Acoustic build

Discussion in 'Tele Home Depot' started by printer2, Apr 10, 2013.

  1. printer2

    printer2 Poster Extraordinaire

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    Inspired by my last build I wanted to go one step further and build a more traditional constructed guitar. I'll get to my Telecaster bodies that are sitting feeling forlorn yet, just want a smaller acoustic without the flaws of my first one.

    But of course I could not go the easy route, no, that is not me. I did pick up some real cedar acoustic tops to use but while looking for wood to use for the back and sides I came across a piece of cedar intended to barbeque salmon on. It was more or less quarter sawn, a little small at 16" long, but that would make a body the size of my last one, let's see what it will sound like.

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    Found some harder wood at work in the form of a broken up pallet. Might get a neck or two out of it.

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    Back and sides of white oak, need to resaw it. I have a metal band saw at home that might work, did a test cut on a piece of construction lumber.

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    Looks promising but it may need some more finesse to make guitar wood though. Not really known for my finesse, I made an ugly but functional jig.

    Had to do some welding and needed a quick exhaust system in the garage, Still is well below freezing outside.

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    In the end, a jig. Top guide block is tied to the table and bottom block. Table is clamped to the frame. Had a 4 tpi saw blade made for the saw.

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    Lining up the board for the first cut. Hope it all works.

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    Did a book matched fence board, half lightly sanded. Seems I am off to the races. Well maybe a race with a tortoise. Trying to come up with a drum sander to surface the wood for the acoustic.


    Oh right a couple of more pics, the cedar for the top.

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    And the neck wood. It is a little thin and I will have to spit one of the boards to laminate it on the other. At least now I have a saw to do it.

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  2. metecem

    metecem Friend of Leo's

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    Oh how I love these guerilla builds!

    Dying to see the rest :)
     
  3. Rich Rice

    Rich Rice Poster Extraordinaire

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    Looks great so far. Those pallet boards sure remind me of southern yellow pine.. I love working with that stuff. Just remember to always sand it with a firm backing- a block or a broomstick handle or something.. The dark grain is much harder than the light grain, and it will wave at you almost immediately if you try to sand it barehanded. ;)
     
    Last edited: Apr 10, 2013
  4. printer2

    printer2 Poster Extraordinaire

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    Good to know, someone else said it might be yellow pine. First time I have come across it.

    Forgot to include this one. Here is the shape I came up with, 16" long, lower bout 13". The red oak board up top is another piece of a pallet my brother had. Looks to be big enough for the fretboard. Thought it would be appropriate given the rest of the wood. Now if I come across a hardwood pallet for the back and sides...

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  5. crazydave911

    crazydave911 Poster Extraordinaire

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    +1000 ;)
     
  6. midget bar

    midget bar Tele-Meister

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    this looks like a great build, I will definatley keep an eye on it.
     
  7. Rich Rice

    Rich Rice Poster Extraordinaire

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    The clock is ticking... ;)
     
  8. otterhound

    otterhound Poster Extraordinaire

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    Pine for an acoustic neck is a poor choice .
     
  9. printer2

    printer2 Poster Extraordinaire

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    Being new to this I hope you don't mind my asking, in what way?
     
  10. printer2

    printer2 Poster Extraordinaire

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    Yeah I know. Just been having some health issues. I have developed an allergic reaction to clothes (Yeah sounds odd, work did it to me). Makes me irritable and it is not conductive to building, hope to do some this weekend.
     
  11. henderson is go

    henderson is go Tele-Holic

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    As long as its dry, hard, stable, and dense, it shouldn't be a problem. While not ideal to me personally, classical builders such as Torres and Ramirez have used pine necks for centuries: with a steel string you'll probably want to use carbon fiber or other neck reinforcements to stiffen the neck along side a truss rod as I'd be worried about the stiffness of the pine. If you can find a hardwood to use, you'd probably be better off though.

    Looking forward to watching this build: it's rare to find other acoustic builders here.
     
  12. Rich Rice

    Rich Rice Poster Extraordinaire

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    I hear ya.. That's why there are so few pictures of me on the threads. I build in my pajamas all the time.. :twisted:

    Hope you get to feeling better quickly.

    If your pine machines like a hardwood, it should be OK for a neck, as long as you don't make it too skinny, use a hardwood fretboard, and make sure to reinforce it (truss rod or similar). Regular pine would be a different story, but the southern yellow pine I've used was very strong and rigid.

    Think of it like a shock absorber in a way- the softer woods will want to absorb energy rather than transfer them. Sort of an acoustic version of "tone suck". A stiffer neck will telegraph the vibrations to the instrument more efficiently, thus losing less acoustic power. You don't want excessive resonance from your neck, a nice, tight, dry, direct tap tone will give you a better tone than a dull, thuddy sound. Hold it gently on the edges, and give it a rap with your knuckles. Get your ear right up next to it and give a listen. You may need to hold it a few different ways before you can get it vibrating, but it ultimately will sing to an extent. Try this with a bunch of different pieces, and you will develop a "feel" for what to listen for, and how to get it to ring.
     
  13. otterhound

    otterhound Poster Extraordinaire

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    You stated that this is your build #2 , correct ?
    I would suggest that you stick to the more mainstream things concerning neck and neck block woods .
    Density was mentioned elsewhere . White Pine is simply not known for it's density .
    The wood that you have shown will need to be laminated for an acoustic neck , so you will gain some strength there .
    I assume that you will be doing a steel string guitar and the classical builders mentioned are nylon builders .
    You also mentioned that you want to avoid the faults that you have in your first . Good thinking .
    I will suggest that you use this build to refine your techniques before you begin treading into new territory . By sticking to your baseline , you will have a reasonable yardstick to measure your skills to .
    There will be time to build your Pallet Guitar once you have more experience , ALA Bob Taylor .
    You don't want to develop bad habits in the beginning that you will need to relearn later on .
    As far as the back and side woods . Can you test for moisture content and can you kiln if you must ?
    I applaud your enthusiasm and wish you the best .
    A PM will follow .
     
  14. printer2

    printer2 Poster Extraordinaire

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    I do have better wood to make it guitars out of but I wanted to save it for my next build. This pine is pretty hard, I built a body out of material I got from Home Depot and it dents pretty easy. This stuff when I do my fingernail test, run my fingernail across the surface, there is barely a mark.

    Took a quick look at some of the pictures in your threads. Definitely going back for another look, don't know how I missed the acoustic ones before. Some nice work.
     
  15. printer2

    printer2 Poster Extraordinaire

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    More than once I have been building in my bathrobe, not much of an option now. My skin has been sensitized and other than wearing the lightest material I end up with what feels like a sunburn. Still too cold outside to wear shorts in the garage, just getting up to freezing in the daytime, no dust collection system yet for the house.

    Hit the board, actually split one and laminated the half to the other board, and not much of a sound. Then I moved my fingers about a quarter way down and rapped it again. The board rung out. Think I might be ok.
     
  16. printer2

    printer2 Poster Extraordinaire

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    Pallet Guitar, Bob Taylor, now I will have to consult Google. Bad habits, plenty of those. One of the reasons I decided not to be a machinist. More of a functional kind of guy than a perfectionist.

    Don't know the moisture content, could dry it if needed. Another thing I may have to look up. Enthusiasm? More a 'Hmmm, I have not tried that yet.' Uncharted territory is nothing new to me. Would be better if I did do things more than twice, might even get good at something. ;)
     
  17. crazydave911

    crazydave911 Poster Extraordinaire

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    All acoustics I built (save one) used quartersawn douglas fir for the necks for this very reason. I had been building wooden boats and had some spar stock, and knew, pound for pound, it is one of the lightest, stiffest woods you can use (for anything). If I still had ready access to it, I would use it and maple exclusively ;) (plus you won't believe what it looks like with rubbed in spar varnish on it :D)
     
  18. printer2

    printer2 Poster Extraordinaire

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    Oh that Taylor, and here I was hoping to see a build thread. Moisture content, should be able to measure it, if not in line I can rig up a small chamber to dry it out. I have not been a complete slacker, did my mold, needs a few touch ups yet. I have been putting off the drum sander project and I brought home a pop rivet tool for my dust collector, wonder which will get my attention?

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  19. Colt W. Knight

    Colt W. Knight Doctor of Teleocity Ad Free Member

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    I say ROCK the pine neck. If it doesn't work out, just build another one. I wouldn't get anything done if I listened to folks telling what I couldn't do.

    I would inlay some stiffeners like Henderson mentioned.

    I wish I knew a good source for that CVG fir. I love that stuff.
     
  20. printer2

    printer2 Poster Extraordinaire

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    Going to have it bolt on, if it does not work out I can always build a maple one for it. Heck, the top is basically a cut down fence board, the sides and back about $15 in wood. Not like it will matter too much if it does not work out. Besides, have to do something with the pine.
     
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