C18Q1 Antoria LP Custom Refurb

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BillyK57BillyK57 Frets: 11
edited January 2018 in Making & Modding
So, seeing the diverse content of this challenge, I decided to commit to a project and as this challenge is time limited, I might actually complete it as well.
My project isn't actually a new idea, rather it's a restoration I started some time ago, but after a multitude of cock-ups, I lost the will to continue. As I'll now be answerable to the challenge, I'm hoping the peer pressure will push me through to completion.
Enough of the BS. My project is to take my knackered old 1976 Antoria LP Custom (I think a 'pre law suit' version) and get it to a place where it is not only functioning as an electric guitar but a nice player too. This was my first electric guitar, bought from new, so holds some sort of sentimental value, even though it's currently a real bag of shit. 

https://farm5.staticflickr.com/4680/38551202725_83c47c74eb_k.jpg
https://farm5.staticflickr.com/4634/38551202265_f57c17ad90_k.jpg

As you can see from the pics, the guitar finish is battered. Also the pickups have been destroyed, the control electronics corroded and tuners were useless in the first place. The original bridge was corroded.
The frets have always buzzed like crazy and needed leveling and redressing. So, about a year ago and inspired by lurking around this website, I removed the neck, bought a leveling beam and straight edge from Crimson, removed the neck and set about it. Well, I was stupidly aggressive with the fret leveling and made a real mess of them - they are very low and flat - and the neck now needs a new fret job.

The idea, with Santa money funding, is to:
  • Get a fret check / re-fret job
  • Replace pickups - I already have these - Ironstone Alnico V. Has anyone any experience of these ?
  • New bridge posts already done - have also bought new bridge.
  • Replace controls - LP wiring kit from Axetec. Again, already bought.
  • Replace pickup selector switch
  • Replace jack socket
  • Replace tuners - from Vanson Guitars. These already installed on the screwed up neck.
  • Reassemble
I'm planning to leave the guitar finish in its' battered condition, mainly for the distressed vibe, but also when removing the pickups I can see the body is made from a composite of crappy woods, MDFs and other materials of dubious nature and quality.
This is the first time I've attempted any modding / upgrading, so any advise, offers of help (especially anyone who wants to take on the neck re-fret for a suitable cost), gratefully received. Will post on progress.

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Comments

  • BillKatBillKat Frets: 1452
    Nice to have your first guitar, good luck. Prob obvious but I'd add getting a new top nut to the list, a well-cut nut & good fret job will make it play nicely. Decent top nut helps with the old tuning vs the splayed strings too.


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  • TTonyTTony Frets: 15748
    BillyK57 said:
     I can see the body is made from a composite of crappy woods, MDFs and other materials of dubious nature and quality.

    You're not alone in that discovery on various MIJ brands of the era. 

    But use of different woods hasn't really held Danelectro back ...
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  • impmannimpmann Frets: 7940
    My first decent guitar was an Antoria Les Paul Goldtop. Once the dreadful original pickups went in the bin, it turned into an absolute beast of a guitar. The original neck was superb once a fret job was done and the original tuners were replaced with a set of USA Grovers.

    I kept it for ages and I genuinely preferred it to my first Gibson Les Paul (a late 70s Deluxe fitted with DiMarzios), and so sold the Gibson! Sadly I did a dumb deal with it and swapped it for a Sound City 50w head and 4x12 about 25 years ago. I still regret it and every day I search the Antoria listings on eBay in the vain hope it comes back up for sale.

    Good luck with the project! :-)
    Never Ever Bloody Anything Ever.

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  • FunkfingersFunkfingers Frets: 4815
    edited January 2018
    BillyK57 said:
    the body is made from a composite of crappy woods
    Your project Antoria has much in common with a Matsumoku guitar that I sourced for HarrySeven.  http://www.thefretboard.co.uk/discussion/121585/ngd-x-2-70s-mij-goodness#latest  Solid mystery wood back. Steam pressed ply arched top. Air gap between them, visible from the control cavity.

    If your "destroyed" humbuckers are the MMK45 type, there are some obsessive hoarders collectors who might buy them and get them rewound. 
    Be seeing you.
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  • eSullyeSully Frets: 911
    impmann said:
    My first decent guitar was an Antoria Les Paul Goldtop. Once the dreadful original pickups went in the bin, it turned into an absolute beast of a guitar. The original neck was superb once a fret job was done and the original tuners were replaced with a set of USA Grovers.

    I kept it for ages and I genuinely preferred it to my first Gibson Les Paul (a late 70s Deluxe fitted with DiMarzios), and so sold the Gibson! Sadly I did a dumb deal with it and swapped it for a Sound City 50w head and 4x12 about 25 years ago. I still regret it and every day I search the Antoria listings on eBay in the vain hope it comes back up for sale.

    Good luck with the project! :-)
    @impmann I remember there was a Goldtop 70’s Antoria on the South Wales gear exchange Facebook page last year that I considered. Chances are low it’s your one I’d imagine but if you did want to chase it up here’s the last link I could find to it!!

    https://m.facebook.com/groups/201634549914520?view=permalink&id=1445269728884323&ref=content_filter&_rdr


    @billyk57 - good luck with project
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  • impmannimpmann Frets: 7940
    Thanks mate. I can’t access that for some reason. 
    Mine was quite heavily modded and distinctive - I’m not going to derail the OPs post though! Thanks for the thought.
    Never Ever Bloody Anything Ever.

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  • BillKat said:
    Nice to have your first guitar, good luck. Prob obvious but I'd add getting a new top nut to the list, a well-cut nut & good fret job will make it play nicely. Decent top nut helps with the old tuning vs the splayed strings too.
    Thanks all for your input.
    @BillKat For sure, you're right - I will add the new nut to the project list. I'm not sure I trust myself to cut the slots but a new nut isn't a massive investment, so if I screw up it will be a cheap lesson. 
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  • impmann said:
    My first decent guitar was an Antoria Les Paul Goldtop. Once the dreadful original pickups went in the bin, it turned into an absolute beast of a guitar. The original neck was superb once a fret job was done and the original tuners were replaced with a set of USA Grovers.

    I kept it for ages and I genuinely preferred it to my first Gibson Les Paul (a late 70s Deluxe fitted with DiMarzios), and so sold the Gibson! Sadly I did a dumb deal with it and swapped it for a Sound City 50w head and 4x12 about 25 years ago. I still regret it and every day I search the Antoria listings on eBay in the vain hope it comes back up for sale.

    Good luck with the project! :-)
    @impmann This Antoria was my first decent guitar too - prior to that it was a cheap Spanish acoustic. To be honest, I had nothing to compare it to and at the time, bought it purely because it looked cool and was about £100 cheaper than the Gibson sitting next to it in the same shop window. What a dick I was..... just £100 more. Anyway, I thought it was as good as it gets. I found the pickups OK, but as I said, didn't have much to compare with. I have an LP Traditional now so it'll be interesting to compare when the refurb is complete.
    @Funkfingers Thanks for the tip ref the pickups. I'll try and unload them.
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  • TTony said:
    You're not alone in that discovery on various MIJ brands of the era. 

    But use of different woods hasn't really held Danelectro back ...
    Danelectro...hmmm.... I've not yet gassed for any. Now for sure I'm put off.
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