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Discussion in 'Tele Home Depot' started by ftbtx, Feb 28, 2020.
Are any of you familiar with a neck builder that offers a bound headstock?
You could have the artisans in china custom make you one for a small upcharge.
Its hard to bind a fender head, easier for a Gibson/Martin/ et al. Its easier when the curves are simple. What exactly do you want?
I actually like binding Fender style headstocks more because it doesn’t have a tight radius or even corners. Someone help out Bill - Would you? . If I can do it all of who have way more skills can do it.
I was talking about the curve up to the fretboard, particularly with wood binding. In some cases it would be possible to bind a neck after it has been fabricated but usually it is easier to make the transition at the nut before the fretboard is on.
Guitarbuild.co.uk would likely do it and are likely competitively priced with the Pound crashing through the floor... (Used two bodies, which have been good. Can’t vouch for necks or international shipping).
Ftbtx and I have been discussing this and I told him the I didn't know if I could do a bound Fender head or not but I would try a couple of quick experiments. I also suggested bringing it back to the DIY forum so others can input their ideas.
Ftbtx sent me several pictures of the guitar he would like to duplicate. It has a double bound black body, bound fretboard and the black head is bound in what looks to be fairly narrow but full 1/4 tall plastic. I have three concerns about trying to duplicate this.
First, can I route the channel in the head for the binding? The big question is were it will curve up from the flat part to the nut - that is normally a 2 or 3 inch diameter curve. I just happen to have an aftermarket neck under my work bench that I bought for one of my barn casters and I just happen to have my floating binding router gizmo on my bench 'cause we were talking about it somewhere else so I put the neck on a coffee can and put it under the gizmo and
it doesn't quite work. That white plastic piece should be riding up on the curve, instead the bracket that holds the router (which is not there) runs into the neck.
However it does look like if it was done before the fretboard was installed it might, just might work.
Another option is this thingie that I bought when I wanted to bind an F style mandolin. It screws onto a dremel and spaces the bit the proper distance from the top and side.
It might work and while I haven't used that thing in years it did do a passable job on the mando.
So, answer to first question, can I cut the channel - maybe.
Second question, can I bend a piece of plastic binding against its long axis at a 3 inch diameter. I took a scrap of 1/4 by 0.040 binding and taped it to the side of the head, applied a little heat from a heat gun and worked it around the curve. The first time I tried it the binding stretched and then buckled, the second time I was able to get a more or less acceptable bend. The reset of the head is easy.
Here are the two experimental pieces, not great but I think if I made a little jig I could make the bends
Third question is about the bound fretboard. I bind fretboards all the time but I always do it before the board is glued to the neck and before it is fretted. I can't think of any way to hold a neck while I tried to route a channel if the board was already glued on and certainly the frets would have to be pulled.
So the results of my little experiment tells me that I MIGHT be able to pull it off. I would probably want to make a dummy neck with the same curve and try routing the slot without the fretboard. If that worked I could use the dummy neck as the bending jig to see if I can get a satisfactory piece of binding. Then make a neck, bind the fretboard and all the rest of the drill. Maybe.....
I'll add one more comment - this would probably be pretty easy for someone with a cnc to add the binding channel. But I don't have a cnc.
Freeman, amazing work! Thanks so much for experimenting!