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Veneer Fretboards (vintage Neck Style)


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Hello.

Does anyone have any step by step instructions as to how I can Make a neck that has a veneer fretboard?

I can make standard necks quite well, slabboard that is, But I prefer the look of veneer, like on old strats and Mustangs etc.

Is the wood actually moulded with heat onto the neck, or is it carved into the curved shape first and then simply glued on?

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I have never seen a veneer on a neck before. What you are referring to is the fretboard itself and that can be other known as the top laminate on the neck, however, veneers are very very thin sheets of materials used often for furniture to make them look nice of top of cheap woods. Veneers can reach up to 1/20" to 1/40...

It is best to glue on the fretboard with the cut neck blank before doing anything. The link will show the build a neck page on the project guitar website.

http://www.projectguitar.com/tut/neck.htm

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I have never seen a veneer on a neck before. What you are referring to is the fretboard itself and that can be other known as the top laminate on the neck, however, veneers are very very thin sheets of materials used often for furniture to make them look nice of top of cheap woods. Veneers can reach up to 1/20" to 1/40...

It is best to glue on the fretboard with the cut neck blank before doing anything. The link will show the build a neck page on the project guitar website.

http://www.projectguitar.com/tut/neck.htm

Rokeros, I think you need to do some reading up on the history of Fender neck construction. What the poster is referring to is the way Fender made necks for many years by radiusing the surface of the maple neck, and then attaching thin fretboard which was pressed to follow the same radius as the neck blank. This let them use thinner fretboard material, and save money. He already stated that he knows how to built a neck using a conventional (or 'slab') style fingerboard. This link shows a good comparrison - on the left is a slab style maple fretboard, on the left is a veneer style, as used from '62 - '80: http://www.provide.net/~cfh/fender.html#specs

I've never built with a veneered board, but if I did, I go one of 2 ways:

1. Get a few consectutive leaves of constructional veneer (around 1,5mm thick). Cut my fretboard oversize from 2 or 3 thicknesses, using the consecutive sheets so the grain matches, and glue up the sheets to the neck by clamping with a radiussed caul. The seam between the sheets wpuld end up virtually invisible.

2. Use a standard fretboard blank, and cut a concave radius into the back of it, using the same setup as for making radiused sanding blocks (there's tutorial by me on the homepage that shows this). Then glue it up with a radiussed caul.

I don't know exactly how thick the boards where on the old Fenders, but either technique gives you room for varied fretboard thickness.

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The thickness is 2mm, or about 5/64". I would think that with a little heat, it could be made to conform to the radius of the neck without splitting. That's probably how Fender did it, but I don't know for sure. The trick then, is cutting the fret slots. Or, maybe that can be done before bending?

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You'd think that's the way Fender would've done it. There's no economy in carving the cap out of a slab fingerboard blank. Heating and bending would've added production steps, time, and eaten up floor space. They probably had radiused caul plates to force the "veneer" onto the neck blank.

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2. Use a standard fretboard blank, and cut a concave radius into the back of it, using the same setup as for making radiused sanding blocks (there's tutorial by me on the homepage that shows this). Then glue it up with a radiussed caul.

I think I might use/attempt this method.

I read the tutorial a while ago, and this method actually did cross my mind as a way to make a veneer style neck.

Good tutorial, if it's the same one i'm thinking of.

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