Guitar Upgrade – Paula gets the final touch – Part 1 The Plan

I LOVE upgrading my guitars, but some things have to come to an end.

Paula is a guitar that have been through a lot, and I want to finish it as best as I can.

Links to the rest of the process:
Part #2 – Parts, Parts Everywhere
Part #3 – Before We Begin
Part #4 – Smooth As Basalt

Paula as of now 07/07/18

I have been through a lot with Paula;
Originally a Made In Mexico Squier by Fender Stratocaster California Series Candy Apple Red.

Paula before the upgrade

She’s my first electric guitar,
the first electronics project I ever did,
the first guitar upgrade was on her,
the first setup I made was on her,
the first repaint I did was on her,
and now she has the best sound and feel than my 2 other guitars.
BUT –
in the long process I had to go back to a pickguard
I didn’t like in combination with her paint…
As seen in the picture on the left.
That’s because I got back to SSS from SSH
(Rails, Single Coil, Humbucker)
I didn’t like how the humbucker-type pickups took away
all the punch and highs from the guitar.
When I got back to my Warman Texas Vintage Single Coils
she got back all the sound I could ever ask from her!
I mean, ~ALMOST~…

The Plan

The Big Scheme (ha! puns!!!)
  • Replace all components to high grade ones
    (yay more knobs to buy…)
  • Wire it B-E-A-Utifuly! (I even bought a “Helping Hands” for this)
  • Add a Neck + Bridge Switch (DPDT Push Pull Potentiometer)
  • ~Replace the pickguard to a transparent one~
  • Test different grounding techniques – both for looks and functionality
  • Make the control cavity of the guitar body smoother and good looking
  • Straighten the neck (I wish I would figure this out)
  • And finally setup the guitar

The last thing I will be able to upgrade in the future,
when I’ll have the money, will be the tuners,
which I already know I’ll go with
Wilkinson\Vanson ones – because they’re cheap(er) and still good.

I will document the process on paper,
and my girlfriend might take some pictures along the way.
I will add a link at the end of this post when the next one is published.
If it all goes to plan (I doubt it),
I will upload the Excel file with all the info on the process to the blog πŸ™‚
After all that, I will finish up Paula’s gear page,
where all the info on the guitar will be organized for you πŸ™‚
(And I might add Affiliated Amazon links, FYI)

The New Parts and Where I Bought ‘Em All

I’m living in Israel, so finding deals with low shipping cost is hard,
so for all you Israelis out there – here is where I buy my stuff πŸ™‚

Banzai Music GmbH

Speed Knobs Black * 2 (SKU24916)
Alpha 16-DPDT-KN-500k log (SKU34523) – Push Pull DPDT Potentiometer, for Bass Cut
Orange Drop 715P – 0,0015uF (SKU17682) – Bass Cut
Orange Drop 715P – 0,022uF (SKU17690) – High Cut
Tremolo Screws Chrome, 6 pieces (SKU35524) – Because the ones I own already look awful..
Bourns GTR-KN Pot 250k logΒ  * 2 – For Volume and High Cut
Switchcraft SC-L-11 – I already have in the guitar, but every time I order an extra one just in case

(Edit 18/05/2019 – This order never arrived and thus the project is halted…)

eBay.com

Guitar Copper Shielding Foil Sheet (good_deal20172)
100Pcs Ξ¦2.2 Keystone Solder Lug Terminal Brass Double Head (ichoseilove)
36x Sandpaper Assorted GrindΒ 9.06″x3.62” 400-3000 (zhuqinling)
Extension Cord Flexible Shaft Chuck for Dremel (supersuperstore)
Black Boat Jack Plate Strat (million-dollar-club) – because the one I have is a little bent
50pcs Guitar Pickguard Screws for Strat Gunmetal Chrome 3*12mm (2010bettertogether)
Transparent Closed Single Coil Pickup Covers For Strat (opasqi-4)
1Ply Strat SSS Pickguard 11Holes Transparent (iknmusic)

Amazon.com

Pro’sKit 900-015 Helping Hands Soldering Aid
Kmise MI0157H4 4-Piece Black ABS Top Hat (I think it won’t fit..)

Wish me luck :3

I’ll need it πŸ˜› and also concentration… and calm… anyway…. bye πŸ™‚