Combine Newsletter - August 2023
July's Guitar of the Month Winner!
We’re pleased to announce that Thomas Y. is the latest winner of our Guitar of the Month contest! This blue burst guitar is built using Combine's Multiscale TCS DIY Guitar Kit. Here is a snippet of his story:
"I love building guitar kits. I find that, if I take my time and go for quality, that I can get a guitar worth $2500 for $500-$750. At this moment I've built 8 guitar kits and I keep learning with each guitar.
Here is what worked great with this build.
1. The guitar itself is very high quality. The fit of the neck in the body (which is critical) was superb. The craftsmanship was excellent. The fret fitting on the neck was smooth and didn't require any clean up (this in and of itself is pretty rare).
2. The guitar did not require much prep for finishing. I sanded it down to about 1000 grit before finishing, and then did my normal routine to finish it out. To get to 1000 grit, some guitars require many upfront steps. This one was easy. Sanding was not a big deal at all to prep this guitar.
3. This was my second attempt at a blue colored guitar. I love the first one, but it turned out more purple than blue. This one turned out exactly how I envisioned it.
Here were the challenges. First off, I always run into challenges when I build kits. Don't expect a dummy proof kit from anybody and, yes I end up being the dummy all the time. These are my learning experiences.
1. I never use the hardware sent in a kit. I always upgrade the tuners, pick-ups, controls, knobs etc. You can't buy a kit for a couple hundred dollars that has high quality workmanship and also expect to have high quality electronics, which are generally worth double what you paid for the entire kit. I always use active pick-ups. It's not a preference for me, it's a big part of my style. I'm also very particular about the tuners. I always use locking tuners. This guitar did come with locking tuners, but they can't compare with the Grover tuners I use. I need that smooth, controllable tuning.
2. The first main challenge I had with this guitar was in substituting for active pick-ups. I got some Seymour Duncans and they didn't fit into the pockets. I had to mill out the pockets to make them fit. I use the term "mill" broadly. It was me and a drill and a Dremel going at it. I actually did this after I finished the guitar which meant that I had to be very careful. Luckily it worked out fine.
3. The second challenge is that I almost created a guitar that couldn't be intonated, and that would also be difficult to capture the strings in the first place. I lined the bridge holes (for the strings) up perfectly with the string holes drilled into the guitar. This was a problem. The bridge needs to be set slightly back for two reasons: First, you need a hard stop to keep the string knobby thing at the end from sliding right through the hole. Second, I barely had room (and I mean barely) to get the guitar intonated. Luckily, it just squeaked in. I ended up adding a small plate at the bridge to block the strings from coming though the holes and keep me from having to raise the Allen screws too much in order to make sure the strings didn't buzz. This wasn't a big deal, but I totally lucked out with the intonation.
Overall - Awesome quality. Awesome kit. I'm hoping they get more body styles with larger electronic pockets to allow for active pick-up electronics. I've bought guitar kits from quite a few sources. The quality of the body and neck were the best I have received. PLUS There are multiscale options, which is just so awesome." - Thomas Y.
Thomas' win has earned him 50% off the base price of his next DIY Guitar Kit, and his build has been shared on our website and social media!
AUGUST SPECIAL OFFER
10% off Multiscale TCS 6-String Guitar Kits
Use code: TCS10 at checkout, or click the link below to automatically apply the discount to your order.
Offer valid until September 1st, 2023
August's Guitar of the Month Contest
We know you're all busy working away on your builds, and we expect some of you will complete them in time to enter August's Guitar of the Month contest! The winner will receive 50% off the base price of their next DIY Guitar Kit, and their build will be shared on our website and social media.