Matching multi-scale guitar and bass

lbridenstine

Friend of Leo's
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Feb 21, 2013
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Location
Kalamazoo, MI
I'm starting up a couple of new builds for a friend. It's going to be an 8 string guitar and a 5 string bass. Both are multi-scale and they will match each other visually.

Multi-scale is new for me, so I asked Shawn May (May Custom Basses) if he could cut the fret slots for me. I took a trip to his workshop over the weekend and picked these up from him. He did an awesome job and had these great pieces of Macassar Ebony.

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I got this massive piece of curly maple from curlymaplewoods.com It's enough for both necks (and they're both neck thru).


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This is surprisingly the first time I've used swamp ash in a build.

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Also the first time I've done curly maple tops.

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Aside from them being extended range and multi-scale, they're going to have resin/powder inlays of my friend's band logo on the body and I'm delving into trans-color finishes with these.

The woods are all white except the Macassar, so I think it's going to be pretty interesting to see the color come to life right at the end.



To start out, I ripped the big maple board for the necks, flipped them, planed the gluing edge, scuff sanded because it looked a little too polished straight off the planer, and glued up the necks.

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This is straight off the planer:

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Definitely the easiest neck glue-ups I've done!

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mistermikev

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subscribed. if that turns out anything like your avatar... gonna be amazing. would love to see bigger pics of your avatar guitar.
 

mistermikev

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ah you went fretless. that's pretty cool. love (what looks like) binding on the inside of the f holes. lots of good points on that. nice work.
 

lbridenstine

Friend of Leo's
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Feb 21, 2013
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Kalamazoo, MI
I've been doing a bunch of cutting, re-sawing, and planing. Nothing super exciting yet.

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Jointer questions:
I got my jointer setup yesterday. I finally figured out why I couldn't get the infeed table level, I ended up just having to completely unscrew it and put it back together. So, it's level now and I started jointing one side of the guitar neck and it did a good job of squaring it, but it's not really level along the length. Anyone have any handy videos or advice on jointing? Maybe I'm doing something wrong.

Also, the infeed table feels sticky when moving wood over it, not actually sticky, but just the wood doesn't slide over it like it should. Is there something I should put on it? Paste wax, maybe?
 

10orgtr

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May 3, 2011
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344
Location
western PA
I've used paste wax, either Simonize or Turtle Wax, and a product called TopCote which comes in a small orange spray can. Both work well. Sorry but I can't remember who makes TopCote, I think we used to get it at Rocklers.
Cheers,
Woody
 

eallen

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Bargersville/Indianapolis, Indiana
Look forward to seeing both builds! I buy from curlymaple out of Ohio as well. Good stuff and prices.

On your jointer when you say not level along the length are you are talking both sides being parallel to each other? If so a jointer can screw up parallel side on a board in a heart beat if much is taken off. That is why it is essential to do it only joint one side first and they use a planer dimension and joint the other in my experience.


Eric
 

RogerC

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Mar 30, 2011
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Oklamerica
I've been doing a bunch of cutting, re-sawing, and planing. Nothing super exciting yet.

57068515_1922746941168727_2130831282404327424_o.jpg



Jointer questions:
I got my jointer setup yesterday. I finally figured out why I couldn't get the infeed table level, I ended up just having to completely unscrew it and put it back together. So, it's level now and I started jointing one side of the guitar neck and it did a good job of squaring it, but it's not really level along the length. Anyone have any handy videos or advice on jointing? Maybe I'm doing something wrong.

Also, the infeed table feels sticky when moving wood over it, not actually sticky, but just the wood doesn't slide over it like it should. Is there something I should put on it? Paste wax, maybe?
There's definitely a lot of art in using a jointer. Here's a good vid. Has lots of info on setup as well as use:

 

lbridenstine

Friend of Leo's
Joined
Feb 21, 2013
Posts
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Location
Kalamazoo, MI
There's definitely a lot of art in using a jointer. Here's a good vid. Has lots of info on setup as well as use:



Ah, this is perfect, thanks! I wish I would have seen this before I spent more hours re-setting the jointer up again on Tuesday. I found that the out feed table was just a hair above the blades, so it was catching. So, I spent SO MUCH TIME (that's an exaggeration, but more time than I wanted) trying to get it perfectly level with the blades and it was picking up the straight edge and moving it forward like he showed, but I didn't know it was supposed to so I was "correcting it" and probably ended up with it under again, maybe.

Okay, I'll try again. Thanks!!
 

lbridenstine

Friend of Leo's
Joined
Feb 21, 2013
Posts
3,062
Location
Kalamazoo, MI
Sorry for the lack of updates. I setup the jointer like in that video and it worked!

Here's a bunch of pictures of everything that has happened in the past month:

A spread of body parts:
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Trimmed up the ends of the fretboards, which I was able to just do with the miter saw this time.

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I tried using my miter saw jig for cutting the scarf joints, but ran into some issues because of the sizes of everything. The bass neck was too long & heavy and wouldn't balance and stay exactly where I needed it. The guitar neck came out fine. The headstock woods were too tall for the miter saw, which I didn't realize until I was like 80% through a cut and couldn't figure out why the blade wouldn't go any further (you'll see some saw burn marks on one of the headstocks).

I ended up cleaning up all the scarfs with my bandsaw and just 220 grit paper taped on the back of a board, which worked well.

Laying out the necks and headstocks... Here's the bass.

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Guitar:

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I cut the tapers, changed the blade on the bandsaw, and cut out the headstocks.

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The bass has a new feature: double scarf.

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When I cut the taper, this bark pocket showed up. Ugh. Luckily the neck blank is thick enough to flip it over and use the other side. That bark pocket should get completely cut away when I cut off the excess material from the back of the neck (fingers crossed that it doesn't take a weird turn further in).

Flame shot:
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Tuner holes are drilled and I sanded the perimeter of the headstocks.

Scarf joints are glued up.

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