How often do you really screw up?

Billycaster21

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Mar 23, 2021
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I’m new to this, and I am into my third attempt at a “first” neck. It seems that there are countless ways all of this can go wrong. It’s a minor miracle that anybody can string all of the steps together without making a fatal error. In the past four months, I’ve ruined two perfectly good fretboards, truss rods, neck blanks. Hoping my rate of completely screwing things up, starts to go down.
 
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devrock

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Please don't take this wrong way, as I'm genuinely trying to give you constructive criticism, but it sounds like you trying to rush and not thinking things through enough before you start.

Everyone makes mistakes now and then, I know I do but the frequency is often related to impatience.

There are so many reasons why you should never rush when building a guitar. You need to allow the wood to rest after cutting/planing and before the next cut or glue up so use this time to plan the next steps. Be mindful with your tools as most of them can do you a lot of damage.

I know it's a cliche but you should enjoy the journey, not the destination. If you're building guitars for a hobby you should never feel a mistake has wasted you time, you've just learnt something new.

No offense taken. You could be very right in the sense that I often do try to squeeze time in when I can and I often feel rushed (by myself).
 

Bob Womack

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May 28, 2016
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Between Clever and Stupid
"Step 6: Love
This is the tough one, and will make or break you. You must do this work with love, or you fail. You don’t have to think, but you must love. This is one of the reasons I have nice tools. If I get hung up with maybe a busted knuckle or a busted stud, I feel my tools, like art objects or lovely feelies, until the rage subsides and sense and love return…" - John Muir on auto repair, from How to Keep Your Volkswagen Alive: A Manual of Step by Step Procedures for the Compleat Idiot

Bob
 

gregulator450

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Aug 12, 2014
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The Dry Side
Fear of screwing up and impatience with my lack of skill has all but killed my venturing into building. My woodworking skill ends at stick framing and installing baseboards, and I am afraid of messing up a good slab of hardwood.

I think a lot of my fear comes from a time when I was financially unable to replace wood if I messed it up- even though I have improved my situation the fear still remains.

All that said, I really hope to do my first body builds in the next 4-6 months. If I don't hate myself after that, I will try a neck...
 

RolandG

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Jul 31, 2015
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UK
Someone told me that the skill of an expert woodworker was the way he recovered his mistakes.

Being retired, and not under time pressure, I work by three rules:
1. If you make a mistake take a break, and have a cup of tea.
2. If you make a second mistake have a beer.
3. Never go into a workshop if you’ve been drinking alcohol.
 




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