Official Luthiers Forum!

Solely owned and operated by Lance Kragenbrink
It is currently Sun Dec 17, 2017 10:06 pm


All times are UTC - 5 hours





Post new topic Reply to topic  [ 70 posts ]  Go to page Previous  1, 2, 3  Next
Author Message
PostPosted: Thu Jan 12, 2012 9:58 am 
Offline
Cocobolo
Cocobolo
User avatar

Joined: Sat Jul 31, 2010 4:03 pm
Posts: 150
First name: Neil
Last Name: Kwak
State: PA
Country: United States
Focus: Build
Status: Amateur
I did a little more routing the other night:

Image

Image

The top doesn't look as pretty but I'll fix it next time. Sorry no pix.

Next (hopefully) time I do the binding. Here's a mockup of the purfling/binding that I made to set up the bit on the laminate trimmer but obviously I measured wrong and will have to reconsider for the back. The front should be OK though.

Image


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: Fri Jan 13, 2012 8:16 pm 
Offline
Koa
Koa

Joined: Thu Feb 12, 2009 10:27 pm
Posts: 1927
Location: South Carolina
First name: John
Last Name: Cox
Focus: Build
Status: Amateur
Wow - looks like you have a great opportunity to try out either a super-multi line binding... or some shell....

Your build is coming along great so far... Keep at it!

Thanks


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: Sat Jan 14, 2012 12:45 pm 
Offline
Koa
Koa

Joined: Sat Apr 19, 2008 10:08 pm
Posts: 1943
Location: Missouri
First name: Patrick
Last Name: Hanna
State: Missouri
Country: USA
Neil, I've been following this thread with interest. Lately, it's the first one I look for when I come onto the forum. I'm really impressed with the way you keep solving your problems and overcoming all the obstacles. I'd hazard a guess that every builder on the forum has struggled through most of these issues at one time or another. I sure have. You're learning a lot and from over here it looks like you're doing quite well. I am really eager to see how this instrument turns out. Keep it up!
Patrick


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: Sat Jan 14, 2012 11:29 pm 
Offline
Cocobolo
Cocobolo
User avatar

Joined: Sat Jul 31, 2010 4:03 pm
Posts: 150
First name: Neil
Last Name: Kwak
State: PA
Country: United States
Focus: Build
Status: Amateur
Thanks, truckjohn and cphanna,

FWIW my friend who's letting me use his shop and materials offers me guidance and ideas and sometimes an extra pair of hands. OTOH he like letting me make these mistakes and making the ultimate decision on how to proceed. Sometimes his advice is suspect but then again he's right about haste making waste; there are times when I forge ahead when I should just quit.

Last night was such an instance. I was working on the end wedge and things went awry and I quit because my eyes were starting to play tricks on me.

As for the purfling, the channel on the back is wider than that of the front. I'm going to keep the front as-is and keep it simple. As for the back I guess I could put some zig zag marketry or something there.


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: Sun Jan 22, 2012 10:47 pm 
Offline
Cocobolo
Cocobolo
User avatar

Joined: Sat Jul 31, 2010 4:03 pm
Posts: 150
First name: Neil
Last Name: Kwak
State: PA
Country: United States
Focus: Build
Status: Amateur
I took a little time yesterday fired up the bandsaw to cut laminates for the neck. I cut out a template from a sheet of 1/8" plexiglass earlier in the week and used it to trace outlines on some riftsawn wood that I bought from Rockler a couple of months ago. Then I did a dry-fitting to see how they lined up. The outer layers are mahogany (I believe they're African mahogany,) the inner layers are maple and the center layer is walnut.

Image

Comparing against the plans and the template:
Image

I cut a little extra to the thickness and length of the headstock. The plans also call for a volute which is tricky to cut out close with my little 9" Ryobi bandsaw so it looks ugly but I'm not worried. I may go without the volute altogether though.
Image

I put a fresh blade on the bandsaw but it's got a pretty big tooth and left some bites that I'm going to have to plane smooth. I also need to glue "wings" on the headstock but that will all be hidden by a rosewood faceplate:
Image

The three center layers measure exactly at 3/4" which is what the plans call for the width of the tenon. I have a pre-mortised neck block in the body so I won't know for certain if it will be a perfect fit until I rout away the sides around the mortise:
Image

Once I cut out the wings I'll glue it all together. I may need to buy more of these clamps; they only cost $3 apiece at Harbor Freight. Then I'll move on to routing out the truss rod channel. I haven't decided on a shape to the headstock yet but I really like the look of Collings' headstocks. They're sort of Gibson-esque:

http://elderly.com/images/new_instruments/20N/COLF_headstock-front_sm_.jpg

Then last night I went over to my friend's shop and did another attempt at the end wedge - and got it right... mostly. It's not perfect but I'll be able to fill in any gaps.


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: Tue Jan 31, 2012 12:31 am 
Offline
Cocobolo
Cocobolo
User avatar

Joined: Sat Jul 31, 2010 4:03 pm
Posts: 150
First name: Neil
Last Name: Kwak
State: PA
Country: United States
Focus: Build
Status: Amateur
Tonight I cleaned up the end wedge:

Image

Image

Image

I know: it's not perfect but given that this is my first and it's for me I'd say it's "good enough." I already know what I'm going to do differently next time: do the wedge just after gluing in the blocks just like that O'Brien guy on Youtube says to do. He makes it look soooo easy. :x

I also glued up the neck blank. I'll take pics when it's presentable; there's lots of glue slop and I need to trim all the rough cuts to match the target profile. ;)


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: Mon Feb 20, 2012 10:13 am 
Offline
Cocobolo
Cocobolo
User avatar

Joined: Sat Jul 31, 2010 4:03 pm
Posts: 150
First name: Neil
Last Name: Kwak
State: PA
Country: United States
Focus: Build
Status: Amateur
I spent 2 hours over Kitchen Guitars' place last night basically decompressing (I've got family problems) so I on;y got a little bit accomplished. Basically, I'm puffing up my courage to install the binding. I bent the rosewood binding just to prepare but I also inspected my binding channels and see some issues with the purfling I chose. I'm planning on using a bold BWB strip on the base of my rosewood binding, but It's not wide enough to fully fit the "step" - I'd have to sand nearly 1/32" off the thickness of the sides.

I need to sleep on this.


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: Sat Apr 28, 2012 5:25 pm 
Offline
Cocobolo
Cocobolo
User avatar

Joined: Sat Jul 31, 2010 4:03 pm
Posts: 150
First name: Neil
Last Name: Kwak
State: PA
Country: United States
Focus: Build
Status: Amateur
It's been slow going but and a few nagging issues (par for the course on a first build I'm told) but here's what little I've been able to accomplish in the past couple of months:

1: I worked on my neck blank to get it ready to start fitting it in the MT/bolt on neck joint. I used my friend's jointer table and belt sander to get the headstock face and fingerboard face trued up. Then I routed out a channel for the truss rod. I also worked on making a backup.

Image

Image

2: I opened up the sides to expose the pre-routed mortise in the mahogany neck block. I have to clean up the area a bit more to accept the tenon and truss rod:

Image

3: I traced the neck profile of my Larrivee and made a template from some scrap:

Image

4: Then when the weather turned inexplicably nice for this time of year the RH in my shop stabilizied so I decided to risk bringing my entire project home to start work on the binding:

Image

Image

Image

Here's a detail of the top binding/purfling. The channels are wider than I intended to cut them forcing me to be creative.

Image

My execution on gluing didn't go off without a hitch and getting the purfling planed/scraped/sanded flush proved to be problematic and several sections got torn out. The edge of the scraper also bit into the soft cedar top in some places, but I'm hoping it sands out since I left it a bit thick:

Image

5: Once I had the top binding mostly glued in place, I started turning my mind toward getting the neck joint figured out. I decided to try the barrel and bolt method:

Image

The problem is that the barrel bolts are slightly wider than the pre-routed mortise so I'm trying to figure out a way to get it widened symmetrically. Everything else about this build seems to be asymmetrical.

As for the neck, I started out by drilling holes for the barrel bolts and then without thinking - or using a jig - I cut away the excess with my friend's rather dull bandsaw:

Image

I'm tempted to try it again with my other blank (which still isn't glued up yet) but so far I'm trying things out slowly, marking out clear demarkations of where my cuts should be and keeping my digital caliper handy just in case. I'm keeping my fingers crossed and trying to walk away whenever i feel remotely frustrated.


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: Sat Apr 28, 2012 7:21 pm 
Offline
Contributing Member
Contributing Member
User avatar

Joined: Sat Feb 28, 2009 10:34 pm
Posts: 938
First name: Rob
Last Name: McDougall
City: Cochrane
State: Alberta
Focus: Build
Status: Amateur
Ambitious first build....great progress!
Like that you are dialed into RH - this is a critical factor, as I have painfully learned....
Onward!

_________________
A Slideshow


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: Sat Apr 28, 2012 8:16 pm 
Offline
Cocobolo
Cocobolo
User avatar

Joined: Sat Jul 31, 2010 4:03 pm
Posts: 150
First name: Neil
Last Name: Kwak
State: PA
Country: United States
Focus: Build
Status: Amateur
Thanks, Robbie! I've been looking over your bubinga build thread to glean some ideas to fit the neck.

OT: it's kind of funny but on the way home from my friend's shop last night I was listening to a discussion on the local talk radio station about the merits of intuitive thought as opposed to analytical thinking. It got me to thinking about how my approach to this build has changed. I was getting so tied up into details that I wasn't making that much progress. Nowadays I'm still not making a lot of progress but when it comes down to actually performing the work I find that sometimes I have to take a leap of faith and "eyeball" things. Hopefully that lapse in discipline won't come back to bite me.


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: Tue May 15, 2012 6:52 pm 
Offline
Cocobolo
Cocobolo
User avatar

Joined: Sat Jul 31, 2010 4:03 pm
Posts: 150
First name: Neil
Last Name: Kwak
State: PA
Country: United States
Focus: Build
Status: Amateur
I figured that since late nights are out of the question with my older son waking every night and causing mayhem maybe I should bring my stuff back home. The basement RH is stable in the mid-40 percentile and I'm looking to finish the binding and start setting the neck. This morning I got everything to the point where the tenon fits in the mortise:

Image

Image

Image

Image

Image

Just to compare the sizes I set it among my Larrivee OM-03R and my Martin D-16GT. The angle is a little deceptive but it falls somewhere in between. The lower bout is about an inch wider than the OM and the depth is comparable to the D.

Image

I still have to drill in the bolt holes but I'm nearly ready to start setting the neck angle. I need to use that centerline finder doohickie that my friend lent me though, but so far things look pretty good.


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: Fri Jul 27, 2012 3:28 pm 
Offline
Cocobolo
Cocobolo
User avatar

Joined: Sat Jul 31, 2010 4:03 pm
Posts: 150
First name: Neil
Last Name: Kwak
State: PA
Country: United States
Focus: Build
Status: Amateur
The neck is roughly carved and for the past month I've been trying to get the neck angle set. I have to go back and do the body binding over though:

Image


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: Sat Aug 18, 2012 10:01 am 
Offline
Cocobolo
Cocobolo

Joined: Tue Nov 01, 2011 10:17 pm
Posts: 190
First name: Raymond
Last Name: Pipkin
Focus: Build
Status: Amateur
Nice neck! How did you do the carving? The heel looks very good.


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: Mon Sep 17, 2012 9:16 pm 
Offline
Cocobolo
Cocobolo
User avatar

Joined: Sat Jul 31, 2010 4:03 pm
Posts: 150
First name: Neil
Last Name: Kwak
State: PA
Country: United States
Focus: Build
Status: Amateur
rtpipkin wrote:
Nice neck! How did you do the carving? The heel looks very good.


Sorry for the late reply. I'd forgotten to add some pics detailing the carving process. Basically I started out with a rasp around the 1st fret and I had the toughest time keeping things symmetrical.

Image

Image

Image

I aired my concerns to my friend John Kitchen who had beaten his hands to hell carving a neck out of rock maple for his second build and he suggested I try a sanding belt. Since my neck is mahogany it cut through it like butter:

Image

You can see here that the 1st fret is still a little off. I'll have to address that once I start work on the fingerboard in earnest.

Image


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: Mon Sep 17, 2012 9:29 pm 
Offline
Cocobolo
Cocobolo
User avatar

Joined: Sat Jul 31, 2010 4:03 pm
Posts: 150
First name: Neil
Last Name: Kwak
State: PA
Country: United States
Focus: Build
Status: Amateur
At that point I started concentrating on setting the neck angle but I think I got ahead of myself. A previous mistake that I made was not sanding and truing up the sides prior to routing out the binding/purfling channels. As a result my binding was all crooked and both sides cupped along the entire lower bout. I've since gone back and paid more attention to the binding, and have even had to do the back binding twice. IMO that's not a bad thing since they weren't glued on well anyway; the popped right off with a dull chisel. I have one more binding strip to do but I've been working hard on truing up the sides and cleaning up marks I made on my top. I've also gotten better with the cabinet scraper as a result though.

Shortly after wiping down with naptha:
Image

Image

Doing the back binding over:

Image

Image

Image

[img]http://i727.photobucket.com/albums/ww275/nkwak/2010%20First%20Guitar%20Build/DC91EB3D-orig.jpg[/img

Image

Image

[img][http://i727.photobucket.com/albums/ww275/nkwak/2010%20First%20Guitar%20Build/FFE21B70-orig.jpg/img]

The next day after an hour scraping and sanding. Note the side purf is still recessed in places so more sanding is in order:

Image

Image

Then of course there are still some spots that needed to be patched. This spot tore out due to a dull mini plane blade. I've since scraped/planed this patch and IMHO it came out pretty good:

Image


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: Fri Oct 26, 2012 7:07 am 
Offline
Contributing Member
Contributing Member

Joined: Fri Oct 14, 2011 10:29 am
Posts: 502
First name: joseph
Last Name: sallis
City: newcastle-upon-tyne
State: tyne and wear
Zip/Postal Code: ne46xe
Country: UK
Focus: Build
Status: Amateur
Hey, Neil, not too far to go and it's looking great. really enjoyed following your process, thanks for your effort. If you're like me, with a young family, it's really hard to find enough time to build and there's so much involved in guitar making. Take it slow in these final stages as neck setting, fretting and bridge placement are more than cosmetic, they are crucial to the sound and playability of the instrument.
Good Luck!

_________________
We are all in the gutter but some of us are looking at guitars.


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: Fri Oct 26, 2012 7:10 am 
Offline
Contributing Member
Contributing Member

Joined: Fri Oct 14, 2011 10:29 am
Posts: 502
First name: joseph
Last Name: sallis
City: newcastle-upon-tyne
State: tyne and wear
Zip/Postal Code: ne46xe
Country: UK
Focus: Build
Status: Amateur
oh, forgot to say, your guitar already looks niecer than your 2 factory built ones.

_________________
We are all in the gutter but some of us are looking at guitars.


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: Sun Nov 04, 2012 5:46 pm 
Offline
Cocobolo
Cocobolo
User avatar

Joined: Sat Jul 31, 2010 4:03 pm
Posts: 150
First name: Neil
Last Name: Kwak
State: PA
Country: United States
Focus: Build
Status: Amateur
Thanks, Joe,

I'll take the compliment, though there are lots of boo-boos that show a lack of experience. All that purfling in the binding and rosette was hard for me to rout accurately for. The bracing was a little rough, especially around the upper bout too. Next time I hope to feel more confident about things, though I plan to go with a strict Martin dreadnought type. For #3 I'm going to revisit the MJ but with symmetrical bracing like my Larrivee. I need more practice on the binding too.


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: Mon Dec 17, 2012 1:12 am 
Offline
Cocobolo
Cocobolo
User avatar

Joined: Sat Jul 31, 2010 4:03 pm
Posts: 150
First name: Neil
Last Name: Kwak
State: PA
Country: United States
Focus: Build
Status: Amateur
Yes, I'm still at this and not much further in the grand scheme of things than I was 6 months ago. I'm still attempting to get the neck angle set just right but close inspection and many weeks of pondering led me to finish up some steps that were still unfinished. Most blatant was the leveling of the sides and installation of the binding and purfling. I also chose to order a serviced fretboard after all, not trusting myself to slot the fretboard blanks I'd already purchased.

That being said, the oddest thing happened tonight. I'd always been unhappy with the way the rosette turned out but was resigned to accept it since I'd used CA glue to install it. The problem was specifically that I'd routed out a channel to accept bold BWB prelaminated purfling but in a rush as I flooded the channel with CA glue I'd grabbed fine BWB purfling by accident instead. So I was stuck with gaps and an irregular lay of the purfling. Well, tonight I looked closely at the rosette and as an afterthought I grabbed a thumbtack of all things that had had its tip bent. It resembled a dentist's tool. I'd left a gap in the ring where the fretboard would cover but I noticed that the end of the purfling was jutting out a little. So, out of some neurotic urge I took that little pick and from underneath I pulled at the purfling.

Believe it or not, but it came out easily. In minutes I had nearly the entire ring removed. Sure there was a little tearout in the usual places but nothing that a little AR glue and some sawdust couldn't fill. Still, I decided not to tempt fate any more and will look to replace the purfling with the correct size BWB tomorrow - as well as fill in some gaps in the body purfling.

I don't know if it's luck or serendipty but I'm thankful for this second chance! The guitar will still be far from perfect as this is my first but at least that rosette won't bother me as much anymore!


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: Fri Dec 28, 2012 10:43 am 
Offline
Cocobolo
Cocobolo
User avatar

Joined: Sat Jul 31, 2010 4:03 pm
Posts: 150
First name: Neil
Last Name: Kwak
State: PA
Country: United States
Focus: Build
Status: Amateur
Here are updated pics of the rosette. There's still some tearout but I'm thinking of dabbing a little shellac in the area then some CA and some light sanding to fill it in.

Before sanding:
Image

After, but no shellac or CA yet:
Image

Image


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: Fri Dec 28, 2012 10:55 am 
Offline
Contributing Member
Contributing Member
User avatar

Joined: Fri Dec 21, 2012 11:52 am
Posts: 1388
First name: Zeke
Last Name: McKee
City: Goodlettsville
State: TN
Zip/Postal Code: 37070
Country: United States
Focus: Build
Status: Amateur
I am very impressed with how little tear out you got when removing that rosette! Im sure you can fill it fairly easily. You seem to be learning quite a lot from this experience. Keep up the good work


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: Tue Jan 01, 2013 1:09 pm 
Offline
Cocobolo
Cocobolo
User avatar

Joined: Sat Jul 31, 2010 4:03 pm
Posts: 150
First name: Neil
Last Name: Kwak
State: PA
Country: United States
Focus: Build
Status: Amateur
This weekend a friend and I traveled out to visit Tim McKnight and I showed him my build. I consider Tim and his wife Mary to be good friends and they've given me a lot of support and encouragement - and Tim has let me know when I've made MAJOR mistakes. This time however he proclaimed that the rosette should be salvageable and the neck angle is right where it should be. That has me REALLy stoked.

Image

A friend is also loaning me their Stewmac bridge slotting jig so I'm (anxiously) looking forward to making the bridge. By God, but this thing may turn into a guitar just yet! The end is in sight!


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: Tue Mar 12, 2013 4:36 pm 
Offline
Cocobolo
Cocobolo
User avatar

Joined: Sat Jul 31, 2010 4:03 pm
Posts: 150
First name: Neil
Last Name: Kwak
State: PA
Country: United States
Focus: Build
Status: Amateur
I used System 3 T-99 Epoxy to glue on a serviced EIR fretboard to my 5-piece laminated neck the other day. Last night I took it out of the clamps, trimmed the excess from the soundhole area and bolted it on to the body.

Image

Image

Image

It's getting closer to being done after 2-1/2 years and the list of things to do is dwindling:

- sand away at the thickness/squaredness of the neck
- use a block plane to reduce the thickness from the back of the headstock
- inlay the side markers and fretboard dots.
- fretting
- fashion a bridge out of my remaining EIR blank. For this I need access to a router since my Dremel wasn't up to the challenge.
- drill the tuner post holes into the headstock
- fashion a bolt to affix the fretboard extension to the soundboard
- fix some "oopsies" in the body purfling.
- final sand the entire body
- locate the bridge position and mask it off
- pore fill with either T-88 or pumice/denatured alcohol
- finish (most likely French polish on the body, tung oil on the neck)
- glue down the bridge
- make a nut
- make a saddle
- install tuning machines, a set of chrome Gotoh aftermarket replacement tuners that are currently on my old Takamine
- set it up
- play the sucker, but what song to play first? I'm thinking it's going to be fingerstyle piece whatever it is.


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: Tue Mar 12, 2013 4:38 pm 
Offline
Cocobolo
Cocobolo
User avatar

Joined: Sat Jul 31, 2010 4:03 pm
Posts: 150
First name: Neil
Last Name: Kwak
State: PA
Country: United States
Focus: Build
Status: Amateur
I took a little time last night to mark where to put the fingerboard markers and after I put Joey on the bus I went and drilled the holes and stuck in the 2.3mm (3/32") dots in with some super glue. I used tweezers so luckily I was able to prevent gluing any parts of my body to the guitar. Afterward I went at the neck with a rasp and a sandpaper belt to refine the neck profile. It felt like I was gripping a baseball bat before and though I'm still not done (I need to removed about 1/16" from either side of the fretboard to get it down to 1-3/4" wide at the headstock end) I'm much closer to where I need to be. I also broke out the sanding wheel on my Dremel and cleaned up the edge of the fingerboard at the soundhole.

Image

Image


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: Tue Mar 19, 2013 9:16 pm 
Offline
Cocobolo
Cocobolo
User avatar

Joined: Sat Jul 31, 2010 4:03 pm
Posts: 150
First name: Neil
Last Name: Kwak
State: PA
Country: United States
Focus: Build
Status: Amateur
The tuning machines (replacement Shaller style Gotoh tuners recycled from my defunct Takamine) went on tonight after a few days of marking where I wanted to drill the holes in the headstock. I measured 3 times and even made a template/caul out of scrap maple but I still screwed it up so that I had to mount the tuning machines upside down. I kind of like the look though.

Image

Image

Image

Image

Image


Top
 Profile  
 
Display posts from previous:  Sort by  
Post new topic Reply to topic  [ 70 posts ]  Go to page Previous  1, 2, 3  Next

All times are UTC - 5 hours


Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 1 guest


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