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Thread: HR design and build thread part III - The build.

  1. #1
    muttley600's Avatar
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    HR design and build thread part III - The build.

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    Some of you may remember that last year I was out of action as a result of several knee operations. During that time we started a guitar design and build thread which got so far before the flaming and trolls took it off the board to a private discussion. A further six months away meant nothing much happened from this end. Now is the time to pick it up and see where we get.

    What was decided before was as follows

    A design based on the drawings done by milnoque inspired by a "surf" theme. The drawing can be viewed here.Surf IV body and headstock(1).pdf

    The guitar was to be a neck thru design.

    The guitar was to be chambred with some form of sound hole.

    There was plenty of other discussion as to what and why but nothing much other than scale length and dimensions was decided.

    So what is the way forward? Based on what we have I intend to combine the design so far with a construction method I have thought of for a while but never had the chance to test. The build illustrated will be a proof of concept and use timbers and fittings that are readily available in my workshop or easy to obtain. If all goes well once this is complete we can turn our attention to picking out fittings, timbers and detail on a genuine HR design and build.

    Thanks to all that took part in the original discussion and I hope this thing works out.

    I have spent a few spare hours getting the main parts of the guitar roughed out and am at a stage where input is needed on the way forward. If the thread degenerates to a flaming competition as it did last time I shall be taking this thread elsewhere as before.

    The next post will show the progress so far.

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    The templates and mold.

    The idea behind the construction method I alluded to is one that involves building off of a series of ply router templates that form the main body of the guitar. This will enable all the main hogging out of timber to be done repeatedly and accurately as well as reasonably quickly.

    The second and possibly untried aspect of the method involves a blind neck through. In other words the neck is set into the body almost but not all the way through. The top can then either cover the neck through or butt up against the centre piece.

    All will become clear.

    The main templates and mold are exact copies of the eventual instrument in outline and assemble to mimic the finished instrument size and geometry but with the potential to alter the latter during the build.

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    The set is made from 3/4 and 1 inch ply. Each piece will be used both for marking out the timber and for cutting and routing.

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    muttley600's Avatar
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    The first thing to do know is get the body blank cut to the outline and also to get the neck taper cut on the neck blank.

    This is done by roughing out on the bandsaw and then finishing off by using the templates as router guides and a flush cutter.

    As this is a proof of concept build I have selected timbers that are fairly cheap and I know are stable and easy to work. Poplar for the body and a nice old and true piece of cherry for the neck. On the eventual HR build we can pick some nice pretty wood.

    First the body is rough cut on the bandsaw

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    The neck is rough cut and then both are trued up using the ply templates and a flush cut router.

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    All the parts so far.

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    Now it's time set the neck in the body blank.

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    First the neck route needs to be marked.

    I know that the neck blank now matches the taper of the template so I can use the two ply wings from the template model to mark the route on the body and then also to route the pocket.

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    The ply wings can be pinned onto the body blank as the finished guitar will have routed chambers where the pin holes will be and the top would cover them anyway.

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    The pocket is slowly routed away using the ply wings as a fence for the flush cut router bit.

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    Test the fit.... Perfick...

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    The finished neck route leaves about a 1/4 inch at the bottom.

    Next a few more pics to show the thing so far..

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    muttley600's Avatar
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    The front and back of the body as well as close up of the neck body join which is what needs to be considered next. There are a few questions to address before I continue. More to follow.

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    muttley600's Avatar
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    A close look at the thing so far and it's clear that some decisions need to be made at this point. So chime in with ideas.

    How are we going to resolve the back of the neck body join? Rote a lot away or keep the point and taper it in as a feature?

    Where are the chambres going to be and how deep/big?

    What type of top and how thick? I need this to finish the neck blank to it's correct thickness.

    Is the top going to cover the neck thru or expose it?

    Lets here from all those that want a piece of the design credit.

  7. #7
    rayc's Avatar
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    This is great to watch/follow/contemplate. I'm very impressed by you template/rout system. I've no knowledge of wwork but am impressed nonethless.
    Cheers rayC
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    Excellent stuff, Multi. It's good continuing the taper on the neck-through, cos you're always going to have a nice snug joint.

    As for contributions, I'm happy just to watch it develop.
    Cold dead hands? If you say so.

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    Nice work Maestro! I like your approach to the neck mortise. That's going to be so much more solid, and stronger than just gluing wings on a neck. Bravo.

    I like the point and taper. I'm assuming that you'll do a solid color on the poplar back. It would be a nice transition for the heel.

    I would go for a larger chamber to keep the weight down.

    A full walnut top would look beautiful with the cherry neck.

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    Quote Originally Posted by JCH View Post
    Nice work Maestro! I like your approach to the neck mortise. That's going to be so much more solid, and stronger than just gluing wings on a neck. Bravo.

    I like the point and taper. I'm assuming that you'll do a solid color on the poplar back. It would be a nice transition for the heel.

    I would go for a larger chamber to keep the weight down.

    A full walnut top would look beautiful with the cherry neck.
    Noted.

    One of my thoughts on this sort of neck motice was just as you say. It should combine the features of a neck through with wings and a set neck. I'm sure it has been done before but I haven't come across it so I'm keen to see how it works.

    I'm not sure yet on the point on the back and how well it will flow. That needs some more thought. There is still quite a bit of meat on the neck block at present.

    I have some nice English Walnut that I can dig out and look at for the top. The poplar is not too heavy so weight is not a real issue, What I'll do is weigh the thing at various stages and see where I get when the neck block is roughed out. Yes it will likely be a solid colour on the body but this is only a proof of concept build so I'm not too bothered about that at present.

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