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My Thicknessing Jig


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i made a thicknessing jig a while ago so i could do virtually everything myself for guitarbuilding (i dont have a bandsaw, but i borrow one from a butcher shop i work at on saturdays for some things every once in a while).

the jig consists of some rails on the edges of a piece of chipboard (was a cutout from the kitchen sink) i made the rails by screwing some pine there and then topping them off with a brass strip (had it laying around). the router is then mounted on some rails.

the router is mounted on some L shaped steel extrusions from bunnings, and a piece of plywood where the router goes (with a hole cut for the router bit to pass through). these are all bolted together to make a solid connection, which is then passed over the wood that is between the rails.

this is a handy tool as it works well for

- thicknessing

- putting angles on things (neck pocket jigs, scarf joints) by proping the workpiece up at the right angle (found using trigenometry) before thicknessing it

- making veneers

- making the recessed headstock on a fender style headstock

- preparing a butt joint

it is even more useful when you consider that you can choose what you want to thickness, for example thicknessing a body of a neckthrough instrument after the wings have been glued on. this way you can make sure that the wings are flush with the centrebit without trying to plane with a piece sticking up from the neck. or leaving a straight edge where you want to have the fretboard on the headstock of a guitar (ie fenderstyle neck)

i know there are plenty of tools that do some of these things but its a great tool for me, someone who doesnt want to spend alot of money on the many tools to make a guitar and would rather work with the bare essentials. i keep finding new uses for it too.

heres the jig, with some qld maple underneath it


heres it from above, with the dado bit i use for this


heres a some walnut (body offcut) i thicknessed into sizes for the headstock veneers (no sure if i should call it a veneer, the thicker is 4mm or so thick)


also thought id post the clamps i made, there just threaded rod and a bit of pine that i tighten up with a spanner


i had 3 other clamps on the neck if you were worried thats all i had for such a long piece.

Edited by black_labb
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Similar to the one I use.


Secret to how I usually get by with no double-stick tape :


Could also be called a 'trash to treasure' jig, 'cause here's a dirty rough board off a curbside pallet, before and after :



Looks "cobbled together" because it is, but where's the motivation to make a "better one" when I end up with boards so flat, I can't get a .003" feeler gauge under the straight-edge :


Ok, I will need a longer jig to do a board long enough for a neck with peg-head, so I guess I'll eventually build a bigger one and use the monster Bosch router I recently got from a forum friend.

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Wow soapbar, you have the same exact Crapsman router as I do. I've been wanting to replace mine forever, but it just won't die!

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  • 2 weeks later...
Wow soapbar, you have the same exact Crapsman router as I do. I've been wanting to replace mine forever, but it just won't die!

I suggest a hammer, much faster than waiting.

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WezV Looks like a sink cutout from the countert0p (just kidding) but certianly a higher quality than the ones Ive seen here good job. The only issue is the slippery surface hopefully you are using two sided tape to hold down the wood. My input would be to add two angle irons attached to the router rails so it rides parallel to the jig (4 counter sunk screws and nuts smaller angle iron)

I hope you dont use it in the kitchen LOL

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yeah its a bit of old worktop - probably was a large sink cutout..

I always use double tape to hold stuff down and a good quality router with good quality bits. The parallel guide idea is a good one, i might add that soon but for now i can probably clamp stuff on to the rails for that

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well its really the difference between a bit of ply and a bit of steel!!!

Yours works great though and i used a similar thing for a while - but my new version is far more accurate and also allows much better visability. Its still a little crude to look at but i dont mind that :D

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