I’m putting together a Stratocaster for a friend. It’s to match a Telecaster he has so will be painted in a creamy colour. This is the look we are going to achieve: The body, as is usual, is from Guitarbuild and it’s a beauty. Made from alder, it arrived really well sanded so virtually no preparation …

Removing scratches from the frets using Micromesh pads

I covered fret dressing in this earlier post but will repeat the steps here for completeness. The pictures should tell the story but I’ll add some text where I think it’s necessary to explain further. The first job, before the frets can be leveled is to remove the lacquer from them. The easiest way to …

Clear lacquer applied over decal

Before spraying I sanded the neck again, checking that everything was clean and wiped over with a tack cloth to remove any dust. I then sprayed another couple of coats of Clear Gloss lacquer to seal before moving on to the tinted coat. You can spray with the neck hanging vertically, but I like …

Les Paul Traditional broken headstock

This Les Paul was only a week old when it suffered this catastrophic break. Unusually, the fall was so severe that it broke the fibre headstock face right across between the E tuners. Although not an easy repair the break had plenty of surface area for glue. The repaired headstock was relacquered and the …

Nasty Gibson Les Paul headstock break

Another week, another headstock repair! This one was trickier than most as instead of a nice clean break, the wood had splintered which meant that putting it back again too some care. This guitar had also suffered some collateral damage to the front and back of the body when it was knocked off the …

Gibson Les Paul Custom Headstock Repair

Here’s another Gibson Les Paul headstock repair, the second within the space of two days! The owner of this guitar had left it in his rehearsal room and come back to find it broken. It was pretty clear from the break and other damage on the body that someone had taken the guitar out of …

Inserting tuner bushings with a Stewmac bushing press

The Stewart MacDonald bushing press is a great tool for safely inserting and removing tuner bushings, avoiding finish damage that may be caused by less elegant methods. Full instructions for using the bushing press are on the Stewmac website. This Gibson Les Paul Classic was in the workshop for repair to a nasty headstock break …

Shaping the headstock Because the Telecaster headstock shape is a trademark of Fender Musical Instruments Corp. (FMIC) then all modern kits come with a blank or “paddle” headstock from which you can cut your own design. Any similarity to a Fender Telecaster headstock on this page is purely coincidental! The first job is to …

Headstock repair This early 70s Les Paul Signature had suffered a headstock break many years ago and had been left unrepaired. I was told by the owner that it was this very bass that turned Peter Hook on to semi-acoustics! Luckily the owner was careful to keep all the parts and I was able …