Guitar and Bass Bodies

USA Custom Guitars replacement bodies are made from the finest hand selected tonewoods with attention paid to every detail. Vintage and modern shapes, hollow body, and carved top designs are available to suit all players' needs and preferences. Our standard bodies are made of 2 pieces of premium tone tapped wood, meticulously joined with special attention paid to grain matching. Premium one piece and lightweight bodies can also be supplied.

Body Options

Lam Top Bodies

Our standard lam top bodies feature high grade figured woods all the time.

Almost any guitar or bass body style can be had as a lam top. Tops with a thickness of 1/8" can be bent over a forearm contour using a vacuum suction system. We use 1/4" tops on semi-hollow construction bodies, and bodies without forearm contours. Lam top S bodies have a slightly less pronounced forearm contour than non lam tops.

We generally use flame or quilted maple for lam tops, but from time to time, other woods are available. Please contact us for alternate top pricing and availability.

Lam top S

Lam top Wolfpack - flat top w/ binding


Neck Pocket Routing

Guitar bodies: Neck pockets on all guitar bodies are milled to standard dimensions (2.19" ~= 2-3/16" wide).

On S or T style bodies, we offer two additional neck pocket options:

  • 2-1/4" wide pocket to fit standard 25-1/2" scale Sharv-Hell necks (or spec out a neck from us with the slightly wider heel)
  • Our exclusive wide neck pocket measuring 2-5/16" to accommodate our super wide 1-7/8" nut width neck

Bass bodies: Neck pockets on 4 string bass bodies measure 2-1/2" wide. 5 string bass bodies have a 2-7/8" wide neck pocket.

Either square or rounded pockets are interchangeable on any body style at no additional cost.


Control Cavity Routing

The standard rear routed control cavity is sized so that there is enough room to fit an assortment of pots and switches without removing too much wood. All rear rout bodies include a black plastic control plate cover. We also offer a rout for a battery box, if you need to have easy access to swap out a battery. Rear rout bodies cost an additional $20.

We have 4 different rear rout cavity styles:

Standard Rear Rout

Standard Rear Rout

As found on S, T, Wolfpack, Dinky S
Offset Rear Rout

Offset Rear Rout

As found on Jazzymaster, Shagwire, Jay, Jay Jr.
Hot Dog Rear Rout

Hot Dog Rear Rout

As found on El Cuerpo
Sharv-Hell Rear Rout

Sharv-Hell Rear Rout

Somewhat triangular shaped, available on S bodies w/ 2-1/4" neck pocket width

Bridge and Pickup Routs

Non-Trem Bridges
  • Strat Flat - Vintage
  • Strat Flat - 7/8 for tighter string spacing
  • Tele Flat - Vintage
  • Tele Hum Flat
  • American Std Tele Bridge
  • American Std Hardtail
  • Gotoh Strat Hardtail (5 screw mount, solid saddles)
  • Hipshot Flatmount Hardtail
  • Gotoh 12 String (including offset rear string ferrules)
  • Rio Grande Twangbucker Pickup/Bridge
  • Schaller 475 Flatmount
  • TOM (.27, .44, .125 TOM Studs - .5, .44 STP Studs)
  • Gotoh 510 Wraparound (.43" dia studs)
  • Tonepros Wraparound (.44" dia studs)
  • Hipshot Baby Grand (.44" dia studs)
  • Schaller "Hannes" bridge
  • TV Jones TV Savalas Bridge
Tremolo Bridges
  • 2 Hole Trem
  • 6 Hole Trem
  • Skyway Trem
  • Am Std Trem (.38" dia studs)
  • Hipshot Trem(.38" dia studs)
  • Wilkinson Trem (.38" dia studs)
  • Orig Floyd (.39" dia studs)
  • Orig Recessed Floyd (.39" dia studs)
  • Schaller Floyd - Recessed (.39" dia studs)
  • Kahler
  • Jazzmaster/Jaguar/Bass VI Bridge (.34" dia studs) with Floating trem
  • Original Bigsby B-5 (USA) (.355" dia studs)
  • Licensed Bigsby B-50 (Import) (.355" dia studs)

Please note: Different mounting hole positions are used for the B-5 and B-50 Bigsby vibratos. Be sure you know which one you've got before ordering.

  • Strat Single Coil
  • EMG Single Coil
  • Tele Bridge Single Coil
  • Tele Neck Single Coil
  • P-90 Soapbar
  • Humbucker
  • Humbucker mounted to wood
  • Slanted humbucker (ring mount - bridge position only)
  • Mini Humbucker
  • Filtertron (specify w/ or w/o mounting ring)
  • Rio Grande Twangbucker Pickup/Bridge

Don't forget we also offer the universal top rout on S bodies and the swimming pool rout on T bodies for greater pickup configuration choices.

Universal Top Rout

Swimming Pool Rout

  • Standard Fender
  • Gotoh 206
  • Schaller 496
  • Hipshot 4-19mm
  • Hipshot 4-20mm
  • 51 P - Vintage
  • Schaller 463
  • Allparts BB 357
  • Badass Bass II
  • Badass Bass V
  • Hipshot 5-18mm
  • Hipshot 5-19mm
  • Hipshot 5-21mm
  • Allparts BB 3460 (Gotoh Quik Release)
  • Split P
  • Jazz (front and rear positions)
  • Vintage 51-P Single coil
  • Musicman Humbucker (4/5 str)
  • EMG 35 Series (89mm wide)
  • EMG 40 Series (102mm wide)
  • EMG 45 Series (115mm wide)
  • Fralin 5

There are some other custom bass pickups we have programmed. Let us know what you want - we may just have it.


Body Contours and Edge Radius Options

Certain body shapes have a classic design to which we have all become accustomed. S bodies are rounded on the edges and have super comfortable rib and forearm contours. T bodies are sharp and dig into your arm and ribs (but it's a good pain!). We know that not every player likes to stick to these traditional designs, so we offer contours and custom edge radii on most of our body styles.

On bodies that do not normally have forearm contour or rib cut, we can add them for $15 each.

Contoured heel is optional for easier access to the higher frets. Requires shortened neck mounting screws to keep them from exiting through the face of the fingerboard. Don't laugh. We've seen it happen. It ain't pretty! Contoured heel upcharge is $25

Binding

Binding on a flat surface - $72 per side

Binding on a carved top - $90 per side

Drop top binding = binding on a forearm contour. A labor intensive process will cost an additional $120

All binding on bodies is approximately .080" thickness. Available in Ivoroid, Cream, Black, or White plastic.

Edge Radius Options

Edge radius measures the "roundness" of the body edge.

We offer the following custom options on most bodies (in order of roundest to sharpest):

  • 1/2"
  • 3/8"
  • 1/4"
  • 3/16"

T Body with 1/2 inch edge radius and rib cut

T Body with Standard 3/16 inch edge radius and rib cut

Body Shapes

Guitar Bodies


Bass Bodies


Body Woods

Quality tonewoods are available here at USA Custom Guitars. Alder, Swamp Ash, Mahogany and the many flavors of Maple are our preferred body woods.

We don't normally stock "exotic" woods such as bubinga, wenge, goncalo, limba (korina), etc., but we will custom craft a body or neck made of these woods supplied by you. Pricing for bodies made from your wood is the same as a comparably styled Alder body. Please contact us for more information regarding body blank or board ft dimensions.

Here are some subjective descriptions of the woods we use for our bodies based on years of building, playing and listening.

Swamp Ash

Swamp Ash

Has a tight bottom end (which we all like), scooped mids and a bright top end. It has a very quick attack when striking the strings - which is great for some players and bad for others. It has very open grain, which makes it a pain in the backside to finish. It is a very resonant wood, so it sounds phenomenal played clean. Great for Funk, Surf Music, Blues with a bite, Country twang, vintage Rock, and clean smooth Jazz.
Alder

Alder

The "tastes like chicken" of wood. It has a nice even response all the way around the tone spectrum! Mostly known for its great Blues and Rock tones. It's the one body wood you can go play a Death Metal Gig one night, country the next night, Blues the next night and it's sounds fine for all of them. It is normally lightweight and has a closed grain which is a finishers dream. We carry hand selected Alder that is suitable for clear finishes as well as bursts and solid colors.
Mahogany

Mahogany

Our favorite wood for different varieties of Rock and Jazz! Normally pretty non-back friendly in a solid body, especially after years of gigging! Mahogany tends to filter out some of the shrill highs, has nice mids, and a fat bottom end. Can't be beaten for chunky rock in a solid body, or chunky Jazz in a hollow body. You can add a 1/4" Maple top to get back some articulation if used with a Mahogany neck. We offer African and other types of equatorial mahogany - truly killer tonewoods. Honduran has gotten awfully scarce and very expensive, but there is an upcharge when available.
Basswood

Basswood

A nice resonant wood. Normally associated with Metal and Hard Rock guitars. Has a fat bottom and can sometimes (depending on pickups) have a mushy bottom end. But overall sounds pretty darn good. But if you look at it to hard it may dent because it is quite soft!
Poplar

Poplar

Doesn't sound too bad, but we refer to it as "the poor mans Alder" and normally use it for prototypes. Not something we normally sell, but if you want it, contact us.
Eastern Hard Rock Maple

Eastern Hard Rock Maple

Durable, bright, and articulate. We can build entire bodies out of it for that 80's shrill screaming Metal tone. Rock maple can be used as a top wood too, if you so desire.
Western Maple

Western Maple

Softer than rock maple, we carry all of the varieties for top woods (quilt, flame, and wild). Tommy really loves the look of wild "angel step" maple tops.