Les Paul Smartwood Project: Complete!

So back in, oh maybe ’99 or ’00, I got this Les Paul Smartwood.  I guess it’s technically a “Smartwood Studio”.  I believe the wood on this one is Peroba, but I really don’t know anymore.  I do know that it was ugly out of the box.  I got it for a very low price because nobody wanted it and it was seemingly built on a Friday afternoon.  Frets were all overhanging, setup was horrid, and again, it was ugly.

Here’s the only shot I have of the guitar kind of in its original state.

les paul smartwood studio
les paul smartwood studio

 Promptly stripped and sold all the gold hardware, ripped out the nasty frets, bought new hardware/electronics, started to paint… and then it sat.

And sat…

Until about two weeks ago.  July 2013, probably 13-14 years later.

The only real inspiration for finishing was a pretty logical one, actually playing guitar.  Been getting together with a few buddies regularly to play; myself and the other guitar player both had fender-ish single coil guitars into fender-ish amps.  I showed up with my Gretsch from time to time and it was a little magical with some contrast in sound.  Got me thinking of how much better it’d be with a solid body humbucker guitar.

Oh, I have one!

Shit!  It’s in 50 pieces.

So I got to work.  Put in new frets, 6105 wire that is actually round and not sanded down to a pancake like Gibson does.  Painted, pumpkin orange on top, black on the sides/back.  Threw on hardware, all chrome.  Pickups – Duncan JB/Jazz (which was a cool combo when I bought them, back in ’01), which I don’t love but they sound good enough through my setup.  Amazingly, it all works and looks pretty okay.

les paul smartwood studio 1


les paul smartwood studio 2






Measure Twice… Office Closet

We have an office of sorts.  It’s that bedroom that’s directly adjacent to your master bedroom so you don’t really want people sleeping there (especially if you have a guest that snores).  Right now it’s got a cute, but ultimately small and useless, desk.  There’s also some exercise equipment and a few other things that kind of fit an office theme (file cabinet, shredder, etc).

It looks like a mess with everything out in the open.  And again, the desk is useless.  So we’re turning the closet into an office space.  It’s a wide and shallow closet.  Over 9′ wide, right around 2′ deep.  Probably perfect for a real long desk (place for both our laptops to rest, printer, etc) and some tidy looking shelves and storage.

First step, rip everything out.

closet empty

Next, need some electrical.  First time using those remodel (old work) boxes, and they really are quite handy.  Will put in a light switch soon (currently a light with a pull chain).

closet outlet

Next update to this should show the table top in as well as some paint.  Not quite sure what to do about the work surface yet as boards that cover the entire length go to 1′ wide, don’t really want two boards deep.  Also don’t want more than one board wide… Wife also wants something that swings/folds out as a sewing station, which will be a whole other adventure.