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

Small Acoustic Archtop

Discussion in 'Tele Home Depot' started by richa, Jun 19, 2017.

  1. Zepfan

    Zepfan Friend of Leo's

    Nov 30, 2013
    Horn Lake, MS
    Hope you got it off the ground to keep the bugs and rot at bay.;)
     
    richa likes this.

  2. callasabra

    callasabra Tele-Afflicted

    Apr 11, 2016
    USA
    Awesome. Be sure to post your conclusions. I have a few locust and beech logs that I cut last year that I would love to turn into guitars
     
    richa likes this.

  3. richa

    richa Tele-Afflicted Ad Free Member

    Apr 23, 2016
    Washington
    Well there's a sticking point. I'll seal the ends right away but I'm on restricted activity right now so moving it will have to wait a few weeks. But you're right it needs to be elevated.

    Will do!
     
    Indy-Tele likes this.

  4. richa

    richa Tele-Afflicted Ad Free Member

    Apr 23, 2016
    Washington
    Linings are as done as I'm gonna done 'em. Leveled them with a block plane then used a paddle sander like in the Benedetto book. Sorry no pictures of the paddle sander. It's really complicated. I took a stick long enough to span the body and wrapped sandpaper around one end. For the most part the sanding was just a sanity check in this case. As long as the sandpaper was evenly contacting the face of the linings it indicates that things are more or less level. They were with one exception. On the top side when I was planing through the waist I managed to lean in a bit and an inward slant on them. So... I did what I always do when I screw up, used sawdust and CA to build up the area then sand it back to the right level. Then I trimmed and sanded off the bits where the linings on the braces stuck out further. All tidied up and ready to go.



    20170811_180844.jpg

    Lessons learned about making linings:
    * Be more careful to get the widths of all the little cuts reasonably similar. The narrow ones are pretty easy to chip.
    * Be more careful to cut through the full depth up to the stop. If the web is too thick it will just break instead of bending evenly. Had this problem a bit on the waist .
     
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  5. richa

    richa Tele-Afflicted Ad Free Member

    Apr 23, 2016
    Washington
    I remembered, remarkably, that I wanted to put a little inlay thingy on the peg end. Even better I remembered that I wanted to that before gluing the top and back on. This led to a sequence. Kinda want to use the same wood as the fretboard. So I had to actually convince myself that the Jotoba was going to be a go for the fretboard. I thought that if I glued up strips of the Jotoba that were quartered the faces might be a little easier to work. I had no real reason for thinking this but the flat sawn faces were a bear because of a grain reversal. Besides the quartered face looked a little nicer I thought. So I managed to cut strips and join them for a glued up fretboard. This was encouraging enough to go ahead with the Jotoba.

    So here's the inlay piece.
    20170812_144941.jpg

    Then right off the bat I boogered things up. While scoring the outline on the body I lapsed and got a rogue line there on the left side.
    20170812_150034.jpg

    Well... I could have cut a bigger inlay... but I would either need a glueup or a flatsawn piece to be big enough. So I decided to try to leave it be and see how bad it looked. Worst case I'll cut a shallow channel adjacent to the inlay and fill it so there's a dark pinstrip on either side. That could look cool.

    So here's the cutout (using a chisel and router plane).
    20170812_152836.jpg

    Here's the inlay glued in and wiped with naptha. So definitely will be adding a filler strip along each side in an attempt to double down on that boo boo. It looks lopsided to me, but when I measure things it all checks out. Maybe the grain lines are playing tricks with my eyes along with that rogue score line. Not sure there's much to be done about it in any case.
    20170812_154626.jpg

    It's not a strong contrast but it is a complimentary one. I quite like the color and it should make for an interesting fretboard. I guess if I really end up not liking it I can dye it or something. But I think this will work.

    Drilled the end pin jack hole as well.
    20170812_161328.jpg
     

  6. Engraver-60

    Engraver-60 Friend of Leo's

    Age:
    65
    Jan 6, 2008
    Franklin, TN
    That drilled hole breaks the grain lines perfectly, so the eye does not see it as crooked. Some thin black/white/black inlay on each side of the inlay would really jazz it up. Great thread, and beautiful work, Richa.
     

  7. richa

    richa Tele-Afflicted Ad Free Member

    Apr 23, 2016
    Washington
    Thanks! Didn't even occur to me to do a B-W-B style inlay. That would have looked classy. Technically because of the way I did it (ship has already sailed) I could still. Hmmm...


    What I ended up doing looks a little unconventional but fits what I'm thinking about for the headstock as well. Instead of going with a pinstripe I cut a fairly wide stripe either side. While doing that I corrected the lopsided line. Note to self - paper template instead of "measuring" for stuff like this. I don't think I would have got the inlay lopsided if I had - it just removes several opportunities for that moment of inattention and I need all the help I can get.

    20170813_150849.jpg

    Seems like I read somewhere on here about using charcoal dust with epoxy for black inlay. Well why not. Masked it off to keep the epoxy out of the deep grain.
    20170813_152719.jpg

    A few touch-ups needed that should come out during final sanding but I can live with this.
    20170814_182350.jpg

    Here's the glued-up fretboard from the same piece of jotoba as the inlay. I'm still undecided whether to leave it natural and just let the glue lines strut their funky stuff or do "something".
    20170813_174204.jpg
     
    awasson likes this.

  8. awasson

    awasson Friend of Leo's

    Age:
    53
    Nov 18, 2010
    Vancouver
    Wow, that epoxy inlay looks great. Before I saw the photo of it, I was thinking why bother, the wood on wood looks nice. Then I saw the results with the black. That's gorgeous!
     

  9. richa

    richa Tele-Afflicted Ad Free Member

    Apr 23, 2016
    Washington
    At this moment back has been glued and the top is glued and in the clamps.

    A lot of tedious thought went into how to clamp up. Short version is that I wanted to glue at least the back while the sides where clamped in the form. The sides seems to be think they are an offset guitar and don't entirely want to behave. With the linings in it's not bad...but they still have somewhat a mind of their own. So...

    I still had the plywood offcuts from original version of the form. I cut the "middle" out of those to make a caul. Had to sand the inside bottom edge to keep it from intersecting the arch. Put a bazillion drywall screws in the side of the form (pre-drilled because the rest of the form is mdf and that stuff splits). Some 1/8" elastic cord and a few practice dry runs to figure out the sequence. Pretty even squeeze-out so I guess it works ok. The form is clamped to another piece of mdf so the body doesn't just push out the other side.
    20170813_184745.jpg

    Here it's obvious why this is the one where I learn to do a binding.
    20170814_183456.jpg

    Then there's this. Forgot that the top will have a cutout for the neck leaving an area where it wouldn't be glued. Should have left material in there during the carve. So glued in a shim. This should provide a continues glue line around the rim. Not pretty but it'll do I believe.
    20170814_190057.jpg

    The top was a snap to truss up compared to the back (mostly because my fingers weren't already done in from all the practice runs with that elastic cord). I did think about using spool clamps for the top even after doing the back this way because it would be a good excuse to make a set of spool clamps. But in the end I had this all set up so they will have to wait for another build.
    20170814_205745.jpg

    So the top is all safely tucked into bed for the night. Feels like packing for a trip and wondering what I'm going to realize I forgot when it's too late.
     

  10. richa

    richa Tele-Afflicted Ad Free Member

    Apr 23, 2016
    Washington
    Thank you for the kind words. It's been a bit of a happy accident. :)
     

  11. richa

    richa Tele-Afflicted Ad Free Member

    Apr 23, 2016
    Washington
    Oh yeah - someone might think I did that end wedge upside down. To any such someone I will only say that I did it my way.;)
     
    awasson likes this.

  12. Engraver-60

    Engraver-60 Friend of Leo's

    Age:
    65
    Jan 6, 2008
    Franklin, TN
    The black lines look pretty nice. That guitar is coming along beautifully. You're a brave soul, you are.
     
    richa likes this.

  13. richa

    richa Tele-Afflicted Ad Free Member

    Apr 23, 2016
    Washington
    Thank you. This build is definitely a stretch for me... and that's an understatement. :)
     

  14. richa

    richa Tele-Afflicted Ad Free Member

    Apr 23, 2016
    Washington
    Freed the poor thing from Shelob's web.

    20170815_182205.jpg

    Did a quick neck alignment check just to see how much trouble I had in front of me. Pleasantly surprised. Will tweak slightly to try to tighten the joint but all the errors seem to have mostly cancelled each other out.
    20170815_193308.jpg

    Kinda broke my heart to start cuttin' on it but dove right into the binding. I've been wondering how they used to cut binding channels before routers/dremels etc. I'm still not sure I know but they must have used something a little like one of these gizmos. It's called a gramil and there's a demonstration video . I thought about trying to build a version of this (there are a few DIY videos out there). But I think I must have exhausted the "grow your own hay to feed your own cows" impulse temporarily and decided to just buy one. It's nominally used for scoring before routing to create a clean edge and reduce chipout. But it can also be used to cut the channel. In that case the waste is removed with a chisel.

    Verdict - meh. I'm sure with practice I would work out the techniques better. But it's slow and there are lots of opportunities for little flubs. Fortunately sepele is very forgiving in the cosmetic touchup department. At the end of the day it's probably best suited for scoring prior to using a router.

    So I started by using one end of the blade to scrape a channel as a reference for the bottom of the binding channel. Couldn't really scrape into the waist. The arched top really gets in the way.
    20170815_202206.jpg

    Then used the other end of the cutter which is used like a marking gauge and cut into the face. I removed waste with a chisel as I deepened the channel. Doing the waist requires the blade to be reversed so the curved surface of the gramil rests against the sides. So did the bit last. Used the tape as a reference line for the bottom of the channel.
    20170816_183402.jpg

    Here's the back. That's a couple hours worth of work. The channel is pretty clean but I expect that when I start dry fitting the binding I'll need to touch up a few areas.
    20170816_211710.jpg
     
    betocool, Zepfan, Barncaster and 6 others like this.

  15. Crafty Fox

    Crafty Fox Tele-Holic

    962
    Nov 25, 2011
    Perth Australia
    Lee Valley, Canada, sell that Irving Sloane purfling tool.
    I have one but haven't used it yet; I use my Dremel/Stewmac thing but I'll probably use the Sloane tool on the current build.
     

  16. guitarbuilder

    guitarbuilder Doctor of Teleocity Silver Supporter

    Mar 30, 2003
    Ontario County

    I think the David Russell Young book had one as well made with an xacto knife blade. I'd imagine that with a really sharp chisel and sharp blades that it could be kind of satisfying compared to the cloud of dust a dremel puts out....(been there and done that once) I found that screw- on aluminum binding jig attachment to perhaps be the most useless thing I ever bought for this hobby.
     
    Crafty Fox likes this.

  17. Zepfan

    Zepfan Friend of Leo's

    Nov 30, 2013
    Horn Lake, MS
    That top looks fantastic.
     

  18. richa

    richa Tele-Afflicted Ad Free Member

    Apr 23, 2016
    Washington
    I like the one in the book - straightforward to build. Having tried this I think having two different purpose built tools would be useful. The purfling tool design seems to work well for cutting the top/back. It would probably work for the side on a flattop. But on the archtop I feel like it needs a donut or standoff that would ride just the edge of the top. I definitely think this is workable...and sharp chisels do help. I had difficulty working out the best approach for the different grain directions going on between the sides the plates and the lining. It wouldn't matter as much if the channel on the side was almost to depth. There's definitely room for tweaking this approach some more.

    Thanks Zep.
     

  19. printer2

    printer2 Poster Extraordinaire

    May 24, 2010
    Canada
    Get yourself some wood nail files from a dollar store. Use them to sand the inside and outside curves before you install the binding. They bend and produce a natural curve evening out the high and low spots.
     
    El Tele Lobo and richa like this.

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