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  #1  
Old 09-19-2018, 11:11 AM
_joshhales _joshhales is offline
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Default First Build - Multi scale L Body

Hello everyone! First post on the forum and an exciting one at that. I am currently studying guitarmaking under renowned luthier Tony Karol based in the Toronto, Canada area. Itís a Larrivee L body shape with some modifications to the size, scaled a 1/4Ē larger. The features for No. 1 are:

German spruce top
Macassar ebony back and sides
Amboyna burl rosette
Amboyna burl tail wedge
Ebony backstrip
Mahogany neck with ebony fretboard
Ebony headstock overlay
Metallic schertler tuners with ebony buttons
24.5 - 26.5Ē scale length
Gold evo fretwire, 22 clear of the body
Ebony/maple purflings
Nitro cellulose laquer finish


Iíve been a member of AGF for quite some time and it has been an incredible source for all things guitar. Now that I have more technical know how and significant progress with the build Iíve decided to share it within the forum. Pictures to follow!
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  #2  
Old 09-19-2018, 12:15 PM
charles Tauber charles Tauber is offline
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My regards to Tony - I'll see him at Exotic Woods on Saturday.

He's a good choice as a guitar making teacher. He does very nice work.
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Old 09-19-2018, 05:24 PM
_joshhales _joshhales is offline
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Will do! Iíll be seeing him tomorrow. Getting back into the shop after the August break. Couldnít agree more on his skill and knowledge!
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Old 09-20-2018, 11:44 AM
_joshhales _joshhales is offline
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The first and arguably the funnest part of starting a build is selecting the tonewoods. Straight from the sawyer in Germany is of course a wonderful German spruce top.



The Macassar ebony back set. I wanted to build with Macassar for my first guitar and this set just spoke to me; great bookmatched set with incredible figuring. I love the sapwood on either side.



Here is the top all cleaned up and body shape outlined. When rough timber is cleaned up it reveals so much more. This particular top displayed much more even colour and medullary ray.

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Old 09-20-2018, 12:13 PM
ruby50 ruby50 is offline
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Ebony b+s for your first? You have more cojones than I have - I picked maple. The wood looks great - go get 'em.

Ed
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Old 09-20-2018, 12:33 PM
_joshhales _joshhales is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ruby50 View Post
Ebony b+s for your first? You have more cojones than I have - I picked maple. The wood looks great - go get 'em.



Ed


Haha thanks a lot Ed! Yes, definitely a daunting task and I am feeling the affects of working with such a dense wood. But itís coming along fantastically and couldnít be happier. More pics to follow!
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Old 10-25-2018, 01:19 PM
_joshhales _joshhales is offline
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It has been a lot longer than anticipated since my previous post regarding my build but it has been a busy month. Will try my best to post every Thursday. Today's post is about the joining process of the back and further preparation of the raw tonewoods.

The joining jig. Once the plate is joined and one it is placed on the jig and the string from the paddle is unraveled. There is a knot in the end of the strong and locked into the notch at the bottom left of the steel beam. From there the string is looped and wrapped under each part of the opposite end of the beam creating V shaped loops. The wooden wedges are then hammered in with a wooden mallet (dubbed "the punisher" by my mentor) through the loops created by wrapping the string around the steel beams. This adds tension and further tightens the pull inwards on the string.



The back is joined by first running the bookmatched plates mating surfaces through the jointer and then finely touched up in the shooting board. We use the candling process to determine if there is any more planing to do in the shooting board. The same process follows for joining the top. We join the plates in a traditional joining jig. Not like the one used in The Guitarmaking book by Natelson & Cumpiano, but the jig used early on by Jean Larrivee and his former apprentices. Either method works exceptionally.



After sitting in the jig for 24hrs, the joined back is removed and I begin to scrape the dried squeeze out with a scraper. From there the back is ran through the thickness sander. The target is to have the back between 0.095" - 0.100". For more dense tonewoods (such as this Macassar ebony) it ideally would be closer to the 0.095" and my back was thinned down to 0.093"
Once thinned and cleaned up the back is cut to oversize shape, approx. 1/4" larger than needed.



Finally the sides are then ran through the thickness sander. This, like any thicknessing process, is very monotonous but essential nonetheless. The sides target thickness is 0.080" - 0.083" and my sides were at 0.081" once completed.




Next weeks post will be more photos and a description of getting the backstrip inlayed, sides bent, and sides rough fitted into the body shape mold. Have a great week everyone!
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Old 11-04-2018, 04:53 PM
_joshhales _joshhales is offline
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We get to bending sides in a traditional side bending jig Tony made. The sides are sprayed lightly with water then wrapped in tin foil before being placed between the steel sheets. Once the targeted temperature is reached the water begins to steam and makes the wood easier to bend. The waist caul in the middle is lowered and we begin to shape the lower bout, then the upper bout with other cauls attached to spring that are anchored on either side of the jig. There's a really good video by The North American Guitar showcasing Casimi guitars processing of bending sides. Although my guitar is not made with double sides, the process shown in the video is near identical to how the sides on my guitar are bent.



Now comes time to install the backstrip. I wanted something simple, so I decided on maple/ebony/maple, which will also follow the scheme for the purfling and bindings. The back is placed in the "backstrip fence" jig to not only hold it in place but to also assist in finding the centre line. A channel is routed and the backstrip inlayed.



Once it is in and a snug fit, I run beads of crazy glue along the seams and then spray with accelerator to cancel out any waiting time for the glue to dry. The backstrip is then planed smooth and flush to the back.




The end result
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  #9  
Old 11-05-2018, 04:42 AM
mirwa mirwa is offline
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Looking good, I personally like the sapwood in the middle, that would have made a very stunning looking back, nice work regardless especially for a first build.

Steve
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  #10  
Old 11-05-2018, 05:27 AM
_joshhales _joshhales is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mirwa View Post
Looking good, I personally like the sapwood in the middle, that would have made a very stunning looking back, nice work regardless especially for a first build.

Steve


Thanks a lot Steve I appreciate it. The sapwood in the centre is a look I love as well but there was just so much of it with this particular back set. The lighter shades of striping down the middle compensates a bit for it but maybe number 2 will have some wonderful sapwood running down the centre.. maybe perhaps African Blackwood, a man can dream lol
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