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I gave in....

Discussion in 'Tele Home Depot' started by Bugeater281, Feb 13, 2018.

  1. Bugeater281

    Bugeater281 Tele-Meister

    Age:
    26
    242
    Nov 30, 2016
    Omaha
    So I've made three neck templates and multiple necks, but for some reason I can never get them perfect. Well I messed up another neck last night, and I'm tired of throwing money away. So I ordered a cnc cut template set. And I'm thinking in the future I'll just pay someone to cut templates. Maybe I'm overly picky, but I find it's next to impossible to line a straight edge up perfectly on both sides. Anyone else have tricks or tips for future projects? Here's the neck I ruined. There's a 1/16th divot on one side. Didn't notice it at first, then I couldn't stop seeing it. And sanding would have made then neck too thin. IMG_7889.JPG IMG_7891.JPG
     

  2. Preacher

    Preacher Tele-Afflicted

    Apr 17, 2007
    Big D
    I hear you....

    I always think, I can fix that. Then it bugs me and bugs me till I can't handle it.

    Making templates is such delicate and time consuming work.
     
    Bugeater281 likes this.

  3. DrASATele

    DrASATele Poster Extraordinaire

    Jul 6, 2012
    North of Boston
    I hear you too . . .

    I took it a little further and got 2 router bits for the neck profile just because I wanted to ensure consistency when got down to the final shape. Even though I have C and D profiles I still carve away until the profile is unique and comfortable in the hand. It's that consistency I wanted, rather than needed, if that makes sense.

    I did make my own templates. The newest ones, made this past fall, are a combination of all the things I want from my hand built necks. My favorite and most used is a snake head with 22 frets, 25.5 scale that has the tuners and head stock pushed back a little further from the nut than say 90%of the PDFs you find out there. It was very time consuming but ultimately worth it. Some times grinding it out until you've got something worth of a master is a lesson in it self.

    That neck and body are pretty SICK! walnut?
     
    Bugeater281 likes this.

  4. Bugeater281

    Bugeater281 Tele-Meister

    Age:
    26
    242
    Nov 30, 2016
    Omaha
    Ya with a maple fretboard and maple cap. I'm really bummed out, at the nut im measuring 1.736 and at the 22nd fret 2.38. Granted .010-.015 really isn't that noticeable, if I take it down any farther it will be noticeably thinner. I will probably still use it, been itching to build a 5 string tele for open tuning. So there is hope. Here's how it was looking. IMG_7881.JPG
     

  5. guitarbuilder

    guitarbuilder Doctor of Teleocity Silver Supporter

    Mar 30, 2003
    Ontario County
    My trick is to not use a template. I learned to shape wood on machines to a high degree of accuracy by taking my time and using old school techniques and machines. One really needs to learn how to real a machinists scale and learn to layout lines with a mechanical pencil or awl. Then learn how to remove the material up to the line and split the line..... Somewhere along the way....templates and router bits replaced those techniques.... If fender has a tolerance of +/- 1/64"....so can you.
     
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  6. Bugeater281

    Bugeater281 Tele-Meister

    Age:
    26
    242
    Nov 30, 2016
    Omaha
    I'm curious about these old school techniques. My biggest issue is I work 40-50 hours a week and have a 2 year old, I wish I had more time. But guitar building doesn't really make me money.
     
    Newbcaster likes this.

  7. guitarbuilder

    guitarbuilder Doctor of Teleocity Silver Supporter

    Mar 30, 2003
    Ontario County
    Consider how people were making instruments before the DIY pattern bits were available. When you were in woodshop 101, you learned how to read a ruler and learned how to layout lines on materials. Then you learned how to square up boards and check them for squareness using a plane/jointer and saws. Next came other machines like the belt sander, drum sander, and drill press. All these skills build on each other. You started out by making simple projects and moving up to more complex things. A piggy breadboard isn't as sophisticated as a guitar neck. It's helpful starting out with simpler projects and working your way up. Each project becomes a bit more complex and adds tool and machine skills to the mix. When you can build a cabinet ( or other complex project) then you have the needed old school skills to tackle instruments. Centuries ago people apprenticed to learn that stuff. You didn't go into a violin shop and start to build your own violin on day one.

    Guitar building doesn't make anyone money. The guy down the road sells a body for 50 dollars with 15 dollars in material costs. It's a good hobby....
     
    Last edited: Feb 13, 2018

  8. Bugeater281

    Bugeater281 Tele-Meister

    Age:
    26
    242
    Nov 30, 2016
    Omaha
    I know how to use a ruler, I took 4 years of drafting, first was all on paper. I also took architectural drafting and worked with steel structural design. I think my biggest issue is lack of tools and experience with wood.
     

  9. guitarbuilder

    guitarbuilder Doctor of Teleocity Silver Supporter

    Mar 30, 2003
    Ontario County
    Just going back to your template issue...could you set up a taper jig on a table saw and make just the sides and ends of the template? Then glue on extra wood and shape the peghead? In my threads I show how to cut and sand the pegheads... It's not that hard on a ROSS type machine.
     

  10. Bugeater281

    Bugeater281 Tele-Meister

    Age:
    26
    242
    Nov 30, 2016
    Omaha
    that's a good idea, I just bought some aluminum track that's perfectly straight. Was planing on my next template to drill some small holes on the outside of the line. So then edge is perfect with the line and do that on each side. Then insert dowels to to line up the straight edge. Then use the router table. I'm moving into a new house with a workshop area, I should have more room to build jigs and tools. And the house is only a min from work, and I have a mill, lathe and some other tools I can use. Our shop just got them. I'm super excited for that.
     

  11. guitarbuilder

    guitarbuilder Doctor of Teleocity Silver Supporter

    Mar 30, 2003
    Ontario County
    Another thing you may be forgetting is that handmade stuff has imperfections. It used to be that those little deviations gave things uniqueness and character. This guitar building hobby is the only artform where you compare your results to a robotic made piece of product. :). When you decide that the part has way too much character...you pitch it and start again... Hundreds of necks and bodies later...I'm still messing up, mostly because my vision isn't where it used to be.
     

  12. TRexF16

    TRexF16 Friend of Leo's

    Apr 4, 2011
    Tucson
    That's brilliant. Just cut the tapered wedge on the table saw, and refine it as required with a jointer. Then tape your printed neck template to another piece of MDF. Rough out the straight part, and sand right down to the line on the headstock portion. Then double-stick your tablesaw routed wedge down lined up on centerline and use it to complete the rout. Presto - a perfect neck template.

    Neat.
    Rex
     
    trancedental likes this.

  13. guitarbuilder

    guitarbuilder Doctor of Teleocity Silver Supporter

    Mar 30, 2003
    Ontario County
    When you make a tapered fretboard and attach that to the neck wood and then flush trim it to the fretboard....it's the same kind of idea.
     

  14. Macrogats

    Macrogats Tele-Holic

    Age:
    50
    727
    May 15, 2017
    Auckland, New Zealand
    That walnut is simply beautiful. Hope you get to use that body at some stage.
     

  15. Bugeater281

    Bugeater281 Tele-Meister

    Age:
    26
    242
    Nov 30, 2016
    Omaha
    I'm just going to get more wood, I have some bloodwood laying around but that's my personal stash. I get walnut fairly cheap, I think I payed 5-10 for this neck blank, I still have half the blank but it's only a half inch thick...
     

  16. Macrogats

    Macrogats Tele-Holic

    Age:
    50
    727
    May 15, 2017
    Auckland, New Zealand
    Oh I wish! We can get it here, but it costs an arm and a leg. :(

    I use walnut stain instead. :D
     
    Bugeater281 likes this.

  17. R. Stratenstein

    R. Stratenstein Doctor of Teleocity Silver Supporter

    Aug 3, 2010
    Loganville, Ga.
    That's a beautiful neck, I'd learn to love the 1/16" divot or a thinner neck before I'd discard it.

    FWIW, when I made my first few necks, it became apparent to me that even using Marty's facet system, at one point or another, I'd get too excited with that big ole horse rasp, and make a dip I'd either have to sand down to, or live with.

    Since then, I've learned to stop before I think I need to stop with the heavy excavation equipment, and break out the abrasives--again, I ran into grief by thinking "you can't take off too much too fast" with, say 40-60 grit by hand. Oh, but you can. So I have developed a technique where I never use abrasives more aggressive than 100, and with a good sandpaper, you can move a good bit of material pretty fast, but it doesn't leave grooves or channels that can't be sanded out readily going to 150/180, and then on down. A card scraper is also very good, once you get familiar with it. And truly, it doesn't take any longer than repeatedly trying to hog off wood with more aggressive means, then trying to even it up on the other side of the neck--you can see the shape and size developing, and move up and down the neck to gradually shape it.
     
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  18. philosofriend

    philosofriend Tele-Holic

    595
    Oct 28, 2015
    Kalamazoo
    Glue in some wood, fog over the area with some brown dye, and you will have a totally traditional looking beautiful guitar. It is up to you if you want to continue the brown up the back of the neck. Perfection is nice, but in case of error, use camouflage. I used to work with a guy who was in finishing in the old Kalamazoo Gibson plant. He knew lots of fast tricks to make mistakes unnoticeable.
     

  19. Bugeater281

    Bugeater281 Tele-Meister

    Age:
    26
    242
    Nov 30, 2016
    Omaha
    I'll still be using this neck, I'm making this guitar for someone else, decided I should make a guitar for someone else so I would take more time and make less mistakes. For myself I don't mind the divot but I don't want to give someone else a guitar with a divot. I got a fully hollow walnut tele at home that I was experimenting with. I'll use it on that, a 5 string semi acoustic tele tuned to open g. Sounds like my type of guitar.
     

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