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Thread: Irish ES-1 / 335 Copper Top

  1. #1
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    Irish ES-1 / 335 Copper Top

    Hello from sunny (lol) Northern Ireland,

    Well the wait for the kit to arrive is over and its finally time to start the build. That was a long wait but Adam was great in his correspondence. I've built 2 or 3 *ender partcasters and refinished a Les Paul over the past few years so hopefully this has built up the skill level enough to build the dream copper top 335.

    I only purchased the raw wood for the kit, as I have a slightly unconventional pickup selection and wiring planned, and I have to say that first impressions are good. It does make you appreciate why high end manufacturers charge what they do for instruments and that's because of the attention to detail in the finishing process which the kit is lacking slightly. Test fitting the neck and there is a good tight fit and it seems not bad at all. Haven't checked the break angle or scale length yet but fingers crossed.

    F hole bindings needed a bit of fine filing, binding at the neck joint had been cut long and needed filing back flush but this is minor cosmetic work. Neck pickup pocket slightly too small but this has been covered in posts by others and was quick and easy to sort out. POT holes were drilled at 8mm so had to open these up to 10mm to allow the CTS ones to fit. Another simple enough job.

    Front binding was meant to be single ply to match the back and F hole binding but unfortunately 3 ply was installed in the factory. Adam was happy enough to offer a slight discount that would cover the cost of purchasing some single ply to fit if that's how I decide to go but for now I believe that I can work with what I have.

    Once I figure out how to get a photo to upload I will put a few up of what was received and what the plans are.

    Jb

  2. #2
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    Test fit

    Hopefully the test fit picture will be below along with the copper patina parts
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  3. #3
    GAStronomist Simon Barden's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jbuller7 View Post
    Front binding was meant to be single ply to match the back and F hole binding but unfortunately 3 ply was installed in the factory.
    Nice.

    It's pretty obvious to me now that the factories simply aren't capable of fitting custom bindings to bodies. Same thing happened on my custom ES-1. All other changes were correct, except the binding.

    Still, if you are doing a copper paint finish, or fitting copper sheet to the top, then you could go over the binding just leaving the outer thin white strip visible. Not really any different than if you did just have the single-ply binding fitted. It's only clear/translucent finishes where you can't do that.

    Are you thinking about using some of the aged copper Schaller hardware? Looks great, but it's not cheap.

  4. #4
    Member Cliff Rogers's Avatar
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    Yeah, I got the 3 ply treatment with my custom too.
    Cliff

  5. #5
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    Its a shame but as Simon says (lol) I can work right up to the edge of the last ply which is what I plan to do. Adam reckoned that they didn't have a template for single ply.

    Not painting at all apart from a base coat of blue on the cap and gloss black on the headstock. I've been practicing with Copper leaf and the aging process has been achieved with a spray of vinegar / hydrangea plant food mix.
    Plan on keeping the tail, bridge and tuners in chrome for the contrast of old and new and it helps tie the pickup pole pieces in with the rest of the guitar. The celtic detail on the speed knobs is silver as well and will probably do something similar with headstock logo

  6. #6
    GAStronomist Simon Barden's Avatar
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    Sounds like a great plan. Hope it all works really well.

    Are you using a side mounted jack instead of the usual (on a 335) top mounted one? Top mounting it is rather a weak point of the 335 design, especially if you use standard straight jacks. I once bought a used 335 with a large washer around the jack socket where the surrounding wood had obviously split a bit after a jack/object encounter.

  7. #7
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    Yes, requested that the jack was side mounted rather than top mounted. Top mounted always seemed like a design flaw to me. Been flicking through your builds and im very impressed.

  8. #8
    GAStronomist Simon Barden's Avatar
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    I still need to finish a PBG kit. Done a couple of guitar refinishes in the meantime and got a couple of kit guitars on the cusp, but either the weather or setbacks or bad depression days when I really can't do anything without it all going horrible wrong keep stopping me. I may just polish up the EX-1 and put it all together for now, then finish it off with clear coats next May (or whenever it's warm enough).

  9. #9
    Good to see the 335 wearing hearing protection... safety first!!!

    Good luck on your build. Sounds like you have a clear idea where you want it to go. Look forward to seeing it progress.

    Cheers,
    Mick
    Making the world a better place; one guitar at a time...

  10. #10
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    Progress

    Well I unexpectedly ended up b4lls deep in this build over the weekend. Too frosty to get anything done in the garden so I went to work...
    First up I decided that I needed to get some Danish oil on the neck, back and sides to protect the wood from being stained by dirty hands. Gentle sanding with 400 & 600 grit and 2 coats on and its turned out the same way my test maple had which is always a relief. Need to add another few layers closer to the end of the build.

    Once fully dried in I made a few fine adjustments to the neck joint and i'm pretty satisfied that it will pull tight into place once I glue and clamp.
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