Waghorn build - Looking for advice

Discussion in 'Luthiery, Modifications & Customizations' started by Wayne Hay, May 14, 2019.

  1. Wayne Hay

    Wayne Hay SS.org Regular

    Messages:
    11
    Likes Received:
    2
    Joined:
    May 14, 2019
    Hi all,

    First post in SS!

    I'm considering going for a custom built 6 string with Waghorn guitars. It's a 6 string Corax model that I've got in mind.

    I've never bought a custom guitar before so I've spent weeks getting an idea on a suitable spec. The one thing I'm struggling with is finding much videos or articles where people have reviewed their guitars. The guys over at TGP suggested this forum would be a good place due to all the 7/8 string guitars that they build.

    Looking for any useful advice but mostly from people who have a Waghorn guitar....how is it?

    Thanks!
     
  2. Winspear

    Winspear Tom Winspear Vendor

    Messages:
    11,093
    Likes Received:
    1,689
    Joined:
    Oct 23, 2009
    Location:
    Yorkshire, U.K
    Not sure - but you might not find many people here with Waghorns due to them being a UK company and one that doesn't really have much internet hype - but they are one of the few custom companies with an absolutely stellar reputation. A really sensible choice. The quality is fantastic, they are reliable, AND it seems they will build just about anything - quite a rare combination to find. I have played a couple - fantastic guitars.
     
    Wayne Hay likes this.
  3. Dust_to_Dust

    Dust_to_Dust Mathew

    Messages:
    510
    Likes Received:
    161
    Joined:
    Apr 4, 2009
    Location:
    Oldbury
    A good friend of mine put an order down for one a few months ago, from what I gather they're meant to be amazing. The bloke's communication is really good too!

    I'll be going down Bristol with him when the build is underway to go visit
     
    Wayne Hay likes this.
  4. Lorcan Ward

    Lorcan Ward 7slinger

    Messages:
    4,987
    Likes Received:
    1,429
    Joined:
    May 15, 2009
    Location:
    Ireland
    I dropped into the workshop a few years ago when I was looking for another custom 7. Tom is an incredible builder with a really sharp eye for detail and loves to take on challenges, just search for the multi scale 9 string he made recently. Dylan(daemoness Guitars) learnt from Tom before branching out. You are in good hands, way specs are you considering?

    If you want an honest opinion about a custom builder ask someone has sold one. Second option ask someone who went back for a second or third build.
     
    Wayne Hay and Winspear like this.
  5. pott

    pott SS.org Regular

    Messages:
    701
    Likes Received:
    379
    Joined:
    Jan 22, 2014
    Location:
    Seattle
    I have a Corax 6, and got another on-order.

    Tom's work is fantastic. It is the highest-quality guitar I own, although part of that enthusiasm is, of course, due to it being 100% of what I requested and more.
    The key here though, is to be 100% certain of what tickles your fancy yourself. If so, Tom will make it work.

    I absolutely adore my Corax and working with Tom on the newer guitar. Ask me anything.
     
    Wayne Hay likes this.
  6. Wayne Hay

    Wayne Hay SS.org Regular

    Messages:
    11
    Likes Received:
    2
    Joined:
    May 14, 2019
    Hi Pott - I'd love some feedback on my proposed spec from you (and anyone else). I'll put it up along with some thinking and any views on it would be much appreciated. I've always been the kind of guy who doesn't think too much about the guitar and I just play them without a huge amount of thought. So, I've had to do a fair bit of research to get an idea of what I actually like. I know I've a lot more research to do.

    I went to meet Tom at his workshop and we talked for some time about the options which helped hugely too. He was very helpful and generous with his time.

    I've seen your NGD day post on your Corax 6 while researching - sounds lovely but would love to see some pics too. The recessed strap lock is a new one on me - that'd be great to see!
     
    Winspear likes this.
  7. Wayne Hay

    Wayne Hay SS.org Regular

    Messages:
    11
    Likes Received:
    2
    Joined:
    May 14, 2019
    Thanks Winspear - your post got me curious about your picks. Bought some this morning :D
     
  8. Winspear

    Winspear Tom Winspear Vendor

    Messages:
    11,093
    Likes Received:
    1,689
    Joined:
    Oct 23, 2009
    Location:
    Yorkshire, U.K
    I thought I recognised the name when I saw the order, but I couldn't place it haha! Thanks a lot, I'll get them out asap! :)
     
    Wayne Hay likes this.
  9. pott

    pott SS.org Regular

    Messages:
    701
    Likes Received:
    379
    Joined:
    Jan 22, 2014
    Location:
    Seattle
    The NGD probably lost its pics around the same time Photobucket became total crap and I cancelled my account... My Corax is the newest guitar on http://www.waghornguitars.com/electric/electricgallery.php, i.e. the first one you see. These pictures are magnitudes better than any I could take :)

    The point of custom guitars is that you can get a combination of specs that matter to you and are not found anywhere else.
    If you don't care about specs, then what's it about?

    You would need to answer these questions to yourself first.

    My Corax has a neck profile derived from the MusicMan Albert Lee HH, my favorite stock guitar. The rest of the specs were chosen to keep it a) tonally-balanced and b) lightweight. Here's what I requested/got:
    * Lightweight Mahogany body (not chambered, just light)
    * Rosewood/Maple neck
    * Ebony fingerboard (reclaimed from an old string instrument's fretboard to be more environmentally-conscious)
    * Quilt maple top (specifically requested wide quilts, almost flame-ish, and boy did Tom deliver!)

    The rest is just stuff I like: pickups, electronics layouts, fret size etc... The end result is a guitar I can pickup and feel right at home with, anytime.
     
  10. Wayne Hay

    Wayne Hay SS.org Regular

    Messages:
    11
    Likes Received:
    2
    Joined:
    May 14, 2019
    Hahaha - that is the guitar that sucked me in and made me want a Corax. That is a work of art, my friend. One of the nicest guitars I've seen, absolutely love the look!
     
  11. Wayne Hay

    Wayne Hay SS.org Regular

    Messages:
    11
    Likes Received:
    2
    Joined:
    May 14, 2019
    Here's the spec I'm considering for my Corax 6 string...

    Neck-Through
    25.5" scale (I believe is standard for a super strat - I've nothing to base a preference on, I only tune down half a step as standard)
    Reverse headstock (because Potts looks kick-ass)
    5 piece neck - Wenge, flamed maple, purple-heart
    Swamp Ash body - I've already a LP standard with mahogany boidy so something with a bit more bite would be a nice variance. Tom suggested this might be better than Alder.
    Quilted maple top (again, because Potts looks kick-ass)
    Ebony fretboard
    Carbon fibre neck reinforcement
    Stainless Steel Jumbo frets
    Binding on body front, neck and headstock
    H H pickup config - need to research which pickups more before deciding
    While I might go for passive pups but I'll probably opt for an 18v battery enclosure in case I try some actives in future.
    Graphtech black TUSQ XL nut - self lubrication sounded good but I've more research to do here.
    Locking machine heads - not yet sure which ones but I'm guessing read locking is probably easier on the eye when viewing the guitar from the front
    Schaller strap locks - I'm already bought into them with my LP and love the new S-Lock ones
    Gloss finish on front/rear/sides with a flat satin finish on the neck
    Not yet given to much thought to how many volume/tone knobs....
    Also, I'm not too keen on an arm bevel. @pott - what do you think of yours? I'm thinking that with a carved top, it might be enough for me and I think I'd prefer the aesthetic of not having it. I don't find the hard edge of the LP an issue or that uncomfortable.

    Critique/thoughts/musings welcome on any element - and much appreciated :)
     
    Last edited: May 15, 2019
  12. pott

    pott SS.org Regular

    Messages:
    701
    Likes Received:
    379
    Joined:
    Jan 22, 2014
    Location:
    Seattle
    Mine is actually an ENLARGED version of the Corax's, somewhere between a MusicMan JP6 and the Corax's standard design. It works perfectly for me.
    I don't get along with guitars that do not have some good forearm contouring, so I didn't hesitate to ask for a bigger one.

    The sole clash on this guitar is on this area: the quilt top's finish doesn't 'blend' perfectly with the bevelled Mahogany. That's hard to see unless from close-up, and is inherent to any bevels rather than anything related to the builder.
    But it may be something to consider if it's something that'd bother you.
    I don't know if their standard bevel would extend below the Top wood, though.
     
  13. AltecGreen

    AltecGreen SS.org Regular

    Messages:
    44
    Likes Received:
    109
    Joined:
    Dec 8, 2013
    Location:
    San Francisco, CA
    My plan actually worked. I was hoping @pott would answer when I suggested Wayne post here on SSO. He was the only one I knew who had a Corax 6.

    I think @pott gave great advice already. When ordering a custom, you really have to know what you want, what you like and dislike. Tom is very good about going through ideas and giving input on how a choice might actually work in real life.

    My specs are very similar to Wayne's except I'm building on a Sauria S body. I wanted a light guitar because at the time I placed the order, my existing guitars were on the heavy side. My neck is 5 ply Wenge, Flame Maple, and Paduak. For the neck I drew inspiration from my seven string Regius but with a profile closer to my custom Zerberus. One does have to give a thought about contours and bevels. I had an idea going in but Tom pointed out that my idea would have lead to a clash at the bevel. I ended up with a sloped contour which is good enought for me since I was coming from the sharp edge Regius. Although Tom did suggest an asymmetric bevel that I considered.

    Tom is fully custom so you can give exact specs on neck profile unlike a lot of other builders. So it is important to take your existing guitars and see what works and what doesn't. You have a lot of freedom on electronics configurations. Mine is going to have a somewhat complex system to give more tone options without resorting to a myriad of switches like my new G-Life.
     
    Wayne Hay and pott like this.
  14. Wayne Hay

    Wayne Hay SS.org Regular

    Messages:
    11
    Likes Received:
    2
    Joined:
    May 14, 2019
    Well, I know I'm looking for a superstrat type guitar, something more suitable for metal/soloing than my LP. This must I'm certain on. I was going to go down the ESP E-II route with a horizon but got completely taken in by potts guitar.

    Was thinking of either - https://www.espguitars.com/products/20995-e-ii-m-ii-nt?category_id=1963528-m-series-guitars or https://www.espguitars.com/products...?category_id=1963530-horizon-series-guitars-3

    So, that's where I'm aiming at. I know I'm gonna be playing metal on it, I know the look I'm after. I know I want a guitar that's going to give me easy access at the top of the fretboard. It's when it comes down to nuts/bridges I'm no good. I've played guitar for 30 years almost and I don't notice these things much. I've tended to just plug and play until recently when I've got into setting up my guitars myself - but I've only one electric guitar currently. I'm not sure how to refine my palette here - I guess I just gotta go play a lot of guitars.
     
  15. Wayne Hay

    Wayne Hay SS.org Regular

    Messages:
    11
    Likes Received:
    2
    Joined:
    May 14, 2019
    @pott - what was your thinking on bolt on neck v straight through? I can see you've gone for the former and would be good to know your thinking behind that choice
     
  16. pott

    pott SS.org Regular

    Messages:
    701
    Likes Received:
    379
    Joined:
    Jan 22, 2014
    Location:
    Seattle
    Honestly, I just tend to gravitate towards bolt-on guitars in general so this wasn't even a contest or a choice for me. I don't own any neck-through guitars, and only one set-neck. So it's not something I think about much. A good guitar is a good guitar.
     
  17. AltecGreen

    AltecGreen SS.org Regular

    Messages:
    44
    Likes Received:
    109
    Joined:
    Dec 8, 2013
    Location:
    San Francisco, CA
    I tend to favor set neck or neck through over bolt-on. Depending on the maker, I like the cleaner neck joint and the access. I have seven instruments almost an equal number of each. It is more of personal preference. My main guitar is set neck while my main bass is bolt-on. One argument for a bolt-on is that the neck ultimately could be replaced.

    I like a clean neck joint like that on my G-Life DSG Life Ash.
    [​IMG]
     
  18. Wayne Hay

    Wayne Hay SS.org Regular

    Messages:
    11
    Likes Received:
    2
    Joined:
    May 14, 2019
    It's another thing that I've never really noticed when playing guitars so I don't know if I really care - although it seems to differentiate the price by a good chunk. I believe I'd had both bolt on and neck-through and didn't notice any difference to playability.
     
  19. Mwoit

    Mwoit SS.org Regular

    Messages:
    2,294
    Likes Received:
    600
    Joined:
    Nov 3, 2008
    Location:
    Scotland
    I just got my custom Waghorn last week, and it's been a blast. Tom is a skilled luthier and a totally sound guy (over emails anyhoo) as far as I am concerned. I'll be posting my NGD thread tomorrow!
     
  20. Wayne Hay

    Wayne Hay SS.org Regular

    Messages:
    11
    Likes Received:
    2
    Joined:
    May 14, 2019
    Great news. I'll look forward to hearing about it!
     

Share This Page

  1. This site uses cookies to help personalise content, tailor your experience and to keep you logged in if you register.
    By continuing to use this site, you are consenting to our use of cookies.