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mahogany/ash tele, maple neck build.

Discussion in 'Tele Home Depot' started by JasonRobert, Aug 16, 2009.

  1. JasonRobert

    JasonRobert Tele-Holic

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    over the past few days I have made a start on a mahogany top/ash bottom tele. Both halves are 20mm, so 20mm+20mm = 40mm. 40mm = just over 1.5", and with both halves planed and glued together they now are a tiny bit over 1.5".

    First I will start from the beggining...

    I had to make myself a router planer, like the one scubadoo made.


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    This ash blank is just over 3/4" thick when I planed one side. This side will have the mahogany top glued to it.

    Unfortunatley the mahogany I purchased (for 4 quid!) was 15mm too short... so I cut some of the ash I had left over to make a 20mm ash "strip" down the middle. I then planed both sides of this mahogany "half" and then glued it onto the ash board.

    [​IMG]

    This picture also shows the neck. It is all maple, but I had to put a fretboard onto it as the maple wasnt thick enough for a one piece. it has a truss rod, which is one that doesnt need a curved channel...and the adjuster is at the heel end of the neck.
    [​IMG]

    Very soon I will be getting all my parts in so I can continue with the build. I will also be winding my own pickups on my new pickup winder....

    Cheers, Jason.
     
  2. bubba105

    bubba105 Tele-Meister

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    Looking good, I like the contrast in colors. I bet it's going to turn some heads.

    You sounded a little disappointed about your boards being not wide enough, so, for next time, if you're a little short in the width of your blank do this, make sure both edges of each board are planed flat, glue them, after it's dry place the template so one side is right (don't worry that it hangs off the edge on the other side), mark the outline with your pencil, cut just the WAIST sections, glue the cutoff of the waist to the section that is short (that's why you planed both edges of each board) (if you look at your photo, the waist on the left side could be turned 180 degrees & the grain would be an exact match). Now you've got a full body. Depending on your width it may only be the bottom section that needs widening but you can add a considerable amount to your width if necessary. This works well when the wood has similar grain thruout & you will have to plan the grain match before you glue. Long grain to long grain is a very strong bond so it won't fall apart.

    Richie
     
  3. JasonRobert

    JasonRobert Tele-Holic

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    thats a really good idea richie! :D I have two more boards left, which are enough for two more teles... I will have to try that out on them. one of them is really straight grained so I think I will have an almost perfect match from it...

    You are right, it is just the bottom half that needs widening. I was thinking, if i put the template in the centre of my next blank, (so that the join of the boards is dead centre...).... and then cut out both of the waist parts and glued them on... do you foresee any problems I would encounter from doing that? the only reason I want to do this is so that I will have the natural centre of the blank in the centre, purely for cosmetic reasons.

    cheers, Jason.
     
  4. Amadhunter

    Amadhunter Tele-Meister

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    Should be no problems, glued joints are usually stronger than the solid wood. :)
    Looks really nice with the center stripe, looking forward to seeing this build.
     
  5. bubba105

    bubba105 Tele-Meister

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    +1 Amedhunter. Jason, keep us posted. In Wood magazine a few years back they did a story on yellow wood glues. In testing, the glue joint held stronger than the wood itself, in long grain to long grain fastening.

    Putting the joint directly in the center is a good idea. Centering the joint looks nicer. With mahogany, if done right, you may be able to lose the joints completely. Make sure to use the waist cut on the same side it was taken from because, if you think about it, you're glueing up what used to be a continuation of the grain. Just hinge it 180 degrees.

    Richie
     
  6. JasonRobert

    JasonRobert Tele-Holic

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    Here is the second blank all glued up....
    [​IMG]

    and here is a closeup of the join.... when its planed I will have a better representation of the join.... that hole is a locating hole for the template....(which is dead centre of the join...
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    someone drilled the wrong locating hole........
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    but luckily it will be covered by the tailpiece!
    [​IMG]
     
  7. JasonRobert

    JasonRobert Tele-Holic

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    Next, I cut out the two waist pieces, and glued them onto the side.....
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    And then I checked with the template, that the waiste pieces are big enough..... They are more than big enough! This is a good tip for anyone who has around 1.5in (each side, 2-3 max in total) too short in the bottom half width...
    [​IMG]

    tomorrow, once these pieces have glued I shall start planing this mahogany blank ready for the ash... I will also plane the back of the first blank, so I can start rough cutting and routing.
     
  8. bubba105

    bubba105 Tele-Meister

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    Post some photos after planing. It looks like you're going to have a couple of invisible joints there. I'm interested to see how it turns out. I've got some black limba I'm going to use this on but I've bitten off more than I can chew right now (4 guitars at once) so I have to wait until I get done with what's on my plate before moving on.
     
  9. JasonRobert

    JasonRobert Tele-Holic

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    Last week my computer burnt out (litterally)... so now I have new one I can finally post some pictures..... Here is the first blank all planed and routed (1/4" (6.4mm) roundover) with the other blank rough cut underneath it, ready for some final roughing and routing.

    [​IMG]

    I have also purchased a new bosch jigsaw, and the difference is amazing. I would highly recomend using a decent jigsaw (if you do not have room for a bandsaw like me) for rough cutting. The one I was using before was OK, but was hard work. with my new one I just zip around the edges in over half the time.

    This is a close up of the edge. I have sanded it to 100 grit, and will be working up to around 320, after I have routed the cavitys and drilled the holes. This photo also shows the thickness (1 1/2")

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    For the second blank (without the stripe) I shall be testing an ash neck. I have managed to get three decent pieces and I laminated them together. I will be adding on some "ears" for the bits that stick out on the headstock.

    [​IMG]


    I do have another piece of mahogany, but I think I will get these two into the spray shed before I start work on another....Like you, bubba105, I dont want to bite off more than I can chew! :D
     
  10. JasonRobert

    JasonRobert Tele-Holic

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    ok, after a few weeks off, Im back at it.

    Last weekend I built a much larger router thicknesser, capable of leveling bass necks, and doing two bodies at once (or both halfs etc.).

    This weekend I have almost finished the ash neck. The grain looks better than what I expected as I didnt really try to match any of it...

    Here is the front (maple fretboard)
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    Here is the headstock, it is actually 5 piece on the headstock, 3 on the actual neck... (in other words a three piece neck with headstock "ears". I personally think that only two joins are really noticable.
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    Front of headstock... almost all of them are noticable from the front.
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    and finally the back of the neck.
    [​IMG]


    There are a few more bits to sand out. I havent decided on any machine heads yet which is why there are a lack of holes. Ideally I would have done them before shaping the back, but it doesnt really make much difference to me, I have got satisfactory results from doing it before and after.

    woooo... I will take the pictures down for a moment as I havent resized them!!!!
     
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