Friday, September 26, 2014

Sir Paul McCartney Violin Bass Pretend Guitar

Sir Paul McCartney has one of the sweetest Bass guitars I've seen: The Höfner 5001 Violin Bass!

I used to play guitar, but no longer.  I much more enjoy playing Air Guitar nowadays while listening to my iPod.

  But for fun I thought I'd make a simple pretend guitar to augment my air guitar playing.  The first thing I did was make some scale drawings of the guitar for templates.

I printed these templates, cut them out and traced them onto some wood.  Because of the size, I created a template that was half of the guitar.  I traced this template twice so I had 2 halves.

Then I cut out the pieces with my jigsaw.

Next I made some pocket holes on one side of the guitar half...

...and I glued and screwed it to the other half.

I glued in some wood plugs to fill the pocket holes.

Once dry I sanded the plugs smooth.

Next I routed the edges of the top of the guitar.  I also glued the guitar to another board to thicken the body.

Using scraps of wood, I also thickened the rest of the guitar.

I cut the new wood additions with my jigsaw and glued and screwed it to the body.  I clamped it and let it dry overnight.

The next morning I printed out more templates for the pick guard, pickups and volume plate.

I cut these pieces out with my jig saw and miter saw.

Before attaching those parts I still had work to do to the body.  I used my hand planer to begin thinning out the neck.

Then I used my sanders to smooth and shape it out.

With the neck and body sanded I then attached the parts I cut earlier.  I used glue and screws for most of it and clamped everything tightly.

While that dried I cut out 2 pieces of wood for the pickups.  I routed the edges to make them look nicer.

I then glued and screwed the pickups to the body.

Next I went through my stuff and found parts that could work for the machine heads and knobs for the guitar.

I drilled and screwed some bolts for the machine heads.

Then I screwed in the knobs.

This thing is coming out really nice so far!

I decided to make a piece for the guitar that could hold my ipod.  I measured out the size and shape on a piece of wood.

Then I drilled the 4 inner corners with my drill press.  This will make it easier to cut out the inner shape.

But before I cut out that shape, I routed the edges.

When I put the ipod holder on the guitar I felt it looked too big and bulky.

So I decided to use a small piece of trim instead.

The trim is a lot smaller and nicer looking.

I cut the trim using my miter saw and glued the 4 pieces to a thin piece of plywood.  Then I glued it to the guitar.

The plug port for the head phones are blocked.... I used some files and my rotary sanding bit to open up that area.

Then I added wood filler.

When the filler dried I did a lot of sanding.

The results so far are great!

Next I used some skinny sticks....

...and started cutting them to form frets.

I cut the sticks with a sharp pair of scissors and glued them on.

Then came the stain!

Next I distressed it a little.

Then I gave it a good cleaning.

Next I went out and bought some carriage bolts and fly nuts.  These are going to be the tuning knobs for the machine heads.

I drilled holes into the head of the guitar.

Then I screwed and glued them in place.

While I was out I also bought industrial strength Velcro.

The rough part will attach to the guitar...

...while the soft part attached to my iPod.

I did not attach the rough part yet, as I still had work to do to the body of the bass.  But the Velcro will hold it in place while the guitar is "in use".

Next I used some gold and silver paint markers to draw on some nice designs.

Then everything received some coats of glossy clear coat.

When that dried I gave it a good sanding with super fine sandpaper to make it very smooth.

Then I cleaned it up.

Next I need to add a guitar strap, but I don't have one right now so I'll move onto other things. I decided to make a small guitar stand similar to the one I made a few months ago.

To see that build click here.

I drew the shapes freehand and cut them out with my jigsaw.

Then I routed the edges.

Then I added the hinge, hooks and a chain.

This stand works well and holds my bass nicely.

Now that I know it works I removed the hooks and chains, sanded it and applied wood filler to fill in the holes I made while routing.

When the filler dried I sanded.

Then I applied stain.

When the stain dried I applied clear coat.

While that dried I bought a cheap nylon belt with a plastic buckle.  This is going to be my guitar strap.

I cut a small piece off using scissors.

I drilled a hole and placed a bolt with washers in it.

Then I drilled a hole at the bottom of the bass.

I screwed it in.

I repeated the process at the top of the back of the body.

I snapped the buckles together and I have a strap!

When the clear coat dried on the stand I reassembled it.

The bass sits nicely.

Look Ma!  I'm playing the Bass!!!

And I'm done!
This was a fun project and my Bass' new home is along side my bar.  Now I can have a shot or two and boogie!

Thanks for reading!