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OK have what could be an issue here! When I hacked away at this all those years back, I left a rather deep cut for the tenon...so much so that it only leaves 12mm clearance from the bottom of the guitar. Im hoping that a tiny little neck heel with be OK, as glues are strong these days! I suppose there could be factors with playability too...I could do an acoustic style neck heel where it juts out but that doesn't appeal to me (fret access etc). 

Thoughts?

Edited by ShatnersBassoon

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Agreed. As long as you have plenty of good mating glue faces, you're golden.

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Routed out the channel, as you can see the router slipped. Oh well!

The weight relief has so far knocked off a pound from the weight (its 7.5 lbs now).  The cap weighs 2lbs but that is before any routing etc. My Les Paul Studio that I owned years back weighed 9lbs and that seemed a ton at the time...lets see what weight this ends up at!

IMG_7797.jpg

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The router slipped but nobody will ever know once the cap is on. If only all little mishaps were invisible!

looking good and I think you could save more weight if you wanted. Don’t forget the weight of hardware and the neck. Might end up a bit 70s weight wise!

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5 hours ago, Pariahrob said:

The router slipped but nobody will ever know once the cap is on. If only all little mishaps were invisible!

looking good and I think you could save more weight if you wanted. Don’t forget the weight of hardware and the neck. Might end up a bit 70s weight wise!

Cheers! I will probably expand on the weight relief to make it more akin to chambering. Will also probably fill in that small area where I went too deep when I initially started to cut out that neck pocket, I don’t want to compromise neck access and I’m sure I will prefer the look. Also I found a great 8 foot long piece of sapele that will fit nicely for the neck. I will probably be buying it this weekend 😀

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So I bought some wood for the neck today. The guy at the timber place wasn’t sure if it was Sapele or Meranti. Just brought it back home and it is a bit lighter than the sapele I used for the body. However it does compliment it quite nicely. Pleased with it! 

Im considering experimenting on part of the wood to do this nifty little trick... 

 

8F03C9FB-DEBD-4A59-8492-0B2F829290CC.png

Edited by ShatnersBassoon

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I have had tremendous success with oxidizing walnut with vinegar and steel wool.

This was my attempt:

 

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I wouldn't give too much credence to Ben's ideas. A lot of them are off track to dodgy and some are simply dangerous. I have a particular hatred for YouTube "educators" who make light of safety, especially that of their employees since that falls foul of the law very very quickly. Another conversation, another time.

Oxidising is not the correct term for a tannic acid and basic iron acetate reaction, if I recall. Substitute iron instead of steel wool as you'll get a better product with less blue or red colouration. I cook my vinegar in a double boiler to speed up the reaction. Really nice bit of woodworking there in your video and a super result! How did you prepare your own solution?

<edit> Oops, crossed wires....I thought that you posted the ebonising video, @ShatnersBassoon! Sorry @FINEFUZZ

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Before I forget, how was that wood stored in the woodshop? I suspect that it might be a little too wet to work unless stored in a warm controlled indoor environment. You don't want to have it moving on you as it dries mid-work!!

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52 minutes ago, Prostheta said:

I wouldn't give too much credence to Ben's ideas. A lot of them are off track to dodgy and some are simply dangerous. I have a particular hatred for YouTube "educators" who make light of safety, especially that of their employees since that falls foul of the law very very quickly. Another conversation, another time.

Oxidising is not the correct term for a tannic acid and basic iron acetate reaction, if I recall. Substitute iron instead of steel wool as you'll get a better product with less blue or red colouration. I cook my vinegar in a double boiler to speed up the reaction. Really nice bit of woodworking there in your video and a super result! How did you prepare your own solution?

<edit> Oops, crossed wires....I thought that you posted the ebonising video, @ShatnersBassoon! Sorry @FINEFUZZ

Aw damn...I could have taken the credit there 😜 I have some wire wool soaking at the moment but will try it with some nails too!

Edited by ShatnersBassoon

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57 minutes ago, Prostheta said:

I wouldn't give too much credence to Ben's ideas. A lot of them are off track to dodgy and some are simply dangerous. I have a particular hatred for YouTube "educators" who make light of safety, especially that of their employees since that falls foul of the law very very quickly. Another conversation, another time.

Oxidising is not the correct term for a tannic acid and basic iron acetate reaction, if I recall. Substitute iron instead of steel wool as you'll get a better product with less blue or red colouration. I cook my vinegar in a double boiler to speed up the reaction. Really nice bit of woodworking there in your video and a super result! How did you prepare your own solution?

<edit> Oops, crossed wires....I thought that you posted the ebonising video, @ShatnersBassoon! Sorry @FINEFUZZ

I dissolved steel wool in vinegar.   I looked for a vinegar with the highest acidity.  It took one week to completely dissolve the steel wool.  I know it helps if you degrease the steel wool.  After the walnut was shellacked, it appears almost black.

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Degreasing is one important step, definitely. I've had unwanted colour casts from steel wool (low carbon steel) which iron doesn't. Blue is a particularly crap one on white Oak. Both turn black Walnut a very nice black. You can get a good working mixture within an hour if you heat the vinegar with a little hydrogen peroxide. Ideally this should be done without flame since I think it offgasses hydrogen, but I'm sure not enough to go Hindenberg. Steel wool has never seemed to be 100% consistent from batch to batch or over time in storage. Iron makes a more predictable product. Again, the actual chemistry is not my strong suit at all. One of my regrets of not learning properly at an early age.

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Routed out the rest of the body, apart from some chambering. Sanded down what I’m using as the cap (the table top) and it came out a very light colour...That varnish was obviously deceiving. I don’t know what I really think of the wood now! It’s still reasonably nice although I may well paint over it. However I have a number of other ideas. Hmmm 

DE566B98-14E5-4C93-B587-7546AF26895D.png

Edited by ShatnersBassoon
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I've never really understood the weight issue with a Let Paul. I have a Traditional that weighs close to 11 lbs. It's by far the best sounding guitar I've ever had. I am a pretty stocky guy though so it may not affect me much.

Nice build though. I enjoyed reading through it. I have plans for my next build after I finish my current one, but I'm think of doing a LP on the build after that.

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7 hours ago, SOLLYGTRS said:

I've never really understood the weight issue with a Let Paul. I have a Traditional that weighs close to 11 lbs. It's by far the best sounding guitar I've ever had. I am a pretty stocky guy though so it may not affect me much.

Nice build though. I enjoyed reading through it. I have plans for my next build after I finish my current one, but I'm think of doing a LP on the build after that.

I played a Traditional many years back and loved it, it also weighed a ton. I kind of liked that fact (at the time). Funnily enough it looks like my finished guitar will be around 11 pounds give or take (even after weight relief/chambering!)

Edited by ShatnersBassoon
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Les Pauls can get a little punishing if you're prone to bad shoulders and back.

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Ok, away from the forum I’m getting conflicting opinions about the suitability of Meranti as a neck. Will it be OK? I’m not even sure if it is Meranti as the guy I bought it from said it might be Sapele...

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Meranti (aka Lauan/Luan or Phillipine Mahogany) looks like it might be sold in this part of the world as a plantation timber for door and window frames. I've never heard of it being used as a guitar neck. There seem to be all sorts of varieties living under the 'Meranti' title.

That said, Dark Red Meranti seems to have similar properties to Queensland Maple (not actually a maple), which does get used quite regularly on Australian production guitars like Cole Clark and Maton. White Meranti might also work well.

Light Red Meranti looks to be a bit more softer and flexible, so maybe not so good. I have some doors in the house that are possibly made from Meranti (maybe the light stuff) and it is definitely soft stuff to work with.

Unless you can work out which particular version you've got it might be a bit hit and miss. But if it's cheap and you don't mind taking a risk..? Who knows - maybe you can be a trailblazer in Meranti necks?

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A lot of woods that were originally trade timbers have blanket names, and I believe Meranti is one also.

The usual rules apply. Straight and consistent grain in any wood is better than as not. Drying it laid flat rather than under stress. If you have chance to rip cut it, look for signs of the piece being reaction wood; that is, if it "parts or pinches" along the cut line as you go through it. That might indicate the wood grew on a slope or otherwise has internal compression/tension stresses that release as the wood is worked.

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I bought a piece of wood once that the seller said was "meranti, some kind of mahogany". It was quite brittle and soft (from what I remember it dented easily). I wouldn't use it on a neck. Worked fine for a body.

But who knows what wood that was really..

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Thanks for the replies guys. The wood has a darkish red hue, so if it is Meranti then I guess it falls in to the first category in Curtisas post. I am probably going to risk it, the wood does feel fairly hard...but then until I route the area for the true rod and start shaping it then its all a bit up in the air. Im a little confused however. The template I am using shows that the truss rod for an LP design is supposed to be angled (fairly low down next to the nut and much higher towards the body). This has added confusion on a number of levels, firstly I am confused as to how achieve this and secondly I have been watching videos of builds where the routed area has just been the same depth throughout...is it ok to route it unangled?

Anyway...as for the body, the top is on and everything routed out. Don't get me started talking about the carve on the top! Lots of trial and error. I have used an 'antique pine' varnish on it. Quite pleased with it so far. 

IMG_9110.JPG

Edited by ShatnersBassoon
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