Sunday, February 27, 2011

S906_3 body finished up

Headstock plate. I need to join the headplate to make one big enough. Cutting down the top really limits the size of the scraps. This piece might end up as the trussrod cover. I forgot to get photos of the actual headplate. I clamp them and hit the seam with CA then run it through the drum sander. Tape on the face to protect it, ivory soap on the clamping caul, and quite a few clamps are all that is needed. I can't wait to get a vacuum press.

Out of the clamps and then to the bandsaw to clean up the overhang. Then we clean up the sides with the spindle sander and some 80 grit.

The blank is still a little thick at 38mm so I trim a few mm off the back and flatten the top. Weight is pretty good and will get better when I carve it. A look at the back of the body

A look at the top.

A look at the veneer. I think I am going to carve into the veneer on this one (ala Diablo/RedWitch).

I like it like this... almost to bad it is getting carved up.

Out in the sun.

S908_1 Neck blank cleaned up...

All the additions are planed out. Also roughed out the headstock. I am going to try 8 on a side. THis could be a train wreck... we will see.

S906_3 top gluing

Heasdstock wings glued on. Sorry about the blurry photo.

So the stripes in the myrtle were outside the body. I really thought they needed to run the length of the body into the horns. Surgery time. Lay the body on the top and move the pieces together until the stripes are on the horns. Then I mark the new temporary center line at the front and back of the top. These marks are just a guide as I am not sure they are centered. Using the first mark I made I measure in equal amounts on each side at the top and put a mark. Then I measure down from the back of the top the same distance on each piece (trying to come close to the temp marks). Then use a straight edge to draw a straight line through the marks on the top.

Next I test the new lines by lining them up and setting the body on the top.

After the test I cut the lines on the band saw and use the jointer to straighten them out. Clamp the top with titebond and set it aside. I only leave it clamped a few hours as we are assembling the whole body today while the wood is still fresh from the sander.

Next is the cocobolo veneer. Since I want this all glued up today while the pieces are fresh sanded I am using CA to join the cocobolo veneer. Lay the pieces on a flat surface and lightly clamp them together. Then take CA and hit the seems... yes if you forgot to put wax paper under it it will be glued to your board. Hit it on the edge carefully with a dead blow hammer and it should come loose. After a few minutes clean up the seems with a scraper. Then we trim it close (within 3/16" or so) to the body.

After trimming up the top (carefully as the glue is not cured yet) we make our sandwich. Using titebond and covering both surfaces you have to move quick because of the short open time. I use spring clamps to hold it together temporarily while I am getting the big clamps out. It takes a long time but it gives much better results.

Monday, February 21, 2011

D506_1 wood conservation and the huge maple top

Wood conservation... I am going to try to explain this but I think the pictures say everything. I have a 13" wide 7/8" thick quilted blank. It is big enough to make a destroyer top but with some engineering I can also get a S9 top out of it. The bandsaw will only cut about 13" so rather than try and run this piece through like that I will cut the halves out. This makes it easier on the bandsaw and me to manage. Position the template on the center line and mark the outline. Then flip the template on the centerline and mark the other side outline.

With the other template still on the top position the smaller template. This time I wasn't able to lay it straight on the edge. In order to have enough to make a top I had to angle the piece. No big deal I will reestablish a center line after the piece is free of the main board.

With everything marked out it is time to cut them free. It is a really tight cut no room for error...

Now to fix the centerline. Lay the template on the board and mark the centerline at the back of the template. Next use a ruler to find out how far out the center is at the top. Use a straight edge and connect the mark from the back and the measurement at the front and draw a new center.

Check the line and then cut. Then off to the bandsaw for bookmatching.

Distractions aside here is the top for the Destroyer bookmatched and ready to go.

Somehow I forgot to clean this neck blank up the other day. Cut the excess away on the band saw and do some sanding, headstock trim, volute rough out...

Trussrod installed time for profiling.

A real Destroyer II is huge. Since I am still prototyping mine out I want to make some changes. Upper fret access leaves a lot to be desired and moving these things to 24 fret does not help (my 82 has 22) so we will start by removing some extra wood while retaining the original shape. I am going to alter the angle on the back of the body but keep the look. This will free up some weight without altering the lines too much. The top line were your arm rests must remain exact. It is one of the reasons I love these guitars.

This is it.