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PostPosted: Tue Mar 09, 2010 1:47 pm 
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Mahogany
Mahogany

Joined: Thu Jul 23, 2009 4:54 pm
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First name: Devin
Last Name: Cox
City: Edmond
State: Oklahoma
Country: usa
Focus: Build
Status: Amateur
I am purchased some uke tops to practice joining the top, the wood is the same as the kit I am building (englemann). I am having trouble getting the perfect joint with my shooting board and Plane. I have the plane setup correctly and its sharp. I get the joint very close, but not perfect. I am considering just using a sanding board and then gluing it up. How do you judge the quality of the top joint? What are the attributes of a well done top joint? I want to join the scrap top and then decide if the sanding method will work for my guitar.

Thanks,
Devin


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PostPosted: Tue Mar 09, 2010 2:36 pm 
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Location: Windsor Ontario Canada
First name: Fred
Last Name: Tellier
City: Windsor
State: Ontario
Zip/Postal Code: N8T2C6
Country: Canada
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Status: Amateur
I planed and then sanded on a few tops since I also could not get the joint good enough with the plane, I had some tops to join last week and I guess I finally got it as the planed joints were on the money. I am guessing I just needed more practice, and I think my cuts were too heavy in the past, I now back the blade off a little after I get close and it works out real good.

Since you a playing with practice tops keep going until you get it right even if there is not much top left.

I use the tape jointing method and after sanding the joint is almost impossible to find, I also glue the tops quite thick about .150 inch and final sand after joining, it makes getting the plates lined up perfectly with each other less important as they will be after final sanding of the plate

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http://www.fetellierguitars.com
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PostPosted: Tue Mar 09, 2010 5:08 pm 
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Brazilian Rosewood
Brazilian Rosewood

Joined: Fri Nov 03, 2006 6:50 pm
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Location: Victoria, BC
First name: John
Last Name: Abercrombie
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Getting the 'pressure' right with a plane and shooting board takes some practice, I've found. A very sharp blade and light cuts, as Fred has mentioned, help a lot. If you are taking light cuts (ie you can read newspaper through the shaving), you can 'hit' the high area and then finish up with one full-length stroke.

To check the joint, I've moved away from holding the joint up to the light and looking for gaps. I put the joint together on the bench and see how tight the joint is if I move one plate (vertically) against the other. You can feel where the joint is tight and where the wood is not in solid contact.

BTW, once you get those great joints working, be sure to 'offset' the plates a mm or two when you glue up. Otherwise it can be tough to find the centerline! (I forget where I first read this tip, but 'Thanks!' to whoever suggested it.)

Cheers
John


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PostPosted: Tue Mar 09, 2010 5:34 pm 
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Cocobolo
Cocobolo

Joined: Wed Jan 23, 2008 7:41 am
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Location: Naugatuck, CT
I had a heck of a time with the plane on zebrawood. I put some sandpaper on the edge of my 3' level(after making sure it's straight with my staightedge)and used it on my shooting board to finish up.

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PostPosted: Wed Mar 10, 2010 9:14 am 
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Mahogany
Mahogany

Joined: Thu Jul 23, 2009 4:54 pm
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First name: Devin
Last Name: Cox
City: Edmond
State: Oklahoma
Country: usa
Focus: Build
Status: Amateur
Thank you all for the replies. I will re-adjust the plane for a lighter cut and make more ribbons before I give up on the shooting board.

Thanks,
Devin


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PostPosted: Wed Mar 10, 2010 9:30 am 
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Location: Windsor Ontario Canada
First name: Fred
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Country: Canada
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Keep at it, I thought I would always be sanding a little and the good results finally came, I actually enjoy the plane now.

Fred

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PostPosted: Wed Mar 10, 2010 10:27 am 
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Old Growth Brazilian Rosewood
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Devin a planed joint, recently planed and glued within 15 minutes is our best shot at the best joint but a sanded joint can be good enough provided that your glue-up method is decent and there are no gaps in the joint.

What my buddy Fred is saying is my experience too. I originally sanded, then planed some and sanded some, and in time I am able to joint a top very quickly now using only a very sharp #5 plane. If you plan on building more guitars going forward and who doesn't.... :) it behooves you to attempt to plane the joint at every opportunity and fall back on sanding if you can't make any progress with the plane.

I can recall a few evenings when I threw up my hands and gave up for the day on using a plane but again in time and with some assistance from my buddy Link I am now able to joint using only a plane. It's very fast too!

I am no longer holding up the joint to a light either instead just favoring to examine the joint very closely on a bench. By pressing and prodding you can see where the contact is and is not.

Lastly since it's likely that you will be sanding if even as a supplement to planing be sure to use new sandpaper on the level if you jointed your back first. The darker colored dust that contaminates the sandpaper will leave a visible dark line on your top if you do the top after the back without changing paper.

Good luck and enjoy!


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PostPosted: Thu Mar 11, 2010 8:50 pm 
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Cocobolo
Cocobolo

Joined: Sun Jan 03, 2010 8:30 pm
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First name: Peter
Country: England
Focus: Build
Status: Amateur
I joined my first two tops easily, but could I do the back? gaah

It was a good thing I was making a parlour sized guitar for my first build or I would have run out of wood. Ever played a guitar the size of a match box? Because I felt I was on the way to making it at one point. Before I try to join top & backs again I will get a proper jointing plane as i was using a no.4 smoothing plane.

back to the OP, I gave up using a plane on my tops and used the sanding method. I pretty much copied the jig sold on http://www.luthiersuppliers.com. I have a glass desk at home and made sure it was level. used something to keep it square and about 5 minutes later I had a good joint.

Do you guys plane both sides of the tops at the same time or one at a time? I have a book that advises one at a time and another that says "you should aways do both together."


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PostPosted: Thu Mar 11, 2010 9:47 pm 
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Brazilian Rosewood
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Location: Victoria, BC
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coke_zero wrote:
Do you guys plane both sides of the tops at the same time or one at a time? I have a book that advises one at a time and another that says "you should always do both together."


I generally do them together, since if the plane is a bit 'off square' the errors will balance out.


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PostPosted: Mon Mar 29, 2010 10:17 am 
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Mahogany
Mahogany

Joined: Thu Jul 23, 2009 4:54 pm
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First name: Devin
Last Name: Cox
City: Edmond
State: Oklahoma
Country: usa
Focus: Build
Status: Amateur
I finally got a practice/uke top glued up. I did it yesterday and have not yet had a chance to clean up the glue, but I think it will be nice. I ended up using my block plane to make it work. I just kept getting a hump in the middle when I used my no. 5. I was using my block plane to take down the middle and then just decided to do the whole thing with it and it worked. I will post a pic once I have it thicknessed.

thanks for everyones help.

Devin


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PostPosted: Mon Mar 29, 2010 12:50 pm 
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Brazilian Rosewood
Brazilian Rosewood

Joined: Fri Nov 03, 2006 6:50 pm
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Location: Victoria, BC
First name: John
Last Name: Abercrombie
Status: Amateur
devincox wrote:
I ended up using my block plane to make it work.


Devin-
You are in good company.
I was re-reading parts of John Bogdanovich's (excellent) book on building classical guitars and noticed that he was using a block plane for jointing the top in the pictures. Actually, it looks like he uses the block plane for all planing- including thicknessing.
Cheers
John


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PostPosted: Wed Mar 31, 2010 4:22 pm 
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Mahogany
Mahogany

Joined: Thu Jul 23, 2009 4:54 pm
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First name: Devin
Last Name: Cox
City: Edmond
State: Oklahoma
Country: usa
Focus: Build
Status: Amateur
That's good to know. The block was a bit easier to control. I think a combination of the two might be the ticket for me. We shall see as I have two more tops to joint this weekend.

Devin


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PostPosted: Thu May 13, 2010 7:55 am 
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Mahogany
Mahogany

Joined: Thu Jul 23, 2009 4:54 pm
Posts: 96
First name: Devin
Last Name: Cox
City: Edmond
State: Oklahoma
Country: usa
Focus: Build
Status: Amateur
I finally have the hang of jointing tops/back with a plane. I guess its a matter of accruing enough curls. (c:
I joined the top and back for my OM build and , both went very well. I still cant get it perfect with my 5 1/2, but the I can with the block plane. This is very encouraging as now I can get on to the next challenge and the rest of my build.
Thanks for everyone's help,
Devin


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PostPosted: Thu May 13, 2010 9:13 am 
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Joined: Fri Mar 24, 2006 12:42 pm
Posts: 2332
Location: Windsor Ontario Canada
First name: Fred
Last Name: Tellier
City: Windsor
State: Ontario
Zip/Postal Code: N8T2C6
Country: Canada
Focus: Build
Status: Amateur
Practice and patience are what it takes to get good at anything. It took me a lot of shavings too, but it came.

Fred

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http://www.fetellierguitars.com
Facebook page http://www.facebook.com/pages/FE-Tellier-Guitars/163451547003866


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