In the past, I often worked on replicas of vintage Fenders and Gibsons. These days, manufacturing standards are generally high, and usually it's only worth custom-building if you want something different and distinctive. I often use exotic timbers such as flame or quilted bigleaf maple. I've also worked on a number of instruments for lefties, who find it harder to get what they want!
As with my rebuilds and restoration, I only use nitro-cellulose, the traditional product for finishing high quality fretted instruments. Though slower to apply than urethane and other modern finishes, it provides a very attractive 'soft gloss', and ages gracefully. Please remember that hand-building is labour-intensive and takes time - 3-4 months is usually the minimum.
Please contact us if you have a project you want to discuss.