A mini restoration of the original Red Special.
The work involved filling all the cracks in the body, then flatting down and re-polishing. Repairing damage to the end and edge, and touching in of the fingerboard. Also, at the last minute, replacing one of the pearl dots that had become paper thin, and was hanging by the skin of it's teeth.
Various parts, including the tremolo and bridge assembly were removed, serviced, cleaned and lubricated before refitting. The last job was renewal of the zero fret. The last time this was done was around 10 years ago, and it has played many tours since.
Some time ago, cracks in the body had begun to let in dirt and moisture and whilst on tour, emergency measures in the shape of duct tape were used. Once the guitar had been disassembled, I had to carefully score with a scalpel, every crack on the front, rear and edges of the body. This was done so the ultra thin viscosity Cyanoacrylate glue would run through the cracks using capillary action. Once sealed the glue could then be built up to the surface ready for flatting down and polishing. The back of the guitar was in by far the worst condition, and ate up hours of painstaking work. The edge of the body had also taken quite a bashing when Brian holds his guitar aloft and the end of the show. The strap mounted booster and radio pack basically used to knock into the body causing the damage.
The fingerboard had also taken a fair bit of abuse, with large grooves worn into the end of the fingerboard between the last fret and the neck pickup. I repaired this firstly with black stain to the bare oak, then built a 'dam' around the damage with tape and filling this with epoxy resin. Once this had hardened it was filed and sanded to profile and sprayed to match the rest of the fingerboard.
While the repairs in the neck and body were curing, we cleaned the parts with brushes, wire wool, oil and wet and dry paper. While I was putting the finishing touched to the fingerboard ready for reassembly, one of the dots makers showed signs of cracking, when touching this with the point of a scalpel it literally fell apart, and in parts was only the thickness of a sheet of paper. Emergency phone calls to Pete and Brian followed, and it was decided to replace the old dot, with a 1.5mm thick new one.
During this time, Will and I filmed and photographed the entire process. I'm currently ploughing through what seems like hours of footage to try and make a short documentary of the mini restoration.
With a MASSIVE sense of relief, the Red Special went back to Brian last week, and is currently in rehearsals for forthcoming Queen & Adam Lambert shows.
The video may be some time, but until then, here are a few photos...
Due to time and workload, I will be unable to answer any questions at the moment, but there may be a FAQ section added later, if there is demand.
Guyton Red Special (RSR-18) is for sale.
The pickups have been custom built by Adrian Turner using original 1960's Trisonic covers and magnets.
The guitar is in good overall condition. It has been played with a sixpence and shows the evidence on the pick guard and the end of the fingerboard. The guitar is in it's original white Calton case, again, signed by Brian. It will be given a full service and setup prior to sale. The scuffing to the pick guard and the fingerboard damage can be made new, but this has been left for the moment, as some people prefer the more authentic used look. Additional work and shipping will be price on application.
Part 2 of the Badger 'making of' series.
Part 3 is being filmed now!