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Cool trip to Abilene TX

Posted by is9582 on September 28, 2014 with No Commentsas , , ,

This blog is a bit of a departure from my fairly normal woodworking focus, but I think we sometimes forget to explore the area outside our major cities. Don’t forget they can have wonderful finds.

We just got back from a fun little jaunt up to Abilene, where they had an interesting balloon festival, and shops and stores that felt like we’d dropped back into the 1970’s, if not earlier. We went to all of the antique stores and found some cool items that we just couldn’t leave behind. Another really neat find was Vleta’s candy shop, where we picked up a variety of really tasty candies. If you’re ever in Abilene, you really should check it out.  Oh, one last thing that was too much of a last-minute thought, was to drive past Dyess Air Force Base, to see some of their planes on the ground. We got to see a couple, and even though it wasn’t as many as I’d hoped for, I always love seeing our country’s flying/fighting machines. I’ll just need to make sure I actually plan for this activity for our next excursion.

Early on Saturday I decided to check the weather between Abilene and home, so I’d know what to expect and determine whether a night-time drive was a good idea. Well, I was glad I did, as there was some significant predictions of weather through the driving areas. As it turned out, we were able to make the full trip without any weather related issues. We did have one cool weather-related occurrence (photo below), in the form of sun/cloud interactions.


1129 Blog sml


I hope this inspires everyone to check out areas that you’ve either not ever seen before, or perhaps those that may just barely hold a place as a memory.

Thank you for stopping by and let me know if you have any thoughts or comments.


Lee Laird


Anyone for an electric Bass build??

Posted by is9582 on September 25, 2014 with No Comments

Bass body neck


After my Les Paul turned out well, I’d thought I’d build me an electric Bass (photo of build in progress above). I had a really cheaply made electric Bass back when I was in high school, and thought it would be nice to have a decent Bass around again. I occasionally record some guitar, and in the past, I would go through the “canned” Bass lines available and drop one into the recording. There are obviously only so many different versions available in these pre-set states, so it would be easier to play exactly what I wanted.

The design for the electric Bass is one I created, rather than just copying someone else’s design. I’ve also decided to build it as a neck-through design, which will allow me to add to my repertoire of instrument building.

I have been working on the Bass for a little while now, and my articles relating to this are up on Highland Woodworking’s Blog. At this point there are three month’s worth of writings, so if you’re interested, click on this link and check it out. I am uncertain just how many segments it will take for the complete build, as I try to make sure I don’t overload any of the readership, in any one sitting. At the time I am writing this post, there are at least two segments, and the third will be there soon.

For those who are interested, all of the Bass build is from scratch, including the fretboard. On my guitar build, I purchased a fretboard that had all of the fret slots pre-milled as well as the radius on the fret-side of the board. In the Bass build, I cut a piece of Ambrosia Maple on my band saw, and did all of the shaping and cutting of the fret slots, here in my shop. Let me tell you, this is a fairly large undertaking, and has a high level of precision required. This is not to say that you, too, wouldn’t be able to accomplish this, but with the amount of time and focus, the cost of a ready-made fretboard can look pretty attractive. Haha.

Thanks for stopping by and let me know if you have any questions or suggestions.