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Author Topic: FYI: I've found a quality Source for replacement/custom Fly back cover panels  (Read 392 times)

Offline TheGrail

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  • Posts: 61
  • Lifelong guitar synth guy
    • My soundcloud (hours of fusiony fun, all played on Parkers)
Good day Gents,
About a year or so ago I bought a 'beater' Fly that the previous owner had stripped down to just one pickup and a volume pot - it didn't have the back cover plate or even the battery box.  That was fine with me because the intended purpose of the guitar was to have no conventional mag pickups or electronics, just the Roland GK-3 guitar synth pickup I use. 

Here's a pic of the white "UltraFly" - http://forums.parkerguitars.com/index.php?action=profile;u=9562;area=showposts;start=15

However, it always bothered me that I didn't have a back plate so I started to look for replacements online - I even tried the guy who bought all of Parker's parts, but he couldn't find any.  So eventually I found Terrapin guitars, a small shop that creates custom pickguards. I contacted them and they were willing to create a copy of the plate I sent from one of my other pre-refined Flies.  Long story short, today I received the panels back and I'm very impressed with their workmanship.

http://s524.photobucket.com/user/RoySmith/slideshow/Parker%20Fly%20Replacement%20Back%20Plate?sort=3

Mary from Terrapin was very helpful and said she'd keep the template that she created for this project, so now if you would like a wild color, or some crazy engraving, or just need a replacement pre-refined plate, you have a place to go. My total cost was $56, which included $15 for doing the measurements and creating a new template - very reasonable in my opinion.  Their website is at http://www.terrapinguitars.com     

Roy
93 Deluxe, 97 FrankenFly, 98 Deluxe w/GK pickup, 98 Deluxe w/no electronics, 03 Mojo

Re: FYI: I've found a quality Source for replacement/custom Fly back cover panels

Offline jb63

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Wow!
I've counted 6 different fly back plates through the years, as well as some custom ones. Do you think we can scan them all?

Re: FYI: I've found a quality Source for replacement/custom Fly back cover panels

Offline TheGrail

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  • Posts: 61
  • Lifelong guitar synth guy
    • My soundcloud (hours of fusiony fun, all played on Parkers)
She has a detailed measurement process she goes through to copy a plate like this - just scanning it on a flatbed scanner won't work (that was my first question).  That's why I had to send one from one of my other pre-refined guitars - she did the scan and then made the white one.  So now if anyone needs a pre-refined plate, she can make it easily.   Any of the other plates (like refined, for example) will require someone to send in a plate and pay for the template like I did.

My point was to make people aware of the service and hopefully get her some more work. (since Parker spare parts are now made of non-obtainium).

Roy
93 Deluxe, 97 FrankenFly, 98 Deluxe w/GK pickup, 98 Deluxe w/no electronics, 03 Mojo

Re: FYI: I've found a quality Source for replacement/custom Fly back cover panels

Offline ParkerPlayer

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  • - Luke
The new backplate looks really nice!  I bet the white-on-white looks cool. 
'95 Fly Deluxe, Majik Blue, Hard Tail
'96 Fly Classic, Transparent Red 
'98 Fly Classic, Transparent Red
'99 Fly Supreme, Honey
'09 Fly Artist, Custom Hard Tail

Re: FYI: I've found a quality Source for replacement/custom Fly back cover panels

Offline billy

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Awesome! 

FWIW, I made a few by hand, despite doing all the prep work to CNC them.  Long story but the CNC I had access to didn't have spindle speed control and at 12000 RPM it would melt the plastic instead of cut it.  Pretty messy and smelly. 

I used ABS with a haircell texture on one side. I don't remember the exact thickness but I still have some and can measure if needed.

There is more variation between backplates than you'd expect.  I did three plates for various flys.  They were all different, none matched my other flys either.

The process I went through was scanning the back of the guitar on a flatbed scanner, using a specific DPI setting of 300. 

Then, I imported that image into 3D CAD,   I could scale the image (if necessary) by comparing the diameter of the bushings in the image to measurements on real parts. 

I used the image as an underlay to create the outline and hole centers.  Then I exported that as .dxf to create a CAM file and get g-code to the CNC. 

If you included the machine time, this took 1-2 hours, and then it would be 10 min for each plate after that.  So $56 isn't too bad all things considered.

After trying for a while to get the CNC to do what I wanted, I opted to just cut them out on a scroll saw and drill everything carefully by hand.  Clean up with a file and sandpaper.

Terrapin probably have a CMM and can export hole centers and profile right to the CNC, so much quicker but still probably 1 or 2 hours.

There are some cool infused graphic options for Kydex sheet that could be used too. 

https://www.ebay.com/sch/i.html?_odkw=kydex+sheet&_osacat=0&_from=R40&_trksid=p2045573.m570.l1313.TR0.TRC0.H1.Xkydex+sheet+graphics+infused.TRS1&_nkw=kydex+sheet+graphics+infused&_sacat=0

Billy

[always the beautiful answer who asks a more beautiful question.  e. e. cummings]