Kit Guitar

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Introduction: Kit Guitar

My brother sent me a kit guitar. A Pitbull ES-3. It is a copy of a Gibson ES-175D jazz box.

Step 1: Color

I chose a minwax stain, Sedona Red. I decided not to use sander filler and let the wood soak it up where it wanted to. I sanded before hand with 400 grit sand paper. All the binding had to be taped off before staining. I found that auto pin striping works much better for rounding flat curves than the painters tape and doesn't bleed at the edges.

Step 2: Wiring

while stain was drying I put together the pickups and pot's. There are lot's of ways to wire them, I chose a more modern set up. The guitar has no access panel everything has to be fished from the top, so it has to be complete before installing them.

Step 3: Headstock

the neck came with extra wood on the head to customize if wanted. I thought following the line of the harp would look good. I used a coping saw to cut it.

Step 4: Neck

It has a set neck that had to be glued into place. It only took a little light sanding and there was a nice snug fit. Left clamps on overnight and had a solid bond.

Step 5: Finish

I decided on a clear gloss acrylic lacquer finish. I started with a couple rattle cans, but wasn't getting what I wanted so broke out the old MBC Devilbiss spray gun. I bought premix lacquer. First time I have used it. Not as good as I would like, It is real thin but sprayed on ok. I used Dupi-color lacquer, that is kind of known for long cure times. I used Black rattle can lacquer for the headstock and ordered a waterslide decal in the Gibson font for the head.

Step 6: Truss Rod Cover

The kit came with a cover but I didn't like it. I took the one off my Epiphone and copied it on a piece of walnut. Have to shorten it just a little before drilling holes.

Step 7: Polish

I polished it out with 2000 wet sandpaper with just a drop or two of dish soap in the water. Had some 1000 for rough spots. Once the whole thing was wet sanded I used 3M lens polish and protector and elbow grease to get the shine.

Step 8: Strings

bought these for a test. Little heavier than I am used to. I usually use 9.5's.

Step 9: Assembly

putting it together was pretty easy. A piece of wire is a must to fish the pots up into the holes. Had to make sure I chose the right drill bit for the little screws that hold the pieces on. I did have to extend cap wire so it didn't show in the F hole. Lined up the tuners by eye and marked for the holes. It came with a pick guard but not sure I want it on.

Step 10: All Done

It sounds great, Deep and warm. I will take it to CJ. at St. Clair Guitars to get it set up. I am pretty impressed that it is as playable as it is right out of the box. Intonation is good action is a little high but not real bad. Fun to build more fun to play.

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    11 Discussions

    0
    scooters2
    scooters2

    Tip 9 months ago

    After using it a couple years I decided to upgrade the electronics in the guitar. Jack would not hold the cord in any more. I ordered a Gibson electronics kit. I changed the caps out from .047 on both to .047 on bridge and a .022 on the neck. Not a big deal as I don't use the tone control very often. I also changed to what they call 50s wiring set up, It puts the tone on the volume output rather than the input. I also put the linear pot in the volume spot and audio pot for tone to see if I liked it that way. volume rolls off quicker. Still think they are a great deal for a kit guitar.

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    0
    scooters2
    scooters2

    Tip 2 years ago on Step 10

    I had the fretts flat filed, was a little buzzing on a couple strings up around 15. Also had a bone nut made for it, so strings sit in a little better.

    0
    scooters2
    scooters2

    Tip 2 years ago on Step 8

    I ended up putting the 9.5 gauge strings on. The 11's were putting a little to much pressure on the neck and had trouble getting the relief out of it. Truss rod had run out of adjustment. 9.5 strings took care of it and I don't notice that much of a tone difference.

    0
    scooters2
    scooters2

    Reply 2 years ago

    Do a search for Pit Bull Guitars. They have all kind's of kits.

    0
    thesoundmaker74185
    thesoundmaker74185

    Reply 2 years ago

    Great kit, I like the shape of the headstock

    0
    tomatoskins
    tomatoskins

    3 years ago

    What a beautifully made kit! Wonderful job!