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PostPosted: Thu Jul 16, 2015 9:31 am 
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Cocobolo
Cocobolo

Joined: Wed Jan 22, 2014 4:59 pm
Posts: 226
Location: sandwich, kent
State: kent
Country: United Kingdom
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Hi all,

I've gathered my confidence and thickened my skin to start this thread in order to get help and learn stuff. This will be my fifth scratch built guitar, all L-00's. Please bear in mind that I started with a KMG kit and ABSOLUTELY ZERO woodworking skills. I've had a lot of help on Ken's kit forum, people on here and in person, very kindly, from Bob Matthews.

I'm currently deciding/ designing the bracing pattern. Drawing heavily from John How's generous post which Haans alerted me to

http://www.luthiersforum.com/forum/view ... la#p225388

and also some helpful dimensions etc from a KG14 here

http://littlebrotherblues.com/Gear/KG-14/index.html

I love the tone of the old Kalamazoo s but I'm not going for a faithful replica, just a ladder braced guitar in the L-00 mould.

The L-00 is a good 1 1/4 inches wider than johns stella so I am thinking the brace across the lower bout will need to be a little beefier than his dimensions.

Time for some pics and some specific questions...


Last edited by mike-p on Thu Jul 16, 2015 9:46 am, edited 1 time in total.

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PostPosted: Thu Jul 16, 2015 9:34 am 
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Cocobolo
Cocobolo

Joined: Wed Jan 22, 2014 4:59 pm
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Location: sandwich, kent
State: kent
Country: United Kingdom
Focus: Build
Four piece back at 2.5 mm thickness.


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PostPosted: Thu Jul 16, 2015 9:35 am 
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Cocobolo
Cocobolo

Joined: Wed Jan 22, 2014 4:59 pm
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Location: sandwich, kent
State: kent
Country: United Kingdom
Focus: Build
Red spruce


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PostPosted: Thu Jul 16, 2015 9:38 am 
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Cocobolo
Cocobolo

Joined: Wed Jan 22, 2014 4:59 pm
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Location: sandwich, kent
State: kent
Country: United Kingdom
Focus: Build
This is a top I got from the Hampton Brothers more or less free when i bought some other very nice ones. It's at 4mm currently and I've flexed it pretty hard across the grain and no sign of cracking where the discoloration/ fungus can be seen so i think I'm going to use it. It's only been cut about two years so I am thinking of trying to bake it in the oven. Any thoughts on this appreciated.


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PostPosted: Thu Jul 16, 2015 9:42 am 
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Cocobolo
Cocobolo

Joined: Wed Jan 22, 2014 4:59 pm
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Location: sandwich, kent
State: kent
Country: United Kingdom
Focus: Build
The design is going to be pretty simple with maple and ebony and dyed sycamore. The maple is construction grade and not particularly hard stable or stiff. I bought a nicer proper piece for my central neck lamination. I'm toying with using a flatsawn maple fretboard, finishing it with tru oil and using nickel strings. Planned scale length is currently 25.5" and planning for 12 guage strings tuned down a semitone, so the same effective load on the soundboard as a 24.75 scale at normal pitch.


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PostPosted: Thu Jul 16, 2015 9:46 am 
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Cocobolo
Cocobolo

Joined: Wed Jan 22, 2014 4:59 pm
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Location: sandwich, kent
State: kent
Country: United Kingdom
Focus: Build
Considering a maple topped with ebony bridge. Neck is maple with light flame, black stripe and mystery mahogany.


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PostPosted: Thu Jul 16, 2015 9:48 am 
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Cocobolo
Cocobolo

Joined: Wed Jan 22, 2014 4:59 pm
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Location: sandwich, kent
State: kent
Country: United Kingdom
Focus: Build
any comments / ideas / advice on wood choices and bracing design or anything else appreciated. Linings will be solid mystery mahogany, about to get on with bending them and the maple bindings,


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PostPosted: Thu Jul 16, 2015 10:17 am 
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Cocobolo
Cocobolo

Joined: Wed Jan 22, 2014 4:59 pm
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Location: sandwich, kent
State: kent
Country: United Kingdom
Focus: Build
You may have gathered that this is reclaimed wood/ minimum spend build. Am experimenting with woods and design whilst keeping the same body shape to give me a better understanding of the variables. It's definitely not because i can't be bothered to make a new solid mould...


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PostPosted: Fri Jul 17, 2015 10:30 pm 
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Koa
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Joined: Mon Nov 24, 2008 12:17 pm
Posts: 650
City: Escondido
State: CA
Zip/Postal Code: 92029
Country: USA
Focus: Build
Status: Semi-pro
My only comment is that I love everything you're saying. Reclaimed wood, KISS, really taking the time to learn a particular guitar, my favorite size/shape: Gibson L, etc. Take lots of pictures (I am horrible at documenting, and am a huge hypocrite because I love reading well documented builds.)


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PostPosted: Sat Jul 18, 2015 1:29 am 
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Mahogany
Mahogany

Joined: Tue Jun 26, 2012 2:35 am
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First name: Lee
Last Name: Passmoor
City: Newport Pagnell
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Zip/Postal Code: MK16 8JG
Country: United Kingdom
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Hi Mike,

I am looking forward to following your build! Where did you source the black strips you are using in the neck?


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PostPosted: Sat Jul 18, 2015 1:36 am 
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Cocobolo
Cocobolo

Joined: Wed Jan 22, 2014 4:59 pm
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Location: sandwich, kent
State: kent
Country: United Kingdom
Focus: Build
They're dyed wood. Probably sycamore. Got then from timberline in Tonbridge. David dyke does them too.

Thanks lrlhett. I think I've finally set up my phone camera with low enough resolution to upload straight to the forum.


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PostPosted: Sat Jul 18, 2015 5:33 am 
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Old Growth Brazilian Rosewood
Old Growth Brazilian Rosewood
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Joined: Fri Nov 02, 2007 9:49 am
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Location: Ann Arbor, Michigan
First name: Hesh
Last Name: Breakstone
Country: United States
Status: Professional
Nice going Mike - our shop is in the land of the KG series guitars since they were built not far from us and many of them stayed in this area. We see them frequently and one of the folks who left a review on our web site has two of them including a 14. As such we work on them frequently and we have even done full-on restorations of 11's and a 12.

If you have any questions about them feel free to PM me and we might know the answer or be able to find out for you. I know you are not going for an uber accurate reproduction which is cool too.

The Kalamazoo KG's are personal favorites of mine and I have always wanted to snag one but the folks I know who have them won't let go...

They are great guitars, very light weight, perfect size for a "slouch on the couch" instrument, and they can sound cool too. They really are very much like the G*bson L-OO only a bit more basic.


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PostPosted: Mon Jul 20, 2015 2:13 am 
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Cocobolo
Cocobolo

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Location: sandwich, kent
State: kent
Country: United Kingdom
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Thanks hesh.

Sent you a pm but it send to be stuck in my outbox. Did you get it?


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PostPosted: Mon Jul 20, 2015 4:47 am 
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Old Growth Brazilian Rosewood
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Yep I got the PM Mike. As for brace dimensions etc. I would have to have one in the shop at present, and I don't to take the measurements but I may have some pics from a 1930's one that I did a full restore on and I will check this evening to see what I have.

As for tucked or not G*bson aka Kalamazoo would feather to very nearly nothing, perhaps .003"ish high and tuck. That much I remember but I'll check for more information later. Bridge plates were maple I believe too since maple is so common around here and it does grow on trees... :)

More to come when I get home this evening.


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PostPosted: Mon Jul 20, 2015 4:53 am 
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Cocobolo
Cocobolo

Joined: Wed Jan 22, 2014 4:59 pm
Posts: 226
Location: sandwich, kent
State: kent
Country: United Kingdom
Focus: Build
You're a good man hesh.


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PostPosted: Mon Jul 20, 2015 4:58 am 
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Old Growth Brazilian Rosewood
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Joined: Fri Nov 02, 2007 9:49 am
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Location: Ann Arbor, Michigan
First name: Hesh
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Thanks Mike :)


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PostPosted: Mon Jul 20, 2015 5:06 am 
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Old Growth Brazilian Rosewood
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Location: Ann Arbor, Michigan
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Found some pics of a KG11 that I did a full restore including neck reset on but none of the pics are inside the box. But.... it occurs to me that since these are really G*bson LOOs the bracing is the same. So you could get the plan for the LOO from ASIA or GAL, can't remember which one offers it but It's a color plan, one page and use the dimensions and positioning of a LOO. There was also a LOO plan out of Germany some years back and the guy who graciously drew them was or is a member here and his name was something like Greller. I remember him, nice guy, good guy, wish I could spell names.... :)

Here's some pics of a late 30's KG11 to wet your appetite.


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PostPosted: Mon Jul 20, 2015 5:11 am 
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Cocobolo
Cocobolo

Joined: Wed Jan 22, 2014 4:59 pm
Posts: 226
Location: sandwich, kent
State: kent
Country: United Kingdom
Focus: Build
the grellier plan is the one I've used a couple of times now but I want to build a ladder braced version. Isn't the KG11 the smaller box ladder braced style?


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PostPosted: Mon Jul 20, 2015 6:45 am 
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Old Growth Brazilian Rosewood
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Joined: Fri Nov 02, 2007 9:49 am
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Location: Ann Arbor, Michigan
First name: Hesh
Last Name: Breakstone
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mike-p wrote:
the grellier plan is the one I've used a couple of times now but I want to build a ladder braced version. Isn't the KG11 the smaller box ladder braced style?


Yeah this one was ladder braced so you are correct. Maybe the GAL or ASIA plan is ladder braced, I would check my plan but I gave it away to someone as a bonus when I cleaned out my shop earlier this year.... :roll: :D


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PostPosted: Mon Aug 10, 2015 10:47 am 
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Contributing Member
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Joined: Sun Feb 17, 2013 4:58 pm
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First name: Ed
Last Name: Minch
City: Chestertown
State: MD
Zip/Postal Code: 21620
Country: United States
Focus: Build
Status: Amateur
Just found this thread - great choices with wood and design.

I had an opportunity earlier this year to rebuild a 1933 L-00. When I had the back off it was obvious that the brace ends were thinned to near nothing, then clamped tightly to the rim and everything was allowed to "crush" together. Here are a couple of shots:

https://www.flickr.com/photos/ruby1638/ ... 344222304/

Ed


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PostPosted: Thu Sep 10, 2015 3:05 pm 
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Cocobolo
Cocobolo

Joined: Wed Jan 22, 2014 4:59 pm
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Location: sandwich, kent
State: kent
Country: United Kingdom
Focus: Build
Thanks all.

I am lucky enough to own a 38 14th fret l-00 but would love to hear from anyone with a kg 14. Been getting the odd hour in on this project. Got the solid linings glued in. Bent them a bit too thick so was hard to get a really neat glue fit but they're all in and not going anywhere. I don't have any spruce cut thick enough for the back bracing so rather than buying some I'm thinking of using Spanish cedar. Any thoughts on the sonic implications?


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PostPosted: Thu Sep 10, 2015 3:10 pm 
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Cocobolo
Cocobolo

Joined: Wed Jan 22, 2014 4:59 pm
Posts: 226
Location: sandwich, kent
State: kent
Country: United Kingdom
Focus: Build
Neck laminated and cut on the bandsaw. Made a large block and cut the neck from that. A bit wasteful I know but the wood cost me very little and I'll probably use the offcut chunk for something. I meant to have the heel at the other end of the blank where the grain was a better bookmatch as I thought this might affect stability but I'm hoping I'm good as I am.


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PostPosted: Tue Oct 06, 2015 10:26 am 
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Cocobolo
Cocobolo

Joined: Wed Jan 22, 2014 4:59 pm
Posts: 226
Location: sandwich, kent
State: kent
Country: United Kingdom
Focus: Build
This is my plan based on John How's bracing for a small Stella. I've positioned the lower braces by eye and put the utbs where I have put them on my other l-00 guitars. I've kept the same dimensions for the lower bout bracing as John's, although on the Stella the lower bout is narrower I'm hoping the loss of strength will be compensatedfor by using 25 foot top radius instead of John's 40 foot.

Brace dimensions in mms are 7wide by 14 high for the utbs and 10 wide by 19 high for the lower braces. Spruce plate With maple inlay will be around 3mm thick as will the top.

Am I on the right ground? I like a light responsive build and the guitar is experimental and for myself so it's not a disaster if underbuilt but obviously I'd like to get it right. Going to use good stiff light European spruce for the bracing.

Appreciate any thoughts or comments,
Thanks,
Mike


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PostPosted: Thu Oct 08, 2015 3:01 pm 
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Cocobolo
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Joined: Mon Apr 19, 2010 6:04 pm
Posts: 118
Location: Surrey UK
First name: Bob
Last Name: Matthews
State: Surrey
Country: England
Focus: Build
Status: Semi-pro
Hey Mike, looking good and I can't wait to see and hear the finished article.

Me and Kate are coming down to your neck of the woods during school half term as I have never been to Canterbury and also want to visit some of the coastal resorts around there, so if you're free we'll hook up and chew the cud?

Bob

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http://www.bobmatthewsguitars.co.uk


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PostPosted: Tue Oct 27, 2015 6:26 am 
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Cocobolo
Cocobolo

Joined: Wed Jan 22, 2014 4:59 pm
Posts: 226
Location: sandwich, kent
State: kent
Country: United Kingdom
Focus: Build
Progressing steadily. Quick bridge plate question.

For the spruce bridge plate I assume this is joined in two pieces like the top and the grain running the dame direction as the top. Is this correct?


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