Building a Bill Lawrence-esque ⅞ strat....need advice

VibratingElectrons

New member
Messages
22
I came across a Bill Lawrence guitar that I really liked the look of (https://yamauchi63133.wixsite.com/hikidaore/bc2e-custom-1989-e), and I've been wanting to build a lightweight ⅞ Strat for a while. I'm wondering if my plan makes sense, or if I'm going to end up with a goofy looking guitar. Here's what I'm thinking:

-Roasted Alder body finished with TruOil
-Roasted Maple neck finished with TruOil
-"Yellow Tortoise" pickguard
-Wilde Pickups (Bill Lawrence 280S/290S)

I'm hoping for three things:

-Lightweight (it would be great for this guitar to be under 7lbs)
-Looks reasonably like the Bill Lawrence guitar linked above
-Sounds good

Walnut is heavy, so roasted alder/roasted maple seems like a better choice, especially since I've heard roasted alder finishes a little like walnut. I've also heard good things about the Wilde pickups, and I like the hat-tip to the man himself.

Thoughts?
 

stratamania

Senior member
Messages
9,218
Welcome to the forum.

No reason not to build something similar in 7/8. You can also get the bodies with chambered construction and a laminate top. So you get figured Walnut with a lighter weight wood for the main body for example. Have a play around with the builder.

Per roasted maple necks they do not require a finish but that is up to yourself of course.

Wilde pickups are made by Bill Lawrence's wife and daughter, Becky and Shannon. They are reasonably priced and good quality from good people.
 

garytlove

Active member
Messages
38
I built a 7/8 tele, all mahogany, and have zero regrets.  I wish there were more headstock options, but I really like the weight and feel of it. 
 

Sadie-f

Senior member
Messages
427
I would sure lean to building this with walnut. Cored, it would probably weigh in about the same as solid body alder and it will probably sound different.

Either way, sounds like a great project!
 

VibratingElectrons

New member
Messages
22
Sadie-f said:
I would sure lean to building this with walnut. Cored, it would probably weigh in about the same as solid body alder and it will probably sound different.

stratamania said:
You can also get the bodies with chambered construction and a laminate top. So you get figured Walnut with a lighter weight wood for the main body for example.

I had that same thought, but I think it would still be on the heavy side. This chambered walnut strat body (https://reverb.com/item/1244374-warmoth-chambered-walnut-strat-body) is 4lb 7oz, wheras a lot of the solid roasted alder and roasted swamp ash strat bodies are closer to 3lbs.

I do like the look of walnut, but from what I've seen, roasted alder can get almost as dark as walnut. Here's an example: https://www.tdpri.com/attachments/ab2-jpg.724064/
 

Sadie-f

Senior member
Messages
427
Hey, I don't need to talk you into a more expensive body. I can tell you my chambered Warmoth rosewood > mahogany strat weighs 1.2 lbs less than my Fender strat with alder body.
 

stratamania

Senior member
Messages
9,218
VibratingElectrons said:
Sadie-f said:
I would sure lean to building this with walnut. Cored, it would probably weigh in about the same as solid body alder and it will probably sound different.

stratamania said:
You can also get the bodies with chambered construction and a laminate top. So you get figured Walnut with a lighter weight wood for the main body for example.

I had that same thought, but I think it would still be on the heavy side. This chambered walnut strat body (https://reverb.com/item/1244374-warmoth-chambered-walnut-strat-body) is 4lb 7oz, wheras a lot of the solid roasted alder and roasted swamp ash strat bodies are closer to 3lbs.

I do like the look of walnut, but from what I've seen, roasted alder can get almost as dark as walnut. Here's an example: https://www.tdpri.com/attachments/ab2-jpg.724064/

With chambered you could get a Walnut top and choose another type of wood for the body that may potentially be lighter in weight such as roasted ash or alder.
 

VibratingElectrons

New member
Messages
22
Thanks to everyone for the encouraging words. I just placed my order and I'm excited to get this build going when everything arrives.

After much debating, I ended up going with an "extra light" roasted swamp ash body that I'll be finishing with Tru Oil. Not identical to the original, but maybe even better.
 
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