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PostPosted: Mon Feb 14, 2011 9:45 pm 
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Walnut
Walnut

Joined: Thu Jan 13, 2011 11:04 pm
Posts: 13
First name: Mark
Last Name: Klee
City: Alpharetta
State: Georgia
Zip/Postal Code: 30009
Country: usa
Focus: Build
Status: Amateur
Okay, so I'm building my first kit and TOTALLY don't know what I 'm doing (as far as guitars are concerned) - there is a ton of information out there regarding bracing the top. Can anybody recommend a simple link/forum discussion that can help me decide what to do from here? I've attached a picture of my top with all of the bracing attached and ready to glue to the sides ... but I can't decide what/how much/if to do any additional scalloping. Any input would be appreciated - thus far I've completely (almost) followed Bill Cory's (KitGuitarManual.com) instructions ... and they're AWESOME ... but I just can't pull the trigger on gluing together without making every improvement on the bracing that seems fit.

Thanks,
Mark


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PostPosted: Tue Feb 15, 2011 3:07 pm 
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Joined: Fri May 14, 2010 11:43 am
Posts: 605
First name: Aaron
Last Name: Craig
City: Kansas City
State: Missouri
Focus: Build
Status: Semi-pro
Hard to tell by looking at a picture, but it appears your bracing is on the heavy side (especially in the tone bars and finger braces). I highly recommend John Mayes's Advanced Voicing DVD. It is $32.00 for that DVD alone, and worth every cent. I have heard great things about all of his DVDs, but so far this one is the only one I have seen. Whether you follow John's method exactly, you WILL learn a lot of useful information and hear the sounds you should listen for while tuning your top.

Here is the link to John's DVD: http://www.mayesguitars.com/orderdvd.html

Regarding scalloping, you can build a fine guitar either way. Some prefer to scallop larger bodied guitars and taper smaller bodied guitars. There is no right answer here, and you will find all kinds of different bracing on all kinds of different guitars. Will tone be affected depending on scalloped or tapered, probably. But who knows exactly in what manner given the infinite other variables that add together to give each guitar its own voice.

Aaron

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PostPosted: Thu Feb 24, 2011 9:38 am 
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Joined: Sun Jan 27, 2008 4:10 pm
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First name: Tom
Last Name: West
State: Nova Scotia
Country: Canada
Focus: Build
Status: Amateur
Mark: Check out Somogyi's book" The Responsive Guitar". This will give you a broad overview of top work in general.
Tom

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PostPosted: Fri Feb 25, 2011 10:27 am 
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Koa
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Joined: Thu Jul 13, 2006 6:17 am
Posts: 1903
Location: Evanston, IL
First name: Steve
Last Name: Courtright
Focus: Build
Status: Amateur
You top looks really nice. Excellent workmanship.

Both posters giving good advice. Mine is to purchase some carefully drafted plans and since this is your first just try to copy the plans exactly. Look for plans with exact numbers showing where and how much to carve. You will get good results this way. Just be assured that whatever you do - i.e., how much scalloping - your guitar will actually sound like a guitar. The goal, over time, because after you finish this one you will be hooked, is to better understand the relationship between the construction of the top/bracing and your sound.

While you carve, flex the top and tap it and feel how it changes in response to your carving. The idea is to get an idea of what it is doing. When you do your next top you can make changes in flexibility, etc. and see what happens. As much as I hate to say it, the first few are learning experiences and will help you understand how the sound corresponds to the flexing of the top. Not a perfect correlation, but pretty good, and a good start.

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PostPosted: Fri Feb 25, 2011 6:25 pm 
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Walnut
Walnut

Joined: Thu Jan 13, 2011 11:04 pm
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First name: Mark
Last Name: Klee
City: Alpharetta
State: Georgia
Zip/Postal Code: 30009
Country: usa
Focus: Build
Status: Amateur
Thanks everybody for your responses. I actually got some drawings that I followed (pretty close) on another forum. Here is what the finished product looked like - I was happy with it. It was just difficult to know what to listen for since I'd never done or heard one previously. Although I didn't take any measurements to verify this ... it definitely seems that I lost some of the radius on the front after the scalloping. This makes sense to me, but is this supposed to happen?

It's all put together now and I've started my first inlay work - I really enjoy the intricate work. Got my inlay tool yesterday from Blues Creek ... and WHOA what a difference it makes over the dremel tool I was practicing with.

Thanks again to all for the input


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PostPosted: Fri Feb 25, 2011 6:47 pm 
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Koa
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Location: Evanston, IL
First name: Steve
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Well done, Mark. I can't wait for you to hear it!

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PostPosted: Tue Mar 01, 2011 9:21 pm 
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First name: Tom
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Mark: That guitar is looking SHARP......!!!
Tom

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PostPosted: Wed Mar 09, 2011 9:08 pm 
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Did you put a cap across the X brace lap joint?
I recommend that you remove some of the mass from the braces. You can make them into triangle without loosing much strength or stiffness. Leave the base alone where it is bonded to the top.

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PostPosted: Wed Apr 27, 2011 4:21 pm 
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Cocobolo
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Joined: Thu Aug 13, 2009 4:32 pm
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First name: John
Last Name: Charnock
Country: UK
Focus: Build
Status: Amateur
Can you show us the inlay tool ?


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PostPosted: Wed Apr 27, 2011 10:20 pm 
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Walnut
Walnut

Joined: Thu Jan 13, 2011 11:04 pm
Posts: 13
First name: Mark
Last Name: Klee
City: Alpharetta
State: Georgia
Zip/Postal Code: 30009
Country: usa
Focus: Build
Status: Amateur
Here is a link to the site where I bought it ... let me know if you need more detailed pictures:

http://www.bluescreekguitars.com/catalo ... ucts_id=18

It truly is an great tool - if you get it please tell John I referred you. Nothing in it for me but John has been terrific help as I've been building my first guitar and did my first inlay work. Right now I'm just (patiently) waiting for my lacquer to cure before the final sanding. Here are a couple additional pictures of the inlay work I did:

Mark Klee


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PostPosted: Tue Jun 14, 2011 12:40 pm 
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Joined: Fri May 14, 2010 11:43 am
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First name: Aaron
Last Name: Craig
City: Kansas City
State: Missouri
Focus: Build
Status: Semi-pro
Looks very nice. Excellent work on those inlays! Looking forward to seeing the finished guitar.

Aaron

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