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Discussion in 'Tele Home Depot' started by Colt W. Knight, Oct 2, 2011.

  1. Colt W. Knight

    Colt W. Knight Doctor of Teleocity Ad Free Member

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    I'd place the fretboard face down on the bench, and then place the neck on top. Clamp it that way. I would shim the fretboad so it doesn't rock, and make some clamping cauls for the back of the neck.
     
  2. R. Stratenstein

    R. Stratenstein Doctor of Teleocity Ad Free Member

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    Axedaddy's 2011 Challenge build showed a pretty stout gluing clamp/jig that I've considered building myself. He attributes the idea to Preeb. Not sure it would necessarially prevent your neck from rocking on the rounded side, but with a few shims to help keep it perfectly vertical, I think once it's clamped down, it will stay.

    http://www.tdpri.com/forum/2011-tdpri-tele-build-challenge/263942-axedaddys-2011-tdpri-build-challenge-thread.html#post3146703
     
  3. RogerC

    RogerC Poster Extraordinaire

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    Thanks guys.
     
  4. mickmac

    mickmac Tele-Holic

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    Maybe someday.....nice vids.
     
  5. Colt W. Knight

    Colt W. Knight Doctor of Teleocity Ad Free Member

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    Alrighty, time to glue in some pearl dots.
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]

    After those puppies are in I start sanding with a block and 100 grit to level the dots to the fretboard radius, then 150, 220, 320, 1000, 1500 to polish the ebony and the pearl.

    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]

    I couldn't get a good shot, but the ebony looks very polished. You can see yourself in it.
    [​IMG]
     
  6. Colt W. Knight

    Colt W. Knight Doctor of Teleocity Ad Free Member

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    Then I did a little layout work on the side dots.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

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    So I would like to go a little more in depth on how a layout my tuner holes.

    1. I measure 7/16" from the long edge of the headstock on either end. Then use my ruler to dray a parrallel straight line from the edge, 7/16" over.
    2. Then I measure 15/16" from the nut end of the line. Make a mark, double check my measurement, and make a center punch. Center punching here is important because you can progressively be off a pencil mark, and it will add up to a real difference over 6 holes.
    3. Then measure another 15/16", make a mark, double check, center punch.
    4. Repeat till all six holes are center punched.

    [​IMG]


    When I make my heel transistions, I place the neck in the body and mark where it meets the body. Then move that line out about 1/2". Then give it a little triangle. This way, I wont get any deep rasp marks by the heal, which means I wont have to over sand and screw up my pretty transistion to correct the rasp marks.
    [​IMG]
     
  7. Colt W. Knight

    Colt W. Knight Doctor of Teleocity Ad Free Member

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    And I put some frets in.
    [​IMG]

    I don't have anything fancy when it comes to fretting. I bend my wire into a little arch, and hammer the frets in from one end to the other.

    I am fretting ontop of my anvil to reduce noise in the apartment.
     
  8. Colt W. Knight

    Colt W. Knight Doctor of Teleocity Ad Free Member

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    Neck Shaping time.

    [​IMG]

    Let me explain my neck shaping setup.
    1. I clamp the neck in a bench vice using softeners. They stick up and out to protect the heel transistion from the rasp.
    2. I use a diamond brand horse shoeing rasp to shape the neck. I measure depth with a set of digital calipers, and contour with a contour gauge.

    Step ONE - removing the bulk shoulder material



    [​IMG]

    Step TWO - Transitioning into a rounded shape



    Step Three - Actually rounding out the shape



    My camera cut off on this step, and I lost most of the video. But what you would have seen is me fully transistioning the neck into a FAT "U" shape similiar to a GE Smith telecaster or Fender Nocaster.

    However, Mr. Wescott wants a V shaped, so after I make the Fat U shape, I hold my rasp at a fairly steep angle and carve about a 1" wide flat spot down both sides. I am mindful of my fretboard lines, and I am mindful to make both sides symetrical.

    Step - FOUR - Final shape


    After thats all done, I don't have rasp gouge marks because I use the rasp as a knife, not a file. To further soften the edges, I use my palm sander to transistion everywhere that my rasp wont reach. And Ill sand by hand the areas I can't reach with the sander.

    [​IMG]
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    [​IMG]
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    I also drilled my tuner holes.
    [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Oct 23, 2011
  9. Colt W. Knight

    Colt W. Knight Doctor of Teleocity Ad Free Member

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    I have carved enough necks, that I don't need to continually check my work with the contour gauge to get the shape I want. However, if I am copying a specific neck shape or specific guitar, I will carve a little, check, carve a little, check, and so on and so fourth. Doing this, you can copy any shape you want. Its pretty cool.

    This is an incredibly hard piece of maple, so the carving will go a little slower. This is good for the beginnner because its harder to mess up. On softer woods like mohoghany and walnut, I can shape the neck in about 5-10 minutes. With this harder maple, its more like 15 minutes.

    I made this sucker 1" thick, becuase I believe that bigger necked guitars sound better. The V shape alleviates a lot of shoulder, so it won't feel as chunky as a 1" U or C shape. A 1" U shape is what feels like a baseball bat.

    When I make necks with thinner transistion. I take my rasp and basically file the back flat till I get a few hundreths above the depth I want. Then I proceed as above.

    I typically will not make a neck thinner than 0.90". When someone tells me they want a thin neck, I wont go down with out kicking a screaming a bunch.
     
  10. Colt W. Knight

    Colt W. Knight Doctor of Teleocity Ad Free Member

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    I forgot to mention this previously, but quality rasps are RAZOR sharp. They will cut you in a heart beat, and when you do cut yourself with a rasp, its usually abour three deep parallel cuts, or you just take a chunk out of your knuckle. These diamond brand rasps have individual teeth sharp enough to cut you, so you really have to learn how to hold them correctly in order to not cut yourself and bleed all over your neck.
     
    Last edited: Oct 25, 2011
  11. R. Stratenstein

    R. Stratenstein Doctor of Teleocity Ad Free Member

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    'in order to nut cut yourself and bleed all over your neck."


    OWWWWWW, that sounds painful!:eek::twisted:
     
  12. gitlvr

    gitlvr Friend of Leo's

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    I use a set of leather gloves when I work with a rasp. You are spot on. Just holding the far end of the rasp as you work it back and forth with your main hand(in my case, my left hand) will turn it into hamburger real quick.
     
  13. Colt W. Knight

    Colt W. Knight Doctor of Teleocity Ad Free Member

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    Yup, don't get to aggressive and aim for your junk.

    Leather gloves would be a smart solution. I can't feel the neck with the gloves on, so I don't wear them when shaping.
     
  14. Justacarp

    Justacarp TDPRI Member

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    Thank you for the lessons, I'm watching from the sidelines
     
  15. Colt W. Knight

    Colt W. Knight Doctor of Teleocity Ad Free Member

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    To add a little extra touch to this guitar, I am going to fit it with an aluminum tone bar. I have used a couple of these in the past, but Herb's recent thread got me thinking how much I like the idea of a tone bar.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

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    It fits!

    [​IMG]

    About the process:

    1. I use two 1/8" drill bits in the outside holes as registration pins.
    2. Slide the tone bar over the bits and onto the guitar body.
    3. Slide the the template over the tone. As you can see from the pics, I used double side tape to hold it down.
    4. Removed the tone bar and bits.
    5. Set the depth stop on the plunge router.
    * Important note - This can be a tricky operation because the route is essentially the same width as the router bit. If you use a long bit and try to plunge down you will most likely nail your template and F' it up. So I use my short pattern bit so I can make sure my bearing is in there to prevent the bit from nailing my template. Even this way isn't ideal because the torque of a router with it starts up is enough to turn that bit sideways enough to catch the template. You need a steady grip, and soft start router helps out a lot. Ideally, you would use a 3/8" short pattern bit like Stew Mac sells.
     
    Last edited: Oct 30, 2011
  16. Colt W. Knight

    Colt W. Knight Doctor of Teleocity Ad Free Member

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    Then I use my highly technical method of drilling electrosocket holes. I know a lot of guys use a drill press, but I always found it so much easier to just clamp the body down, and drill it by hand. I can have it drilled before I can setup my drill press.

    [​IMG]

    * Quick note - When you buy long shank bits or forstner bits, buy the ones that have 3 flat relief cuts or have that hexagonal shape where you chuck it into a drill. Nothing worse than your damn forstner bits spinning while you drill.
     
  17. Colt W. Knight

    Colt W. Knight Doctor of Teleocity Ad Free Member

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    Then its time to paint this bad boy, oh yeah! Normally I enjoy painting.
    As I have mentioned before, this guitar is going to be butterscotch blond.
    There is two ways to make Butterscotch Blonde.
    1. Spray the guitar vintage white, then spray on an amber toner coat, then clear.
    2. Mix up your butterscotch at one whack.
    Both methods have their own merits. If you are trying to get a vintage guitar look, I would go with option 1. If you just want a pretty golden butterscotch, I like number 2 the best.
    [​IMG]
    This much thinner
    [​IMG]
    This much lacquer
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    ~16 drops of white pigment
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    ~2 drops brown pigment
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    ~10 drops yellow pigment, and 3 drops amber dye
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    This is super easy to tweak. If you want it lighter, add some white, darker, add brown. More golden, add yellow, and you can always add more amber. I think stew mac says you can add up to 10% pigment before you begin to effect the properties of the lacquer .
    [​IMG]
    Then I went to spray my nice body after I gave it quick rub down with 220 to remove dirt and bumpies. Then a quick wipe down with naptha. Then I went to spray. Well, the damn purple gun pissed me off for the last time. I got mad at it, and hurled it across the room. Needless to say, I am going to purchase another spray gun to finish this build up.
     
  18. Colt W. Knight

    Colt W. Knight Doctor of Teleocity Ad Free Member

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    Oh well, lets calm down a bit, and goto to work finishing up the neck.
    Something that has been poking at the back of my mind since I started this build is how am I going to carve the peghead down to proper width without my RAS or good bandsaw back home. I had a couple options. 1. Use the Ranch’s table saw, 2. Use the 12” bandsaw I just bought, or 3. Figure something else out.
    1. The ranch’s table saw is a dangerous POS. It probably needs more in repairs and refurbishing than its worth. It needs an on/off switch, motor belts, fence system, blade, and a bunch of sanding , polishing, and lubrication.
    2. I don’t have a lot of faith in my new bandsaw. We are on speaking terms, but I wouldn’t trust him with my girlfriend.
    3. I can’t believe I didn’t think of it before, but it hit me as I was looking at that dangerous table saw today. Ill just use my router…DUH!!!

    [​IMG]

    That worked out well. And it was actually easier and quicker than the ways I have done it in the past. Now I feel like a big DA.
    Then on to contouring the transistion behind the nut. The big spindles and belt on the ROSS have to large of diameter to get the corner of the transistion.
    [​IMG]
    And you have to really watch that little spindle. If you let that headstock get crooked or let it get away from you, that little spindle will put gouges in your nice and flat head stock. But its still the best way I have found to get the job done.
    [​IMG]
    After wards, I just clean everything up with a palm sander, and go about normal finish sanding on the neck.
     
  19. Colt W. Knight

    Colt W. Knight Doctor of Teleocity Ad Free Member

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    Alright, so I finally went out and got a better spray gun.

    [​IMG]

    World of difference! I know better than to buy cheap tools, but sometimes you just can't afford the nice stuff and have to make do for awhile.


    After 2 passes( not coats) of BSB. This came out great for that vintage Nocaster look in my opinion.

    [​IMG]

    After 4 passes(not coats)

    [​IMG]


    Then onto the neck. Mr. Wescott wants an unfinished neck. I couldn't bring myself to put a pearly white neck on one of my guitars, so I am doing some experimenting.

    EXP 1.

    1 ounce lacuer, 7-8 lacquer thinner, and a splash of transtint amber.

    [​IMG]

    1 pass - TINT heaven!

    [​IMG]

    The tint laid down even. Once it dried, it was smooth as hell. Then I laid down 1 more pass. Once it dried, it was so smooth and shiny it didn't need any buffing or level sanding. WOW!!! I think I have a new way to spray lacquered neck!

    However thin, the neck still had a finish build up. That is not what MR. Wescott wants. So I going to strip the finish, apply the dye to the bare wood, and probably just wipe it with a coat of teak oil. The headstock will of course be lacquered, but the rest of the neck will not.
     
  20. CraigB

    CraigB Tele-Afflicted

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    That color looks like real butterscotch, like... edible. Really nice. And the neck looks great too. This is an awesome thread!

    Craig
     
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