Tym Perspex Vibratone aluminium neck

This is one of mine that I made a few years ago in that quest for alternative materials.


The Vibratone was my take on the upside down Jagstang and after making a bunch of them out of several different timbers in several different forms I decided I was going to make a Perspex body like a Dan Armstrong.

I've always loved the concept of the Dan Armstrong but it, like the aluminium neck just didn't catch on in the guitar world back then except for a few key players at the time and a resurgence lately with some hard/punk bands playing them again.


This was the second Perspex body I'd made and I should have learnt from the first one to make it out of thinner material. They're HEAVY !

I cut the body from one piece of Perspex (acrylic) and shaped it using all wood working tools. It was quite an experience. It looked like someone had thrown coconut all round the workshop inc the ceiling and walls ......... It was everywhere.


 

I then had to rout the body for pick up, neck cavity etc. Working with this acrylic is weird but ultimately very satisfying. It's reasonably easy to work by hand and takes a bit to polish the edges but you don't need to paint it.

It was at this stage I thought I'd fit one of my aluminium necks so I could make a guitar with no timber (except the fretboard) so the neck pocket was cut to suit my Vee neck bolt pattern. I then tap and thread the aluminium to use metal bolts to attach them to the body Fender style.


 

 


My aluminium necks are sand cast from a reasonably low grade aluminium from pine patterns I make by hand. I like thin necks and these are THIN. They are hollow down the middle with a "web" for strength running the length of the neck under the fretboard. This also gives the fretboard something else to glue to down the middle.

I had problems with the fretboard de-laminating on the first ones. This fretboard is Jarrah, an Australian hardwood that I use for nearly all my fretboards.


The headstock is of course a take on the Travis Bean headstock which is one of the guitars that inspired me to make these in the first place. Mine is slightly angled like a Mosrite and hollowed out at the back to save on weight.

This is "production" neck number three and is slightly different to the prototypes and production necks one and two.

Because I make the patterns by hand out of pine I could change each neck to make it lighter, thinner etc as I went.


I think this number three neck may have been the "last" in the design line for me and I made a few necks off this pattern. I've since made a different pattern that will allow the aluminium neck to retro fit onto any Fender style bolt on neck guitar. That should be done ........... soon ......... when I get time, yeah, right.


Anyway, enjoy and if you wanna see some more of my metal necks, let me know and I'll do some more blogs. More coming about other guitars, effects, amps etc anyway.

Other Tym aluminium neck guitars HERE and HERE

Aug 22 2013 Written By: Tim Brennan