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vulture

Compound Radius fretboard

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Hi, 

I was considering a compound radius fret board on my next build.

I have been watching many Utube videos with various ideas/jigs, mostly american as they seem to be lot more geared up than we are or seem to more willing to share information. All which look fairly involved. 

Both of my Les Pauls have standard tubular radius fret boards which I have played happily for many years, but I'm ever trying to push forward and improve on the next build.

I know it's possible to do this without a jig if your brave enough.

Has anyone tried this before? Is the difference noticeable and worth the effort? 

John

 

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I've done a compound radius. It starts about 1/2 way down this page... 

(For some reason it's choosing a photo of another guitar in that link/summary)

There's not a huge amount of info about it, although the process was relatively straightforward. It basically involved having 2 radius gauges and planing straight lines between them.

As for whether it's noticeable... not really to me, but then I'm a bass player :D

 

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Thanks, looks a lot more successful than my first build. Finishing being the biggest learning curve. 

I used rattle cans of nitro lacquer and had massive problems with blushing. How did you apply yours? 

Edited by vulture

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18 hours ago, vulture said:

Thanks, looks a lot more successful than my first build. Finishing being the biggest learning curve. 

I used rattle cans of nitro lacquer and had massive problems with blushing. How did you apply yours? 

Thanks. I used rattle cans of nitro too. I used up far too much lacquer - there was a lot of sanding back. There was also a lengthy time repairing chips on my fretboard after I scraped the frets clean - I should have cleaned them off a lot more frequently.

I managed to avoid blushing though. I sprayed enough for each coat to "flow" rather than just misting, but stopped at that point. There was a certain amount of guitar rotation on the occasions I sprayed a bit too much, to avoid runs.

What were the weather conditions when you sprayed? Too hot and the surface can go off too quickly and trap solvent, too damp and that can also cause bloom. Usually a sandback and another light coat can help. AFAIK (and I'm still very much a novice) blooming is either trapped moisture or trapped solvent. Warm dry conditions help to avoid it

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1 hour ago, Norris said:

Thanks. I used rattle cans of nitro too. I used up far too much lacquer - there was a lot of sanding back. There was also a lengthy time repairing chips on my fretboard after I scraped the frets clean - I should have cleaned them off a lot more frequently.

I managed to avoid blushing though. I sprayed enough for each coat to "flow" rather than just misting, but stopped at that point. There was a certain amount of guitar rotation on the occasions I sprayed a bit too much, to avoid runs.

What were the weather conditions when you sprayed? Too hot and the surface can go off too quickly and trap solvent, too damp and that can also cause bloom. Usually a sandback and another light coat can help. AFAIK (and I'm still very much a novice) blooming is either trapped moisture or trapped solvent. Warm dry conditions help to avoid it

It was winter, my first neck on my Strat was in summer and came out O.K. apart from the odd fly landing on it, but the second was in the winter and we were having a lot of rain. I would definitely say it was the moisture getting trapped in the coat. I kept trying to melt it out with the next layer which didn’t work then I ended putting too much on and cracks appeared all over the finish which I now know is a common problem. (learning curve)

I ended up sanding the whole thing back and went to a spray shop supplier that mixes rattle cans while you wait and they suggested I tried a clear two pack what they use on cars which they mixed into rattle cans. It worked without blushing and I only needed three coats. Providing you use it in a couple of days there are no issues.

That said the finish doesn’t enhance the wood at all and looks plastic in my opinion. I will try and persevere with Nitro in future; try warming up the workshop and using a dehumidifier. Or even brush applying it so I can add retarder or thin it in some way.

Moving onto the expense of a compressor and spray-gun is something I would like to avoid for now for what is a hobby.

It’s nice to share information on this as there’s only so much you can gleam from utube and books. I find with uTube there is as much bad advice as good and a lot of the stuff is American and not as readily available over here.

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32 minutes ago, vulture said:

It’s nice to share information on this as there’s only so much you can gleam from utube and books. I find with uTube there is as much bad advice as good and a lot of the stuff is American and not as readily available over here.

That's one of the pet hates of @Prostheta. I'm sure he'll have something to say about it! :D

Yes, I think the dampness is probably the cause. Sounds like you're on top of it now though :)

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I just posted in the CNC section of the forum.    

If it works as well as I hope, I should be in good for custom work.  I couldn't imagine any other way to do compounds with any real accuracy so easily.  

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