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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
I just delivered the last of my Guitars to the store. I ran out of necks so thats all for this series-This is the last 4 of 25 I built since June- all the rest have sold!
Who'd a thought?
If anyone is interested in the idea let me know and I will relate all I have learned/and developed.


 

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those are awesome canman- i have some ideas for a resonator uke i been kicking around for a while but never did it yet. how much are you getting for these? nice work man
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Guitart

Well alot depends on the can condition and graphics. -as far as retail average 400-500 bucks each.
I did do a "special necked" one with a Fralin bridge P/U and had a real cool graphic which went for 600.

Some of the best cans were a little beat so I used older lower powered dearmonds/ and lipsticks for a P/U.

They are fun, most have sold to performers for stage use as well as to some guitar collecters and Oil company and Car collector fellows.

They've gone out all over the world purchased by tourists.

The key here is not putting them in a guitar store but a Gallery.

They do function pretty well however. Ive gotten emails from customers whom claim they play "really sweet."

As a matter of interest-I scooped the necks off ebay, 20 Samick factory rejects for a hundred bucks.
The cans cost anywhere from 15 to 40 bucks each and can be difficult to aquire. 20 sets of machines 4.00 per in a bulk pack.

I am currenly working on my own special can from 1923, its a different shape.


When you get going on you-res if you like any info on bracing and stuff let me know after 25 of these things I got it cased.
Jeesh I could talk about myself and these things all night-good greif!
Anyways thanks for the interest-
Cheers:food-smiley-004:
 

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DO I read this right and those are hollow?

Cool.

I'd love to hear what they sound like.
Especially if you used them for slide.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Hollow Yes!

Zontar- In the begining I used to take off the top and elaboratley construct a bracing system with wood/aluminum. L brackets etc...I helt the Aluminum on with Pop rivets but then it occurred to me I was overcomplicating things because of my years of a luthier building wooden instruments, I had to think out of the Box(pun intended).
Anyways to make a long sory short I imagined myself as a poor kid in South Africa where the instrument originated and thought about how he would do it if he had minimal tools. I did some research on them and figured it out.
Basically simple, its engineered like a Banjo.

These guitars go back many years and evolved from the African "Ramkie". Poor Africans used to make guitars and instruments out of old tins which were used for stuff brought by europeons as far back as...well as they made them, maybe 1700's certainly the 1800's?

Currentl;y there are several African based companys producing oil can guitars, most well know is perhaps the "Afri-Can".
I just thought it would be cool to use old North American cans since there has been a vintage obsession here for the last 15 to 20 years.
Seems to have worked.
Yes they are Hollow-
A man with a can, can!
 

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Great, now I want one for sure...:smile:

Seriously I'd like to try one.
I have a tone in my head I'm imagining from the description, and it suits slide playing so well. I'm not much of a slide player, but I dabble in it, and wouldn't mind getting to know it better.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Ramkie tin tone

Well the tone is natural metalic like slight overdrive distortion. Imagine a small tube guitar amp just when it begins to clip and that is how it sounds unplugged.
They are not very loud however so I put P/U's on them. Now when I plug them into my Clubman set on clean I can get a real nice smooth tone. The only thing is you have to be careful with the feedback sincen they're hollow.

I Usually stand away from the amp for real loud. But for nice mild strumming and slide say at coffee house volumes it sound really...unique.
The addition of a mike by the can adds more of the acoustic "can" sound.

I was thinking of trying one with a fishman in tandem with a lipstick. Also the can acts as a massive sheild so these things are quite quiet.

>>>>>I have some really nice cans and fender style necks and machines if you want to give it a shot,
Except for the basscan Im working on, Ive lost interest but If you been interested, PM me and maybe we could work something out.
I could send you some pics and pricelist of what I got and Id only ask what they cost me + shipping to you over the hills.


PS Id bet you could sell a hundred over there in the oilpatch!

They are quite simple to put together for me now I can do one in about 2hours as long as I dont run into any headaches stringing and setting up.
 

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I have an old Gibson copy neck sitting around doing nothing.

I wonder if that might work?

And I have some other leftover parts from when I was going to make a guitar back in high school (That never came to pass.) I have used some of those parts on other guitars (The pickups are on my Les Paul for example.)

it could be fun...
 

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Discussion Starter #9 (Edited)
zontar-what U need 2 make 1

Any old parts can work-
Well U need a pickup, a neck, a bridge (a gibson style works good) but a chunk of wood makes it more original and primitive looking. A 12.5" long -->hardwood/mahog/maple,real 1"x2&1/8" and some screws and of course a can some strings.
Fit the electronics in 2 the can in an area appealing 2 the eye. Depending on the pickup placement is crucial. One that is 2 thick will not work the closer 2 the neck U get. The pickup should be centred perpendicularly on the can.
- cut a hole in the centre top of the can careful 2 leave the edge binding. The hole is rectangular the size of the neck and the 1x2.combined
-on the neck U undercut the fingerboard in about a 1/4 inch or so. This slot is where the can edge slots in.
The neck is then fitted 2 the can by itself. Be careful not 2 bend the can. Then check 2 make sure it is centred. If not, the slot which was cut is maybes no straight or the neck is not on the tin completely.
-A centre line down the neck should hit dead centre at the bottom of the can. Then the can is marked for bridge position distance nut 2 12th fret centre+ 1/8th".
This is where the high e string will meet the bridge.
-The end of the 1x2 is prepared by cutting the bottom at a 2 or 3 degree angle (not absolutley required but better)
-Once this is so, the 1x2 is then put in the can behind the neck, Short side away from the neck , then it is marked on the neck. Everything should now be angled back the same as the angle which was cut on the bottom of the 1x2.
-All is removed and the neck screwed in the same spot 2 the 1x2.
-the apparatus is then reinserted into the can checking everything for centre.
- depending upon bridge height the whole wooden peice is moved 2 the optimum height. and 2 screws are set in 2 the bottom of the can in 2 the wooden part.
-take and centre the bridge under the 2 e strings and move them 2 the right distance, mark the bottom of the can where the string holes are 2 go and drill those holes at an angle.
-The strings are fed up thrpough the bottom of the can over the bridge... Then drill corresponding holes for the other 4 strings.
-Run up all the strings and move the bridge left to right until U acheive the desired fingerboard/pickup/string alignment.
The bridge height is then adjusted with washers till ya gets it hows U wants it.

ps --I forgot to add that where the bridge meets the underside of the belly a fat screw is partially put in the centre of the wooden part to support the bridge.

There in is the "key". with the screw holding up the centre of the bridge its held up 2 string tension but the outside ends of the bridge are free 2 move with the strings.
When stringing up initially care must be taken the first time so as 2 allow the bridge to sing down on both endes evenly.
If U try 1 Id be interested in the results-good luck, if U need a can let me know.

canman
 

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Hey great--thanks.
I may not be able to get to it until January, with all the Christmas stuff coming up, etc. but I'm seriously tempted to give it a shot as I have most of the parts, & they're not being used.

I'd have to check, but I think the only things I'm missing are a jack to plug the cord in (for the pickup), a nut, and a pickup. I may have to increase the holes in the headstock to fit in the Grover machine heads I have--or I'll use the cheap-o ones that came on the neck.

As for the pickup--I've seen some cheap ones at a local mucis store. That may add to the look & sound.

If I get around to doing this I'll post pictures.
 

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Discussion Starter #12
thanks a lot muikoma-

Ill see if I CAN find some more pics of the others...somewhere, and post.
 

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Discussion Starter #13
A Oilcan Xmas tree!

I began doing the oil-can guitars last year around April. By the end of may production was in full swing.
I took this photo of the first batch. Series I(13 or 14 instruments some not shown)

Here, some are completed and others are "awaiting treatment".
All of these guitars were completed with various P/U's and all sorts of weird bridges including wooden ones which I carved. All sold prior to my begining the second batch.
I was going to make a poster like this of the finished instruments but alas demand was great & I couldn't hang on to them long enough.
[/IMG]

If you look carefully you can see at this point I had not perfected the design as these incorporate things like pop rivets and wooden internal frame structures. The Series I guitars are structurally are quite complex and although effective, the bridge was primitive in design.
Most all of these guitar got pick-ups, everything from vintage 60's Dearmond to mid 80's Dimarrzio.
I found the gibson wrap around style to be the best in this application However I did not utilize the wrap around feature as the strings anchor in the can bottom.

Eventually the design took on the series style II of which four guitars are featured in the begining of this thread.

The Series which I am presently working on (III?), similarily is minimalist in approach but incorporates some higher tech features such as all metal neck support structure and other things still on the bench...08 will see.

I must get busy luthiering, as the Gallery is down only two left! When they are gone that will be 24! In less than6 months!

To all whom ponder here...
Enjoy!:smile:
 

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Discussion Starter #14
"A cascade of sonorities"

My first customer: Hank Pine of the Hank and Lily show



Hank and Lily show in Montreal at the 07 Osheaga Festival.

Hank Pine of the Hank and Lily show(shown:the Cascade oilcan) perform at the Tiger in Toronto


for info on Hank and lily see:

http://Hank and Lilys site/


warning: not for the faint of heart...:eek:
 
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