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Natural Binding On Archtop

This is where the boys in the paint shop rise above the others. The attention to detail is crazy good, This on of the PH-AT, plain maple cap arch top with the maple cap sides taped off. It creates a binding that’s so cool, because you can look at it up close and see the grain of the maple. It’s quite beautiful actually.

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John’s Jumpin’ Johesephat Jubulation ..

Hi Phil,

It’s been a while but I wanted to send some pictures of my LP build now that it’s finished.  This was quite a learning experience with a lot of mistakes but I persevered and very happy with the results.
I used hot hide glue for the neck which fit perfectly.  Next, oil based pore filler from Guitar Re-ranch was used for the mahogany.  I tinted the filler with cherry aniline dyes which gives it a nice antique look with fading.  The top was then stained lemon yellow followed by sanding and a coat of tinted lacquer with a few of ‘clear’ coats.  This step was the most interesting and fun.  I used Behlen lacquer and set it out in the intense summer sun for a week or so which turned it a beautiful amber shade and seemed to lower the viscosity.  The top cherry shading was the same aniline dye as used in the pore filler along with a little blue to get a more pronounced and deeper color (I was shooting for a washed cherry fade with a dirty-green lemon). The aged lacquer gives it a nice dirty lemon hue all around and I did a light top coat with the pristine lacquer.  The guitar was then wet sanded from 400 up to 2000 grit followed by buffing using the foam pads from stewmac.  The top and back are starting to fade slightly and the pics more or less capture that effect, especially the lower bout that now has a nice antique-y amber tone.  I kick myself now for not documenting the whole process since it was an incredible transformation and a very rewarding experience overall.
Aside from the finish work, I put in Throbak PG102’s with luxe capacitors and faber hardware.  The bridge studs are the new faber ABR-nashville adaptors, which are a nice upgrade.  The result is a very lively and resonant guitar that plays and sounds way better than the reissue’s costing around $3K or higher.  The guitar is also super light (~8 lbs) which seems to go very well with the PG102s.  In particular, the neck pickup along with the out of phase middle position are scary good in this guitar (amazing clarity and punch, notes bloom like crazy)!  Together with the thinner and harder lacquer finish and the buttery neck (somewhere between 59 and slim 60 with small shoulders) the feel and playability are absolutely superb.  I don’t think it could have come out any better than it did. A real gem.
Lastly, I still can’t get over how cool the old looking top is with all the flecks and subtle curly pinstripe flame that really pop with the finish (so much for being in the ’ugly’ top category!!!).
Thanks very much for all of your help in making this happen!
Best Regards,
Jon
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Lutz’s Luxury

Hi Phil,

sorry it took me a while to give an update…  I decided to let the lacquer cure while we were on holiday and do the buffing and final assembly later.
Here are some pics… of the end result… I call the look ‘light ginger burst’… quite please for my first attempt at an LP…
To get to this, I first lightly washed the maple cap with potassium permanganate to emphasise the flame and give the maple a slightly ‘sun-light aged’ base colour,  then sanded. I then dyed the entire top with water based light amber coloured dye. I then applied 2 thin coats of shellac and sanded again before spraying gloss nitro over the top, with a little more amber tinted nitro towards the edges. The back and sides are dyed in a mix of cherry red and black (to darken it) water based dyes.  The back of the body is grain filled using transparent filler that I tinted with the cherry red /black mix, followed by 2 thin coats of shellac as barrier and sanding.  The back and sides of the body and back of the neck were then finished in satin nitro….  Buffing and polishing of face of headstock and top done entirely by hand just using wet & dry of increasing grits as well as 3M micromesh, before using Meguiars automotive compound and ScratchX to mirror finish.
The pickups are the ‘Super-Dry’ humbuckers by Mark Foley of Fatboy Guitars UK (Replicas of Maxon/Greco DryZ humbuckers of the 1970s).  The wiring harness has all the usual bits, including CTS Switchcraft, as well as bumblebee caps.
All metal hardware is nickel.  The tuners are Grovers, the bridge, studs and tailpiece are Faber. All plastics are Gibson OEM.
I see you now do a hollow arch top 335-style body as well???  Might be a project for the winter/spring if I can get a good price on it.  Always wanted a cherry red 335…
All the best,
Lutz
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Sean’s Sensational lil Red 59

HI.. finally done.
Yes it took a few years to get her completed but I’ve had her up and running for about a month now.  I haven’t played any of my other guitars (save my archtop) since then.  Although my last Carved Top was Stolen in 1982, I do think this one sounds better.  Band members and fans love it as well.
Cheers
Sean
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Nicholas’ Spectacularly Awesome Road Warrior

Hello all PGK team;)

I wanted to say that I was very satisfied with the kit that I bought you, it sounds crazy, mega rock guitar! grin emoticon

I exploded view to realize the black over goldtop heavy relic, everyone finds beautiful and it sounds great!

So I think that soon I will come to you to buy a sg jr and a flying V!

You address some pictures of my work hoping you like it! grin emoticon

cordially

Nicholas

This Name is ” T.T.Special ” ..Tracker Trip Special wink emoticon

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Minja Ninja excellence in Switzerland

Hi Phil,
Some pictures of the finished guitar, for your Homepage if you like. The guitar was built by my good friend Werni Sahli, an absolute professional!
Pickups are OX4 Humbuckers, hardware is from Faber Germany.

Many thanks again for your great work, the wood work was simply superb!!!

Indeed. Werni is one of the best Luthiers here in Switzerland. His paint jobs are simply outstanding. He was impressed about the quality of your kits, everything went together without any problems.

Greetings to the team, all the best

Michael

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Roger’s TV White’s Tuned Right in..

Hello Phil,

Hope you are well. Thought it would be worthwhile sharing with you some images of the completed double cut Junior based on your kit.

I am extremely pleased with the way the guitar has turned out, the way it sounds and the TV Yellow colour.

The luthier I used  here in Melbourne to assemble the guitar was Cargill Custom Guitars and they are one of the better luthier’s here. They were also very complementary about the quality of the kit, which was good news noting their experience with guitars generally.

Thanks again and regards,

roger

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The Blue Ghost…

Here is a guitar that is pretty awesome. It is 59 Carved Top with the Graphtech Ghost System installed. It has the most wonderful, full, acoustic guitar sound with just a bit of that edge you’d expect from an electric.  Ken was very happy with the end result and we love making stuff like this..

Here is what Ken had to say:

Thought I would send you a few pick of the fantastic work you and yours did for me…I do not have the tools nor the patience to complete a project like this but Precision Guitar Kits sure do…the work that the CNC shop, the Bespoke build crew and paint is first rate…if you want to have a custom guitar built for you, I can recommend this wholeheartedly…fill your cart and press the buy button…then sit back and wait for “Precision” to arrive!

Ken

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Tim’s Totally Terrific White Window Wrattle….:)

Hi Phil
Thought I’d send along a photo of my finished Jr. The kit was, as advertised, a dream to build. Everything went together smoothly; the neck/body fit was absolutely precise. A couple of things surprised me in a good way; the neck is described as a baseball shape on your site so I wondered if it would be on the large side. It turns out that it’s a very comfortable size and shape even for someone with smaller hands. The biggest surprise is how good this guitar sounds. I purchased the Seymour Duncan Antiquity P90 that you sell and I really like it. I usually play jazz through the clean channel of a small Blackstar tube amp and this guitar fits the bill. When my wife is out, I crank up the amp and it sounds very snarly. When I switch to the dirty channel, the windows rattle. Seriously though, I expected to end up with a decent guitar but this is WAY beyond decent. It’s fabulous.
The photo has a paper mock up of a decal that I’m getting made up. It says Muffin City custom in honour of two Toronto bands; Martha and The Muffins and a cultish 60’s band called The City Muffin Boy’s. They were kind of like Lou Reed and the Velvet Underground but sadly ,without Andy Warhol promoting them, they remained unknown except for members of Toronto’s art community back then.
Already planning the next build; a T style, no pick guard, natural finish with a Lollar Charlie Christian neck pickup and a regular Tele bridge pu.
Thank for making such a fine product. You guys are off the charts for quality and workmanship.
All the best and Happy Canadian Thanksgiving.
Tim

 

TIM's FullSizeRender

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Dan’s Damn Fine Dangerous Delight…

Hi there – Here a few pics of my SG Jr. build from a few years back. It plays like butter, and resonates like nothing else I’ve ever played. I’ve recommended PGK to anyone interested in rolling their own. Great bones – just like you say!

Named this one the “Les Ismore”. The P90 is an Alnico 2 kit from Stew Mac (8.4k dcr) The bridge is a Pigtail – and the studs and bushings from them are just spectacular. The tone cap was rescued from an old Hammond organ preamp. Wish I had more of em! It was hard (for me anyway) to get an accurate photo of the color. It’s a slightly yellowed white – nitrocellulose that I mixed up here. Thanks again!

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Hendrixson’s…. sensation

Dear Precision Guitar Kits,

          I wanted to express my appreciation of your product and give you an account of my completed Les Paul Junior DC. Love this guitar!!!
          I received the LP Junior DC with African Mahogany body and ’59 Black Limba neck with ebony fretboard in flawless condition. People rave about the quality of the lumber you use and the perfect fit of you neck joint. I was, nevertheless, impressed. Incidentally, I find this ’59 neck to be just as comfortable for either chords and single note playing,
          I decided to emphasize the beauty of the wood by using a clear oil finish–three coats of Odie’s Oxi Oil (which ‘ages’ the wood color) and a couple of coats of Odie’s wood butter hand buffed to a satin sheen.
          I used the really gorgeous Tonepros Kluson style vintage tuners and wraparound bridge from Precision with a really nicely aged finish.
          The pickguard and truss rod cover are from Quickguards and are in the “variegated gold leaf” finish which my photography really doesn’t do justice to.
           I wanted the look and something of the sound of a vintage Junior but without the hum. I went with The Creamery’s “Custom ’13 Dogear bridge” which is a true double coil humbucker but with a lot of P90ish clarity. I’m really happy with this choice and I think it will really allow this guitar to perform in a range of environments.
Thanks so much for helping me create this guitar!
Jonathan
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One Of Stern’s Stable…

INCREDIBLY lively, resonant and responsive.

Truth is that I was going for a Neil Young “Old Black” thing– Bigsby, Firebird/P90 pups– but bought the wrong (’54) LP.  Live and learn.
Will get it the 2nd time around…. and have two killer/different Carved Tops in the stable 😉
You guys do excellent work.  And the MojoAxe wraparound plus Lollars puts the icing on the cake.  Wow.
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Bye Bye’s Beauty….

hey Phil, here’s the first new guitar, second one is coming soon!

This one is total custom for the color, got some dyes and stain tinctures and crap like that from my supplier. Anyway, this is the color I came up with after quite some time till I was happy with it! Kind of a cinnamon color, in a brighter light it has the color of a tiger! I went with all gold gear on it, tried to anyway! And if anyone out there can help me find some gold trim for my tone switch would be awesome! All my parts came from precision guitars, and the Seth lover pickups are amazing! The knobs came from another source. One thing for my as a woodworker and finisher for 30 years is my supplier often gets me to test new products, so one new product is a new compound for buffing the sheen after sanding with 2000 grit paper. Normally I use my buffing wheel and it takes me quite some time, with this compound I did it by hand and took maybe 20 minutes! And absolutely perfect! I was shocked, a bought a gallon of the shit! It was really cool as well because I was the first to try it!
Anyway, as far as the truss rod cover I may be able to buy 1/2 a sheet of gold aluminium of a supplier and make the cover and possibly the pick guard too, we’ll see how adventurous I get!
I got a buddy to wire the thing for me this time and he wired it ass backward, but it’s ok because it’s the same way Eddie wires his and I’m a huge fan, so I’m happy!
Can’t wait to finish the next one Phill,I love yer guitars, they are the cats ass!!!
Rob Bye
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Shut My Mouth..:)

Hey Phil,
 Just finished up that totally awesome strat you all made and stained. This thing is crazy, tone knobs for each pickup, one master volume, mini switches , top to bring in the neck pickup in 4th and 5th position. Each of the other splits the coils so the combination is vast. Pickups are seymour duncan, neck and bridge are quarter pounds, middle is reversed wound, bridge is a custom staggered.
SSL4 neck and middle, SSL5  bridge. Super Vee tremblo, This thing is incredible, solid low end and crisp high. low action, on spot intonation, With the electronics it’s almost a cross between Les and Fender. You all did a spectacular job with the black limba body,  neck and fingerboard. The stain job is unbelievable. Perfect, Perfect,   Perfect.
Thanks to you and all your craftsmen,
 Don W
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Phil’s Ph’n Fantastic Jr

 

G’day Phil.

We have finished my Ratbones Junior, we are absolutely stoked with how it turned out. The timber and your C&C work is amazing. Several coats of stain, a Tonerider P90, Tone Pros bridge, CTS pots with your Jr wiring harness, unbleached bone nut. Bang. Goal.

It really is stunning and is an absolute blast to play. THIS THING IS A BEAST!

 

Please find attached some photos of how it turned out. I will be ordering more of these from you soon.

 

Thanks a million.

 

Phil B

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Charlie’s Drop Dead Gorgeous Burst

Hi Phil,
I am sending you some photos of my recent build.  I am very happy with the results because you provided me the best foundation to complete a great guitar.  The project was not rushed and took approximately eight months to complete.  I used a Faber bridge and aluminum tailpiece, S.D. Alnico Pro II pickups and vintage wiring with PIO caps. The finish is amber on the top and red mahogany on the back and neck. The Guitar feels and plays very well and is definitely one that will be used. This guitar sounds amazing!
Thank you!
Charlie
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Kon’s – As Raw As It Gets

Phil,

Surprisingly raunchy sound out of this ’59 double cut junior with 60’s profile neck yáll.
check the not the best of pics from iphone
not getting much tone response from the dimarzio 500k pot with cap – not that i care much
tried variations of wiring setup…doesnt matter …usually I play flat out.
it was a quick fix to get the move on outta here.

 

Kon

 

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Daniel’s Spalted Perfection

Hi Phil,

Haven’t heard from you in a while. Guess you are keeping pretty busy. Not surprised with the quality of the kits that you put out. I was going to upload these to the site but there seems to be a communication problem so I thought I would pass these along if you would like to post them. The fit was dead on so I don’t wonder why you are called Precision. So to sum up…’59 Junior Double Cut, sanded down to accept a 3 year Spalted Maple top, Bubinga pickguard and Spalted 1/16″ headstock with a funky little Bubinga truss rod cover to mimic the shape of the headstock. Six screws was overkill but I wanted them to look like the tuners, which are Grover. Tonepros bridge and a Spalted Maple cavity cover which attaches with rare earth magnets for easy removal with a fingernail or pick and Seymour Duncan P-90 Antiquity Series pup which sound fantastic with a custom gold plated cover to match the rest of the hardware and Gibson 500k tone and volume pots. Took a while but I think it was well worth the effort. Thanks, Phil and all the guys at PGK for making this possible. I’m calling it Drop Dead Drop Top or DDD-T.

Thanks again and I look forward to my next kit!

Daniel V

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Gunbarrel Guitars Comin’ A ya..

Hey Phil,

I finally took some photos of the last three kits I got from you. The photos seem really bad which I will blame on low batteries.

My Dad passed away last September, so I was not able to get any work done on these guitars last year. I am really happy with the sound and playability of all three and they do look fantastic in person. I suspect taking a photo of Gold Top gold is as difficult as getting a good finish with Gold Top gold. I did match it to some photos I have of 50s Gold Tops where the top clear coat had turned yellow to give it that older look. All guitars were painted with rattle cans and no dye on the tops so the flame moves with the viewing angle.

I wound all the pickups and made the back plates for the carve tops. I was experimenting with magnets and other things which is why some are still double creme. I like the look, and sound, of the open coils on the sunburst, but the gold top is going to get raw covers at the next string change. I also wired in a secret weapon in the Gold Top where one knob rolls off the volume to one coil, on both pickups, so you can get humbucking power, single coil sweetness or any mix you want. Pull up on the knob and it chooses the opposite coil(s).

I really love the ebony headstock overlay! I was debating on whether I should leave it raw or spray it and as you can see spray it won. I feel like I finally have the faux binding scraping under control and I really like how it looks with more clear maple exposed on the sunburst. Hot hide glue was used for all neck joints and nuts, and while I can’t compare it to using titebond since I have never used it, I would definitely choose my guitars over anything the big G makes! You can also see how the logo you printed for me looks on the finished product.

I still have a Vee, for my son, and a Bound & Flamed carve top kit to complete, but the weather is colder and wetter than it was in February! It needs to warm up and dry out before I can do much else. I guess I could get going on the pickups for the six guitars I have in progress. The next kit I plan to order will be the carve top with the smoothed neck joint unless you can do the 1958 Jr. with a carved top of flame maple (hint) as it is the best shape for slide with all the fretboard exposed.

 

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This dark one makes him happy as hec…

Phil
I bought a completed body and neck recently, well I have finished the build, used Gotoh part and finished her with a light stain and 30 coats of french polish!
She plays like a dream, thank-you for a great piece of kit, extremely well made and raring to go.
Feel free to use the picture and anyone who may be thinking of building a guitar, PG’s are your go to Men!
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Duane’s Daring Dazzlin’ Darling

 

Hi Phil,

Finally got the chance to take some decent pics of the guitar. It was a 59 carved top kit. I had been wanting to try one of the precision kits for a while, just to be able to put what you
want on a guitar in the infancy of it the process always appealed to me.
Also wanted to try my hand at seeing if I could get close to a Bourbon burst. I do a bit of painting as a side job but nothing on wood, more helmets, bike tanks ect. so that part was also of interest to see what I could learn on the finishing part. And really who doesn’t want to see if they can put something like this together.
Anyway everything went smooth in the assembly. The only real hangup I had was trying to get the bourbon color how I wanted it. I learned dyes are a much different beast than the paints I am used too.
Picked the dyes and water based finish up from wood essence. It was actually a nice product to work with.
I’m still picky on the finish, but it was the perfect way to learn.
The neck plays amazing, the body has a great weight to it. I have a Seth lover in the neck of another guitar so i knew what to expect there. Love the vintage vibe of the pick up’s. Very happy with how everything turned out, it is a great playing and sounding guitar.
I’ve already picked out the next kit I want to try my hand at. You will definitely be hearing from me sooner
than later as I plan to set this one up as a summer project.
Cheers,
Duane