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  #61  
Old 01-18-2011, 09:10 PM
GuitarFundi GuitarFundi is offline
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Howard, looks fantastic!

When you listen to the top to check for tone as your scalloping the braces... how is this done?
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  #62  
Old 01-18-2011, 09:40 PM
Wade Hampton Wade Hampton is offline
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Originally Posted by Rodd View Post
This is really an amazing and intrigueing thread.
My thanks to Howard and Wade for sharing their combined efforts on a fantastic guitar build.
Well, I ain't doing diddly - Howard's doing all the work. All I'm doing is cheering him on to victory and giving him the "fight, team, fight!" speech.

But I agree that this is a fun thread. It's as revelatory to me as it is to you all.


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  #63  
Old 01-18-2011, 10:54 PM
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Originally Posted by Wade Hampton View Post
Howard Klepper and I have been kicking around some ideas for a guitar for the last month or so, and we've finally gotten all those highly enjoyable "blue sky" discussions narrowed down to the point where we can talk about the guitar he's going to build for me.
Wade, you are a humble man. Good on ya.
You're not fully in the back seat of the build, you have a plenty of input into it.
Be proud!

Rodd

Last edited by Rodd; 01-18-2011 at 10:57 PM. Reason: grammer
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  #64  
Old 01-19-2011, 12:52 AM
Howard Klepper Howard Klepper is offline
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Originally Posted by GuitarFundi View Post
Howard, looks fantastic!

When you listen to the top to check for tone as your scalloping the braces... how is this done?
No one has succeeded in verbalizing this very well, Fundi. It gets asked a lot, and never really answered in a way that you can just take and apply as if from a cookbook.

I listen for the tap sound getting louder, deeper in pitch, and more resonant--a kind of musical ring to it. I tap along the braces and listen for dead spots (nodes), although these can't all be removed. I know from experience about where I should end up. I think a brace should look graceful when it is shaped to sound good. I also know from experience that there is a loss of something musical in the sound when one has gone too far, and that this corresponds to the loss of something structural, too. The trick (in part) is to know when to stop.
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  #65  
Old 01-19-2011, 04:22 AM
jmagill jmagill is offline
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Originally Posted by Howard Klepper View Post
....I also know from experience that there is a loss of something musical in the sound when one has gone too far, and that this corresponds to the loss of something structural, too. The trick (in part) is to know when to stop.
True for more than just testing tap-tone.

In a recording studio I used to use there was a refrigerator covered with grafitti from all those who had recorded there. My favorite of the bunch:

"Art is knowing when to stop."
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  #66  
Old 01-19-2011, 01:06 PM
GuitarFundi GuitarFundi is offline
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Originally Posted by Howard Klepper View Post
No one has succeeded in verbalizing this very well, Fundi. It gets asked a lot, and never really answered in a way that you can just take and apply as if from a cookbook.

I listen for the tap sound getting louder, deeper in pitch, and more resonant--a kind of musical ring to it. I tap along the braces and listen for dead spots (nodes), although these can't all be removed. I know from experience about where I should end up. I think a brace should look graceful when it is shaped to sound good. I also know from experience that there is a loss of something musical in the sound when one has gone too far, and that this corresponds to the loss of something structural, too. The trick (in part) is to know when to stop.
Do you sit the top on the body to do this or just on top of your bench brace side down?
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  #67  
Old 01-19-2011, 03:33 PM
Howard Klepper Howard Klepper is offline
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Originally Posted by GuitarFundi View Post
Do you sit the top on the body to do this or just on top of your bench brace side down?
I dangle the top next to my ear, pinching it with two fingers a little ways above the waist where there is a node.
-----------------------------------------

Moving along on the neck:

The frets are in. Gold EVO wire size 4380. This is the nicest fret wire I have ever used.



Gluing the board to the neck:



Neck trimmed to its taper, and dots installed in the binding. Just going with the traditional black dots.



And the neck is carved. I always come back to this the next day to check it with fresh eyes and hands. I often notice some irregularity I missed on the first day. Wade wanted a C shape, not too thin. I'm doing a Gibson style heel instead of my usual shape.

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  #68  
Old 01-19-2011, 05:21 PM
CBG_BUILDER CBG_BUILDER is offline
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Neck looks great Howard! Can't wait to see it complete!
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  #69  
Old 01-19-2011, 10:42 PM
GuitarFundi GuitarFundi is offline
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Looks Amazing!
Thanks for the info!

I wish I could watch you check for tone... sounds fascinating!

God Bless
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  #70  
Old 01-19-2011, 10:43 PM
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Originally Posted by Howard Klepper View Post
----------------------------------------
The frets are in. Gold EVO wire size 4380. This is the nicest fret wire I have ever used.
Howard, are you referring simply to the Gold EVO, or is the size part of your assesment? If so, can you expand on your comment?

Steve
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  #71  
Old 01-19-2011, 11:33 PM
Howard Klepper Howard Klepper is offline
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Originally Posted by El Conquistador View Post
Howard, are you referring simply to the Gold EVO, or is the size part of your assesment? If so, can you expand on your comment?

Steve
Gold EVO regardless of size. It is so accurately made. Both sides of the crown are symmetrical and have a sharp corner where they meet the board. The barbs on the tang alternate perfectly between the two sides. The tang and barb size are constant. The junction of tang and crown is clean and square. It comes coiled to a consistent radius of about 10", so it needs no arcing. It cuts cleanly and files cleanly. Just right.
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  #72  
Old 01-20-2011, 08:48 AM
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Bruce Sexauer Bruce Sexauer is offline
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I bought a few feet of Evo wire a couple of years ago because I thought it would look good with the gold tuners on a specific project. The fret installation went perfectly and seemed easier than ever before, so I tried it on the next one too, and then the next one . . . in fact I don't think I've used anything else since! What I am I going to do with all my old Nickel fretwire?

The population is rapidly developing an allergy to Nickel, and the Evo wire is hypo-allergenic as it has no Nickel in it.

And it DOES look cool, too.
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  #73  
Old 01-20-2011, 10:00 AM
Howard Klepper Howard Klepper is offline
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Default the sides

I needed to make a new bending form for this guitar, since I haven't done the slope D shape before.



One of the sides in the bender. Walnut bends like buttah.



Most wood spring back at the ends after bending in a Fox style bender. Walnut is unusual in that it tends to overbend. I adjust on the bending iron by hand in either case. I'm able to shape them accurately enough not to need a mold. Here's the pair out of the Fox bender.

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  #74  
Old 01-20-2011, 01:15 PM
Glennwillow Glennwillow is offline
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Howard,

This is a great tutorial. I am finding this fascinating. I will be extremely interested to hear and see what the final result looks like.

Regards, Glenn
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  #75  
Old 01-21-2011, 02:46 PM
Howard Klepper Howard Klepper is offline
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Howard,

This is a great tutorial. I am finding this fascinating. I will be extremely interested to hear and see what the final result looks like.

Regards, Glenn
Thanks, Glenn. Interesting that you call it a tutorial. I like to think of this as Wade's thread about his new guitar, to which I of course supply a lot of the content. I have been trying to distinguish with some of the posters who have asked questions between that and a guitarmaking tutorial. There is no bright line between the two, since I am showing the build progress and sequence, and trying to give some insights into how I work and think about a guitar. But I try to keep in mind that it's Wade's thread and not instruction in the mechanics of building per se.

Wade underestimates his role in this guitar's creation. Every commissioned guitar is a collaboration. In this case I am collaborating with someone very experienced, who has listened carefully and well to a lot of instruments, and worked with builders such as Wayne Henderson and Roy McAlister. So I learn a lot from listening carefully to Wade about what he hears in various guitars, what he likes and dislikes, and what he wants this guitar to be able to do.

Here I'm gluing in the tailblock. In the background, I'm gluing up the headblock. I use a lamination at right angles to the rest of the block on both tail and headblock so they will resist splitting from a blow.



While the glue is drying, I shaved the top braces. I glue them in full dimensioned and square cornered, and then shape them on the guitar. The factory method is to pre-shape them. I've laid out some of my favorite chisels and a couple of finger planes, and honed them up. This is probably my favorite part of the job. Paring with sharp tools is always fun. Plus, it's where life gets breathed into dead wood, and the alchemy of tap tuning is employed.



Just about done. They are shaped but not yet sanded smooth.

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Last edited by Howard Klepper; 01-21-2011 at 06:20 PM.
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