Wednesday, 17 April 2013

12 String 335 - New Kit arrives from RM Olsen

After much research and much agonizing, my first semi-hollow body guitar kit arrived today from RM Olsen Guitars. The 12-string 335 kit landed here in Australia in perfect condition thanks to double boxing, bubble wrap and a metric fuck-load of squishy packing beans added to the box. Suffice to say I was very happy with the condition of the guitar.

Unboxing the Kit

The guitar came with the set-neck already installed. For me this is awesome. Setting and gluing the neck was the major worry of the only 2 worries I have with regards to finishing process. The other is the drilling of the bridge post holes, but that is some fun I can postpone to much later. One downside to not setting the neck myself, apart from not knowing whether the neck has been set correctly to allow a good setup (i can only assume it has for now, and I have no reason not to trust the abilities of Robert Olsen) is that there is some glue soaked into the neck from where the binding and ends of the cutaways merge into it. Sanding should remove most of this, but one side is a little rough. Having said all this, I have to admit that the job done in setting the neck is much better than anything I could have achieved with my limited tool-set and limited woodworking skills.

A little glue has soaked into the neck where the cutaway meets it.
In terms of the wood used, Robert Olsen is known for providing some of the best wood for his kits in the price range. Having requested flamed maple, the kit arrived with a gorgeous flamed maple veneer front and back. The veneer is flawless with a nice deep figure. It looks like it will come up beautifully when finished. The neck has trapezoidal inlays into a rosewood fretboard and could not look better. The body is finished top and bottom in multi-layer binding, and the junction between the binding and the wood has no gaps or glue squeeze out all the way round.

All in all I'm very happy with the craftsmanship offered by Robert Olsen, and I'm itching to get started on the finishing for this baby! I have only attempted one build previously, that being a solid-body Jackson-style Flying V that I received as a present. In comparison, this build will be a much more challenging undertaking and I'm looking forward it!