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  #136  
Old 06-26-2012, 05:56 PM
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Ah, my young friend. Time is not of essence in this case. You are on no time schedule. Building anything with deep precision is very therapeutic in many ways. You have created a great deal of interest in your build threads. I am sure you have no idea what you offer in the way of encouragement for others who hope to accomplish such a build .... some day.

I saw this guitar up close and personal at the McJam a few weeks ago. You are very much on course. It's going to be amazingly beautiful in the end.
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  #137  
Old 06-26-2012, 08:08 PM
Neil K Walk Neil K Walk is offline
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Thanks, Mary. There are lots of "oopsies" but all in all I'm happy with it so far.

Moving right along, after a nice.evening alone with my two little boys I whittled a little more...

It's really starting to look like a guitar:




The area around the nut is still not symmetrical though. If worse comes to worse, I could always start over with my other group of laminates that you can see on the work bench. I've been writing down ideas and reflections in a notebook and like to thinks that things could go more smoothly next time.
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  #138  
Old 07-27-2012, 10:48 PM
Neil K Walk Neil K Walk is offline
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I haven't gotten much done this past month apart from fine-tuning the neck angle and ordering ElR bridge and fretboard blanks. I think I'm getting closer on the neck angle but I still need to order up more purfling and finish up the binding. I also started making a bridge out of the lesser of the two blanks I bought. It has some yellow brown streaks in it which doesn't match the color of any of the other EIR components so I'm not worried about the color.

Sorry no pics.
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  #139  
Old 09-13-2012, 07:16 PM
Neil K Walk Neil K Walk is offline
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Since both kids are now in school and my afternoons are once again my own (mostly) I decided to tackle the back binding. I had to chisel off the first attempt and spent the last couple of days cleaning up the "staircase" so that I have a clean surface with crisp edges to glue to. We'll see about that but in the meantime I glued up the purfling and binding on the other side of the back. I made sure to use enough glue - the first attempt popped off easily because I didn't use a lot - and went nuts with the tape. I wish I'd had another pair of hands but after a half hour I was done. Let's hope it held!

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  #140  
Old 09-14-2012, 05:33 AM
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I have heard quite a few luthiers say this is one of the hardest parts of the build if they don't have a second set of hands there to hand off the tape. Was the shop a little different feeling now that John is working a different job?
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  #141  
Old 09-14-2012, 11:49 AM
Neil K Walk Neil K Walk is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mary View Post
I have heard quite a few luthiers say this is one of the hardest parts of the build if they don't have a second set of hands there to hand off the tape. Was the shop a little different feeling now that John is working a different job?
To be truthful, I haven't put a lot of thought much less effort into the build over the summer. With the kids home I burned up all my patience keeping them in line. It's been a looooong summer and I don't even want to get into it here. You know the deal.

Anyway, the guitar has actually been at my house all summer. I'd go down into the basement and tinker and during the day I'd bring it up and put it on the kitchen table every so often. When I did go over John's I'd mostly just decompress and get my bearings. He'd be tired and I'd be tired so we'd just hang out. Hopefully once he's settled in and I catch up on sleep we'll bot be able to work on our builds.
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  #142  
Old 09-14-2012, 11:51 AM
Neil K Walk Neil K Walk is offline
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Binding scares the beJeezusss out of me. From using a precarious jig to suspend a heavy power tool above a delicate piece of wood to twisting lines of purfling saturated in glue while your fingers get all tangled and sticky while reaching for tape - well, I just don't know how the "pros" do it. Mary, you said that Tim magically grows another pair of hands but I'm not so lucky. Still, I couldn't wait to peel off the tape and see if the glue held - and I used a LOT of glue. Cumpiano says to fan out the multiple lines of purfling and get glue between EVERYTHING, which I did. Fortunately, no gobs of Titebond could be seen congealing from between the kerfling inside the body - and I checked, believe me. That's the one and only chink in the armor of my Larrivee OM-03R and I'm told that that's important.

Anyway, here's how it turned out with some detailed shots to show every little victory and even a couple of mistakes.



If you noticed from yesterday, I used a clamp to hold everything tight because that's one spot where just tape is not enough. But look Ma, no gaps!





The next step where I have to match up the ends of the other side will be tricky so I paid a little extra attention to the ends with a chisel. Everything seemed to be tight there as well, though if you look close you can see that some bands of purfling were leaning.





Now for another mistake, which unfortunately I can only fix by sanding a LOT of mass away from the sides as a whole. Note that the binding on the upper bout doesn't project beyond the sides?



That means that I will have to sand or scrape all that away so that I have a truly flat side and a clean BWB side purf line. I already know what I did wrong but I want to spell it out for those of you who might be interested in undertaking a project like this at some point.

Basically, all the sanding and scraping should have been done BEFORE I routed out the binding channels. Since the guide on the router didn't have a truly perpendicular line to follow it tiled the bit a little and took away more from the sides and the kerfing than I allotted for. I tried to go back with a sanding block and correct my mistake but at that point it's really too late and you have to just clean it up, chalk it up to inexperience and remember what to do right the next time.

Now it's time for the final binding/purfling strip and I have a little bit of setup to do. I'm making it even trickier by doing something different. These first 3 passes were done with binding that I'd bent previously. The first two times I glued the side purfling on to the bent strip but this last time I decided to upgrade from Titebond I to Titebond III (per Tim McKnight's tutelage) and glue the purfling to the unbent rosewood binding strip. My friend John Kitchen told me NOT to do this, saying that the binding/purfling would delaminate in the Fox bender but I'm not even going that route. I don't know if the purfling reinforces the wood binding, but it's pretty flexible and I've been able to do some dry fittings where I've bent the entire length of the strip into the channel. Admittedly, gluing should be more complicated because I have to deal with springback but we'll see how it goes. I have another strip of rosewood binding held in reserve just in case...
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  #143  
Old 09-16-2012, 05:05 PM
Neil K Walk Neil K Walk is offline
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Last night I put a little time in on scraping the sides and back purfling. It's looking really good IMHO:



Now I'm concentrating on using a scraper and/or a sanding block to level the sides so that all the side purfling is just as crisp along the entire finished side. I also have some cupping to take care of too:



When I got dusty and tired - I have yet to learn how to properly sharpen my scraper - I moved on to fixing some missing top purfling that had been torn out by a dull mini plane blade. It had been nagging at me:



I admit I've been putting it off but tonight I'm wiping it all down with naptha and tackling the remaining section of binding.
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  #144  
Old 09-17-2012, 08:55 AM
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it's getting better. keep at it kwak!
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  #145  
Old 09-19-2012, 04:01 AM
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Great job thus far and well done! Someday, when I have mustered enough courage and amassed enough knowledge, I hope to build my own acoustic guitar too.
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  #146  
Old 09-29-2012, 08:27 AM
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Lookin' good man! Save your Mahogany dust for the "fine tune". Make a slurry with it and titebond, shove it in the little gaps. Sanded you will never see it. Get the high glue spots in the gap down a touch before slurry.
Building right now is still too daunting for me. Life is leveling out and I am getting a rhythm. Still freaky long hours. Governor says hi. Got a trip to Kentucky in my stars this coming week.
The studio is back in and carpeted.( Eats half the space I was building in) So, the shop is tight but doable. 2 more dates in as the Photography studio to wrap up clients then its back to being my wood shop!
Next time you are over to work on yours maybe I will bring one of my tragic old solid wood Harmonys back to life. Ah' heck, lets just play guitar!
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  #147  
Old 09-29-2012, 06:45 PM
Neil K Walk Neil K Walk is offline
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*snip* duplicate post that somehow could not be deleted.
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Last edited by Neil K Walk; 09-29-2012 at 07:16 PM.
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  #148  
Old 09-29-2012, 07:15 PM
Neil K Walk Neil K Walk is offline
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Thanks, John. Tell the governor to spring me out sometime or my next vacation will be in a pine box.

This week I've had John's fret-slotting rig and I've been stumbling through it. Depsite my best efforts, my first attempt at slotting a fretboard blank came up short. Luckily I was able to plane out most of the marks and start over, If not, I still have another blank in reserve.

Since we don't have a 25.4" scale template I had to rely on numbers but my caliper only goes up to the 4th fret. I figured crunching the numbers for each fret would help...



If not then I'd compare the fret spacing to that on my Larrivee:



I'd dial in the measurement of each gap into my digital calipers and lock it in. Then I'd take the calipers and slide the blank so that one tong of the caliper was on the right side of the slot for the saw and that other was at the right side of the previous slot.



This turned out to be wrong and gradually (and if I'm not mistaken) the spacing got progressively tighter by .023" for each fret. Fortunately, I cut the slots shallow and hadn't yet planed the thickness of the blank down to 1/4" so most of the mistake was able to be erased. So the next night I decided to start over in a way and get that blank down and erase my mistake.

I started with the scraper. I'd always had trouble sharpening in a nice burl but I eventually got it as well as the right angle and way to hold it - you need to bend it slightly and I found that a 45 degree angle worked well for me. I got some nice chocolatey ribbons for my efforts, which is a heck of a lot cleaner than sanding with 150 grit.



Even though I made some progress the going was still very slow...



...so I put the scraper aside and decided to sharpen my 7" jack plane. As with the scraper I finally got a nice edge on the blade and got my technique down.



Mass came off much quicker and more cleanly this way:



Not all of my mistakes were able to be erased though. I'm hoping that these first few frets are close enough though. If not, then I truly start over from scratch with the other - and more visually appealing - rosewood fingerboard blank.



So I asked over at the kit guitars forum what I was doing wrong and will work at trying to get a better way to measure the distance of each fret from the nut, not from each other. Tonight I'm working on that and will measure several times BEFORE I cut.
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  #149  
Old 09-29-2012, 07:34 PM
BradHall BradHall is offline
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Neil,
Are you going to radius the fretboard?
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  #150  
Old 09-29-2012, 08:14 PM
Neil K Walk Neil K Walk is offline
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Yes. I also borrowed a 16" radius caul.
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