Official Luthiers Forum!

Solely owned and operated by Lance Kragenbrink
It is currently Mon Sep 28, 2020 7:34 am


All times are UTC - 5 hours


Forum rules


Be nice, no cussin and enjoy!




Post new topic Reply to topic  [ 17 posts ] 
Author Message
PostPosted: Mon Jan 06, 2020 11:30 pm 
Offline
Cocobolo
Cocobolo
User avatar

Joined: Mon May 26, 2008 2:31 pm
Posts: 178
Location: Conway, Arkansas
I've been researching inlaying MOP into maple. Not getting a lot of info, probably because of the difficulty of getting good results.
But for those of you persistent enough (crazy enough?) to do this ---- Could you share any techniques that you've found helpful in getting something that you're happy with?
I know cutting the inlay cavity accurately is the first step. (CNC is not possible for me, I will be doing this by hand.)
Cutting a close and deep outline of the inlay seems to be the ticket, but how?

The other side of the equation seems to be what to use as the gluing medium (CA, Epoxy, tinted CA, tinted Epoxy).

Anyway, anything you could contribute would be very much appreciated.
Thanks,
Bill

_________________
Formerly know as Mandodiddle.


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: Tue Jan 07, 2020 12:05 am 
Offline
Contributing Member
Contributing Member
User avatar

Joined: Fri Jan 22, 2010 9:59 pm
Posts: 3190
First name: Dennis
Last Name: Kincheloe
City: Kansas City
State: MO
Country: USA
Focus: Build
Status: Amateur
The only trick I can think of is if your inlay has sharp corners, sand the underside of the corner on the inlay piece so it can fully seat even if the pocket corner isn't quite full depth. Router bits are round, so sharp corners of the pocket have to be done by digging at it with the tip of a knife. It's not too hard to get it perfect right at the surface, but at the bottom of the pocket it's usually left a little bit rounded, and this allows you to avoid the issue.

I use hide glue. It doesn't actually adhere well to shell, but when the piece is surrounded on all but one side, it gets mechanically locked in place. And especially in a tight pocket like you'll need for maple, you'd never get it out even if you wanted to.

Actually that reminds me of another trick: if possible, drill one or two tiny holes in the bottom of the pocket. This allows you to test the fit, and if it's too tight, you can poke the piece back out from underneath. Otherwise you can wind up with it stuck in, but unable to fully seat.



These users thanked the author DennisK for the post: Pmaj7 (Sat Jan 11, 2020 3:41 am)
Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: Tue Jan 07, 2020 12:41 am 
Offline
Contributing Member
Contributing Member
User avatar

Joined: Sun Mar 06, 2011 12:04 am
Posts: 4408
First name: Chris
Last Name: Pile
City: Wichita
State: Kansas
Country: Good old US of A
Focus: Repair
Status: Professional
OLF member Larry Ayers here in Wichita is a master at inlay, and does a lot of maple.

_________________
"Act your age, not your shoe size" - Prince


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: Tue Jan 07, 2020 1:40 am 
Offline
Contributing Member
Contributing Member
User avatar

Joined: Thu May 20, 2010 11:20 pm
Posts: 312
First name: Bob
City: Kurtistown
State: Hawaii
Zip/Postal Code: 96760
Country: USA
Is this an inlay on a head plate, or fretboard, or? Different techniques might apply.--Bob

_________________
“ The meaning of life is to find your gift and the purpose of life is to give it away” Pablo Picasso


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: Tue Jan 07, 2020 10:13 am 
Offline
Contributing Member
Contributing Member
User avatar

Joined: Wed Oct 08, 2008 11:36 am
Posts: 5980
Location: Southeast US
City: Lenoir City
State: TN
Zip/Postal Code: 37772
Country: US
Focus: Repair
Obviously, inlaying into lighter woods is very unforgiving and the key is to get a tight fit. One thing I do that helps with that is not to use the router for the final fit. I trace the inlay position with a 0.3mm pencil and route close to the line then I go back and use a selection of small, very sharp chisels along with an Xacto knife to carefully finalize the inlay pocket. It is very time consuming but the end result is worth it. Also, as Bob said it makes a difference on whether it is going into a flat or curved surface.

_________________
Steve Smith
"Music is what feelings sound like"


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: Tue Jan 07, 2020 10:34 am 
Offline
Contributing Member
Contributing Member

Joined: Tue Dec 17, 2013 10:52 pm
Posts: 1795
First name: Don
Last Name: Parker
City: Charleston
State: West Virginia
Zip/Postal Code: 25314
Country: USA
Focus: Build
Status: Amateur
I've inlaid into maple. The above guidance is all great. Another thing to watch for: The color of the fill material that will go in the outline gap. With a dark wood background (ebony, rosewood), going dark is good. With maple, you might need to experiment with scrap to see what looks the best. I used hide glue and maple sawdust, and it looked OK.


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: Wed Jan 08, 2020 1:21 pm 
Offline
Contributing Member
Contributing Member
User avatar

Joined: Thu Feb 09, 2006 2:35 pm
Posts: 2928
Location: United States
First name: Joe
Last Name: Beaver
City: Lake Forest
State: California
Focus: Build
when inlaying into light wood, I just take extra time to get the pocket as tight a fit as possible. And a simple inlay with fewer twists and turns makes it a lot easier.

_________________
Joe Beaver
Maker of Sawdust


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: Fri Jan 10, 2020 8:42 pm 
Offline
Cocobolo
Cocobolo
User avatar

Joined: Mon May 26, 2008 2:31 pm
Posts: 178
Location: Conway, Arkansas
Thanks everyone.
Sorry for the delayed response as I have been out of town.

Yes, this is going to be a headplate MOP inlay into maple. Unfortunately, it is my last name spelled in cursive so no simple design here.
I will try to use your suggestions and I guess I'll just have to experiment with glues and coloration. If I can't get a decent result I guess I can always inlay the logo into ebony and insert the simpler ebony shape into the maple.
Thanks again everyone.
Bill

_________________
Formerly know as Mandodiddle.


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: Fri Jan 10, 2020 9:58 pm 
Offline
Contributing Member
Contributing Member
User avatar

Joined: Thu May 20, 2010 11:20 pm
Posts: 312
First name: Bob
City: Kurtistown
State: Hawaii
Zip/Postal Code: 96760
Country: USA
I stack and double cut all my head plate inlays. Never use a router. Just glue the pearl, or wood, or whatever inlay onto your head plate before you mount it on the head. Put your pattern on the top and cut the inlay and the cavity the same time with a jewelers saw. You can cut any pattern in any wood. Not as perfect as CNC, but a lot easier than trying to rout an inlay. Names no problem. Practice on scrap. You will need a saw frame big enough to clear the head plate, or you can cheat like I did on the Olivia inlay and do the inlay into a piece of something that is easy to inlay. I use 5" frames on ukes and 8" frames on guitars. Typically I use 2/0 blades .Have fun!-Bob


You do not have the required permissions to view the files attached to this post.

_________________
“ The meaning of life is to find your gift and the purpose of life is to give it away” Pablo Picasso



These users thanked the author Pegasusguitars for the post: Pmaj7 (Sat Jan 11, 2020 3:46 am)
Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: Sat Jan 11, 2020 3:48 am 
Offline
Contributing Member
Contributing Member
User avatar

Joined: Sat Jan 31, 2009 8:50 pm
Posts: 1859
Location: Seattle WA
Focus: Build
Status: Semi-pro
Pegasusguitars wrote:
I stack and double cut all my head plate inlays. Never use a router. Just glue the pearl, or wood, or whatever inlay onto your head plate before you mount it on the head.
Mind blown. Thanks Bob!

Pat

_________________
Pat


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: Sat Jan 11, 2020 4:39 am 
Offline
Contributing Member
Contributing Member
User avatar

Joined: Fri Jan 22, 2010 9:59 pm
Posts: 3190
First name: Dennis
Last Name: Kincheloe
City: Kansas City
State: MO
Country: USA
Focus: Build
Status: Amateur
Bill Higgs wrote:
Yes, this is going to be a headplate MOP inlay into maple. Unfortunately, it is my last name spelled in cursive so no simple design here.

In that case, contact Birkonium CNC in the sponsors up top.


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: Sat Jan 11, 2020 12:52 pm 
Offline
Brazilian Rosewood
Brazilian Rosewood
User avatar

Joined: Sat May 22, 2010 10:32 am
Posts: 2614
First name: alan
Last Name: stassforth
City: Santa Rosa
State: ca
Zip/Postal Code: 95404
Country: usa
Focus: Build
Status: Amateur
Bob, thank you for that.
Alan


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: Sat Jan 11, 2020 2:46 pm 
Offline
Contributing Member
Contributing Member
User avatar

Joined: Mon Apr 16, 2012 12:47 pm
Posts: 1845
First name: Jay
Last Name: De Rocher
City: Bothell
State: Washington
Bob - Those inlays are impressive especially the one in the koa. I've been puzzling over how your method is done and I'm not fully getting it. It sounds like you glue a pearl blank to the headplate, put your inlay pattern on the pearl, and then cut the outline through the blank and the headplate at the same time. If so, how do you initiate the cutting and how do you get around sharp corners (like the corners on the Y, h, and s) without widening the kerf or going outside or inside the pattern outline?

_________________
Once in a while you get shown the light in the strangest of places if you look at it right - Robert Hunter


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: Sun Jan 12, 2020 12:02 pm 
Offline
Brazilian Rosewood
Brazilian Rosewood

Joined: Fri Aug 19, 2005 4:02 am
Posts: 2366
Location: The Woodlands, Texas
First name: Barry
Last Name: Daniels
That is a traditional marquetry technique. If you lean the saw blade to the outside at about a 10 degree angle then the pieces will fit together more closely and close up the saw kerf.


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: Sun Jan 12, 2020 12:59 pm 
Offline
Contributing Member
Contributing Member
User avatar

Joined: Thu May 20, 2010 11:20 pm
Posts: 312
First name: Bob
City: Kurtistown
State: Hawaii
Zip/Postal Code: 96760
Country: USA
Yes, tilting the blade does close up the gap, and I do that when I can. On straight sections I do that if possible. For names, it can be tough, and just sawing straight up and down can be O.K. I lay up the pieces to be cut using Scotch 468MP double sided adhesive between the pearl and the headplate for most inlays. Same stuff that is used for adhering pick guards. Available on Amazon and luthier's supplier's. For names I usually have to glue the pearl down so the small pieces don't shift. I use Titebond for that.For applying the pattern to the pearl I usually use an artist's double sided tape from Action tapes. Used by Scroll saw artists, it's very thin and the adhesive does not clog the blade as much as the Scotch. Works well for paper to pearl. Using glue for all the adhesions would be fine too. The cut is started by drilling the smallest hole that the blade can be threaded through at what you determine will be the least noticeable place on the inlay. You can buy cheap miniature numbered drill sets from Rio Grande, and maybe on eBay, that will give you a selection of sizes for 0 to 4/0 blades, which are mostly what you will use. Sawing around inside corners just takes a little practice. A friend of mine calls that particular saw technique "marching in place", which pretty much explains it. You just saw up and down, slightly pulling back on the blade, while gentle turning the blade to the new direction. Using the smallest blade that you can helps a lot. Blades are cheap, and even if you break a bunch trying to do a name inlay, the cost is no big deal. However, once you get some experience you won't break many blades. When the inlay is cut through, I leave the wood on the pearl and glue it face down which makes the pearl level with the face of the head plate. I run the face plate through the sander to remove the wood when it is dry. You will still have some small degree of glue line around the inlays in light colored woods, but I find it acceptable. I do a lot better using this technique than I've ever done trying to rout the cavity.
I think of inlay in John Henry folk story terms. Trying to beat the laser or CNC is impossible, but it is way more satisfying to me to be able to do the work myself!


You do not have the required permissions to view the files attached to this post.

_________________
“ The meaning of life is to find your gift and the purpose of life is to give it away” Pablo Picasso



These users thanked the author Pegasusguitars for the post (total 5): Tim Mullin (Sun Jan 12, 2020 7:25 pm) • SteveSmith (Sun Jan 12, 2020 2:33 pm) • Clay S. (Sun Jan 12, 2020 1:40 pm) • J De Rocher (Sun Jan 12, 2020 1:29 pm) • Barry Daniels (Sun Jan 12, 2020 1:02 pm)
Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: Sun Jan 12, 2020 1:32 pm 
Offline
Contributing Member
Contributing Member
User avatar

Joined: Mon Apr 16, 2012 12:47 pm
Posts: 1845
First name: Jay
Last Name: De Rocher
City: Bothell
State: Washington
Thanks a lot for the detailed reply. Thanks for including the trick of leaving the wood attached to the inlay and gluing it in face down. I had been wondering how to deal with having a hole cut all the way through the headplate since my headplates are thicker than the pearl blanks I use. Nice.

_________________
Once in a while you get shown the light in the strangest of places if you look at it right - Robert Hunter


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: Sun Jan 12, 2020 2:34 pm 
Offline
Contributing Member
Contributing Member
User avatar

Joined: Wed Oct 08, 2008 11:36 am
Posts: 5980
Location: Southeast US
City: Lenoir City
State: TN
Zip/Postal Code: 37772
Country: US
Focus: Repair
Thanks for explaining that Bob, it makes sense now and I'll probably try it next time I cut a custom inlay.

_________________
Steve Smith
"Music is what feelings sound like"


Top
 Profile  
 
Display posts from previous:  Sort by  
Post new topic Reply to topic  [ 17 posts ] 

All times are UTC - 5 hours


Who is online

Users browsing this forum: patmguitars and 18 guests


You cannot post new topics in this forum
You cannot reply to topics in this forum
You cannot edit your posts in this forum
You cannot delete your posts in this forum
You cannot post attachments in this forum

Jump to:  
Powered by phpBB® Forum Software © phpBB Group
phpBB customization services by 2by2host.com