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  #1  
Old 01-02-2019, 03:05 PM
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Mark Hatcher Mark Hatcher is offline
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Default Hatcher's Studio '19

Happy New Year everyone! I'm starting this year out with a Greta grand auditorium. This is a custom build with some wonderful woods. The back and sides are Honduran Mahogany from the "Fiddleback Tree".





The top is a mildly quilted old Sitka Spruce:



I think they are well match both for color and tone:



The trim will be mostly Cocobolo. I am using the last headstock overlay, fretboard, and bridge set from a board I bought quite awhile ago. I love the spiderweb grain patterns on this. It will keep up well with the amazing fiddleback Mahogany on this guitar:



Much more to come!
Mark
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  #2  
Old 01-02-2019, 03:24 PM
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Erithon Erithon is offline
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That's a fantastic Mahogany B&S set, Mark. Such tight flaming. This is going to look great!
And of course I love the Cocobolo as well. If I'm not mistaken, the fretboard on my Greta is from that same board.
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  #3  
Old 01-02-2019, 04:25 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Erithon View Post
That's a fantastic Mahogany B&S set, Mark. Such tight flaming. This is going to look great!
And of course I love the Cocobolo as well. If I'm not mistaken, the fretboard on my Greta is from that same board.
Thanks Erithon, and you are not mistaken. That Cocobolo fretboard is from the same board as your guitar's:



Mark
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Old 01-02-2019, 04:52 PM
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Wow! That Honduran Mahogany is stunning Mark.
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Old 01-02-2019, 05:24 PM
swiftz07 swiftz07 is offline
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Stunning woods and photography as usual, Mark!
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  #6  
Old 01-02-2019, 07:03 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Haasome View Post
Wow! That Honduran Mahogany is stunning Mark.
Thanks Paul, the curl is deep and beautiful. The kind of figure that makes you sweat when it's time to bend the sides!

Quote:
Originally Posted by swiftz07 View Post
Stunning woods and photography as usual, Mark!
Thanks swiftz07, It's my good fortune to get to work with such great woods.
Thanks for commenting!

Mark
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Old 01-03-2019, 09:53 AM
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Default Joining the Back

I thought I'd write a few things about joining a fiddleback set. First, it's important to get a clean fit between the two sides. A window comes in handy for checking that:



With this much figure it really shows how well you line up the sides. There's a problem doing this though. Flamed figure is a series of peaks and troughs as reflected by the wood grain actually rippling up and down. When you book match the two back pieces where there is a peak one side of the joint there is a trough on the other. Now if you work the light and view angle you can make them line up fairly well like this shows:



Now without moving that penny and changing the viewing angle a picture of the exact same area appears to be mismatched:



So even though the woods are perfectly matched the appearance of the match is a moving target!

A reasonable solution to this is to use a center graft which puts a little space between the two sides of the back and greatly reduces this effect.
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Last edited by Mark Hatcher; 01-03-2019 at 12:37 PM.
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Old 01-03-2019, 10:42 AM
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I like the look of peaks and troughs lining up. that's the way it's done in the violin family and to my eye it looks right.
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Old 01-03-2019, 12:34 PM
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Originally Posted by j. Kinnaird View Post
I like the look of peaks and troughs lining up. that's the way it's done in the violin family and to my eye it looks right.
Thanks John,

I guess it never occurred to me that I could just like that look
Now that I think about it, itís pretty common to see on carved back instruments, including arch top guitars. When I see it on these I donít give it a second thought. Somehow when itís on the much less arched back of a regular guitar Iím not comfortable with it. Iíll try liking it and see how I do.

Mark
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Old 01-03-2019, 02:07 PM
DamianL DamianL is offline
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Every time I see a fiddle back style, I want a centre strip...itís great either way, but I canít help but think it looks unfinished with out one...and having had this explanation maybe now I know why!
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Old 01-03-2019, 08:21 PM
The Bard Rocks The Bard Rocks is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mark Hatcher View Post
Thanks John,

I guess it never occurred to me that I could just like that look
Now that I think about it, itís pretty common to see on carved back instruments, including arch top guitars. When I see it on these I donít give it a second thought. Somehow when itís on the much less arched back of a regular guitar Iím not comfortable with it. Iíll try liking it and see how I do.

Mark
I'm with John here, part of my bug about symmetry.
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  #12  
Old 01-03-2019, 10:09 PM
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Snazzy wood indeed!
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  #13  
Old 01-04-2019, 09:38 AM
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Default Back Strip

Quote:
Originally Posted by DamianL View Post
Every time I see a fiddle back style, I want a centre strip...itís great either way, but I canít help but think it looks unfinished with out one...and having had this explanation maybe now I know why!
Thanks for commenting DamianL.

Quote:
Originally Posted by The Bard Rocks View Post
I'm with John here, part of my bug about symmetry.
I like balance which I suppose may be a cousin of symmetry.

Quote:
Originally Posted by ukejon View Post
Snazzy wood indeed!

Thanks Ukejon! Speaking of snazzy wood I picked out the wood and designed the back strip today. I am doing a Cocobolo back strip. Typically, I do cross grained center laminates on the necks. I thought I'd carry that arrangement right through to the back laminate. This fiddleback is such a strong and uniform figure doing something a little more random for the back strip would really stand out. So then it was time to pick the actual piece of Cocobolo wood:



This is a little piece I'd been saving for something special. The block is about 3" x 5" and 3/4" thick. The figuring in the top left corner is called "cloud figuring" which brings just the kind of randomness I'm looking for. That cloud is about 2" long and goes all the way through. I can slice this down into enough pieces to make both the back strip and the center laminate on the neck.

Here is a close up for the back:



And a broader view:



I'll have purfling on either side when I lay it in. Glad I saves that piece of wood!
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  #14  
Old 01-04-2019, 05:17 PM
Zandit75 Zandit75 is offline
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1995 Maton EM725C - Solid 'A' Spruce Top, QLD Walnut B&S, AP5 Pickup
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  #15  
Old 01-04-2019, 06:53 PM
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Wow ... that fiddleback mahogany ... and that cocobolo ... you'll definitely make something spectacular from that Mark!
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