Telepaul

elgravos

Senior member
Messages
331
I may have mentioned a couple of times in passing that I really had no interest in building a Les Paul based W simply on the basis that only a set neck will do where an LP is concerned.

I'm sticking with that.  However, now that we have the carved top tele, it seems to me there is nothing that will prevent me from building an LP disguised as a tele.  That way, I can pat myself on the back for not making a bolt on LP while still having the full benefit of the LP sound and W quality.  Win-win all around in other words.  I'm guessing this is a pretty popular project right about now...

Been working away at Kisekea with our friends next door and have put together the basic design.  I will readily admit to some deathbyubershall influence on that front.  Since Blue showed up, my interest in building a tele has suddenly peaked.  God knows why... In any event, just a couple of things I want to run by the group:

From a playing standpoint it should be full on LP.  Going for conversion neck etc however I'm not bent on reproducing the electronics.  I'm going to go the 1 volume 1 tone route.  First question therefore, and you can see it on the picture below that I'm still flaky on this one, is which toggle to go for:  traditional tele using a 5 position blade switch or the gibson 3 way toggle on the upper horn?

Next one:

I strongly feel this should be an all mahogany job.  Amongst other things, it will allow me to settle all the stuff I’m hearing on the forum about how Ws are so far superior to LPs.  Don’t get me wrong, I love my warmoth guitars, but I’m just as impressed with my LP standard (sometimes more so I have to confess).  On that basis I could go the mahogany neck route and get a satin finish which would be quite pleasant and do away with the nitro which I absolutely hate on a neck.

The other option is to go for Wenge.  I kind of feel I’m missing out on the raw neck thing and I really dig what everyone is saying about that wood.  Strangely enough, I’m not so thrilled about rosewood.  The only drawback there is that it will divert me from my A/B - Gibson/Warmoth test.  It will no longer be like for like which will not quite be the same trip.  But maybe it’s worth the trade off.

Thing is, I still want it to sound pretty much like a not overly adulterated LP.  Question: will a mahogany / wenge sound significantly different than a mahogany / mahogany combo?  Not sure what the pickups will be yet but assume PAF based (ideally bare knuckle rebel yells) playing with full on JCM800 type gain.  Fretboard is going to be ebony – going the LP custom route.

Like everyone, I keep hearing the catechism that is popular on the forum as far as sonic order of precedence goes: pickups first, then neck etc.  Thing is, I can very easily tell what wood is making what sound so I’m not entirely sold on that.  I can tell the difference between body woods and neck woods pretty easily, regardless of pickups and even at reasonable gain.  It also helps that all my guitars are dual HBs with PAF based electronics and have significantly different woods - if I couldn’t tell them apart that would be pretty embarrassing and I couldn’t justify owning more than one of them…  I realize that everyone can have their own opinion on that front but I find this forum somewhat biased on the subject which is odd given that if it were true we’d all be buying poplar bodies with nice laminates and maple necks.

In fact here’s a good quote from Crimson guitars which is quite popular on the forum these days and goes a little against the received conventional wisdom we are seeing on this side of the web:

Maple:

The most common electric guitar neck wood, Maple has a uniform grain, it's strong and stable, and it has less reaction from environmental changes than other hardwoods. Its tone is highly reflective, and focuses more energy onto the body wood. All things being equal, bolt-on Maple necks are less of a factor on the guitar's tone and emphasize the body wood.

Not typically what you would hear on this forum.

Anyway, I digress, I confess that it’s because it’s Friday night and I’ve had a drink.  Rest assured, I am over 21.

In the meantime, here’s the mugshot:




 

dbw

Senior member
Messages
4,531
You got something mixed up... satin neck finishes are nitro, everything else Warmoth does is poly.

I don't understand your insistence that a LP Must Not Be Bolt-On.  Why build a tele if "From a playing standpoint it should be full on LP."  Yeah, Warmoth makes a guitar like that!  It's called an LP!

2883858292_eeddb5b99e.jpg
 

elgravos

Senior member
Messages
331
It's a quasi religious thing.  Don't expect it to make sense.  I am essentially cheating myself by building it in tele form.  Plus, I think it will be real cool.
 

vegababy

Senior member
Messages
156
elgravos said:
It's a quasi religious thing. 
I'm with you on that one. To me, and that probably won't make any sense to anyone else, LPs with a bolt on neck always remind me of cheap copies like they were widely available when I was a kid. I'm not talking Japanese Tokai etc. copies, but the even cheaper ones. Somehow that's just stuck in my mind. Fortunately, owning a real mid 70s Deluxe myself and not likeing LPs whatsoever, there's no need to get upset about all this...
 

Patrick from Davis

Senior member
Messages
2,197
When I built my tele, I used the dual humbuckers and wired the tele controls as if they were a Les Paul.  I used concentric knobs to do it and in that tele route there was little room to spare, but it works more or less the same.  It is my goto guitar for everything I generally play.  If I need to go for the traditional strat sounding things, I built a hard tail for that.  But, the next monster that I will build will be a goldtop whenever Warmoth gets around to releasing the Warmoth/Earvana for a tilt back neck.  It will be a while because of other purchases, but I'd have to wait for that nut to be released any ways.  Back to the original idea, a tele will do the les paul sound well.  At least mine does.
Patrick

 
Messages
8,318
elgravos said:
From a playing standpoint it should be full on LP.  Going for conversion neck etc however I'm not bent on reproducing the electronics.  I'm going to go the 1 volume 1 tone route.  First question therefore, and you can see it on the picture below that I'm still flaky on this one, is which toggle to go for:  traditional tele using a 5 position blade switch or the gibson 3 way toggle on the upper horn?

I like the three-way toggle for that build.  It doesn't even have to be in the upper horn.  Since you're not going the top mount route with the control plate, they don't have to be in standard locations.  Since you may go carved-top Tele, you could get the recessed control routes and put the controls in the VIP/PRS locations.
 

elgravos

Senior member
Messages
331
that would put the 3 way toggle in the same position as the PRS 5 way rotary - like a McCarty then... not a bad idea.
 
O

OzziePete

Guest
elgravos said:
It's a quasi religious thing.  Don't expect it to make sense.

To a point I agree with you too.

However, when it comes to LP styled projects, I would use Warmoth and bolt ons for one I have in mind, like the idea of doing a Old Black type LP guitar.

I couldn't justify using a genuine Gibson on an idea that would involve some modding of the look of the guitar (like installing a Bigsby and a Firebird pickup at the rear), and to get a Gibson LP with a Bigsby already installed would mean going to their Custom Shop (IF they would do it) and that is way too much money.

So if I ever want to have my own version of Neiler's Old Black, it won't be a Gibson unless I'm suddenly filthy rich.
 
Messages
8,318
elgravos said:
that would put the 3 way toggle in the same position as the PRS 5 way rotary - like a McCarty then... not a bad idea.

PRS uses the rotary or a 3-way toggle in that position.  It's a very comfortable, simple layout.
 

dbw

Senior member
Messages
4,531
Patrick from Davis said:
When I built my tele, I used the dual humbuckers and wired the tele controls as if they were a Les Paul.  I used concentric knobs to do it and in that tele route there was little room to spare, but it works more or less the same.  It is my goto guitar for everything I generally play.  If I need to go for the traditional strat sounding things, I built a hard tail for that.  But, the next monster that I will build will be a goldtop whenever Warmoth gets around to releasing the Warmoth/Earvana for a tilt back neck.  It will be a while because of other purchases, but I'd have to wait for that nut to be released any ways.  Back to the original idea, a tele will do the les paul sound well.  At least mine does.
Patrick

Cool, how'd you lay out the controls?  Are the concentrics V/V and T/T, or V/T and V/T?  Which is inside and which is outside?
 

stubhead

Senior member
Messages
4,669
I think the two tone/two volume setup is integral to what a Les Paul ought to do, listen to Jimmy Page or Duane's solo for "Elizabeth Reed" - keeping the selector in the middle and varying the controls is the Les Paul sound, it is the "woman tone".... I used concentric volume/tone controls on my scalloped-neck Tele, though I also opted for a five-way to give me all the coil possibilities from the bridge HB (plus a three-way!), and a single-coil noiseless Lawrence neck pickup for the Hendrix/SRV/Johnson tone.

http://www.gibson.com/en-us/Lifestyle/Features/how-to-get-claptons-classic/
 

bpmorton777

Senior member
Messages
1,651
just an opinion/observation here

on my guitars with one volume per pickup I have noticed that the tone gets muddy whene the volume gets turned down. This doesnt happen with my tele or Warmoth because Ive got them set up master tone, master volume. I woulded want a Les Paul without the trad 4 pots in there for looks but I probably wouldnt have all four wired up. I also cant tell much diff in the in-between settings either....not enough diff for me to have to put up with the mud when I turn one of the volumes down on a single pickup. not being able to tell the diff in tone could have to do with the kind of pickups in there too...I have the SD super dist in a LP style Hamer and some crappy mighty-mite hums in my Epiphone Wilshire but I dont know.

Brian
 

Patrick from Davis

Senior member
Messages
2,197
I have the controls laid out like a tele.  Tele three way switch, Vol/vol, tone/tone.  Electrically it is vol-tone-switch-out like a Les Paul with the bottom of each concentric as the neck and the top of each as the bridge.  It all fit into a tele route assembly.  I bought it as a tele body from the showcase so it was a tele route and nothing could be done.

01-Small-Front_of_Tele.jpg


Doesn't have that Les paul vibe so much, but the controls work exactly like one.
Patrick

 

stubhead

Senior member
Messages
4,669
FirstAct001.jpg


The closest knobs are V/T for the bridge, and furthest are V/T for the neck pickup. The inner knob is volume - the larger outer one is hard to do little-finger swells with, though I've always got a volume pedal in stage situations anyway. The five-way gives me either coil, or both coils parallel, series or out-of-phase. The three-way is between pickups.

It does takes a good bit of getting used to to use the combined pickups, but I grew up that way so I'm really used to it. Bill Lawrence pickups are bright and powerful enough that "mud" isn't an issue. :toothy12: I do the usual trick of setting my amp(s) for ideal tone with all the knobs on "7", so I've always got room to get brighter (and LOUDER) - if you set your amp to sound best with all the guitar knobs on "10", obviously you can only go downhill from there. :help: If I make another guitar to do similar things (i.e., not a seven string, baritone, etc.) I'd just have to duplicate this wiring, because it does everything I want. That L500XL "Dimebag" bridge PU is so powerful that each coil sounds as good as a good Tele pickup - you kinda have to turn in down in humbucking mode. Kinda.
 

T50

Senior member
Messages
238
Not a Tele, but a Strat-SG... mahogany body, rosewood fb, SD humbuckers, etc  :headbang:

DSCN1452.JPG

DSCN1455.JPG
 

dbw

Senior member
Messages
4,531
I also have a strat with humbuckers.  Mine also has a TOM so it's a bit Les Paulier than T50's, but it's not as pretty.  :D
 

elgravos

Senior member
Messages
331
Saw dbw's strat - that's the black korina strat with 2 HBs and TOM bridge right??  It's a classic.  That's one of the forum guitars that inspired this new tele project.

I love the strat SG.  Not sure if I could do that but you have to respect it.  Very cool.  
 
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