While deciding on a veneer layout for the headstock, I went ahead and finished the plate to hold the Pickup onto the guitar body. A piece of aluminum was sliced down to 1/8" thick on a band saw, and the opening was routed out in the middle. Then the corners were rounded and holes were drilled.
After that, it took about 2 hours for me to smooth up the band saw marks and make it flat. I started with coarse 60 grit sandpaper and progressively went to finer grits. The last was 600 grit. Since the plate was thin I ended up sanding off my fingernails while trying to hold it. I should have made some kind of jig to hold it, but that would have meant a trip waaaaaaaay out to the garage. Eventually after I couldn't take it anymore I put on some work gloves and that helped.
When the sandpaper work was done I shined up the plate on a polishing wheel. It's difficult to get a good picture because the flash makes it glare, but it looks like chrome. I'm pretty happy with the way it turned out. To cut down on hums, electronics chambers can be shielded and grounded with aluminum foil. The nice thing about using aluminum instead of wood or plastic for the plate is now I'm halfway there as far as shielding goes.
Here are the work gloves afterwards. They were new when I started. To a lesser degree my fingers kind of look like that too.
Here's something unrelated. Mei wanted an exercise hula hoop, and we found out they were $50 if you get the size and weight she was looking for. We made this one instead. You get some bendy PVC pipe, and a coupling link. We put 5 pounds of wire cable inside to make it heavy. TADA! It was about $8 total. She's been using it every night.