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Asher Guitars WD Music Products Amplified Parts Mod Kits DIY Nordstarnd Pickups Warmoth.com
Asher Guitars WD Music Products Amplified Parts Mod Kits DIY Nordstarnd Pickups Warmoth.com

Let's make a neck!

Discussion in 'Tele Home Depot' started by guitarbuilder, Aug 2, 2017.

  1. erix

    erix TDPRI Member Silver Supporter

    43
    May 12, 2014
    Richland, MI
    Thanks Marty, I think I'll take a stab at it! Like you say, worse case is I'll need to make another'n....
     
    guitarbuilder likes this.

  2. slick4772

    slick4772 Tele-Meister

    161
    Jan 21, 2013
    Pittsburgh
    Great thread, and I will be using this information.

    Quick question - do you find any major difference in tone or weight using the hot rod truss rod vs using a traditional one way truss rod with a skunk stripe?
     

  3. guitarbuilder

    guitarbuilder Doctor of Teleocity Silver Supporter

    Mar 30, 2003
    Ontario County

    The difference in weight is roughly an additional 18" long piece of 3/16 steel, minus the 3/16" piece of maple it replaces. I measured it in another thread but can't recall the difference at the moment.


    As far as tone...everything impacts tone. No two necks are the same density and weight even if they are made the same way.
     

  4. guitarbuilder

    guitarbuilder Doctor of Teleocity Silver Supporter

    Mar 30, 2003
    Ontario County
    Neck #2










    I have a MIM body here and thought I'd build a one piece neck for it. The problem is it helps to have a router jig to do the truss rod slot. I started to draw up a jig and remembered that in a few Gibson LP style necks, I milled a straight slot and put in a ramped filler strip to obtain a little arch. So I said...why wouldn't that work in a tele neck? So here is my experimental neck.
     
    Last edited: Sep 6, 2017
    Mat UK likes this.

  5. guitarbuilder

    guitarbuilder Doctor of Teleocity Silver Supporter

    Mar 30, 2003
    Ontario County
    I took the Ed Hawley drawing and dimensioned it Rhino. Thanks again Ed...that's a great piece of work you did. In particular I was interested in the depth and curve of the slot.

    If you haven't learned how to do CAD, you should. It's a good skill and it isn't that hard. If you can use a Smart phone you can do CAD.


    truss rod slot for one piece neck.png
     
    Last edited: Sep 6, 2017

  6. guitarbuilder

    guitarbuilder Doctor of Teleocity Silver Supporter

    Mar 30, 2003
    Ontario County
    I put a point at the start, middle, and end of the curve and drew in a radius line of my own. It turns out to be about 150" Rad. The little vertical lines denote the ends of the truss rod slot. I made those lines perpendicular to the arc because I figured I'd use this on a future jig and wanted the plunge to be correct.


    150 rad.png
     

  7. guitarbuilder

    guitarbuilder Doctor of Teleocity Silver Supporter

    Mar 30, 2003
    Ontario County
    So having determined the slot depth and radius, I made a slot on the router table on a piece of 1" thick maple. I used a 7/32" bit. I plunged the neck into the bit and started with about 1/8" depth of cut. I put a couple lines on the fence to denote the front and back of the bit. I drew some start and stop lines on the neck top surface to ensure I'd get the slot in the correct spot. This is from the EHawley measurements. You can find that drawing in PDF and DXF formats here:

    http://www.gitarrebassbau.de/viewtopic.php?f=10&t=6


    Then I carefully lowered the neck at the start line into the bit and moved to the stop line and raised it up, all while holding it against the fence.


    n4.jpg

    n1.jpg

    n2.jpg
     
    Last edited: Sep 6, 2017

  8. guitarbuilder

    guitarbuilder Doctor of Teleocity Silver Supporter

    Mar 30, 2003
    Ontario County
    I repeated this step until I got to depth in 1/8" increments. The depth was .719" deep.



    depth.png

    n3.jpg
     

  9. guitarbuilder

    guitarbuilder Doctor of Teleocity Silver Supporter

    Mar 30, 2003
    Ontario County
    Next up was the curved filler strip. So I made a little pattern out of pine with the radius on it.


    n6.jpg
     

  10. guitarbuilder

    guitarbuilder Doctor of Teleocity Silver Supporter

    Mar 30, 2003
    Ontario County
    I cut a strip of maple. I traced that curve on it and sanded it to thickness in order to fit into the slot. I made a walnut strip too That is for a future skunk stripe. I figured do it at the same time since it was the same thickness.


    n8.jpg n9.jpg
    n5.jpg
     
    Last edited: Sep 6, 2017

  11. guitarbuilder

    guitarbuilder Doctor of Teleocity Silver Supporter

    Mar 30, 2003
    Ontario County
    The next part wasn't too bad, I carefully cut a maple strip out of the strip. I sanded the radius to the line on the drum sander.

    Then I went over the surface with a sanding block to smooth out any irregularities. I sanded the ends round to match the router bit radius too.

    I didn't want to push it in right away for fear of having to get it out again.


    n10.jpg n11.jpg n12.jpg
     
    Last edited: Sep 6, 2017

  12. guitarbuilder

    guitarbuilder Doctor of Teleocity Silver Supporter

    Mar 30, 2003
    Ontario County
    Then I stuck some titebond 1 glue on the underside. I clamped it in and down to the straight slot of the neck blank.

    I wrote H on the heel end to remind me to put it in the correct direction...:).


    The little walnut scraps are waxed on the bottom. Clamps were needed at the ends and middle of the strip.


    n13.jpg
     
    Last edited: Sep 6, 2017

  13. guitarbuilder

    guitarbuilder Doctor of Teleocity Silver Supporter

    Mar 30, 2003
    Ontario County
    That worked! So one hard part down. Then it time to slot. The registration surface that was against the fence for making the slot is against the fence on the stew mac miter box saw.


    After all the fret slots were made, I decided to thickness the peghead. I wanted a perpendicular wall to drill the walnut plug and anchor hole for the truss rod. I looked at the drawing and found a spot right where the transition starts to curve up. That is where I will drill the hole at a 3 degree angle.


    I machined the peghead down to about .600 thick with a router bit in my cnc. There's no point in making a router planning jig when I can do it this way, which is essentially the same thing.

    slot1.jpg

    slot2.jpg

    thickness.jpg

    thickness.jpg

    thickness2.jpg

    thickness3.jpg
     
    Last edited: Sep 6, 2017

  14. guitarbuilder

    guitarbuilder Doctor of Teleocity Silver Supporter

    Mar 30, 2003
    Ontario County
    Now the hard part of this kind of neck is the truss rod anchor plug hole. It requires a 3 degree angle dead in line to the truss rod slot. I transferred all the lines with a try square and machinist's scale to the peghead. I have a number of long "aircraft" drill bits with a regular point on them and have used them in the past. I decided to order a brad point version which hopefully will relieve the stress of this hole. That should be here in a few days.


    Here is the target.

    location.jpg
     
    Last edited: Sep 6, 2017
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  15. guitarbuilder

    guitarbuilder Doctor of Teleocity Silver Supporter

    Mar 30, 2003
    Ontario County
    So since the last installment there have been a few ups and downs. I went to drill dot holes just like on the two piece neck, in fact the drill bit and fence were still clamped there. To make a long story short the holes came out 1/16" away from the centerline. Poor vision, parallax view, bad lighting.... I think it was some of each...

    Anyway the neck was A. Destined for trash or

    B. Needed to be made usable.


    I could have redrilled with a 3/8" dot but didn't care for that. I opted to cnc out some rectangular slots and make some small block inlay similar to the small trapazoids like Gibson has done. They are glued in and look like this. While I was making rectangular mortises with a 1/8" bit, I figured I'd buzz out the nut slot between the saw kerfs.



    dots.jpg
     
    Last edited: Sep 9, 2017
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  16. guitarbuilder

    guitarbuilder Doctor of Teleocity Silver Supporter

    Mar 30, 2003
    Ontario County
    Now the truss rod anchor business. The bradpoint long bits still aren't here. I made a 3 degree ramp a bit different than the last one I buzzed out. I put a v notch in the middle to support the drill bit. I cnc'd the ramp but made the v notch on the router table with a v bit. I sanded the front face square. It gets taped to the peghead with some double sided tape.


    t1.jpg
     
    Last edited: Sep 9, 2017

  17. guitarbuilder

    guitarbuilder Doctor of Teleocity Silver Supporter

    Mar 30, 2003
    Ontario County
    I decided since the neck wasn't going to win any dot awards, I'd just drill with my twist drills. The ramp worked out nicely. The bottom of the v line up with the centerline. I made a mark on the side back a ways to align the block too.


    First I used a 3/16" drill bit.

    t2.jpg
     
    Last edited: Sep 9, 2017
    richa likes this.

  18. guitarbuilder

    guitarbuilder Doctor of Teleocity Silver Supporter

    Mar 30, 2003
    Ontario County
    Then followed that in with a 1/4", and 3/8" diameter bits. I moved the angle block backwards for each drill to compensate for the larger diameters. The first hole became a pilot hole for the next bit.

    The 3/8" drill bit went in only 1. 625" deep to correspond with the plug hole from the EHawley drawing.


    t5.jpg
     
    Last edited: Sep 9, 2017

  19. guitarbuilder

    guitarbuilder Doctor of Teleocity Silver Supporter

    Mar 30, 2003
    Ontario County
    A piece of truss rod stuck in there. You can see the gap in the nut slot where walnut will show.





    t3.jpg

    t4.jpg


    t6.jpg
     

  20. guitarbuilder

    guitarbuilder Doctor of Teleocity Silver Supporter

    Mar 30, 2003
    Ontario County
    Since that was a decent result, I sanded the transition on my edge sander, ROSS, and orbital a bit. I wet the area to raise the grain after the last pic was taken and will orbital it some more later.


    t7.jpg


    t8.jpg
     
    Last edited: Sep 9, 2017
    richa likes this.

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