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  • #46






    Quote Originally Posted by Freeman Keller
    View Post

    Neil



    1 - I have used MDF (and particle board) for all my molds. Two pieces per side have worked fine. I believe I've posted pictures. Others will do it differently



    2 - Cumpiano does not build in molds, he uses a workboard or "solera". One more way to do it, perfectly fine, particularly for a classical



    3 - If you PM me your snail mail addy I'll send you my copies of Cumpiano and Kincade - I trust you to return them. I can put them on UPS tomarrow.



    There are also dozens of good (and bad) build threads at the kit forum, different luthier forums (I like MIMF.com) and blogs. I spent a full 6 months before building my first one reading and getting confused.




    That's mighty generous, Freeman. YJ has both texts as well as the Willis text which I have here beside me along with the plans. I intend to use MDF though J tells me that I should be able to find a 4'x8' board locally for much cheaper. He figures it's best to have it cut into 12"x24" boards and well form the mold from 4 boards glued together and cut simultaneously on his band saw - which is now running again.



    The reason I was worried about the MDF was because YJ had modeled his mold after Blues Creek's molds (he has the dread and OM molds) which were made from marine grade plywood, which is very expensive and almost as solid as a rock! Turns out that that may have contributed to the difficulties he was having with his bandsaw! I assume that in relation the MDF should cut like warm butter - though YJ informs me that I need to get a mask.



    Tonight I went over the YJ's place and looked at wood. He and I picked out a set of mahogany that rang nicely against a rapped knuckle (even though we're both novices) despite having a single round imperfection in the grain. For the top we did the same novice tap test and selected a set of western red cedar that is wavy in one spot but I can live with it.



    The only real hangup seemed to be that the boards for the sides are about 1/8" shorter than the side diagram on the plans. Is that a deal breaker? God, I hope not. Can I adjust for it at the heel block?



    As I'd mentioned before he had finished Martin necks and preslotted black ebony fretboards but they're all precut for 1 & 11/16" but that's not going to work since I want this to be a fingerstyle guitar and I prefer 1.75" nut. Looks like I'll either have to carve my own neck or order a wider neck from somewhere.



    As for pics, YJ took one pic of me hunched over the plans which I'd spread on his photo studio floor along with the boards.



    So it's going to be at least a week before I can head back over there. My wife is heading out of town and I'm solo with the boys until Sunday, though my mom is coming to visit and will provide moral support. I may drop offline for a bit to ponder over the build but it looks like I've officially started.



    BTW, my wife told me yesterday that I seem to have too many hobbies. She was not joking.
    Gear:
    2013 Official Luthier's Forum Medium Jumbo (Western red cedar/mahogany)
    2012 McKnight McUke (soprano ukulele, redwood/mahogany)
    2010 Martin D-16GT
    2006 Larrivee OM-03R
    1998 Fender American Standard Stratocaster (natural ash finish)
    1989 Kramer Stryker
    197? Epiphone Texan FT-160N

    Comment


    • #47
      ALWAYS wear a dust mask when workign with MDF. You'll have no problem in terms of stability fwhen it's used to build moulds, but I would suggest using a surface treatment such as Danish oil once the mould is completed as this helps prevent accidental glue adhesion during the build process.



      Side sets can afford to be as much as 3/4" short of the drawn length as long as you build tight to the mould and plan for your heel graft and neck heel to cover up such gapping.



      Another author you can look up is;



      http://www.amazon.co.uk/Guitar-Maker...1501667&sr=1-6



      I'm told the above book is comparitively short, but contains as much detail as you need to successfully build a very decent, well voiced instrument.
      IF IT AINT BROKE, DON'T FIX IT.

      Comment


      • #48
        whaaaa heyyyyyyy .... good man Neil, told you it had to happen



        I know the feeling about family getting in the way of building and wives being shall we say "less than positive" about it . I just viewed it as a "no hurry" thing and took whatever time I could find. I'm quite sure you'll produce a great guitar and believe me, there's nothing like playing a guitar you've built yourself - its a special thing



        I'll try to help any way I can but mainly with where I nearly made a couple of balls ups (and was duly saved by Gary) to help you avoid premature hair loss lol.



        I'll look forward to watching her progress
        imagination is more important than knowledge. knowledge is limited. imagination encircles the world.

        viva fui in silvis
        sum dura occisa
        securi dum vixi tacui
        mortua dulce cano

        Comment


        • #49
          Hi folks, its been a long time! I heard I was being talked about here!

          FYI- pestered to do so but does not. Tim McKnight does not offer classes. I wish he would. I have bought a few of his guitars and Photo'd all of his summer gatherings. He has been a valuable friend, so have I.

          John at Blues Creek is set up as a class and a supplier. If you want to build you need to know him.

          I'm happy to help out Neil. I bought a "Guitar Company" last year. The fellow had 50 sets of wood, 2 dozen martin second necks, a Uhaul of tools and more. BTW Neil I was looking at many Collings guitars yesterday. They had waves! Don't panic waves. Also, my guitar was better voiced than some of the best! OK, my first build weighed 15 ounces lighter than the same sized Collings. The shop owner said "Can you say Implode" lol

          Another point/correction; Martin Kits are good seconds, LMI and Stew Mac give their best to you in their kits.

          Least I could do is help Neil with a dream. Some stuff he'll have to buy. But, because of a lucky buy out I am happy to share with him. At the end I will bite his neck so I can play guitar like him!

          In my buy out I got so many toys I was not familiar with. R&D was very time consuming. Tools, and building.

          Note; an apprentice in a Luthier shop is like fishing with 2 kids

          Neil, happy to help.

          Here is Neil sayin' WTF

          NOW WHATTTTTTT!!!

          Comment


          • #50
            Hee hee hee! You didn't adequately catch my "deer in the headlights" look!



            Aren't those some detailed plans though? I think I may indeed do the X bracing on the back. Isn't that what McPherson does? D'ya think it's OK to pester Tim and Mary for advice?



            BTW, I played a "certified used" GS5 today at Empire (basically what I'm planning to build but man do they have a LOT of custom shop GS's too! *drool*) but I never warmed up to it. I think mine's gonna be nicer anyway!
            Gear:
            2013 Official Luthier's Forum Medium Jumbo (Western red cedar/mahogany)
            2012 McKnight McUke (soprano ukulele, redwood/mahogany)
            2010 Martin D-16GT
            2006 Larrivee OM-03R
            1998 Fender American Standard Stratocaster (natural ash finish)
            1989 Kramer Stryker
            197? Epiphone Texan FT-160N

            Comment


            • #51
              I spent a good part of last night in my friend's workshop last night:



              I bought the MDF and had it cut up at the Home Depot yesterday. YJ and I glued and clamped together 6 boards (in 2 stacks of 3) to serve as two sides of the mold. YJ wants to clamp the other 6 together in this fashion.



              I traced the outline and bracing pattern to a thin sheet of plexiglass last night and scored it with a razor blade in order to attempt to cut it out. It broke into several pieces though and is the first in what will probably be many setbacks.



              Once that's done it's on to cutting out the molds. We're also going to join the top and back too. That'll be next week at the earliest though.



              We also bent the sides for his sycamore L-00. This was the first time I'd seen the process with my own eyes and it was very educational.
              Gear:
              2013 Official Luthier's Forum Medium Jumbo (Western red cedar/mahogany)
              2012 McKnight McUke (soprano ukulele, redwood/mahogany)
              2010 Martin D-16GT
              2006 Larrivee OM-03R
              1998 Fender American Standard Stratocaster (natural ash finish)
              1989 Kramer Stryker
              197? Epiphone Texan FT-160N

              Comment


              • #52
                It's official: the build is underway - we joined the back.



                I made an outline out of cardboard and after cleaning up the inner edge of what are going to be my molds I went and drew the outline. Due to the concern for excessive sawdust the actual cutting won't be made until Tuesday when YJ's ShopVac is up and running and attached to the bandsaw. At that time I'm going to join the top too.



                In the meantime, I have some oversized paper and am going to trace the cutout for the sides. Bending obviously won't happen until the mold and forms are cut out.



                I'm thinking rosewood for the binding and wedge. I haven't decided on purfling but I've seen that WBW looks nice between cedar and rosewood and mahogany. Still no idea of what kind of rosette I want to do. Most likely I'll do a wood inlay of some type.
                Gear:
                2013 Official Luthier's Forum Medium Jumbo (Western red cedar/mahogany)
                2012 McKnight McUke (soprano ukulele, redwood/mahogany)
                2010 Martin D-16GT
                2006 Larrivee OM-03R
                1998 Fender American Standard Stratocaster (natural ash finish)
                1989 Kramer Stryker
                197? Epiphone Texan FT-160N

                Comment


                • #53
                  Sorry, you guys need pics or this didn't happen. I understand. Here's the results:







                  We decided to skip using the 3 hug clamps for this jig. We figured the nails were snug enough.



                  Note the glued boards of MDF. There are four pieces of 3 glued together and each represent a half of 2 molds.
                  Gear:
                  2013 Official Luthier's Forum Medium Jumbo (Western red cedar/mahogany)
                  2012 McKnight McUke (soprano ukulele, redwood/mahogany)
                  2010 Martin D-16GT
                  2006 Larrivee OM-03R
                  1998 Fender American Standard Stratocaster (natural ash finish)
                  1989 Kramer Stryker
                  197? Epiphone Texan FT-160N

                  Comment


                  • #54
                    Man, but I love the smell of cedar! Last night I planed the edges and did the light test and did much better this time: I was rewarded with a wonderful smell and a perfectly tight joint after only 6 passes on the table planer. I also used a little less glue when joining the two book matched halves of the soundboard. THe only hang up was when I clamped it down; I put a dink in the soft cedar. Oh well - it's close to the center and that's where the fretboard extension can go.



                    Meanwhile, we had some issues with the band saw and I only got one of my 4 mold sections cut out. I suppose it was partly user error because I haven't used a band saw before and I found myself fighting the thing around the curves. Still, I have one done, another halfway through and the other 2 ready to go.



                    Sorry no pics; I left my camera there though I did take a couple pics.
                    Gear:
                    2013 Official Luthier's Forum Medium Jumbo (Western red cedar/mahogany)
                    2012 McKnight McUke (soprano ukulele, redwood/mahogany)
                    2010 Martin D-16GT
                    2006 Larrivee OM-03R
                    1998 Fender American Standard Stratocaster (natural ash finish)
                    1989 Kramer Stryker
                    197? Epiphone Texan FT-160N

                    Comment


                    • #55
                      Good luck with your build.
                      "HAVE FUN, TRY NOT TO HURT ANYONE AND EAT PLENTY OF GREENS"

                      Comment


                      • #56






                        Quote Originally Posted by poppytater
                        View Post

                        Good luck with your build.




                        Thanks! With the winter coming up it might be hard to make it out to my friend's place so I've been cleaning my basement. I have about 10' of my workbench uncovered along with a whole lot of floorspace that fell victim to clutter. I figure I'll take some work home and do the stuff that doesn't require power tools.
                        Gear:
                        2013 Official Luthier's Forum Medium Jumbo (Western red cedar/mahogany)
                        2012 McKnight McUke (soprano ukulele, redwood/mahogany)
                        2010 Martin D-16GT
                        2006 Larrivee OM-03R
                        1998 Fender American Standard Stratocaster (natural ash finish)
                        1989 Kramer Stryker
                        197? Epiphone Texan FT-160N

                        Comment


                        • #57
                          great stuff Neil .... keep the pics coming. Believe me, it'll be one of the most enjoyable things you've ever done. I'll look forward to the smell of cedar with my next
                          imagination is more important than knowledge. knowledge is limited. imagination encircles the world.

                          viva fui in silvis
                          sum dura occisa
                          securi dum vixi tacui
                          mortua dulce cano

                          Comment


                          • #58
                            Thanks, Rick. I'm looking ahead to thickness sanding and cutting the billets for the bracing but I have to finish my molds and do my center strip and rosette first.
                            Gear:
                            2013 Official Luthier's Forum Medium Jumbo (Western red cedar/mahogany)
                            2012 McKnight McUke (soprano ukulele, redwood/mahogany)
                            2010 Martin D-16GT
                            2006 Larrivee OM-03R
                            1998 Fender American Standard Stratocaster (natural ash finish)
                            1989 Kramer Stryker
                            197? Epiphone Texan FT-160N

                            Comment


                            • #59
                              I got a little bit done last night but am still learning to use the band saw and now thickness sander.



                              One bit of bad news - there was a weak spot in my top and it split and not at the joint. When my friend took it out of the jig he held it up to give it a look to see if the join was perfect and free of gaps he gave it a tap for tone and it split. He managed to save it though and reglued it for me; there were no loose fibers. Kinda sucks but that's first builds for you I guess.



                              He's probably getting back at me for messing up his band saw. I have trouble making the turn when cutting the waist in my molds.



                              BTW, there's been blood shed - his not mine though. He cut his finger on the metal housing of his band saw when I got my mold hung up halfway through a cut. I feel terrible about it but he brushed it off. He looked a little peeved though.



                              After throwing the band saw out of alignment for the 3rd time we moved on to the thickness sander and got to work on the cedar top. The board started at around .199 and the target range is .110-.120 but it was pretty slow going. His sander is a smaller 10" drum type which only sands the top and half of the joined board at a time so it takes 4 passes. Then I'd crank the height down very slightly so as not to mark the boards or gum up the sandpaper but of course I messed it up. Luckily it should sand out eventually, but it was getting late and the sandpaper roll was getting gummed up so I had to quit. After about a dozen passes I only got the board down to .169 but my "oops" is getting noticeably lighter and the glue joints are getting less and less visible.



                              On the bright side, I got 3 of my 4 molds cut and have 2 sides which should be enough to put my sides in once I bend them. The cutouts will make suitable forms for the bender. They'll all need to be sanded smooth and level but not by much.



                              It's still not looking like a guitar yet but I feel like I've made significant strides in the setup phase, despite the setbacks and slow going.
                              Gear:
                              2013 Official Luthier's Forum Medium Jumbo (Western red cedar/mahogany)
                              2012 McKnight McUke (soprano ukulele, redwood/mahogany)
                              2010 Martin D-16GT
                              2006 Larrivee OM-03R
                              1998 Fender American Standard Stratocaster (natural ash finish)
                              1989 Kramer Stryker
                              197? Epiphone Texan FT-160N

                              Comment


                              • #60
                                I just uploaded some pics from last week:



                                Top being joined (the first time):





                                The molds being cut (in progress):





                                Close up of the cutout to be used as a form for the bending process:





                                Top being joined the second time (this time the right way?):

                                Gear:
                                2013 Official Luthier's Forum Medium Jumbo (Western red cedar/mahogany)
                                2012 McKnight McUke (soprano ukulele, redwood/mahogany)
                                2010 Martin D-16GT
                                2006 Larrivee OM-03R
                                1998 Fender American Standard Stratocaster (natural ash finish)
                                1989 Kramer Stryker
                                197? Epiphone Texan FT-160N

                                Comment

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