D28 #13 Guitar blog:
January 25th 2014
Since my last post, I glued on the headstock veneer and profiled it. I cut the slots and profiled the fret board and carved the bridge. I used Brazilian rosewood for these three parts.
Nothing too exciting, in any of these processes. For the head stock I rough cut the head stock profile out on the band saw, I sanded the nut edge of the headstock veneer to the correct angle first and carefully placed and glued it to the headstock (You can see in the pictures I had a little help). In the past I would use template following router bit to do the final profile, but seeing as I ruined multiple neck when this process went wrong I just shaped it by hand with a plane and a rasp.
I use LMI's fretting jig and templates. The first thing I do is to get a straight edge on my shooting board to use as a reference through out the process. The jig and the saw make quick work of the fret board. The BRW is a lot easier to cut than the ebony I cut in the past. I use the long stewmac 16" radius bar to radius the slotted fret board. To make life easier I planed a rough radius on the fret board first.
You can see I have a matching body and neck angle.
This is the first steel string bridge that I carved. I copied a martin style bridge as closely as I could. I cut out the rough shape on a Brazilian Rosewood bridge blank, did most of the profiling using my luthiers friend sanding station on a drill press. I used the drum as both a spindle sander for the shape and as a drum sander for the wings. I used my 16" radius bar to put a radius on the bridge itself to match the fret board bridge. I noticed that my store bought bridge had a 12" radius.
I still need to install the nut inserts into the neck tenon and glue on the fret board until I can start my finish prep, but I am getting very close.
January 26th 2014
With the neck bolt inserts in and the fret board glued on I am ready to start finish prep, I still have a bit of fussing to do with the neck
and drill the tuner holes. Other than that I can start prepping the body.
February 3rd 2014
I have been slowly preparing this guitar for finishing. My main concern right now is keeping the maple clean while preparing the rosewood. I have scraped the entire the back and sides and sealed the binding, purfling, back center strip with shellac. I rounded the bindings edges and re applied the shellac. I plan pore fill with z-poxy. To seal the rosewood before I really get going I plan to carefully pad on alcohol thinned Z-poxy. I should be able to create a thin enough coat that I can follow with normal pore filling coats without the need to sand off the seal coat. It might be a nutty idea, but it mimics what I do when I French Polish with shellac and I want to avoid spreading rosewood stained shellac all over.
I also made and installed two version of my hawk in moon logo. The first I made with mother of pearl and ebony. I thought that I had installed OK but, when I had it installed there was a hair line crack in the pearl going straight up from the hawks head. Also I wanted to try a black African rosewood hawk instead of the ebony to look better with the Brazilian Rosewood.
Logo one with ebony would have been Ok except for the crack. It is too small to see in the picture.
Logo two with a Black African Rosewood hawk. Still is very dark under finish but a nice match with the headstock veneer.
February 9rd 2014
I have the guitar in the finish room now waiting for the second coat of epoxy to cure.
To finish off the fret board I inlayed diamond shaped pearl. Like I normally do I just glue down the pearl with a dab of white glue. With in 10 minutes it is secure enough to trace. My normal method is to just trace with a .5 mm pencil. This time I traced with my scalpel and filled in the cut with chalk This worked well enough and I started routing out the diamonds. I was switching back and forth between end mills, fine for the outline and corners and a larger one to route out the bulk. Sure I could be efficient do either all of the bulk routing first followed by the fine routing or visa versa. Instead about half through the process I looked at the nice clean cuts I made with my scalpel, deepened them a bit more and used a chisel to clear the waste. I was much happier with the fit. Also it was nearly as fast.