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Jig Madness - Neck Carve - Fretboard Radius - Fret Slotting

Discussion in 'Tele Home Depot' started by PingGuo, Aug 8, 2018.

  1. PingGuo

    PingGuo Tele-Holic Ad Free Member

    608
    May 19, 2014
    North FL
    Post with links and helpful stuff for people looking to make some guitar making jigs...

    1: Fretboard radius jig:

    of all the plans and ideas I've see this is the cleanest imho.

    It's basic in design and build complexity. And looks like it'll produce consistent results... (idk yet as I haven't tested it myself but the guy in the video seems to like it



    http://www.eguitarplans.com/Fretboard_Radius_Jig_11x17.pdf



    2: Neck profile carving jig:


    people have made a lot of fancy and interesting improvements to this design. It seems like the most common method begins with turning it upside down and running the router on top.

    my router table works fine. I don't see a need to turn it upside down. So I'll be building the basic version.

    For those that don't know, this is the neck jig that's credited to Bill Scheltema. As @guitarbuilder pointed out, it's not worth building this if you are only making a handful of guitars. And the process of hand carving is part of the joy for many small shop builders.

    Idk how many guitars I'll end up building but I'm very into the idea of a repeatable process. This might all end with a CNC... who knows.



    http://www.tdpri.com/threads/new-member-poplar-tele-build.123054/page-8

    Here's a link to the thread that has some pucks to get you started in it:

    http://www.tdpri.com/threads/scheltema-neck-contour-jig-and-puck-discussion.371134/



    3: Fretwire bender or fretwire radius jig:


    I just ordered bearings to make one of these:






    4: Fret slotting on the table saw:

    Let's be honest. As far as I can tell, stewmac has the monopoly on this.

    https://www.stewmac.com/Luthier_Tools/Types_of_Tools/Saws/Fret_Slotting_Table_Saw_Blade.html

    https://www.stewmac.com/Luthier_Too...g/Measuring/StewMac_Fret_Scale_Templates.html
     

  2. PingGuo

    PingGuo Tele-Holic Ad Free Member

    608
    May 19, 2014
    North FL
    Man, people do some crazy stuff. And If I post a picture of me doing something crazy I hope that someone like you calls me out on it.

    No feathers ruffled.

    This doesn't solve the problem that you described... But our plan is to get a sawstop in the next year or so.

    I know they're contentious. They don't fix stupid. But as a home builder, with means, it seems like a no brainer.

    My partner went to a fancy school and they'd just gotten one before she started working on sets in their shop. This was years ago and nobody had really worked with one there.

    Well, she was the first person in that shop to set it off with wet wood. They were all like "where'd the blade go" :lol::lol::lol:.

    They have one of the big ones at her work... It's a shame they don't just license it... The tech is innovative... but very cheap to implement.
     

  3. jimgchord

    jimgchord Tele-Meister

    Age:
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    Apr 3, 2018
    victor,ny
    I have zero experience with them but I really want to try one. I used to tell the newer guys that the saw didn't really care if it was cutting flesh or wood....guess that ones out the window nowadays.
     
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  4. PingGuo

    PingGuo Tele-Holic Ad Free Member

    608
    May 19, 2014
    North FL
    My understanding is that as saw's they're ok. The Bosch and Hitachi job site saws are usually considered to be a little nicer as saws... but they're happy to cut a finger off.

    I wish I held the patent. I'd license it to every maker for a low enough pice to ensure that every saw on the market had my design in it... But I don't hold that patent.

    Sawstop's method has been to try to force regulators to give them a monopoly. It's gross imho. But too much further down that path and it becomes a political discussion.

    All that said it won't stop me from buying one of the big ones after we get a proper home (I rent currently, so no 220 or any really heavy tools). I just wish I could get a powermatic or other big saw with the tech in there.
     

  5. jimgchord

    jimgchord Tele-Meister

    Age:
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    victor,ny
    I love powermatics
     
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  6. guitarbuilder

    guitarbuilder Doctor of Teleocity Silver Supporter

    Mar 30, 2003
    Ontario County
    Years ago, my co-worker cut the tip of his thumb off next to me while we were making 400 silk screen frame parts. The next year, I took a shattered Plexiglas kickback in the groin on the saw. It was a Delta Contractors saw..a nice saw.

    At that point I realized that the radial arm, miter saw, and bandsaw were to become my saws of choice. I don't do much with my skil table saw gathering dust in the garage except with an occasional resaw with a second pair of hands holding up material.

    When you look at the number of straight cuts in a guitar, and that those cuts can be done on other tools, I prefer to keep my body parts attached. Some people love the TS. I'm not one of them. Our high school has a sawstop. The replacement cartridge was pretty pricey 10-12 years ago, but still way cheaper than the ER bill and psychological and physical damage for those impacted.
     

  7. jimgchord

    jimgchord Tele-Meister

    Age:
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    victor,ny
    Some people just aren't comfortable using them, it's good that you stay in your comfort zone in this case. I too have seen fingers cut...I actually had to pick a guys fingers out of sawdust, rinse them off and put them in a cup of ice five minutes after I warned the kid about ripping red oak with gloves on. He told me to f off and mind my own business. Not pleasant. Maybe that's why I get a bit uptight about table saw safety
     

  8. maxvintage

    maxvintage Friend of Leo's Ad Free Member

    Age:
    59
    Mar 16, 2003
    Arlington, VA
    I was pretty seriously injured when a dado stack I was using caught the zero clearance insert in my saw , shattered it, and threw it at me. Valuable lesson.

    Great thread, thank you for posting. Personally, I like carving the necks freehand. I use mostly a Shinto rasp and it’s very fast

    For frets I bought the stewmac fret miter box. I’m not crazy about it. I think the table saw slotting deal is probably better


    fretboard radius is hard to get right, at least for me. I use a radius block and continually mark the board with a pencil, so I can see that I’m sanding it evenly. I love the idea of that jig but that’s a lot of shop space to devote to such a single use jig.
     

  9. Old Tele Hack

    Old Tele Hack Tele-Meister Silver Supporter

    Age:
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    317
    Mar 31, 2017
    Virginia
    I dunno - I always found that using a jig allowed me to fine tune a cut's shape prior to committing it to "good wood". For something I'm gonna have my hands on as much as the back of a guitar neck? At my meager skill level, I don't think I'd get a satisfactorily smooth radius doing it by hand.
     
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  10. jimgchord

    jimgchord Tele-Meister

    Age:
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    Apr 3, 2018
    victor,ny
    My issue with using the router for that task is tear out, especially with maple. With a router you have zero feedback, by the time you know something bad is happening, it's too late. More control over the result with a bladed tool. Plus it just feels better to slide a sharp tool through a piece of good wood
     

  11. PingGuo

    PingGuo Tele-Holic Ad Free Member

    608
    May 19, 2014
    North FL
    I worked with a guy that took a finger off with a his table saw. He's damn smart. And it didn't prevent him from making a mistake.

    That's what scares me most about that tool. There's a lot of opportunity for mistakes. And there's a lot of times/cuts where a mistake can be dangerous.

    That said, people did some crazy stuff with radial arm saws. Have you seen anybody try to rip with one... That's insane. But the manufacturers thought it was a neat feature at the time.
     
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  12. PingGuo

    PingGuo Tele-Holic Ad Free Member

    608
    May 19, 2014
    North FL
    I've found more and more that the router is a patience game. You have to be willing to take tiny passes to make stuff like that work.

    But there's no denying that a lot of people get a lot of pleasure out of hand carving.
     
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  13. guitarbuilder

    guitarbuilder Doctor of Teleocity Silver Supporter

    Mar 30, 2003
    Ontario County

    I've ripped on a RAS. It pretty much forces you to be on the side of the saw instead of behind it. The trick is making sure you feed into the blade direction and not with the direction. I also had a RAS with a router collet on the other side. It worked, but it wasn't the best thing since sliced bread.
     

  14. mtorn

    mtorn Tele-Holic

    567
    Nov 29, 2016
    Portland, Oregon
    A simpler jig like mine doesn't take a lot of shop space, and has been working very well for me. It's mostly made of scrap MDF.
    The only mistake I did (until I fixed it) was that I didn't take into consideration that the radius of the arc in the MDF has to be slightly larger than the desired radius at the fretboard height.

    IMG_7695.jpg
     
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  15. PingGuo

    PingGuo Tele-Holic Ad Free Member

    608
    May 19, 2014
    North FL
    That's beautifully clean too.

    There were two reasons that I went for the design I did over the design pictured.

    The first is that I don't have to cut any clean arcs to make the jig function. The pins become the swivel and the length of the board describes the arc rather than the router describing the arc.

    The second is that whenever possible I like to move the least heavy thing the most. In my mind, this is why it usually makes sense to have a stationary table saw... until your milling giant slabs from logs... then you want to move the relatively light saw rather than the massive log.

    All that said, on the scale we're talking about it's mostly irrelevant. I thought the design I went with would be easier to build.

    Anyhow your jig looks beautiful. Do you have multiple bases for different radii?

    Best,
    -Vic
     
    Last edited: Aug 10, 2018

  16. PingGuo

    PingGuo Tele-Holic Ad Free Member

    608
    May 19, 2014
    North FL
    Was it set up like a pin router? I'm having a hard time envisioning it.
     

  17. guitarbuilder

    guitarbuilder Doctor of Teleocity Silver Supporter

    Mar 30, 2003
    Ontario County
    You can see the router collet on the right side. These were recalled because of defects. It was a pretty horrible saw. It was too bouncy to use as a pin router. I did try it once. I used it to cut dados and thickness guitar necks for a short while.

    http://rasmuscatalog.com/cgi-bin/mmlist.cgi?rasmus1037/10058
     
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  18. guitarbuilder

    guitarbuilder Doctor of Teleocity Silver Supporter

    Mar 30, 2003
    Ontario County

    You can't have multiple bases unless you machine multiple matching arches to bolt onto the sides. This has been done before, but is more work and one of the iterations I alluded to in my section in my "lets make a neck thread". The pvc pipe rails is another iteration. This is a one radius deal which I guess is a drawback to some folks. It worked for me...;-).
     
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  19. PingGuo

    PingGuo Tele-Holic Ad Free Member

    608
    May 19, 2014
    North FL
    That's a wild machine! My partner and I picked up a radial arm saw for free while we were still in CA. After thinking about it we decided to just send in the motor. Even after 30 years they'd still give you a $100 to prove that the thing was dead.
     
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