Yesterday I did my first complete build. It started as a MIM Tele. I had a local luthier try to relic it years ago, and didn't love the result. So I picked up a Telemaster body from Michael at Rosser Guitars, and rebuilt it with the same hardware and pups, but with new electronics - including a 5-way switch wired the Bill Lawrence way. And it is an absolute tone monster.
I went the relic route because the donor parts were already aged, and because learning is easier when you're not worried about screwing up the finish. I tried to get the nitro to cold check, but when I heated it I added an attractive scorch mark to the back of the body (that's why we start with the back :)). I'm no master luthier (yet), but it feels like I just made a lifelong friend, and this won't be my last build. Can't wait to take her live.