Ron's Vega Soloist
19 fret tenor
Replace neck (bad heel/fingerboard) with used period neck

Level-rebind-re-fret new neck
Polish hardware-re-lacquer brass parts

Pictured with second neck nearly completed

Frets pulled
This neck is much straighter, but still has divots so I have to pull inlay to re-level
Even with tape off slots were super degraded and I will rebuild them all.

90 percent of divots leveled, that is mostly shadow
Slots rebuilt, and now I am installing the new binding

Binding completed
Finish stripped, Pear wood dyed, sealer coat applied

Ready to fret
Minor chips will be addressed after fretting

Frets in, side markers added

Leveled-crowned-ends dressed-polished-board oiled
Ready for finish


I will soon see what is in there. A lot of wood filler

Dowel is pulled forward, adjustment gone
Non original hook sets

Under wood filler plugs in heel cap, 3 screws

Split the old repair back off

Split the dowel tenon out without hurting it
This neck will be scrapped on out, with all it issues it is only good for spare inlays, dowel,etc.


All normal on the tear down
Soloist is a mixture of Gold/Brass/Nickel and I will clean the brass parts and use Brass lacquer to protect it.
Basically, this is like protecting a brass trumpet, same Lacquer.
Then I will strip and refinish the wood

Oxidized brass

Starting the cleaning after pulling the shoes, always fun.

There is alot of lifting in the veneer, I will strip it and then seal it down

Inside stripped, getting the black dye back on before clear coats

Nikolas Brass Lacquer on these pieces after buffing/cleaning

ready to assemble

The hooks...
20 are correct, but only 2 nuts were Vega
so I need 8 hooks, and 26 nuts, I'll have to pull those from stock.
The original have a light flashing of copper over steel, then gold over copper
A little of all of it still shows, I will only clean what is showing rust.

Flanges are un-plated brass, and pitted
 I will have to sand them all, then buff them all, then lacquer them all.


Resonator trip complete, flanges polished and Nikolas lacquer applied.

Rim Assembly

REMO medium crown head works best if you like some hoop over the head.
With Oettinger, it helps to have a nice place for them to "Land"



After the tint was chosen (Vintage Maple-light burst) I went on to the final stages of clear-wetsand-buff-wax.
I was time compressed so missed a few pics

Setup on DR Strings, made in USA and furnished by as well as Remo head, bottom frosted 
Thanks Mike, for being a great vendor.
You all should buy your strings and stuff from Mike Amato, good guy.

This tip is broken, but will still hold the string

Note, this tip is bent in, if you try to bend it out, it will resemble the broken one, immediately
They work, leave them alone.


Since the new neck was already drilled for modern tuners that were pancake body, I swapped out the Planets for a nice set of Import 4:1, gold plated, MOP buttons
They are nice and smooth.

New Bridge, good action, noting well up and down.
 Should be VG after settling back in
Same Vegaphone tone I grew up on.

Downforce is good, neck angle good, neckset is tight
It should hoe a row.

OK, its headed back to AZ with TJ, and I hope it gives good service for Ronnie.
It's been a pleasure working on it, and giving back to a Serviceman that has given many years watching our backs.
God bless those that serve!
Thanks for watching