Custom Bass Build- Skjold Drakkar Series 6-String

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Pete Skjold is a luthier based out of beautiful central Ohio that has been building basses since 1997. I've played his basses in the past and been thoroughly impressed by them, and he seemed to be a fan of my playing and appreciative of my feedback on his products. I had just hit a point in my playing where I needed something with slightly narrower string spacing (I love my current 6-string bass, but 19mm is HUGE), a wider sonic pallet, and frankly, I wanted to be the FIRST owner of a bass for a change! I explored a lot of options, but kept coming back to Pete's work.
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I made a trip to his shop near Coshocton, Ohio and after seeing his operation and talking to him about his philosophies on bass and music and his craft, I decided to propose a collaborative project. I wanted a bass, and he wanted a rare, detailed look into the intricacies of building a fully custom instrument. A agreement was reached, and here we are on the interwebs.
There is SO MUCH that goes into building a custom instrument. It's not just picking the wood, pickups/electronics, and finish, then waiting a year and hoping for the best. Our goal through this project is to chronicle the creation of 1 instrument- my own. You'll also get valuable insight on just what is involved in building a truly 1 of 1 instrument through a top quality luthier.

Part 1- From Raw Materials to Rough Shapes

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March 30, 2016- The beginning of my custom Skjold Drakkar 6 Bass. This is the top wood, straight off the shelf with a little mineral oil to bring out the textures.
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The bass body in the press. The top has been bonded to the swamp ash body. After the top has been glued to the body wood in the press, the two body halves are joined together once the two edges have been jointed flat and straight on the joiner.
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This image gives a closer look at the layering process. You can also see the jointed edge on each piece which will now get glued together.
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Here's a close-up of the layered top, veneer, sub-top and veneer again on top of the body,
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Late May, 2016- Once the body blanks have been center joined, the shape is cut out and then shaped to the exact dimensions on a special shaper bit with a pattern follower.