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Hide Glue Problems


rbjem
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I am having a problem with gluing my fretboard onto the neck. This is the first time I am using hide glue so I am not too sure of the correct techniques to use (if any). I used to always use titebond on all my neck but decided to try something different and choose to try out some hide glue. I am using ground hide glue, not the liquid. The neck I am constructing is a maple-bubinga-maple laminate neck with an ebony fretboard. I am also putting LEDs into the fretboard, this is the reason for the hide glue, easy removal. I have the LEDs flat in the fretboard so there is nothing sticking out of the bottom of the fretboard and no gap when I put it on a flat surface. I have made a few necks with LEDs before with no problems hat leads me to believe it is the hide glue which has caused my problem. Okay to my problem, I glue the fretboard on and let the glue dry overnight. I then took off all the clamps and it looked pretty good, a nice tight joint. I then tapered the sides to the correct dimensions and set it aside for about two to three days. I looked at it again tonight and there was a crack all the way along the center of the fretboard from nut to the 24th fret. I was horrified when I saw it because it was perfect not too long ago. Now, does anyone know of hide glue doing this? Is it common at all or am I just unlucky? Also, may this have occured because the glue was not fully cured before I relieved all clamping pressure? I am thinking that I may need to keep some clamps on it for at least a few days. Any thoughts?

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I'm also using hot hide glue on my current project and have not has any problems like this with it. I have an idea though...

If this is an electric guitar neck, there is a truss rod channel down the center, correct? I have heard of hide glue having incredible strenght as it contracts and cools, so my theory is that you applied glue to either side of the truss rod channel on the neck, then applied the fingerboard and clamps, and what has occured is the contracting of the hide glue on either side of the truss rod channel, pulling the fingerboard in two opposite directions, therefore splitting your fingerboard.

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MATT, you may be on to something... That seems like it could do it. Can anyone confirm this?

Southpa, I should have mentioned, I actually cut two channels in the finger board, one on each side of the trussrod, to carry the two seperate wires. But there still is the LEDs in the center as well as a channel from the LED to the main wire channels on both sides. I just put the LEDs in the regular dot positions, basically, I cut a hole through the board and glue them in.

Edited by rbjem
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The neck itself was definetly flat, as I have a great joiner, but... come to think of it, the ebony may have been a little bowed. This is the first time I am using ebony and didn't think the slight bow could make such a difference because I have used many rosewood and maple fretboards with similar properties. It was a 2nd grade board from LMI, so maybe that had something to do with it.

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A bit of lengthwise bow really shouldn't be a problem. Side to side unflatness should be (HAS TO BE) sanded/scraped/planed out before the 'board is glued down.

Ebony's not the most stable of woods. Grading from major manufacturers is generally about looks more than anything else. Takes forever to dry, and likes cupping. Really should be kept stickered up, and I much prefer to use wood that I've personally had sitting on a shelf for at least a year. Same goes for all wood, but fingerboards and necks in particular. The stuff's cheap enough that buying reasonable amounts in advance is doable.

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