Jazzo-Sonic | Restoring a '62 Jazzmaster

Bringing your older offset back to life.
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Highnumbers
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Jazzo-Sonic | Restoring a '62 Jazzmaster

Post by Highnumbers » Mon Jun 13, 2022 3:43 pm

I recently introduced the Jazzo-Sonic™ in this thread: viewtopic.php?f=41&t=122791

Half-1962 Jazzmaster, half-1958 or '59 Duo-Sonic, this was a crudely build homemade double-neck guitar that managed to ruin two offsets. I picked this up from a guy offering vintage JM parts, and I'd guess it was made in the late 70s or early 80s.

As interesting as this thing is, the build quality was very low, it would have required tons of work to build it back as a functional doubleneck, and most of the Duo-Sonic parts were missing aside from a pickup and some tuners.

But almost all of the '62 JM stuff is there (apart from the wiring harness, guard and some shielding). Not only is is possible that I could restore this guitar, but perhaps I should restore it.

After much consideration, and inspired by Will's excellent "unVoxing a JM" thread (viewtopic.php?f=42&t=111273), I have decided to restore this oddball back to a Jazzmaster.

So, follow along in this thread as I resurrect this sorry looking thing back in shape.

"Before" pics:
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Highnumbers
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Re: Jazzo-Sonic | Restoring a '62 Jazzmaster

Post by Highnumbers » Mon Jun 13, 2022 3:58 pm

To start things off, let's look at what we're working with.

Thankfully the neck is in excellent shape. Original finish on the backside, with only the decal lightly scuffed off the front of the headstock (I'll be going custom color with matching headstock anyway!). Thought it was interesting that this neck was made in June 1962, and here we are in June 2022 exactly 60 years later. Hopefully it will last another 60 years after this restoration!


The body is crudely made, as you can see. I'm glad the Duo-Sonic was the lower side because it has a huge control cavity and a rough route for the trem on the lower side of the body. You can see the faint joint line on the backside


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It's hard to see, but best in this photo. The top surface of this guitar was heavily sanded, most likely to match the thinner Duo-Sonic body (anybody have a measurement of the width of a 50s MM or Duo body?). To the point where I'll need to add fresh wood to the top in order to re-shape everything as needed.
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Highnumbers
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Re: Jazzo-Sonic | Restoring a '62 Jazzmaster

Post by Highnumbers » Mon Jun 13, 2022 4:03 pm

First order of business is stripping the seam away, to see what's going on under the (sort of) Candy Apple Red finish:

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As you can see, the rhythm circuit route was plugged with practically high school-woodshop-level skills and filled. At least they used solid wood, but it's ugly AF and needs to go. This is an area where adding a thick veneer top to this body will help, I can clean up the route and open the factory cavity, making a nice clean repair without any of this mess.

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Also, for reasons unknown, they added a large patch of some other kind of wood (mahogany?) in the pickup route area. Not a big deal because this will get removed in the rebuild, but a good demonstration of just how bad the work was on this thing.
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You can still see the plugged indexing holes on the backside of the body. Great to see and confirms (most likely) that this body is original to the neck and all the other '62 parts.
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Last edited by Highnumbers on Mon Jun 13, 2022 4:07 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Jazzo-Sonic | Restoring a '62 Jazzmaster

Post by Highnumbers » Mon Jun 13, 2022 4:06 pm

I thought about steaming the body halves apart...but why? The Duo-Sonic body is wasted anyway, so I simply cut it in half with a Skil Saw! :w00t:

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Running the JM body half through an edge jointer, to make a nice clean edge for gluing a new treble side body on.
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Lastly, I lightly planed the top surface of the JM body, in preparation for the veneer top.
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Highnumbers
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Re: Jazzo-Sonic | Restoring a '62 Jazzmaster

Post by Highnumbers » Mon Jun 13, 2022 4:13 pm

As of today, this is where I'm at.

For the top, added two pieces of thin instrument-grade alder (it's not available in wide pieces so I had to epoxy two strips with the grain edge matching.

For repairs like this, I use West Systems Marine Epoxy - a pretty standard material in many guitar repair shops because it doesn't shrink, it cures rock hard and is perfect for repairs that you don't want coming apart - ever.

I have these 3/8" acrylic sheets for clamping flat bodies and it works really well for evenly distributing pressure as I add 20+ clamps all over the thing, without marking the body in any way

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Next, I'll reshape the body and prepare the new thick alder slab for shaping the treble side of the body. Stay tuned next week!

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caples
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Re: Jazzo-Sonic | Restoring a '62 Jazzmaster

Post by caples » Tue Jun 14, 2022 3:33 am

awesome thread! What color are you thinking?
"no comment"

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Highnumbers
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Re: Jazzo-Sonic | Restoring a '62 Jazzmaster

Post by Highnumbers » Tue Jun 14, 2022 9:22 am

caples wrote:
Tue Jun 14, 2022 3:33 am
awesome thread! What color are you thinking?
Thanks!

Looking at the '61/62 Custom Color chart I'm leaning toward Sonic Blue, Sherwood Green or Burgundy Mist - with a mint guard and aged finish. In fact, I already have a mint Spitfire guard that will work perfectly for this.

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caples
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Re: Jazzo-Sonic | Restoring a '62 Jazzmaster

Post by caples » Tue Jun 14, 2022 10:46 am

Highnumbers wrote:
Tue Jun 14, 2022 9:22 am
caples wrote:
Tue Jun 14, 2022 3:33 am
awesome thread! What color are you thinking?
Thanks!

Looking at the '61/62 Custom Color chart I'm leaning toward Sonic Blue, Sherwood Green or Burgundy Mist - with a mint guard and aged finish. In fact, I already have a mint Spitfire guard that will work perfectly for this.
Nice, all of those are great finishes.
"no comment"

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Re: Jazzo-Sonic | Restoring a '62 Jazzmaster

Post by SWE » Tue Jun 14, 2022 12:03 pm

Threads like this makes me happy, great job, looking forward to the rest.

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Re: Jazzo-Sonic | Restoring a '62 Jazzmaster

Post by CROSS_guitars » Tue Jun 14, 2022 4:33 pm

Love this!

Wish I had access to more banged up old vintage guitars.

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gishuk
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Re: Jazzo-Sonic | Restoring a '62 Jazzmaster

Post by gishuk » Wed Jun 15, 2022 3:41 am

Love that this guitar is going to be reborn!

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Pacafeliz
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Re: Jazzo-Sonic | Restoring a '62 Jazzmaster

Post by Pacafeliz » Wed Jun 15, 2022 7:15 am

Amazing!!!

As cheaply and clumsy as this was done, someone really put some thoughts into the idea of the double neck bastard... :bored:
i love delay SO much ...that i procrastinate all the time.

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Highnumbers
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Re: Jazzo-Sonic | Restoring a '62 Jazzmaster

Post by Highnumbers » Wed Jun 15, 2022 8:49 am

Thanks everyone!

Yep, a lot of thought went into this conversion and while that person's build skills weren't quite up to the level of their concept, the design itself is pretty good. I've seen more awkwardly shaped doublenecks come from Fender in the past, and this idea would make a great scratch-build (that doesn't use up two vintage guitars!).

I'm making some progress on the build, will post some more photos later this week.

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Re: Jazzo-Sonic | Restoring a '62 Jazzmaster

Post by terminalvertigo » Thu Jun 16, 2022 4:40 am

the real treat will be watching the duo sonic come back to life ;)
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Highnumbers
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Re: Jazzo-Sonic | Restoring a '62 Jazzmaster

Post by Highnumbers » Thu Jun 16, 2022 5:05 am

terminalvertigo wrote:
Thu Jun 16, 2022 4:40 am
the real treat will be watching the duo sonic come back to life ;)
I’m going to leave that endeavor up to somebody else.

Personally I think there is nothing left to restore!

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