Monday, December 29, 2008

New site feature and possible magazine feature!

OK, so I've got the homepage updated with a video from BCG artist Andrew Godwin of The Famine. I've known Andrew since he was a wee lad and am proud to see him doing so well. Kudos to you my friend! And thanks for making the site cooler.

Don and I also got a call from Joe of Premier Guitar magazine. Seems they want to feature the Hot Rod J-Blaster in their February issue. Hopefully this will happen and we will experience much joy. More as the story unfolds...

Tuesday, December 9, 2008

New Site Up and Walking...

Check out the new look for the Bell Custom Guitar web site. I worked long and hard on it, so appreciate it! I'm still developing a few pages and features that will hopefully be live in the not-too-distant future. So check back often to see what's new and don't be shy, tell us what you think of the site!


Thursday, October 23, 2008

Good Show!

Bell Custom Guitars had a great time at the Arlington Guitar show this year. We met lots of interesting folks, discovered lots of new guitars and toys, made a couple of sales and saw single guitars that are worth more than our booth 10 times over! Thanks to all who came by to check out the guitars and chat it up with Don, Matt and myself.

The shop is going to be up and running soon, so we plan on getting the tele models done, as well as a jazzblaster bass featuring the acrylic/wood hybrid body.

Guitar show videos up soon. Inspired for the future...

Friday, October 17, 2008

Couple of videos up...

Check out the links on the Bell Custom Guitars website homepage.

Jamie Ice video interview. Jamie is a guitarist for Capitol record's recording artist Green River Ordinance.

Don's workshop video walk through. It's getting closer to completion and you are all gonna be in big trouble.

The production is not as great as it could be, but hey, the guitar show is here and I'm out of time!
Hope you enjoy.

Thursday, October 16, 2008

To the Guitar Show

We're going to the guitar show! And this time, we'll have a booth! Official! Come by and say "hey" if you can! See you there!

Wednesday, August 13, 2008

New page on website...

I'm working on getting a new page up and running that shows our exact inventory and the status of each instrument. I went ahead and included it for now, even though it's not 100% complete.

I feel a revamping of the site may be necessary soon :(

It's alot of work, but will be a more powerful tool for us.

Thursday, August 7, 2008

Summer Update

Well, still trying to get into the swing of things and although there's not a whole lot of guitar building, there's a whole lot of dwelling building. Don has moved the shop out to Venus TX and is in the process of creating walls and a storefront as well as getting all of the shop equipment in order.

In the meantime, you can now see Don's guitars at Guitar Center in Arlington, TX. We've got two JazzBlasters up there, a standard teal one and a Pearly white version with humbuckers. You should go check 'em out or getcha one.

Also check out the Bell Custom Guitars shop at Premier Guitar Online. There's a new DeLuxe version of the JazzBlaster that is smoking hot and featured on the store site. Here's a preview:

I hope to get out to the shop soon and get some pics before I go out of town for vacation.


Wednesday, June 25, 2008

JazzBlaster and new orange V

A couple of 'Blasters getting ready for their hardware. I think the teal one is gone already, or maybe it's the orange one. If I can get out to the shop I'll snap some final pics. They are selling faster than I can take pictures of them! Granted, I'm slow on the shutter.

A nice solid mahogany V. Sort of reminds me of a Camaro or some muscle car.

Don is moving the shop out to an undisclosed area of Mansfield this month so we can eventually have Bell Custom Go-Karts and Bell Custom Skeet Shooting. So call before you come.

Thursday, June 5, 2008

The Vandal...

Forgot to post these images of the completed combo amp, "The Vandal".

Should have painted the speaker mesh frame black. You can't really see it w/o a flash, though.

I'm very pleased with the Hellatone speaker.

Classy meets Assy.

Overall, I couldn't be happier with the project. I knew it was gonna look rough, but that's OK. It sounds great with the Strat and the Les Paul, not so sharp with the big Gretsch. Volume-wise, it's loud and can hold it's own with Brett B's Matchless. I've been twisting some great tones out of it, for sure.

I'm heading out to the shop to work tonight and not just to take pictures and leave. I'll be working again! More soon.

Wednesday, June 4, 2008

Don's interesting repair...

Last week Don had the pleasure of doing a few tweaks to Jimi Hendrix's white 1963 Strat.
The guitar got the neck adjusted and tightened, the nut worked on and got re-strung to be played right handed. PLAYED? I guess it's going to be played at a show or an auction or something. I don't get why it's not sealed away and in a vault.

Don's also doing some work on a Clapton Firebird with a badly broken headstock. I will reserve all crude comments as to how the damage may have occured.

Wednesday, May 14, 2008

lights, camera...

I Went to the Shop...

for about 15 minutes, so I didn't get to work. Don was so busy getting ready for the Chicago Guitar Show that it felt like I had jumped into a tornado. I got some pics, though, and will be working on the Bell-a-Blaster after the guitar show. Sorry for the absence of posts, but I'm still trying to get the groove back.

More pics of the process of the JBs sometime next week, but didn't want to keep these to myself.

Wednesday, April 30, 2008

Holding Pattern

Still can't break away from home. Typing with Cam in my hands!
Don's taking pics of the process for me, so I will post up some guitar pics when I get 'em.
Meanwhile, thanks to Scott at B&S signs for the graphic help on the amp.

Sounds pretty good so far, but I've still go to put the back on it. Head cover, too.

Friday, April 25, 2008

Bell in the Telegram

The Star Telegram, that is.

OK, so it's not a front page full feature spread with interview, but there is a photograph!
Here's the link:

A little over half-way down the page. Travis Hensley is the kiddo rocking the V.

Photo is on this page:

5th photo in the slideshow.

Thanks, Fort Worth Star Telegram!

Wednesday, April 23, 2008

Cameron's here...

and doing fine. So far he prefers sound of the bass to the guitar.

He's keeping me quite busy, so I haven't been able to work at the shop at all.

Don's been doing lots of repairs and marketing for BCG. The JazzBlaster made it's first live appearance at the Green River Ordinance show at the Dallas HOB this month...

I've been working on an amp project to keep my production skills sharp. It's a 1 12" combo using a custom cab, a Sovtek tube midget 50w head and a 60 watt Hellatone Celestian. I have no idea what I'm doing, so it should sound interesting. Many thanks to my dad and his tools & skills with lumber manipulation.

I hope to get out to the shop soon and get back into some sort of groove. We'll see...

Saturday, March 22, 2008

Preparing for my son...

to come into the world so updates to the blog will be taking a hit for a while. Although I'm not counting it out, mind you, they are just gonna be slim for a while.

Sunday, March 16, 2008

March 16 Update...

Not the most exiting job, but necessary none-the-less. Adding the dots to the fretboard. I never really thought about how this happened until I had to do it. One of those, "Ohhhh, so that's how it's done." moments of discovery. I think I did about 10 or so yesterday.

This is the CNC machine routing out the cavities for the controls. The programs are created in a 3D modeling software and then exported to the CNC's routing software. The CNC is also used to create the relief in the bodies. Basically it does the rough cuts and the rest is finished up by hand.


No progress on the Bell-a-Blaster, but I am hoping to have some work done this week.

Wednesday, March 12, 2008

A little progress...

Routing the bodies to a half inch radius causes a mess when routing plex.

That was just the fourth one out of ten. At the end of the run it was a winter wonderland.

Routing for the control plates and cavities is next, then necks.


New headstock for the Bell-a-Blaster.

Zoomed out

Here's the art for the 12th fret. It's meaning is two-fold. BAB for the name of the guitar and for the initials of it's future owner

Sunday, March 9, 2008

Jazz and Bell-a-Blaster...

After a very positive response to Don's guitars, namely the JazzBlaster, Don is busy at work creating the first ever production run of Bell Custom Guitars. 10 to be precise. 7 of which are already spoken for. Over the past two weeks Don and his help have cut the wood and acrylic, carved the bodies' cavities, bonded the body materials, plane sanded them and are in the process of fretting the fingerboards. The efforts of fretting have been made much easier thanks to the addition of the wonderful press.


We have also begun the design and development phase of the Bell-a-Blaster, a new twist on an old favorite. I am building the all wood version for long-time friend and band mate, Brett Bledsoe, and Don will be building the wood/acrylic prototype at the same time. These will likely feature Amalfitanos in the form of tele single coils in the bridge and a hot rod soap at the neck.

An early mock-up:

Sunday, March 2, 2008

A brief history...

I met Don when a fellow musician/co-worker/friend showed up to work after lunch one day with a flying V guitar case.

As soon as the case was opened I could tell it was something special. Originally built for a charity auction to benefit a local woman with terminal breast cancer, the guitar and it's mojo bounced around ownership a while before it landed at Guitar Center, Arlington.

I called Don to get work done on my recently acquired Gibson eb0, went to his home/shop, and he did the work for me then and there. I took an immediate interest in his craft and he was gracious enough to let me hang around to help. Soon thereafter I began to help him with website and graphic needs so I could wedge myself in there!

Don has since retired from his job as an engineer and is building guitars full-time. Things are getting interesting now as we are making a push to carve out a niche in the world of music. That's as much history as I am going to provide, as the future looks much more interesting.