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  #31  
Old 07-17-2018, 09:08 PM
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Hey Burton, love your work and seeing all that goes into your craft. And of course, I enjoy playing them even more! I should have your Braz/Adi on Thursday!
The guitar that started it all IMO
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  #32  
Old 07-17-2018, 09:24 PM
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Beautiful guitar Burton. I just recently finished an Engelmann/Cuban Mahogany guitar and really love the sound. I think if I were building a guitar just for myself I would go with a similar wood combination.

One question, how are those "old iron" bandsaws. I have a Minimax/SCM MM20 and it's a great saw but I'm wondering if those older bandsaws are better. I'm guessing there is less vibration which leads to a smoother cutting experience ??? I recently rebuilt a Kindt-Collins Spindle sander (weighs about 800lbs) and it is leagues above the new stuff coming out of Asia. I'd like to get and old Northfield jointer and rebuild it at some point but I am curious about how the European bandsaws compare to the old stuff.

Have fun and don't chop off any digits
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Last edited by Simon Fay; 07-17-2018 at 10:31 PM.
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  #33  
Old 07-17-2018, 10:56 PM
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Originally Posted by Simon Fay View Post
Beautiful guitar Burton. I just recently finished an Engelmann/Cuban Mahogany guitar and really love the sound. I think if I were building a guitar just for myself I would go with a similar wood combination.
...[snip]...
I agree, Cuban Mahogany is the good stuff. Mine is paired with Lutz spruce. The Cuban Mahogany guitars that you Simon, and Burton, have shown look fantastic.
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  #34  
Old 07-18-2018, 06:17 AM
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Originally Posted by Simon Fay View Post
Beautiful guitar Burton. I just recently finished an Engelmann/Cuban Mahogany guitar and really love the sound. I think if I were building a guitar just for myself I would go with a similar wood combination.

One question, how are those "old iron" bandsaws. I have a Minimax/SCM MM20 and it's a great saw but I'm wondering if those older bandsaws are better. I'm guessing there is less vibration which leads to a smoother cutting experience ??? I recently rebuilt a Kindt-Collins Spindle sander (weighs about 800lbs) and it is leagues above the new stuff coming out of Asia. I'd like to get and old Northfield jointer and rebuild it at some point but I am curious about how the European bandsaws compare to the old stuff.

Have fun and don't chop off any digits
Simon,

First off, congrats on the Kindt-Collins. I have the same machine, and it's really one of the most wonderfully useful guitar building devices I've ever encountered. I looked for months to find the right one, and it's been doing yeoman service in my shop since day 1.

I ran a 30" Crescent bandsaw for years at my old job, in contrast to my current Laguna 16". The Crescent was fun and cool but had its issues. The wheel axles ran in Babbitt metal bearings which did make them fairly "smooth" feeling, but had to be regularly oiled. The guides (on that machine, at least) were fussy to dial in, and as a result of the long term side load on the upper wheel during use, the bearing wear was uneven, leading the wheels to be out of plane with each other. This led to tracking issues especially with wider blades. We never successfully set up that saw as a good resaw machine - the combination of above factors just didn't let it track accurately enough. I can resaw much more accurately on my little Laguna. For freehand cutting with a narrower blade, though, it really was great on the Crescent - so much room around the blade in every direction. We could crosscut 8/4" poplar to 20" lengths for solidbodies on that saw, with the cutoff inside the throat.

Also, the blade cost scales up with the saw. The Crescent took a 16' blade. In that shop, at least, that meant we were more likely to let a blade go a bit too long on the saw before replacement.

To be honest, if I had my choice of a new saw, I'd probably pick your MM20 as a first choice, given my experience with the saws described above. I'm not sure the 'fun factor' will be appreciably higher with an old one.

(Burton - sorry to hijack your thread for a moment there. The work looks incredible! Hoping to see you in Woodstock this Fall, if not before...)
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  #35  
Old 07-18-2018, 09:33 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by HomeBySix View Post
Hey Burton, love your work and seeing all that goes into your craft. And of course, I enjoy playing them even more! I should have your Braz/Adi on Thursday!
Hey Ed! Can't wait to hear your thoughts. I think you are going to be happy
And glad to see you here! I didn't know your screen name
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  #36  
Old 07-18-2018, 10:05 AM
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Simon,

I certainly agree on the mahogany. I love it all, although the Cuban is certainly special. I saw that you mentioned yours came from Don and he supplied the set in this last guitar I showed. They likely came from the same board! I have one of those sets left and wish I had 50.

Regarding bandsaws- The saw this one is replacing is a MiniMax 20" saw. It was fine but I wasn't super impressed. It did what we asked but not without issues. I don't think anything can exist in a space like a school shop without SOME issues, so that isn't surprising but I just didn't like it.

For reference, the Oliver is a direct drive saw and the motor alone likely weighs as much as the entire MiniMax saw. Its pretty massive I've only had the Oliver running for a few days but the few cuts I have made are very different than a similar cut on the MM20 would have been. We'll see how it holds up over time. Also, for reference on the blade length- The 30" Oliver blade is only 20" longer than the MiniMax. That's with a loss of only 2" on the resaw height (14 vs 16). Lots of wasted space on the MiniMax.

I generally have a preference for cast iron and weight in machine tools, but good engineering is important too, of course. Martin's comments are spot on- No matter how cool the tool is if it isn't maintained well or in good condition it won't perform. We were lucky to have the money to have the Oliver rebuilt to like new condition by the people who specialize in those tools. The new manual even came with a copy of the original receipt from when it was brand new. We could have bought a few brand new MM20's for the cost of all that.

At my home shop I have been working on a Crescent 20" saw for YEARS fixing almost all the things Martin alludes to were suboptimal on their Crescent saw- New bearings, new tires, balancing and crowning the tires, scraping the bearing spindle mounts to have the wheels coplanar, making missing parts and doors etc.... A labor of love more than anything. But work I very much enjoy.

I'm constantly amazed at the level of available industrial level tooling. You go on Craigslist/Ebay and find serious stuff for insanely cheap prices. Take that Kindt-Collins sander. I'm familiar with it, a few people around here have them (most of them talked into buying it by Ken Parker who showed me all the bells and whistles of his) and they are pretty much little spaceships . So far beyond what most people think of as a "spindle sander". With our (guitar makers) yearly outputs and income there is simply no way we should be able to have tools like that in our shops, yet we do. Its a strange time.

I know you guys know all that, but still.

For old bandsaws the few people (furniture guys mostly) who really know their stuff on vintage machines seem to agree that the Tannewitz saws are the best. I'm not complaining (at all) about the Oliver, but that's what they say.

Martin, I hope to see you too! Certainly at Woodstock, I'll be there hanging out for sure. And you'll get a kick out of this- Another Ken inspired vintage tool doing constant and perfect work in the school shop (not one at home.... yet.)

2018-07-18 11.00.41 by Burton LeGeyt, on Flickr
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  #37  
Old 07-18-2018, 11:07 AM
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The Hammond saw! A good friend of mine just bought one for $300 in excellent condition. I was super impressed with how well it was made. The sliding table was super tight and smooth.

And.....he has a local friend who is a pipe organ maker who said he could have his hammond saw for $50, and it would get passed on to me. I don't have a lot of extra room, which is a bummer because I would love to take it. Would I be crazy to not make room for it? I thought about exchanging it for my cheapo table saw. But I'm not sure how it would do with ripping. I'm guessing it's primary use was intended to be cross cutting. But maybe I would find it more useful than I can currently imagine?
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  #38  
Old 07-18-2018, 11:54 AM
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Ryan,

I don't imagine it could replace a standard table saw. Ripping would be tricky, and pretty limited. The blade doesn't go so high for through cuts either. And the face mount ones can be a little expensive.

It really just does one thing but does it perfectly, over and over again.

If I had room, though, its the first thing I would add. I think its a perfect platform to make lots of little jigs and attachments for. And if you have the capability to modify the spindle to accept different blades even better-

I'll be super jealous if you get it!
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  #39  
Old 07-18-2018, 01:45 PM
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Martin and Burton - thanks for the info. I do love the old American stuff. I've set up my MM20 very well and it does what I need it to but I'd love to replace all my tools with rebuilt vintage machines.

I'll have to post photos of the rebuilt Kindt-Collins. I basically completely rebuilt the machine including have the spindle taper reground (which I outsourced). It's an amazing machine.
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  #40  
Old 07-18-2018, 02:19 PM
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Originally Posted by Burton LeGeyt View Post
And last but not least- I had the chance to attend a class in the spring on the use of a rose engine. Specifically, in the art of guilloche. If you are not familiar with this then by all means there is a youtube rabbit hole waiting for you

The rose engine is a hand powered machine that can somewhat be though of as the child of a lathe and a spirograph- Most of the best examples were built at the turn of last century and are extremely old by now. I was able to travel to the Pacific NW and use a few pristine examples of the older machines as well as an amazing newer one made by Lindow machine works in PA.

I've been curious about these tools for years and they are difficult to get technical information on. Even more difficult to see in person. The decorative patterns they can produce are most often associated with fine watches and that is still what most people use them for. I, of course, want to use them on my guitars- The backplates I have been making are a perfect surface to utilize this wonderful process and I am working hard now on designing and making a machine I can use to incorporate this into my work. I think it will be wonderful for backplates but also tuning machines. It won't be happening soon, but I am hoping I can begin to explore using this for guitars sometime in 2019.

Here is a picture of one of the machines as well as a small dial I did at the class. Again, all hand power. This one is engraved into nickel silver.
Marvellous work on the guitar, as usual. I think you'll enjoy watching Roger W. Smith doing some guilloche work on watch cases. The relevant videos are on "straight line engine turning" and "rose engine turning", although I'm sure a craftsman like yourself will enjoy all of them. He was an apprentice of the late and great George Daniels, who is worth researching, the greatest watchmaker of his day, as is Smith now. Smith inherited a lot of Daniel's tooling when he passed away and now makes watches on the Isle of Man, which is where he still uses the old tooling. Look up Daniel's Space Traveller watch, it's a marvel. For a flavour of Daniels I'll put a link to a short film. Enjoy!

https://www.youtube.com/user/rwsmithwatches/videos

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_Nsh8llV5dE&t=7s
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  #41  
Old 07-19-2018, 09:28 AM
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Magirus,

I'm familiar with Daniels and Roger Smith, although I hadn't seen the "A Man of Time" documentary piece you shared- I just watched a bit of it and will certainly finish it later. We had to watch many of the Roger Smith guilloche videos as preparation for the class I took. I had seen them before but enjoyed watching them again. I couldn't be more jealous of his shop and tools.

Thanks for sending those links!

Simon, I feel the same way about vintage tools. I have quite a few but they are all the smallest versions of things as my space is very small, and down a flight of stairs. My dream shop would likely resemble Ray Kraut's (with maybe more metalworking tools). He seems to have a big head start on us!
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  #42  
Old 07-19-2018, 07:55 PM
RGPGuitars RGPGuitars is offline
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Very tasty work. Really like the neck block and tail block design. Also how the linings blend in with them. Not to mention the rosettes. Lol . Russ Parker
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  #43  
Old 09-08-2018, 04:20 PM
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Thanks Russ. Apologies it took so long to say that!

We've had a brutal (by our standards) Summer here and keeping the basement shop controlled has been tricky. I haven't been working as much as I'd hoped to. Lately though I have made some good progress on the little Ditson inspired guitar. I'll share a few pics below-

I went back and forth on what to use for the back bindings. I really didn't want to break up the birdseye if possible but I also knew that long seams in maple might be tricky. I made up some strips with small koa lines similar to the top binding and rosette but it just didn't look right. Instead I went for it with the stealth bindings. In the end I am so glad I did- The seamless look is great and highlights the grain well. There is a some nice rippling in there that will show up under finish.

I know many people love a stark blond finish on maple but I really don't like the difference in color between the spruce and maple when done that way. The 2 tones clash for me. We had decided well before hand to go for a darker tone and I have a specific shot from Robert Corwin's site (as well as a sample from the customer) as a guide. I'm going to use mostly a darker shellac and maybe some slight stain as well. I'm aiming for a pale but dark color. We'll see how it turns out. Need to make up the neck before I can begin that work.

Here are the pictures:

WEBDitson-front by Burton LeGeyt, on Flickr

WEBDitson-back by Burton LeGeyt, on Flickr

WEBDitson-3-4 by Burton LeGeyt, on Flickr

WEBDitson-binding by Burton LeGeyt, on Flickr

WEBDitson-rosette by Burton LeGeyt, on Flickr
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  #44  
Old 10-20-2018, 12:32 PM
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For those of you unfamiliar with Burtonís work and going to Woodstock, I believe heíll have the CL with him. Though he isnít exhibiting, heíll be there.

Burton makes some of the most impressive guitars Iíve ever played. His mahogany CLM at SBAIC 2016 was my favorite guitar of the show. He will be building a nearly identical guitar for me next year. His work is original, beautiful, and very detailed. The tone he is getting out of his guitars is top tier. I put him on par with the best builders Iíve played.
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  #45  
Old 10-20-2018, 04:59 PM
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Thanks Juston!!

I will be there and am excited to see everyone who will be both visiting and exhibiting.

My CL will be there with Mike D. It was at my table last year but I added a few things before sending it off, the backplate being the most obvious- I took some nice pics before it left-

CLWEB-front-close by Burton LeGeyt, on Flickr

CLWEB-down-back-on-ground by Burton LeGeyt, on Flickr

CLWEB-backplate-ground3 by Burton LeGeyt, on Flickr

CLWEB-bevel-cut by Burton LeGeyt, on Flickr



I was hoping to have the Ditson with me as well but the french polish schedule didn't cooperate. Oh well. Saves me the stress of passing around a newly Shellac'd guitar! I've been lax updating this thread but I do have some nice pics of it in the white. I'll upload them this weekend.
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