Telecaster project – step 2

Parts to build a Fender Esquire / Telecaster type guitar
Most of the parts have arrived, I only need a jack and cup, which I’ve ordered. The neck and other parts are coming from my parts bin. The guitar itself appears to be an excellent working platform. Keep in mind, we aren’t shooting for showroom beauty, we are shooting for barnyard fun, but still, it must be a serious instrument. More importantly, we get to age some wood and I get to take my first dive into finishing a real world project. We won’t be globbing the finish on like most new shiny guitars, we want the sounds of the wood to come through. The purpose is to seal the guitar, to protect it just enough, yet allow natural wear and tear to happen as well. I could drone on about how this will advance the corporate knowledge and experience, blah blah blah….but at the end of the day, a bit part of why I’m doing it is simply because it looks fun. And I find nothing wrong with that. I am a long time Telecaster aficionado. My first “new” guitar was a Fender Telecaster, and I own several. It doesn’t take a lot of prodding to talk me into doing this project.

Once again, this is a long term thing, it won’t be done in a week, I have other obligations, but it will get done. This week, the hard part begins. The guitar was sanded to 150 grit only, which is a fine starting place. I’ve picked up some 220 and 400 grit, which may be enough to take me to the end, along with some 0000 steel wool. We’ll see. After removing all the hardware, the body comes in at 4.05 pounds. I have a bunch of sanding to do, so it will probably be a bit lighter pre-finish, but we will just say “4 pounds even” for simplicity. As far as bodies go, that is respectably light although not extraordinarily so. That means the finished out guitar will probably be in the 6 to 7 pound region, depending on the weight of the finish. This is actually comparable to a couple of Fender Thinline Telecasters I have. This is common for pine, and in line with expectations.

I’m smart enough to know that when I think I’m done, I need to dampen it down a bit to let the tiny hairs swell, then let it dry and sand again, but between now and that point, I probably need to read up a bit more to prevent mistakes. If I’m expert on anything (and I don’t care for the word “expert”) it would be UV lamps, not wood finishing, so I’m confident mistakes will be made, and you will be by my side as I make them. Please keep the snickering to a minimum.

Dennis