I decided I was going to build one of these after seeing a video on youtube(www.youtube.com/watch?v=0qFxXhg6zwA) of a electric one, but you can also build an acoustic one too.
What is a Tres Cubano you may ask?
It's a short scale(23" to 24") 6 string guitar that has the strings paired into 3 groups of 2. They use small gauge strings and pair the D string with high E, then 2 B strings and then a G string with high E and tune it gG-cC-dD(lower case is octave higher)like half of a 12 string guitar.
They are often used in Salsa music.
I got a couple short scale Strat type guitars for kids, but they were trashed. So I decided it would be better to build one out of a Cuban Cigar Box since my cousin gave me 4 Cohiba boxes.
My box after layout of the 3 Gitty Lipstick Tube Pickups. I modified the middle pickup to be RWRP for noise cancellation in the combo positions. Using a 5-way switch,250k pots and .047 cap to start off with. May change the pot/cap values later after hearing it. I also have a gitty "rail runner" rod piezo bridge that I'm considering adding to the pickups. That may change later too.
I messed up the neck/headstock joint when I glued them together without a pin. It was clamped and in place, but moved later before the glue dried. I usually use a pin when gluing, but didn't because it looked like it was going to stay. Should have known better.
Titebond Original is what I use and it works great, had to use my Exacto saw blade to cut them apart. Then it was dry fit and clamp, pin, take apart and glue, realign and pin and clamp to set.
I glued a through piece in the box for the neck to bolt onto with spacers to support. Needed a 4mm spacer to allow the fretboard to go over the top of the box. Tried to cut one, but that ended in disaster. Found a extra paint stir stick left over from recent home painting, it was exactly 4mm thick. Wasn't wide enough so I cut 2 pieces and cut off the excess. I have some degree cut shims if I need them later for neck angle.
That’s kool, Paul! An actual tres cubano is basically a spanish classical guitar with three sets of strings, so you’re right on using a box since it’s an acoustic instrument. I converted my classical for awhile back in my teens, it’s really fun if you have a busy playing style. Ry colder went all the way to Cuba to learn & jam with famous tres cubano player Papi Oviedo, what a lucky guy!! Keep us posted!!
I'll keep posting it. Posting on the Friends of CBGitty too on FB.
This is kind of a mix between the modern and the classic with the electric involved and uses strings from 2 sets. I'm using 2 Southbound 4 string sets to make it.
Definitely different from the usual.
Is that a Rail runner bridge?
Yes it is. Haven't tried one yet, so I thought I'd give it a go.
So the Gitty Lipstick Pickups come with the wrong pickup mounting screws. The base is made to mount to a box top or pickguard like a Strat. The holes in the base are threaded with a fine thread, which I found out to be 3mm x .50 and got the 20mm long for this application. The mounting screws supplied are too small for the base, coarse thread and too long( very much like the PBass pickup screws.
Anyway, I got the pickups mounted.