TMI Musuar

Like all my other TMI guitars I've been building lately this latest offering is from my puny brain to fruition made here at my workshop in Brisbane.

I've been a HUGE fan of the Fender Jagstang (and related) since the first time I saw it. It wasn't just the Kurt connection but the fact that Fender had gone out on such a limb design wise and combined two of their vintage designs that polarized people. I loved it the second I laid eyes on it, and like most guitars, I instantly said "what would that look like upside down?" as I prefer my offsets the right way around. The Tym Vibratone, introduced in 1997 was that guitar.

 

At around the same time I also thought "what would it look like if it was more Mustang and less Jag?" but never really did anything about it. Well, this TMI Musuar is kind of the completion of that thought.

This is built like all my other TMI guitars with a hollow body made of laminated sustainable plantation timber cut and glued together in "layers" with a spine running down the length from neck pocket to strap button that everything important mounts to. This one is more hollow than past ones with a (approx) 6mm edge and the spine is hollow on some levels along it's length. I'm still experimenting with this idea and I am going to venture into more non timber materials soon.

 

This one also has body binding which I thought would suit the block and bound neck I was going to use. These necks are made for me in rough form and I finish them to how I like them to feel, cut the headstock and paint them with the body. While I used to make everything on my Tym guitars back in the day, I just don't have time to now and this frees me up to actually make some guitars and ideas again. This was a "sample" neck from the manufacturer as I usually use rosewood fretboards and dot (or some inlay) markers so I can thin them down a lot closer to a Mosrite neck but I couldn't with this one as the binding was already attached. It's not too wide but probably 1 or maybe 2mm more than I would normally use. I'm not sure I'll end up getting any more of these made, but who knows?

So, with the body glued up and bound and the neck shaped as much as I could, I decided to mix some light blue paint as I love the Mustang shape in light blue and I thought it should make the black binding really stand out, which it does. 

Since I was making this a little more "deluxe" than a Mustang (or Jag) I figured why not give it a matching headstock too? I do love offsets with matching headstocks so it got a few coats of the newly mixed blue too.

 

With the body and neck painted and cleared I considered pickups. Initially I was going to go with a custom set I made specifically for this guitar but I kept thinking it really should have chrome pickups with a dark tort plate so ....

I made two Tym T-90's with A5 slugs and medium high output and stuck them in chrome covers. 

The control plate is from a Jaguar and I hand made the scratchplate to be kind of Mustang but with my favourite "sweep back" like I've used on a few of my guitars, but less pronounced. The bridge is a Mustang bridge but I'm probably going to change the saddles soon as I've thought of an idea that I really want to try. Or I'll make another guitar for that bridge?

 

The vibrato is one of my TMI stainless steel "offset" vibratos with the offset going the "wrong" way. When I designed these vibrato plates I made ones for offsets in both directions but this one just seemed to suit this shape better. 

The body is actually a Jagstang back end with a Mustang front. I traced my Jagstang, lay my Mustang on top and lined up the waist and traced the horns from the Mustang and ..... there is was. 

 

I'm not sure what I'm going to do with this one yet. I might do some experimenting on it (bridge idea) and play it for a while or drop it into the shop for people to try. I'm making these guitars as a kind of therapy to distract me from life right now so I have no real plans for them once they're done. I told myself I'd like to build 10 this year and this is number 4 (finished in April) so I'm still technically on track. We'll see how that turns out in December.

 

May 09 2019 Written By: Tim Brennan