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  1. #1
    Atomic Punk bsbll4's Avatar
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    12.14.17 @ 02:04 PM
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    Default Bsbll4's B&W Frankenstrat Project

    So I've been playing guitar for years and have always wanted a RBW Franky. After watching Kevin Dodds whip out 4 awesome Frankies in a couple months, I figured I should give it a try. I was looking to do it on a budget since I have a 10 month old crawling around the house, and the idea of dropping $800 on a finished replica or kit all at once would not be the best idea. Luckily, I had my original guitar, a black Fender Squier with a maple fretboard (thanks for Christmas '96, mom!), lying around. After doing some research and tearing it apart, I realized I couldn't make a RBW version out of it, but I could make a passable VH I style guitar and test out my skills in the meantime. The plan is to still make a RBW version, but this way I can order the different parts one by one over a couple of months and get everything correct without having to worry about routing, shimming the neck to get the right intonation with a floyd, drill my own posts for the Floyd, etc.

    Here's the original guitar that had been sitting in a guitar case for the last 5 years:



    And then disassembled. Here you can see the way the pickup cavities are routed that it wouldn't work for an exact RBW Franky, so that's where I got my inspiration:





    So I set out to buy the parts I needed, which it turned out to just be a handful of items.

    - a new Seymour Duncan Custom Custom (SH-11) pickup ($79)
    - a black pickguard routed for a bridge humbucker ($20 with shipping)
    - a new graphite nut which I may or may not put in after the guitar is finished (I know it should be brass, but that seemed little more involved than what I wanted for my first attempt) ($10)
    - Sandpaper ($5)
    - Duplicolor paint ($10)
    - 1" X 2" piece of wood to attach to neck pocket for painting ($.88)
    - 4 pack of eye hooks ($3)

    Grand total: $127.88

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  2. #2
    Atomic Punk bsbll4's Avatar
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    Default

    First thing I had to do was sand the guitar. I bought some 120 & 320 grit sandpaper, a sanding block, and a case of beer to get the job done. Unfortunately I was going out of town for Easter so I didnít get very far, but I picked up when I got back. Hereís the early progress:
    Whose idea was to do this by hand?!




    More progress plus a lightly sanded headstock to get rid of the script:



    Ö.and now the back:



    Front and back now sanded leaving only the sides. And look what came in the mail! Time for a test fit:



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  3. #3
    Atomic Punk bsbll4's Avatar
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    Default

    Borrowed my brotherís random-oscillating sander to help out with the sides. My arms were killing me doing this crap by hand! Finally finished the sanding:



    And back:



    Taped the neck pocket and attached the piece of wood to help hang the body during painting:



    Eye hook to help hangÖhmmmÖthat little guy may get a second life down the road



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  4. #4
    Atomic Punk bsbll4's Avatar
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    Default

    After 4 coats of black Duplicolor, hereís what it looked like after a night of curing:

    Front


    Front again


    Back


    So the first issue I see is that because itís a crappy body pieced together with many different layers, the grain on the sides is really glaring. I didnít seal or prime it before the black because Iím considering doing a bit of a relic job (again, to get some practice for the real deal to come). Iím hoping with a little wet sanding and another coat or two of black it will be less discernible. I donít mind the grain on the face of the guitarógives it character. Oh well, even if it doesnít end up looking perfect it will be a lesson learned and will be a fun project!!
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  5. #5
    Atomic Punk MF5150's Avatar
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    Default

    I actually kinda dug how the original guitar looked.


    Could have made a kickass Clapton Blackie replica with that!


    Can't wait to see how it all turns out though, dude.
    My man, when you are fantasizing, don't go for attainable, you can get attainable at the local Applebee's. - Dave's Dreidel

  6. #6
    Atomic Punk bsbll4's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by MF5150 View Post
    I actually kinda dug how the original guitar looked.


    Could have made a kickass Clapton Blackie replica with that!


    Can't wait to see how it all turns out though, dude.
    I love Clapton's playing (like Eddie, I was really into him before I "discovered" VH), but my Squier always felt...plain. My wife bought me an Ibanez with a floating tremolo system a few years ago and that was my 2nd (and main) guitar. I'm not really wild about the looks of it (white with a white diamond plate-ish pickguard), but I can't deny that it plays extremely well. Still, my heart has always yearned for a Franky and it felt appropriate to take the first guitar that I owned and make it into the guitar I wanted. It won't exactly get there, but it should be fun to have around as a 2nd axe. It will definitely get more love than it has for the last 5 years where it was just collecting dust.
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  7. #7
    On Fire Bluto's Avatar
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    Default

    Looks good so far, can't wait to see how it turns out. The B&W franky is something I've always wanted to do but just haven't gotten to it. I have a SD Custom Custom that I'm planning to put in a Kramer 5150 style guitar (but I still have to order the body and neck) so please let me know how it sounds!


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  8. #8
    Forum Frontman Double Down's Avatar
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    Very cool. Looking forward to the final result.


    (with the Blues out of the way so early you have plenty of time to finish it up )
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  9. #9
    Good Enough Kevin Dodds's Avatar
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    Default

    Awesome, man -- keep the progress pics coming!

    KBD3

  10. #10
    Atomic Punk bsbll4's Avatar
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    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Double Down View Post
    Very cool. Looking forward to the final result.


    (with the Blues out of the way so early you have plenty of time to finish it up )
    I got into a nice sanding rhythm by going into a zen-like state chanting "Fuck-the-Hawks, Fuck-the Hawks" and "Goddamn Blues, Goddamn Blues."
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  11. #11
    Atomic Punk bsbll4's Avatar
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    Default Update:

    Yesterday during the day I was able to get a quick wet sand and one final coat of black paint (that's 5 in total). I toyed with doing more coats but the can was empty, so I figured ,why bother? The white paint is going to cover most of it anyway. On to taping!

    Partial progress on the back:



    Partial progress on the front:



    More progress on the back:



    More progress on the front:




    I'm going to go back and do the "squiggle" again. My wife was hurrying me off to bed so I didn't cut it or apply it correctly. Everything else I'm pretty happy with so far. Since the body isn't exactly the same as the Franky, I came about as close as I could with the large stripes.

    As for the small stripes, I've been struggling to find the right tape. I bought a $17 pack of multicolored 1/8" "artists tape" from Michaels, because Autozone didn't have the right pinstriping tape. I want to make a run to Hobby Lobby because I think they might carry tape for RC builds, but I'm just trying to find the time.

    I'm not sure whether I'm going to paint them on or tape them on afterwards. Obviously taping would be the more correct version, but since I'm never going to turn this into a RBW version, I figured painting them on might hold up better and just plain look better.

    I'm hoping to get this thing painted and put together by the end of the weekend!
    Last edited by bsbll4; 04.30.14 at 07:14 AM.
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  12. #12
    On Fire Bluto's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by bsbll4 View Post
    I got into a nice sanding rhythm by going into a zen-like state chanting "Fuck-the-Hawks, Fuck-the Hawks" and "Goddamn Blues, Goddamn Blues."

    More like "fuck-yes-hawks". Can't wait to see the Hawks take the cup again this year


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  13. #13
    Forum Frontman Double Down's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bluto View Post
    More like "fuck-yes-hawks". Can't wait to see the Hawks take the cup again this year


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

    Who invited this guy?


    .
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    VH with Dave ('78-'84) - The best years....the "real" VH.
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  14. #14
    Emperor of VHLinks.com Brett's Avatar
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    Gay hockey talk in a guitar thread. What a sad turn of events.
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  15. #15
    Forum Frontman Double Down's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Brett View Post
    Gay hockey talk in a guitar thread. What a sad turn of events.
    Who invited this guy?




    .
    .
    .
    VH with Dave ('78-'84) - The best years....the "real" VH.
    VH with Sam ('86-'96) - Incredible era....."We have renamed this town 'New Halen!'.
    VH with Gary ('98) - Fucking disaster. WTF was that??
    VH with Wolf/Dave ('12-'15) - Amazing comeback. Smokin' album and tours.

 

 

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