The Acoustic Guitar Forum

The Acoustic Guitar Forum (https://www.acousticguitarforum.com/forums/index.php)
-   Custom Shop (https://www.acousticguitarforum.com/forums/forumdisplay.php?f=38)
-   -   A Contemporary Guitar made with Contemporary Hand Tools (https://www.acousticguitarforum.com/forums/showthread.php?t=604898)

Mark Hatcher 02-07-2021 10:53 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by cigarfan (Post 6627750)
Wow! A serious piece of kit, as they say down under!

Outstanding! :)

Serious piece of kit, That's a good way to describe it!

Quote:

Originally Posted by srick (Post 6627755)
Mark - the Jointmaker pro looks like an amazing device! But this is a terrible thread, as TAS may be replacing my GAS. I love the concept of a hand powered table saw. Thanks for introducing me to this.

Rick

It is an amazing device and is the epitome of how hand tools didn't stop evolving after the use of electricity came to woodshops.

Quote:

Originally Posted by srick (Post 6627761)
I did a search for Jointmaker Pro on eBay and the only results were for cigarette rolling machines!:roll:

HAHAHA I guess that might be the 5th advantage of a hand powered table saw. Try rolling a cigarette with a power table saw! :)

Quote:

Originally Posted by hopdemon (Post 6627915)
I am just blown away by the beauty of your work,I only wish I had the skill so I could convince myself that I play good enough to do justice to one of those beauties. I will enjoy following this build.

Oh I bet you play just fine :). Thanks for your kind words.

Mark

Mark Hatcher 02-09-2021 05:58 PM

Closing the Body
 
Here is the top going on:

https://live.staticflickr.com/65535/...742453d1_c.jpg

And the back:

https://live.staticflickr.com/65535/...2a8b0c68_c.jpg

Look how that Bloodwood just glows in the spotlight:

https://live.staticflickr.com/65535/...baf48f27_b.jpg

Mark Hatcher 02-12-2021 12:40 PM

Cleaning up the Body
 
I have the guitar body closed and have the Black Ebony binding, end graft, etc. in. Now it is time to clean all that up and since this is a tool orientated build thread here are the tools I use to get the job done:

https://live.staticflickr.com/65535/...225c7b10_c.jpg

I'll start at the top and go on around. First we have my newest acquisition an HNT Gordon curve bottomed spoke shave:

https://live.staticflickr.com/65535/...aa1c8bb9_c.jpg

The curved bottom lets me get into curved areas like the waist and inside cutaways. It helps with the heel on necks as well. The blade can be reversed which switches it from a plane to a scraper. It has a thick blade and a nice weight to reduce chatter. It's a great tool that goes where others can't.

Then comes this Lie-Nielsen hobby palm plane:

https://live.staticflickr.com/65535/...92a202c1_c.jpg

I use this one mostly to clean up the top and back binding and purfling. It is small enough to manage around curves. This plane, like many of the quality contemporary wood planes has a thick blade which allows for nice smooth controllable cuts.

Next up is this thick scraper designed by Alan Carruth:

https://live.staticflickr.com/65535/...05e0e77c_c.jpg

This is a very rigid scraper plane with a very thick blade. Are you starting to see a pattern here? Contemporary woodworking tools and some scrapers have gone the route of putting some weight behind the blades. Why? Because it works better. It turns what is normally a frustrating, tedious clean up job into well, a less frustrating tedious job.

Finally we have the spring steel Crucible scraper plane:

https://live.staticflickr.com/65535/...71294b6b_c.jpg

This is a relatively new design, although it does not have a thick blade the scrapers edge is curved (unlike a typical card scraper) This allows you to use it without having to bend the curve into it. It works both as a push or pull scraper. This is a nice fast scraper for cleaning up larger areas with out wearing your thumbs out.

So besides the ease of use part what makes these better? Well

One is they don't leave little pig tail marks in the wood like an orbital sander does.

The amount of wood you are removing is a lot more controllable than with a power sander.

The wood surface is easier to keep flat like when you are flattening the harder binding on the same plane as the softwood top. Hand sanding and power sanders tend to leave little gullies in the softer wood.

You are not smashing saw dust into the wood pores so the finished wood is cleaner and the figure is more defined.

Carpinteria 02-12-2021 06:22 PM

This great! Thanks for all the specific information on the tools and their manufacturers. Since I only build a couple guitars a year, I can take my time and enjoy the process, and having the “right” tool just magnifies the enjoyment.

Mark Hatcher 02-13-2021 10:21 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Carpinteria (Post 6633812)
This great! Thanks for all the specific information on the tools and their manufacturers. Since I only build a couple guitars a year, I can take my time and enjoy the process, and having the “right” tool just magnifies the enjoyment.

You're welcome Carpinteria. Nobody enjoys fighting with the "wrong" tool :) Part of my point on this thread is there are a lot more "right" hand tools available these days and they not only enhance the pleasure of building but they can also enhance the quality of the instrument being built!

mhw48 02-13-2021 12:18 PM

1 Attachment(s)
Quote:

Originally Posted by Carpinteria (Post 6633812)
This great! Thanks for all the specific information on the tools and their manufacturers. Since I only build a couple guitars a year, I can take my time and enjoy the process, and having the “right” tool just magnifies the enjoyment.

For those of us of a certain age:

Nemoman 02-13-2021 12:32 PM

That Bloodwood looks amazing, Mark!

And although I'm not much of a fine woodworker (being a carpenter for quite a stint), I really appreciate your dedication to hand tools and the detailed explanations you've shared thus far. I never have considered the difference between sanding and scraping and how it affects the wood fibers. But your explanations make perfect sense and I can see how it would affect the surface and the finish look of the wood.

Thanks for the education and taking us on this journey!

Mark Hatcher 02-14-2021 10:00 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by mhw48 (Post 6634443)
For those of us of a certain age:

That's great :)

Quote:

Originally Posted by Nemoman (Post 6634457)
That Bloodwood looks amazing, Mark!

And although I'm not much of a fine woodworker (being a carpenter for quite a stint), I really appreciate your dedication to hand tools and the detailed explanations you've shared thus far. I never have considered the difference between sanding and scraping and how it affects the wood fibers. But your explanations make perfect sense and I can see how it would affect the surface and the finish look of the wood.

Thanks for the education and taking us on this journey!

Thanks for commenting Nemoman. I am always looking for ways to make a better guitar. This reappraisal of the tools I use and how I could do better with contemporary hand tools has proven very fruitful on several levels.

Guitars44me 02-14-2021 10:40 AM

Mr. natural
 
Mr. natural knows best! I've been thinking about that reference all the way through this thread, so thanks for posting the image!

Carry on Mark

Salud

Paul

Mark Hatcher 02-23-2021 07:27 AM

Arm Bevel
 
Here is a quick progress picture. The arm bevel is starting to come together:

https://live.staticflickr.com/65535/...98beee7d_c.jpg

Thanks for viewing!
Mark

BlackKeys36 02-23-2021 10:12 AM

This is stunning work and I'm envious of all of your tools, Mark. Excuse my ignorance, but how did you rout for binding?

Mark Hatcher 02-23-2021 11:10 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by BlackKeys36 (Post 6644642)
This is stunning work and I'm envious of all of your tools, Mark. Excuse my ignorance, but how did you rout for binding?

Thanks BlackKeys36, I currently use a router on a jig I made. I'd like to say I cut the binding by hand but, I don't. Not yet. I have a collection of various gramils but I don't know if it is the tools or the guy trying to use them. Either I have not yet found the right one or the way to confidently use them.

Here is a thread on the Build and Repair forum where I posted the router jig I made and I have updated it with improvements I made over the years:

https://www.acousticguitarforum.com/...hlight=Hatcher

Mark

SJ VanSandt 03-02-2021 06:35 AM

My favorite thread
 
This is currently my favorite thread in Custom Shop! My hope is that you will update it occasionally even after you finish this gorgeous bloodwood guitar, as you acquire new hand tools and techniques.

I'm curious: how many of these techniques were used on my Woodsman? Did its old-time aesthetic inspire the use of more hand tools, or was it the other way around? My Hatcher guitar, by the way, seems to be going through a quite remarkable transfiguration. When I finally got the saddle replaced I had it set up with some extra light strings, thinking I needed that for bending the strings while playing blues, but after those changes the tone because far too beautiful to waste on the blues! I'm going to cultivate the classical end of my technique to play on the Woodsman - which is a good thing. I like John Hurt fine, but in the end I'd rather listen to Segovia.

Cheers,

Stan

ruby50 03-02-2021 07:22 AM

Here is a tool you need- I found one in a barn and could not get it working, so I passed it on to a very eager group of restorers

https://www.museumsmanitoba.com/150/...oid=1997105-01

Ed M

charles Tauber 03-02-2021 11:35 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Mark Hatcher (Post 6627364)
One hand powered tool that I have found immensely helpful for this type of precision cut is the Bridge City Jointmaker Pro.

It's interesting to see how you implement hand tools. Thanks for sharing that.

While I don't want to derail your thread, I did want to say that I owned a Jointmaker Pro for about a decade. I eventually sold it at considerably less than I paid for it and was happy to see it go. As a woodworker, guitar maker and design engineer, I found that while the "upside down saw" is a clever concept, it was incredibly badly implemented on a variety of fronts.

I have owned a number of Bridge City Tool Company tools, many of which I've sold. My experience is that their designers really didn't understand how to make functional mechanisms - their tools that have no moving parts are very nice.

For those interested in the Jointmaker Pro, Bridge City Tool Company was purchased a few years ago by the Chinese company Harvey. Since then the same Bridge City tools, including the Jointmaker Pro, are no longer made in the U.S., instead now made in China. The manufacturing quality appears to be no worse for having done so, but the retail prices of their tools have dropped by half or more. Lee Valley is again selling their tools, including the Jointmaker Pro.

What is so surprising to me is that despite there being a lot of initial publicity about the Jointmaker Pro, those that have them virtually never talk about them. There are only a few - literally three or so - videos on the internet by owners. There is no mention of them on Internet forums. Hence, doing an internet search yields little result.

One of the few ventures was by one of the well-known American woodworking schools who purchased a number of Jointmaker Pros. They then advertised a two-week (paid) seminar in how to use them and that the outcome of that seminar would be a book on all of the wonderful things that could be done with the Jointmaker Pro. The book was never published and nothing was ever heard from again regarding the Jointmaker at that school.

Its an odd mystery that those who spent thousands of dollars on one never talk about them. This is the first time I've seen any owner actually talk about having one, save the few YouTube videos of people doing introductory stuff with it that a handsaw would do faster and easier and with as much accuracy. Even in the days before the company was purchased, and they had their own discussion forum, almost all of the discussion regarding the Jointmaker Pro was from people with setup and performance issues, not people showing all of the things they had done with it.

Mark Hatcher 03-02-2021 01:09 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by SJ VanSandt (Post 6651122)
This is currently my favorite thread in Custom Shop! My hope is that you will update it occasionally even after you finish this gorgeous bloodwood guitar, as you acquire new hand tools and techniques.

I'm curious: how many of these techniques were used on my Woodsman? Did its old-time aesthetic inspire the use of more hand tools, or was it the other way around? My Hatcher guitar, by the way, seems to be going through a quite remarkable transfiguration. When I finally got the saddle replaced I had it set up with some extra light strings, thinking I needed that for bending the strings while playing blues, but after those changes the tone because far too beautiful to waste on the blues! I'm going to cultivate the classical end of my technique to play on the Woodsman - which is a good thing. I like John Hurt fine, but in the end I'd rather listen to Segovia.

Cheers,

Stan

Thanks Stan,

I'm glad you are enjoying this thread! I am truly enjoying my adventures in hand tools and sussing out the advantages of using them. I would say the Woodsman and the thinking behind it has helped me in my commitment to go further along this path.

I was asked to write an article for the Guild of New Hampshire's annual Journal magazine. The article goes into some depth about the Woodsman and my trying to find some authenticity in making a vintage influenced model. I don't think they do an electronic version but I'll likely scan it and post it up when the publication comes out.

I am also very happy to find you are finding some inspiration with the Woodsman you commissioned with me!

Quote:

Originally Posted by ruby50 (Post 6651163)
Here is a tool you need- I found one in a barn and could not get it working, so I passed it on to a very eager group of restorers

https://www.museumsmanitoba.com/150/...oid=1997105-01

Ed M

That's quite a tool there! I'm already afraid of table saws and can't imagine trying to peddle power and work a table saw like that. I'll happily keep my Jointmaker Pro!

Thanks for commenting!
Mark

Naboz 03-02-2021 07:58 PM

Mark,
Once again I visit one of your posts, and have to say; you are a sculptor who makes guitars!
And your aesthetic for design is very refined, from the build particulars to the organic details of your inlays.
Maybe one day I will get to play one of your lovelies (we don't make it out to that Eastern edge much).
I also applaud you for your informative, instructional build posts--being an Art Instructor for 30+ years.
I'm watching this one through!

Mark Hatcher 03-05-2021 05:10 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Naboz (Post 6651823)
Mark,
Once again I visit one of your posts, and have to say; you are a sculptor who makes guitars!
And your aesthetic for design is very refined, from the build particulars to the organic details of your inlays.
Maybe one day I will get to play one of your lovelies (we don't make it out to that Eastern edge much).
I also applaud you for your informative, instructional build posts--being an Art Instructor for 30+ years.
I'm watching this one through!

Thank you Naboz, I am very passionate about guitar building on many levels.
I take a very qualitative approach to lutherie which requires a lot of human involvement. My relationships and interactions with my customers, the guitar community, my fellow builders, my students and suppliers are all crucial elements for me to do what I do.
Thanks you for your kind words!
Mark

Mark Hatcher 03-08-2021 11:03 AM

Onto the Neck
 
I have the Mahogany neck black cut out. Cleaning up the blank starts with being sure the top where the fretboard lays is perfectly flat. Here I am checking flatness with a straight edge against the sun:

https://live.staticflickr.com/65535/...92724d12_b.jpg

I've been upgrading layout tools and I thought this is a good time to review one. The straight edge is a SERX-24 from the Woodpecker tools:

https://live.staticflickr.com/65535/...2f72eb40_c.jpg

This is a very accurate straight edge. You'll notice it has a wide bottom so it easily stands on edge on its own. The center of the edge is cut away so light won't be blocked by the thickness.
Unlike most other straight edges one side is indexed for measuring.

More to come!
Mark

Bone0305 03-08-2021 02:55 PM

Loving everything about this thread! Very inspiring!

Mark Hatcher 03-09-2021 02:37 PM

More Layout tools
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Bone0305 (Post 6656986)
Loving everything about this thread! Very inspiring!

Thanks Bone0305. I'm glad you find it inspiring!

One issue I have with the Woodpecker straight edge is that because it is made of aluminum it won't work as a guide to drag a razor down when slicing veneer for purfling etc. The straightedge's metal is too soft and will be damaged. I still have my steel one but it is also only two feet long and top purfling is usually cut in 32" lengths. Also dragging a razor on a straightedge doesn't always work as well as planned.

So I just ordered this Gramercy veneer saw:

https://live.staticflickr.com/65535/...999dc90f_o.jpg

If you look closely at the saw teeth you see they are angled in two different directions from one side to the other. The idea is if you are cutting thin veneer you can slice it off with the less aggressive side. If you are cutting thick veneer you can go to the more aggressive side.

Ideally I'll be able to cut thick veneers that I wouldn't even attempt with a razor and straightedge. I'll need to assign a straight board as a guide but this opens some new opportunities I can use with purfling lines.

I should have it on Friday and I'll have the weekend to play with it!

Mark Hatcher 03-11-2021 06:53 AM

So What does a Twenty Dollar Pair of Tweezers Get You?
 
As woodworkers we all have lots of crappy tweezers somewhere around in the shop. Splinters are inevitable especially with some woods like Wenge and this Bloodwood (aptly named) I am currently working with. A splinter starts the search for those crappy tweezers and a pin. The tweezers usually come from some pharmacy and cost a couple bucks. The jaws don't really line up and the tweezers roll around in your hand (especially your left hand) while you're trying to use them. The pin is typically caked up with old cured CA glue that you have to scrape off to get back down to the point.
Then the excavation begins to get the stupid splinter out and after too much time you are finally back to work. Within a couple minutes you see a wet streak of blood soaking into the spruce top that used to be ready for finish. Seems the hole you dug to get that splinter out did more damage than the splinter did. Now you have to put a piece of tape or a spot of CA on it so you can get back to work.

I have a new eye in my studio for identifying old crappy tools so I can replace them with better more useful tools. I'll make better guitars that way. So what does a better pair of tweezers look like?:

https://live.staticflickr.com/65535/...da940e10_c.jpg

For twenty bucks you can get tweezers like these, except they are now called splinter forceps. The handle is wide and flat so they don't roll in your hand and the jaws don't wonder side to side. They come with a probe that stays protected inside its steel handle.

https://live.staticflickr.com/65535/...43d3167c_c.jpg

The teeth line up perfectly and there is a guide pin which makes sure the jaws stay perfectly aligned.

https://live.staticflickr.com/65535/...6460a3da_c.jpg

The three sided sharp pointed probe is very rigid and easy to control holding the textured handle.

Get the right tool for the job!

Guitars44me 03-11-2021 10:26 AM

Splinter forceps!
 
Mark, you are the tool Guru. Mr. Natural must be SO HAPPY, that you have taken up the gospel:

Always use the right tool for the job.

Thanks for the inspiration!

Paul

CoolerKing 03-14-2021 07:39 AM

I inherited a bunch of great German hand tools from my dad, who is a retired oral surgeon and has been woodworking for 60 years or so. Good tweezers, as you said, are hard to find! :)

tadol 03-14-2021 10:18 AM

Uncle Bill’s Sliver Grippers - keep one in every first aid kit -

Mark Hatcher 03-14-2021 01:13 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Guitars44me (Post 6659370)
Mark, you are the tool Guru. Mr. Natural must be SO HAPPY, that you have taken up the gospel:

Always use the right tool for the job.

Thanks for the inspiration!

Paul

Thanks Paul,

Quote:

Originally Posted by tadol (Post 6662175)
Uncle Bill’s Sliver Grippers - keep one in every first aid kit -

Those look pretty handy, Thanks!

Mark Hatcher 03-22-2021 09:06 AM

Rules
 
In reassessing my hand tools I am trying not to miss any categories. Layout tools are a big one. Since I do so much one off work I don't use many jigs and templates. I am often laying out my designs right on the piece of wood or shell that I am going to cut. Layout tools specifically for wood are most often the best. I bought a number of these newer woodworking rules which are working out well. Here is why:

https://live.staticflickr.com/65535/...34850e72_c.jpg

First off they are red so they are easy to find, easy to read. The scale runs to twelve inches on one side and is a center scale on the other side.

https://live.staticflickr.com/65535/...8613ab80_c.jpg

The indexed edge has a 30% bevel which reduces parallax and overhead light reflections making it easier to read

https://live.staticflickr.com/65535/...350d5d59_c.jpg

The bottom has a slight recess so the rule grips flat surfaces better

https://live.staticflickr.com/65535/...a149e5a2_c.jpg

There are finger indents on top so it's easier to push it around

https://live.staticflickr.com/65535/...bbbda21b_c.jpg

There are accessory items available like this attachable end hook and adjustable measure stop. These accessories work with the 24" rule and the T-square as well

A good cut starts with an accurate layout. These make life a little easier!

Mark Hatcher 04-05-2021 04:51 AM

Hand Re-saw kit hardware
 
I just got this hardware kit for making a Roubo frame saw. It is for doing my re-saw work by hand. I'm looking forward to making the saw frame from a nice hardwood of my own selection.

The blade is four inches wide and four feet long:

https://live.staticflickr.com/65535/...b71bc97d_c.jpg

I expect that by the time I get good at hand re-sawing my tonewoods I'll pick-up a couple knots in my kayak! :)

j. Kinnaird 04-05-2021 06:12 AM

Now you need to dig a resaw pit and get a friend who also kayaks

Mark Hatcher 04-05-2021 07:44 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by j. Kinnaird (Post 6682611)
Now you need to dig a resaw pit and get a friend who also kayaks

That’s a good idea :)

I was also thinking I could make a box with holes on the ends and take the box, the saw, and my wife and drive around to different towns and do magic shows!


All times are GMT -6. The time now is 09:20 AM.

Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.11
Copyright ©2000 - 2022, vBulletin Solutions Inc.
Copyright ©2000 - 2022, The Acoustic Guitar Forum

vB Ad Management by =RedTyger=