Saturday, 21 June 2014

Scratch Pine Body: Fender Toronado!

Shopping for a decent body shape for this pine scratch build, I happened upon the Google docs Guitar Plans Collection. Here you'll find plans for every guitar body shape under the sun! Since the neck I am going to use is a cheap Chinese Telecaster neck, a Fender shape was always on the cards. Rather than make yet another Telecaster, however, I opted for a body with a similar size and neck pocket but with more of an alt shoe-gazer feel. Enter the Fender Toronado!

It's kinda Jazzmaster'ish, with its large top horn and small lower nub, and I really like that look. It's a shape that I personally associated with "Vintage" looking guitars, even though the Tele, amongst others, is a much older design. Anyway, the plans from Google docs include the body shape, pickguard and neck pocket so I should be able to use it for all my routing and cutting requirements.

After 24 hours, the clamps came off the body today and it was on to the 40 grit sandpaper to get the front and back of the body levelled up - basically what professional luthiers, or even sane individuals, might do with a thicknesser. I've got one of those fucking annoying orbital sanders with the little bar clamps either end. Do you think the paper would stay fixed in there for more than a minute at a time?? Nup!

Consequently it's taking an age to get the body blank level(ish) but, with dogged determination, I'm persevering. $400 for a cheap thicknesser? Believe me, it's looking cheaper by the minute ;) ! Despite my little whinge, the results are very promising! The blank is looking nice (and piney) and is just wide enough to accomodate the Tornado body shape.

I have printed out the plans (downloaded as pdf) and am in the process of sticking them to 12mm MDF so that I can cut out templates for routing. I'll let you know more about how that goes in the next installment. Stay tuned!