Kemp Guitars UK Build Thread #2

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My first build thread is looking a little tatty - broken image links that I cannot repair, etc - so I've decided to start a new thread, which also coincides nicely with the start of some new builds that will show a slightly new direction for Kemp Guitars.

I won't give too much away now but all will become apparent as these two stock builds get underway.

So, Kemp DC or Jackson Dinky-style? I'm making both... Quartersawn Sapele bodies and Wenge/American Dark Birch (inverted) necks... These two builds will also be getting some (interesting) solid/PU colours =)

FYI, Birch, as you may or may not know, is known for it's "natural EQ qualities" and this variety has a grain pattern and strength similar to Black Walnut... along with an unusual colour.

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  • KempGuitarsKempGuitars Frets: 113
    edited July 2017

    Something like this appeal to anyone? These are rough mock-ups for the next two builds - one Dinky style archtop (colour undecided) and the Kiwi Green DC. Both will be Sapele bodies, Wenge/Dark Birch (inverted) necks, Wenge fretboards, 25.5"-26.5" multiscale/half-fanned, Gotoh hardware and EMG 81 pups. Finish will be matte PU.

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  • KempGuitarsKempGuitars Frets: 113

     Fanned fret DC and SS underway... Looking a bit dull at the moment ;)

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  • TTonyTTony Frets: 13813
    That Dark Birch looks interesting.
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  • KempGuitarsKempGuitars Frets: 113
    TTony said:
    That Dark Birch looks interesting.


    Something different to use. It's got an odd colour, bronze-like, but when it's wiped over with spirits or water it turns a deep orange-red colour. The smell when machining it is fantastic too - smells sweet, like sugary coffee or syrup.

    It looks like it could be Black Walnut (grain, etc) and it's about the same hardness/density and weight, but I would only use it laminated until I knew more about it. I've not come across it before, and it's not an easy one to get hold of over here. There's a couple of small pieces on eBay and barely anything about the stuff in general on Google. This'll probably be a one-off.


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  • KempGuitarsKempGuitars Frets: 113

    Further progress on the latest DC and SS (formerly referred to as the "Dinky-style") builds. The bodies are now ready for finish sanding and I started the first neck carve today - on which you can now see the final colour of that Dark Birch with the help of some spirits...


    The SS is an archtop with the same deep scoop in the lower cutaway...


    Dark Birch and Wenge neck - the Dark Birch is a similar colour to the lighter Wenge grain...


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  • KempGuitarsKempGuitars Frets: 113

    Nearly forgot; going back to those SS colour mock-ups I recently posted. I had decided to go with the yellow, but whilst messing around with the images I came up with this orange which I'm quite drawn towards. Thoughts - yellow or orange?



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  • webrthomsonwebrthomson Frets: 344

    Something like this appeal to anyone? These are rough mock-ups for the next two builds - one Dinky style archtop (colour undecided) and the Kiwi Green DC. Both will be Sapele bodies, Wenge/Dark Birch (inverted) necks, Wenge fretboards, 25.5"-26.5" multiscale/half-fanned, Gotoh hardware and EMG 81 pups. Finish will be matte PU.


    I like the green meanie - how much adjustment does the fan fret take - I've seen but never played one?
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  • Slanted pickups for fan fret instruments, in this case 14% slant 7 string 'Masterwound' Blackbirds designed by us for Carillion Guitars ...
    Professional pickup winder, horse-testpilot and recovering Chocolate Hobnob addict.
    Oil City Pickups  ... The Guitar Weasel blog

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  • WezVWezV Frets: 8030
    I have always preferred to go with normal pickups, i think of it as being like the bridge slant on a strat.   although its worth noting that the kemp ones above has a fan starting from the bridge so a single straight pickup looks fine.    I have always had the fan starting from somewhere between 12th fret and nut which obviously gives more slant on the bridge end






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  • WezV said:
    I have always preferred to go with normal pickups, i think of it as being like the bridge slant on a strat.   although its worth noting that the kemp ones above has a fan starting from the bridge so a single straight pickup looks fine.    I have always had the fan starting from somewhere between 12th fret and nut which obviously gives more slant on the bridge end






    Nice to see my Masterwound  Havoc in there again Wez ... always thought it really suited the look of that guitar.
    Professional pickup winder, horse-testpilot and recovering Chocolate Hobnob addict.
    Oil City Pickups  ... The Guitar Weasel blog

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  • WezVWezV Frets: 8030
    it sounds bloody awesome in it too.
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  • Something like this appeal to anyone? These are rough mock-ups for the next two builds - one Dinky style archtop (colour undecided) and the Kiwi Green DC. Both will be Sapele bodies, Wenge/Dark Birch (inverted) necks, Wenge fretboards, 25.5"-26.5" multiscale/half-fanned, Gotoh hardware and EMG 81 pups. Finish will be matte PU.


    I like the green meanie - how much adjustment does the fan fret take - I've seen but never played one?
    I love this sort of stripped out look ... 
    Professional pickup winder, horse-testpilot and recovering Chocolate Hobnob addict.
    Oil City Pickups  ... The Guitar Weasel blog

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  • KempGuitarsKempGuitars Frets: 113

    Something like this appeal to anyone? These are rough mock-ups for the next two builds - one Dinky style archtop (colour undecided) and the Kiwi Green DC. Both will be Sapele bodies, Wenge/Dark Birch (inverted) necks, Wenge fretboards, 25.5"-26.5" multiscale/half-fanned, Gotoh hardware and EMG 81 pups. Finish will be matte PU.


    I like the green meanie - how much adjustment does the fan fret take - I've seen but never played one?


    Hello Sir - that's my favourite at the moment too. Sealed both builds today so I should be shooting primer before the weekend and top coats next week =)

    The fanned frets, despite appearance, don't take long to get adjusted to, even with the bigger scale length differences, such as 25.5"-28", and full fan (neutral fret around 7th to 9th, or even 12th fret). I decided to adopt the "half fan" because I feel it offers the same benefits but looks less daunting and, therefore, might encourage more players to try out multiscale... I can also fit any standard bridge, unlike full fan builds that have very limited options.



    Slanted pickups for fan fret instruments, in this case 14% slant 7 string 'Masterwound' Blackbirds designed by us for Carillion Guitars ...
    Do you do other angles? I've used BKPs (limited to 12 degree) and I've had Lundgren make me an M8 with a 25 degree angle. But if I the need came for angled pups then I'd like someone UK based that can make them for me =)
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  • KempGuitarsKempGuitars Frets: 113
     WezV said:
    I have always preferred to go with normal pickups, i think of it as being like the bridge slant on a strat.   although its worth noting that the kemp ones above has a fan starting from the bridge so a single straight pickup looks fine.    I have always had the fan starting from somewhere between 12th fret and nut which obviously gives more slant on the bridge end






    Nice build. I think it works looks-wise (non-angled pup) =)


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  •  WezV said:
    I have always preferred to go with normal pickups, i think of it as being like the bridge slant on a strat.   although its worth noting that the kemp ones above has a fan starting from the bridge so a single straight pickup looks fine.    I have always had the fan starting from somewhere between 12th fret and nut which obviously gives more slant on the bridge end






    Nice build. I think it works looks-wise (non-angled pup) =)


    The Havoc pickup was designed for guitars like this, it's a balls to the wall metal pickup with triple magnets and a 16k DCR, but with over height bobbins, so it retains all the high end harmonics and splits to be like a true single coil ... like two 8k strat pickups in the same unit. Sorry ... I'm very into what I do :-)
    Professional pickup winder, horse-testpilot and recovering Chocolate Hobnob addict.
    Oil City Pickups  ... The Guitar Weasel blog

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  • KempGuitarsKempGuitars Frets: 113
     WezV said:
    I have always preferred to go with normal pickups, i think of it as being like the bridge slant on a strat.   although its worth noting that the kemp ones above has a fan starting from the bridge so a single straight pickup looks fine.    I have always had the fan starting from somewhere between 12th fret and nut which obviously gives more slant on the bridge end






    Nice build. I think it works looks-wise (non-angled pup) =)


    The Havoc pickup was designed for guitars like this, it's a balls to the wall metal pickup with triple magnets and a 16k DCR, but with over height bobbins, so it retains all the high end harmonics and splits to be like a true single coil ... like two 8k strat pickups in the same unit. Sorry ... I'm very into what I do :-)


    No, that's good to know. I did consider Oil City pups on a recent(ish) build. I will have to find out more and perhaps try out some of your products - including the Havoc by the sounds of it. It's getting late and I need some sleep so I'll take a look through your site tomorrow and start thinking about pups for my next stock build. Initial thoughts were something along the lines of the SD Distortion... Or maybe I'll just try out The Havoc =)

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  • WezVWezV Frets: 8030
    I put a push/pull in the volume control too.  The split sound is one of the best I have had, and I have tried a lot.  I was really happy when Ash said he could do a double white one too.
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  • WezVWezV Frets: 8030
    Oh, and apologies for posting one of mine in your thread.  I thought it showed a slightly different approach to a similar style of guitar.

    i sometimes have people say they have tried fanned frets and it wasn't for them... but often they don't remember what scale lengths it used of where the fan started from.  There probably is a fan that would work for them.
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  • KempGuitarsKempGuitars Frets: 113
    WezV said:
    Oh, and apologies for posting one of mine in your thread.  I thought it showed a slightly different approach to a similar style of guitar.

    i sometimes have people say they have tried fanned frets and it wasn't for them... but often they don't remember what scale lengths it used of where the fan started from.  There probably is a fan that would work for them.

    No, I'm glad you did. Like you said, it's a different approach and works with both the full fan and, what I like to call the half fan that I'm doing. Thanks Wez
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  •  WezV said:
    I have always preferred to go with normal pickups, i think of it as being like the bridge slant on a strat.   although its worth noting that the kemp ones above has a fan starting from the bridge so a single straight pickup looks fine.    I have always had the fan starting from somewhere between 12th fret and nut which obviously gives more slant on the bridge end






    Nice build. I think it works looks-wise (non-angled pup) =)


    The Havoc pickup was designed for guitars like this, it's a balls to the wall metal pickup with triple magnets and a 16k DCR, but with over height bobbins, so it retains all the high end harmonics and splits to be like a true single coil ... like two 8k strat pickups in the same unit. Sorry ... I'm very into what I do :-)


    No, that's good to know. I did consider Oil City pups on a recent(ish) build. I will have to find out more and perhaps try out some of your products - including the Havoc by the sounds of it. It's getting late and I need some sleep so I'll take a look through your site tomorrow and start thinking about pups for my next stock build. Initial thoughts were something along the lines of the SD Distortion... Or maybe I'll just try out The Havoc =)

    I also develop pickups specifically for and with builders as I did with Blackmachine. I can always cut you a deal m'boy ;-)
    Professional pickup winder, horse-testpilot and recovering Chocolate Hobnob addict.
    Oil City Pickups  ... The Guitar Weasel blog

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  • KempGuitarsKempGuitars Frets: 113
     WezV said:
    I have always preferred to go with normal pickups, i think of it as being like the bridge slant on a strat.   although its worth noting that the kemp ones above has a fan starting from the bridge so a single straight pickup looks fine.    I have always had the fan starting from somewhere between 12th fret and nut which obviously gives more slant on the bridge end






    Nice build. I think it works looks-wise (non-angled pup) =)


    The Havoc pickup was designed for guitars like this, it's a balls to the wall metal pickup with triple magnets and a 16k DCR, but with over height bobbins, so it retains all the high end harmonics and splits to be like a true single coil ... like two 8k strat pickups in the same unit. Sorry ... I'm very into what I do :-)


    No, that's good to know. I did consider Oil City pups on a recent(ish) build. I will have to find out more and perhaps try out some of your products - including the Havoc by the sounds of it. It's getting late and I need some sleep so I'll take a look through your site tomorrow and start thinking about pups for my next stock build. Initial thoughts were something along the lines of the SD Distortion... Or maybe I'll just try out The Havoc =)

    I also develop pickups specifically for and with builders as I did with Blackmachine. I can always cut you a deal m'boy ;-)

    I'll tell you what, I'd like to get the current stock builds finished and out the workshop asap as I'm going to be moving house (and workshop) sometime over the next two months. Once I'm all set up at the new place then I'll get in touch with you directly and we can have a chat - That also gives me time to think about what I'd like to be putting in my builds as standard =)
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  • By all means ... phone me anytime you like ... my number is on the Oil City website :-)
    Professional pickup winder, horse-testpilot and recovering Chocolate Hobnob addict.
    Oil City Pickups  ... The Guitar Weasel blog

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  • KempGuitarsKempGuitars Frets: 113
    By all means ... phone me anytime you like ... my number is on the Oil City website :-)

    Thanks, will do
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  • KempGuitarsKempGuitars Frets: 113

    Sealed and primed - the new DC and SS Archtop builds looking good in white but they're still getting those colours =)

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  • axisusaxisus Frets: 9886
    I don't actually buy guitars any more, I just make my own, but I have to say that these are looking really good! Very nice indeed. I look forward to seeing the finished articles.
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  • KempGuitarsKempGuitars Frets: 113
     axisus said:
    I don't actually buy guitars any more, I just make my own, but I have to say that these are looking really good! Very nice indeed. I look forward to seeing the finished articles.
    Thanks axisus, I'm looking forward to seeing them finished too - I haven't really had the chance to use colours like this before and the whole style/spec is my own taste. It will be hard to see these go :/
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  • axisusaxisus Frets: 9886
    KempGuitars said:

    It will be hard to see these go :/
    I have built one guitar, and I know from that that I could never build guitars and sell them. 
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