Jump to content

Voting for May 2020's Guitar Of The Month is open - VOTE HERE!

mattharris75

First Acoustic. Not exactly a guitar...

Recommended Posts

18 hours ago, MiKro said:

Really? I was born and raised in Warrington until moving in 1972. Sounds like you were  on Innerarity Point looking at white island? Or were you on Navy Point?

mk

I think I new that....we must have talked about this some years ago...

I was on Navy Point. The Blue Angels used to practice right over my house--often at the butt crack of dawn.

SR

 

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Thanks guys!

So, here is my frankenstein of a neck joint...

The neck heel isn't the full depth of the body, and the original plan was to just cut a spacer to take up that space in the mortise between the neck heel and the back plate, and then attach an externally visible heel. You can see that part here, with the small chunk of walnut in the mortise, and then the macassar ebony heel (which is actually a sandwich of mac ebony/cherry/mac ebony, which I'll have a better pic of at some point I'm sure). 

Initially this was just supposed to be a bolt on mortise and tenon, but you can see that only one bolt is in place, which is due to a screw up in aligning the second bolt insert. I'm not quite sure how I made the mistake, but there it is. So, I used the single screw to tighten the neck to the body, which it did nicely, then drilled 1.25" deep 3/8" holes which I then glued oak dowels into. It's not pretty, and it's not to plan, but it's going to be plenty strong!

 

IMG_20200113_234529.thumb.jpg.19335dc6c0f0b2e10f3ffe6cb15346d3.jpg

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
1 hour ago, ScottR said:

It actually looks like it would be a good idea to do that on purpose.

SR

 

Neither sort of joint is bad or uncommon on mandolin family instruments. But combining the two isn't common. Small scale instruments don't need neck resets as often as guitars, but if one is necessary it's going to require the removal of the back, instead of just removing screws through the end pin hole. 

But it really is a secure joint! The bolt pulled the body and neck together really well, very snugly. And the dowels will hold it there. So I think I may actually use a single bolt and a pinned mortise on my next acoustic instrument build, if I ever get to it...

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
4 hours ago, mattharris75 said:

Thanks guys!

So, here is my frankenstein of a neck joint...

The neck heel isn't the full depth of the body, and the original plan was to just cut a spacer to take up that space in the mortise between the neck heel and the back plate, and then attach an externally visible heel. You can see that part here, with the small chunk of walnut in the mortise, and then the macassar ebony heel (which is actually a sandwich of mac ebony/cherry/mac ebony, which I'll have a better pic of at some point I'm sure). 

Initially this was just supposed to be a bolt on mortise and tenon, but you can see that only one bolt is in place, which is due to a screw up in aligning the second bolt insert. I'm not quite sure how I made the mistake, but there it is. So, I used the single screw to tighten the neck to the body, which it did nicely, then drilled 1.25" deep 3/8" holes which I then glued oak dowels into. It's not pretty, and it's not to plan, but it's going to be plenty strong!

 

IMG_20200113_234529.thumb.jpg.19335dc6c0f0b2e10f3ffe6cb15346d3.jpg

when I saw this, I thought this was going to be a 'glueless' neck joint and that the bolt was a truss rod (not a lot of experience, and even less mandolin experience).  Having read your post I'm up to speed and think it's super cool but can't help but wonder about glueless necks now.  I'll shut up now... way outta my league.  thank you for sharing.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
43 minutes ago, mistermikev said:

when I saw this, I thought this was going to be a 'glueless' neck joint and that the bolt was a truss rod (not a lot of experience, and even less mandolin experience).  Having read your post I'm up to speed and think it's super cool but can't help but wonder about glueless necks now.  I'll shut up now... way outta my league.  thank you for sharing.

 

Glueless necks joints are definitely a thing in the acoustic guitar world (Taylor Guitars for example). There are a ton of different neck joints on acoustics, from bolt on, to M&T bolt on, to spanish heel, to dovetail, and on and on. Less of a thing in the mandolin world, but they are out there. But this guy is sort of a hybrid between guitar and mandolin, and my initial idea was to make it glueless. It's just that my lack of skill necessitated changes... 😁

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
55 minutes ago, mattharris75 said:

 

Glueless necks joints are definitely a thing in the acoustic guitar world (Taylor Guitars for example). There are a ton of different neck joints on acoustics, from bolt on, to M&T bolt on, to spanish heel, to dovetail, and on and on. Less of a thing in the mandolin world, but they are out there. But this guy is sort of a hybrid between guitar and mandolin, and my initial idea was to make it glueless. It's just that my lack of skill necessitated changes... 😁

I'm told there are some solid body builders who do it too but I know not who.  I don't necc buy into the whole 'glue is bad for tone' thing but I have to admit... the craftsmanship intrigues me.  Also, thats a really handsome join there... so nice work on that level too.

not seeing any lack of skill from where I'm sitting.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Thanks!

Well, got the neck heel sanded flush with the rest of the neck. A few little scratches here and there, but it's getting close. Quite a fiddly little piece of work. Of course everything in this neck and scroll area is just a nightmare to sand. Small, detailed, and poor access. It's going to be weeks of sanding on the neck join and scroll once the back gets attached to get everything in shape. Fun, fun...

The dark line at the join is all the crud I couldn't manage to clean out with the naptha. Going to have to take a tiny scraper to it I suppose.

IMG_20200115_225741.thumb.jpg.69caad0840c59366e36219d8aaccf933.jpg

 

  • Like 2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
On 1/14/2020 at 6:45 PM, mattharris75 said:

Thanks guys!

So, here is my frankenstein of a neck joint...

The neck heel isn't the full depth of the body, and the original plan was to just cut a spacer to take up that space in the mortise between the neck heel and the back plate, and then attach an externally visible heel. You can see that part here, with the small chunk of walnut in the mortise, and then the macassar ebony heel (which is actually a sandwich of mac ebony/cherry/mac ebony, which I'll have a better pic of at some point I'm sure). 

Initially this was just supposed to be a bolt on mortise and tenon, but you can see that only one bolt is in place, which is due to a screw up in aligning the second bolt insert. I'm not quite sure how I made the mistake, but there it is. So, I used the single screw to tighten the neck to the body, which it did nicely, then drilled 1.25" deep 3/8" holes which I then glued oak dowels into. It's not pretty, and it's not to plan, but it's going to be plenty strong!

 

IMG_20200113_234529.thumb.jpg.19335dc6c0f0b2e10f3ffe6cb15346d3.jpg

As @ScottR says, that's a pretty sound solution in it's own right.

Got me thinking for my next acoustic build...

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
On 1/15/2020 at 11:11 PM, mattharris75 said:

It's going to be weeks of sanding on the neck join and scroll once the back gets attached to get everything in shape. Fun, fun...

You got a plan for that yet?

The best I came up with was to spray glue sandpaper to various feeler gauges. The thinner ones could be bent into curves to get into the tight spaces of the scroll.

SR

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
2 hours ago, ScottR said:

The best I came up with was to spray glue sandpaper to various feeler gauges.

The legendary masking tape and super glue trick might work as well and be easier to clean from the gauges.

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I have some small flat files, a few that even flex a bit, and some various sized sanding drums. I figured I would just wrap them all with progressively higher grits as I go. Not planning to glue them on. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Such a beautiful double scroll! It's always nice to see attention paid to the rear as well. 👍

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I've been paying a lot of attention to the rear!

Hours of scraping, filing, and sanding this week and I've got the back plate pretty well cleaned up. At least up to 80 grit. The scroll is flush with the head block and the front, as is the area around the neck heel. Once I got the scroll flush with the sides I had to re-carve the scroll area. It's close but I'm not entirely happy yet. It'll get there...

I've also introduced a small round over into the back as well. Softens things up nicely. 

In the second picture you can see my biggest issue, an ugly glue joint under the scroll. It's actually a good join on the block, but the bent side (the rib) somehow was a hair short on the end. I knew it was going to be an issue, but fortunately it's in the least noticeable place on the instrument. Once it's filled and finished I don't expect it will be too obvious.

IMG_20200123_233116.thumb.jpg.14a2511de74a92a465a8213e14ec8129.jpgIMG_20200123_233243.thumb.jpg.652a357775707895fba5a636c4abd597.jpg

 

  • Like 3

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
3 hours ago, mattharris75 said:

In the second picture you can see my biggest issue, an ugly glue joint under the scroll. It's actually a good join on the block, but the bent side (the rib) somehow was a hair short on the end. I knew it was going to be an issue, but fortunately it's in the least noticeable place on the instrument.

Well, if it's any consolation, I'm not sure where you mean...so it can't be too bad ;)

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

That's gorgeous Matt.

And it looks both old and new at the same time. I'm not sure how you did that....

SR

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Gibson would be proud for such tight glue joints!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Thanks guys!

Scott,  I think I've mentioned in this thread before that I was going for a vintage vibe with this project. Almost like an alternate history. Gibson never made an instrument like this in the 1920's (or ever), but what if they had?... So I think a mix of vintage and modern, old and new, is a good thing. I hope I'm able to reflect that in the finish as well.

  • Like 3

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.


×
×
  • Create New...