My #1 finally done

red king

Junior Member
Ok guys

After many trials an tribulations here is my Warmoth #1.
Swamp Ash body - body was sealed with flake shellac, surface sanded, and dyed with black aniline dye (water based), then finished with about 10 coats of flake shellac.  (I actually tried to finish in Tung Oil but didn't like the results and sanded it down twice)  I rubbed the body with extra fine steel wool for a matte finish.
The neck is Canary with a Kingwood fretboard (naked finish) - locking schaller tuners, graphite nut.
It is configured with standard strat controls and has 3 DiMarzio pickups - Area 61 in the bridge and Area 58 in the neck and middle positions.  I waited 3 months for these picups on backorder - but definitely worth the wait!  The bridge is a Wilkinson VSVG model.
The shellac finish will have a well-worn look in a few months which was what I was going for.

Next Project:  My Black Korina double humbucker strat!


Very Impresive!!!  I really love that finish. That was a well executed project. How does it sound and feel?

Dude, I L-O-V-E LOVE the finish! :cool01:  It reminds me of a bass I once had.  It had a very open grain that wasn't filled properly, so you could feel it through the finish.  It felt so good, even if it didn't sound that great. :kewlpics:
RK  looks awesome, I love the color on the body, I think swamp ash is under rated , or under used for its showy grain
Thanks for your response!  I must have gone back and forth about a thousand times between the Tung oil finish and the shellac finish.  Ultimately, I am happy with the result, as my original intention was to build a body that would "wear" nicely as I intend to play this thing on a daily basis.  It feels nice to the touch with the grain exposed.  My only concern was whether the aniline dye (water based) will come off all over my hands and arms if / when I eventually wear down the shellac.  However, its easy enough to just rub some more shellac on in that case as it only takes a few minutes between coats and is super easy to apply.

In case you haven't heard these pickups before, they are killer.  Check out the Guitar World review on youtube for yourself.



Very nice looking guitar. The only choice of finish, looks great. I checked out the pickups, they have a great vintage tone and noiseless to boot, awesome!
red king said:
It is configured with standard strat controls and has 3 DiMarzio pickups - Area 61 in the bridge and Area 58 in the neck and middle positions. 

Fascinating guitar!  :cool01:

Do you know Kinman pups? On Harmony Central's forum there are some people comenting about how better the new generation DM Area (58/61)  pups are if not  better at least on par with Kinman's noiseless. Do you have somme thoughts about it?
Thanks for the comments everyone!

Hey Xochitl...I've never played Kinman pickups, but these DiMarzios really do it all.  They are very responsive to rolling off the volume and tone for a nice mellow ringing strat tone, then when you go all out on the vol and tone, they really snarl.  They even make my not-so-impressive amp sound good.  I can't wait for my new amp to see how these babies really sound!

Thanks for the input!
I bought a pair of DP409 for my strat just when DM issued their Virtual 58/61 pups. But I was afraid they were too trebley and as they weren't in stock at the time, I went with the DP409. They were an improvement on my standard Fender pups, but from time to time I'm still wondering...
...and what you say doesn't help! ;)
Great looking strat Red King; That is going to age beautifully. You'll have to watch the boys when she grows up!
I just bought this amp... (not from MF - local store)

This thing on "6" is like heaven!  I haven't gone beyond 6 yet since the floor and walls were shaking and my pantlegs were ruffling in the breeze! :headbang1: :headbang:

The full potential of this guitar has been revealed now.  The 58 bridge pickup is a little trebly, but just roll back the volume a hair and it has plenty of soloing punch.  The in-between settings on the strat are both pretty killer.  The front / middle position is especially good for rhythm playing if you like a good shuffle!  One thing I can say for sure about the noise, even when the amp is in overdrive.  If I play my P90 guitar at the same volume the noise is unbearable!

The neck does make the guitar very dark sounding overall.  I might get a maple neck to brighten it up and put this neck on my 2 humbucker guitar that is going to be my next project.

I'm re-evaluating my pedals after getting this amp, because I know have 3 redundant overdrive pedals, so I'm thinking of exchanging those for a univibe, an octafuzz, and a tremolo. 

Thanks for your posts!


on your recomendations and the link to that clip on youtube i have changed my mind on which noiseless pickups i would use in a strat. I had been thinking a long time about Lace Holy Grails but those Dimarzio's sound great! Looks like they make an equaly good noiseless p90.

Great job on the Strat! it has a cool vintage look to it.

Brian - thanks for the post!  I'm very happy with the Dimarzio's.  I had quite a backorder wait from Musicians friend when I ordered them, so be aware of that.

Sundin - No grainfill - just a sealer coat of shellac, then dye.  I was actually about 75% done with dye and then tung oil on 2 different occasions, but sanded it down because I didn't like the thick gooey finish from the tung oil.  I finally did about 7 or 8 coats of dye and then about 15 coats of shellac and buff with 0000 extra fine steel wool and that was it.  Feels amazing.
Yah. REALLY nice finish. Not shiny at all.  :icon_thumright: I really like it that way.
Looks like it would feel like wood. That's awesome. I love wood.  :laughing11:

Really nice.
That guitar is SHARP! 10 years of gig abuse, and it will be perfect.

Congrats, bro.