Friday, December 31, 2021

My Review of 2021

The past few years have really been hell for us all, well most of us anyway. Due to personal reasons my hell began toward the end of October 2019. I took that as a reason to seek betterment of myself. With the world screeching to a halt a few months later I went one step further and decided this was a time in my life I couldn't pass up the chance to get a few things checked off the old bucket list. It was time to stop pushing the pause button on life and let it playout the way it would playout.

In 2020 I began an adventure in building guitar pedals, as well as selling off things I didn't need anymore to fund a future endeavor. Things went smoothly, given the circumstance, and as Autumn 2020 rolled in I felt it was time to relax and hopefully this whole pandemic would blow over so I could plan my next steps. As we all know that didn't go to plan, so in Spring 2021 I was actually quite antsy to build more guitar pedals, so I did.

I knew there were a few I wanted to build, like my MXR Distortion Plus clone, but I didn't have the drive to build it until the weather felt right to sit out on the back deck and get things done. After a few pedals I felt burnt out and took a break, but as the summer came that urge was put into overdrive (pun absolutely intended!) and more pedals were built. With a few successes and a few absolute failures, and complete rebuilds, the pedal ideas kept coming. For the pedal building season of 2021 I built thirteen pedals; substantially more than I did in 2020. Even as Autumn 2021 came around I was still planning, sourcing parts for, and cutting boards for pedals I plan to build in 2022. I think this year was the year pedal building became a bit more than just a hobby, and perhaps it has reached personal challenge status in my mind.

Besides building guitar pedals I put together my first partscaster. Now I say put together as I bought the body and already owned the parts for assembly, so I don't feel saying I built the guitar would be strictly accurate. The yellow strat with the Squier neck I picked up from Goodwill many, many years ago came together rather slowly, as I was worried I would completely screw it up. Without fail I did fail, and while this guitar isn't perfect it is my first partscaster assembly, but that just gives me more reason to tinker and fix what's wrong with this guitar in the future.

Another sort of build is my Trashcaster, which is just heavy modifications of the Peavey Rockmaster I (also) picked up from Goodwill many years ago. What was a single humbucker guitar with a fairly decent neck, I turned it into a semi-Tele style by installing tele style pickups. I'm pretty sure the Rockmaster body is made of some particleboard or something really cheap because it was crumbling as I was broke ass routing the neck pickup hole. Sure the neck is a bit twisted, but it doesn't affect playability, yet! My ultimate plan is to acquire or build a tele style body and put that neck onto it, and have myself a tele style guitar.

In 2022 I plan to build more pedals, obviously, but I would also like to finish off Trashcaster and finally have a tele style guitar. Another thing I also hope to complete in 2022 is a lap steel guitar, which was on the schedule for this year but I couldn't find the wood to make it happen. With all these plans I know are well within my control there is still one thing that is beyond my control. I just hope that comes back together and these past two years become a mere memory of person growth while getting back on a better track together.