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  #1  
Old 09-16-2012, 08:20 PM
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J.R. Rogers J.R. Rogers is offline
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Default The McKnight - Maple/Mahogany/Sitka

After years of wanting a McKnight guitar it's finally time! First off, Tim and Mary are two of the best people to work with. I know that they have quite a waitlist for their guitars, but these guitars are really in a class all their own. Playing my first McKnight back in 2009, I didn't feel worthy to be holding such an instrument. But I've been practicing! On to the design...

I'm a fan of the classic 30's era 14-fret Gibson L-00 design and this is the body shape and size that seems to fit me best. So I wanted Tim to build something that hearkened a bit to my favorite classic in size and some of the visual aspects as well as the tone. However I also love the classic Gibson archtop and hollowbody designs with their figured maple goodness and rich burst finishes. Therefore, I opted for flamed maple back and sides for aesthetics, doubled with Mahogany back and sides on the inside of the guitar for tone. It's magic.

Tim's Deacon body shape provides the basis for this guitar. Tim credits this model's design to country and bluegrass legend Marty Stuart, who designed this guitar by pulling together some of his favorite specs from classic instruments such as Jimmy Rodgers' guitar body and Lester Flatt's D-28 14 fret neck profile. I opted for Tim's fingerstyle headstock instead of the slothead, however.



I play a 1 11/16" neck, and I prefer a 2 1/4" string spacing at the bridge and 25.5" scale. This guitar will have 14 frets clear of the body, satin finish mahogany neck, ivoroid binding all around, double ring rosette, back zipper center seam strip, bound ebony fretboard, simple micro dot inlays, stainless steel frets for durability, bound headstock with purfling, knight head logo, and a classic torch inlay on the back of the headstock. Bone nut and saddle of course, and silver tuners with ivoroid buttons.

Finish will be honey burst.



Since I play plugged-in a lot, I asked for a simple Fishman undersaddle pickup. I run this into a Taylor K4 (Neve Preamp) and then straight into the digital board, Hafler power amp, and Daedalus WS803 speakers.

To be continued...
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Old 09-16-2012, 08:20 PM
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Wood selection... Body wood


Detail options






Work begins!
Planing the guitar back






Checking for imperfections and thinking about what a luthier might want to be for Halloween



Beautiful!
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Old 09-16-2012, 08:27 PM
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Tracing the sides..



Double side material - maple and mahogany



Cutting the outer side







Measuring the inner sides



Sanding down the inner sides. Notice the workbench? Tim prefers Apple.





Sides....


Waist block...


To be continued...
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Old 09-16-2012, 08:54 PM
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Congratulations, JR. This is going to be an amazing instument. I want one too. I need to practice some more!
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Old 09-16-2012, 09:13 PM
SuperB23 SuperB23 is offline
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Congrats JR you are in for a real treat, all the McKnight guitars I've played have been amazing!!!!
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Old 09-17-2012, 06:25 AM
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Looks Great! Your gonna love that guitar!
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Old 09-17-2012, 07:38 AM
ericcsong ericcsong is online now
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JR, looking great! can't wait to see this one completed!
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Old 09-17-2012, 08:45 AM
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That's a fantastic looking guitar... coming along nicely! And the McKnight's sure seem like first class folks all the way...
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Old 09-17-2012, 10:27 AM
Dru Edwards Dru Edwards is offline
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I just love these build threads and pics. Just amazing work! Congrats JR on your first McKnight. When can we expect the completed build pics with strings attached?
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Old 09-17-2012, 12:28 PM
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Tim McKnight Tim McKnight is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dru Edwards View Post
I just love these build threads and pics. Just amazing work! Congrats JR on your first McKnight. When can we expect the completed build pics with strings attached?
Hi Dru,
JRs guitar is slated for HB 2013 delivery. We had some spare time Saturday so we will gradually start working in the Healdsburg guitars when we have openings. We have exhibited there for several years and learned some lessons the hard way and have unfortunately burnt a lot of midnight oil rushing around at the last minute to fininsh up guitars JUST before the show. I am sure Mary will back me up when I say that I am not the most pleasant person to be around under stressful time crunches. Therefore, we try to take our time and build up the HB guitars on a much slower pace.
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Old 09-17-2012, 04:09 PM
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Congrats, McKnights and J.R.! This is going to be a fun thread to watch!

Kindly,
Danny
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Old 09-17-2012, 04:23 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tim McKnight View Post
Hi Dru,
JRs guitar is slated for HB 2013 delivery. We had some spare time Saturday so we will gradually start working in the Healdsburg guitars when we have openings. We have exhibited there for several years and learned some lessons the hard way and have unfortunately burnt a lot of midnight oil rushing around at the last minute to fininsh up guitars JUST before the show. I am sure Mary will back me up when I say that I am not the most pleasant person to be around under stressful time crunches. Therefore, we try to take our time and build up the HB guitars on a much slower pace.
Excellent! If plans go well then we'll take delivery of both JR's and mine at HB'13!!

Nicely chosen, both of you. Love those small bodies!

Best,

Phil
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Old 09-17-2012, 09:25 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tim McKnight View Post
...have unfortunately burnt a lot of midnight oil rushing around at the last minute to fininsh up guitars JUST before the show. I am sure Mary will back me up when I say that I am not the most pleasant person to be around under stressful time crunches...
Funny that you should mention "fininsh" up guitars! You may not be pleasant for Mary and your family under stress, but I can vouch for you that, once your guitars safely arrive at Healdsburg, you are a downright charming fellow, and by then Mary seems to have forgiven you!

J.R., I know from grateful first hand experience what a build thread from the McKnights can be, and how totally enjoyable the final result will be. Your guitar is going to be absolutely wonderful! Looking forward to seeing it be born.

Once again, thank you, the McKnights, and my other AGF friends here for my AGF Award McKnight. It is One. Fine. Guitar!

cotten
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Old 09-17-2012, 10:38 PM
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Congratulation, JR, on your McKnight Guitar build! It was great to receive my McKnight at last year's Healdsburg Guitar Festival, and much fun to share it with friends at the McKnight gathering. I'm looking forward to this build thread, and to seeing you pick up your guitar at next year's HGF. Enjoy the build!
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Old 09-19-2012, 03:18 PM
Neil K Walk Neil K Walk is offline
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Congratulations! The Deacon body size is a fun little guitar to play. I had the honor to play the prototype way back in 2005. It was a sad day when Tim pulled it from my hands and gave it to the person who would become its owner. I have no doubt that you will enjoy yours.
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