1
    Build 4 - The Sonicaster TL-1ish
    Build 5 - The Steampunker Bass YB-4
    Build 6 - The Howling Gowing ST-1

    "What I lack in talent I make up for with enthusiasm"

  5. #5
    Member Asphaltwings's Avatar
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    Upon another inspection I've noticed the binding on the top edge of the neck pocket is coming loose, which makes pulling the neck into a tighter fit (looking for a better position as you suggested) difficult without damaging it. Unfortunately what I can do today/this weekend is limited as I just don't have the stuff I need handy as I deliberately waited for the kit to arrive before I bought anything in order to make sure I didn't miss anything.

    As for where I'm going with the build; I'm hoping to build a guitar capable of being used for heavier tones, like the Swedish Buzzaw style associated with the Boss HM-2 pedal, but also suitable for melodic songs like this

    So I want to go with a finish that shows the grain of the wood rather than the typical matte or gloss black that is generally associated with heavier styles as I feel like that pairs with my musical interests more than a flat-colour finish would. The whale blue PRS guitars are where I'm mostly looking for inspiration for the finish, but I'm also leaning towards using the bondi blue Dingotone finish.

  6. #6
    Overlord of Music Sonic Mountain's Avatar
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    Yeah cool, have a look at the Rit clothing dyes. Phrozin has done some amazing finishes with those. Donít worry to much about the neck etc. just take your time and ask questions.
    Build 1 - Shoegazer MK1 JMA-1
    Build 2 - The Relliecaster TL-1
    Build 3 - The Black Cherry SG AG-1
    Build 4 - The Sonicaster TL-1ish
    Build 5 - The Steampunker Bass YB-4
    Build 6 - The Howling Gowing ST-1

    "What I lack in talent I make up for with enthusiasm"

  7. #7
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    Look forward to following this build. I'm thinking I may have to do one of these kits in the future.

    As far as the finish goes, I've just used Angelus Leather Dye on my TLA-1Q build and have been very happy with them. Would be easy enough to thin down to dilute the colour a bit as well if you didn't want it quite as dark.
    Build #1 - TLA-1Q
    Build #2 - Scratch Thinline Tele

  8. #8
    Member Asphaltwings's Avatar
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    Hopefully I don't disappoint, Woltz.

    I looked into the Rit clothing dyes and other peoples experiences with staining their guitars with non-wood stains/dyes and kept being led back to Angelus leather dyes, and your TLA-1Q looks absolutely stunning, Woltz so I think I have been sold on that now. I'm now looking at a green stain on the top and a dark brown stain on the back and headstock.
    Add to it I've settled on using a Seymour Duncan SH-5 and SH-1n set for my pickups and my plan is coming together rather nicely in my head.

    Also, as an aside has anyone had any experience using a coat of tru-oil as a grainfiller to flatten any dents/scratches, sanding it back and then clearcoating over the top?
    Last edited by Asphaltwings; 12-10-2018 at 05:12 PM.

  9. #9
    GAStronomist wazkelly's Avatar
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    Hi Mik, welcome to the forum and hope it all comes together easily for you. Plenty of help is never too far away.

    I have used Tru Oil on all my builds and mostly over the top of a dye, stain or natural finish. As layers build up it eventually does fill the grain but wouldn't recommend using it first if you plan to add any colour to the finish. Why, because Tru Oil is like a varnish or lacquer and stains will just sit on top and not soak in or adhere thus making it difficult when trying to add subsequent layers of colour and top coats.

    Wouldn't recommend Tru Oil over Blue as here is a shot of what was once a turquoise blue Tele that is now more green than blue due to the amber tint in Tru Oil that tends to age fairly quickly. Upside is I don't need to do a green guitar as this one is now close enough.

    Click image for larger version. 

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    Build diary link is in my signature where you can see how blue it started out as.

    Getting back to grain fillers, those flame maple veneers are so thin it is best not to sand them at all otherwise you risk sanding through in some thinner places. Glue spots are best dealt with by using Goof Off that is readily available at any big box hardware store (think large green sheds). Maybe wipe the body down with a rag lightly dampened with metholated spirits or good quality turps if you don't have any metho on hand. Avoid using water if at all possible as it can rehydrate the glue underneath thus adding to what may have been just a small problem. If the glue spots can't be rubbed off with a clean white cotton cloth maybe consider a small toothbrush sized wire brush. Maybe a medium or hard proper tooth brush might work but be wary of anything coloured as Goof Off has a nasty habit of disolving the colour which can then end up spread into the timber grain before you realise what just happened. Same goes for any rags or cloths used and best to sacrifice an old white singlet or T shirt to be cut up into 50 mm x 50 mm squares and then folded over a few times.

    If you choose to stick with a blue stain you will need to consider clear top coats such as wipe on poly or maybe rattle can clear acrylic. With more & more layers of top coats that eventually fills the grain from above and with periodic wet sanding you can flatten it off and bring on a really smooth all over feel. From there you just keep on going until you have enough layers to sacrifice in the final wet sand and polishing process.

    Good luck with the build.

    Cheers, Waz
    # 1 - EX-5 https://goo.gl/fQJMqh
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  10. #10
    Member Asphaltwings's Avatar
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    Thanks for the advice, Waz. A shame the tru-oil changed the colour of your finish so much, but at least the greenish tone is also very nice.

    I settled on green myself, and ordered some Jade Angelus leather dye and I'm going to head to the local hardware store to pick up some darker stain for the back and headstock of the guitar (thinking a dark chestnut or walnut colour) as well as some other miscellaneous things I need this week coming.

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