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Maple Inlay Filler?


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Hey guys I am inlaying my maple fretboard, and I have some gaps around all my inlay. What can I do to mask or hide these gaps and make the fretboard look a little better. Also my fretboard is already attached to my neck but I want to put a binding around it, how would I go about doing that?

If you guys need a picture just let me know.

Chris

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First, usually you can mix the sawdust from routing out the inlay shapes and mix w/ glue to create a gap filler. Some use CA glue, others regular wood glue.

Second, if you wanted to wrap an attached fretboard, you would need to remove the frets, route the correct gap for the binding, glue/clamp the binding, cut the fretslots into the binding to make existing and put in new fretwire. This is not advisable while attached.

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First, usually you can mix the sawdust from routing out the inlay shapes and mix w/ glue to create a gap filler. Some use CA glue, others regular wood glue.

Second, if you wanted to wrap an attached fretboard, you would need to remove the frets, route the correct gap for the binding, glue/clamp the binding, cut the fretslots into the binding to make existing and put in new fretwire. This is not advisable while attached.

There are no frets on the fretboard yet. I think I can make a jig to reduce the risk of messing up the fretboard while routing for the binding. I didnt know if there was any kind of powder I could mix with epoxy to give it a maple hue, I was thinking about using black epoxy to put a black outline around all the inlay but I am unsure if that would look good.

Chris

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The black epoxy could look really good (depending on inlay) if it's even. Wouldn't want black splotchy things all over the place :D

The inlay is a tree of life with gold stem, white pearl small leafs and blue pearl big leafs. To be honest the gap around the inlay isn't really consistent, which sucks because I did not make the inlay it was done by a 3rd party. So some gaps will be wider then others. Maybe I should just mix the maple dust with the epoxy and call it good, because I already know it isn't going to ever look right, but I would like to salvage what I can. What would you do in my situation?

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Not knowing your skill level - and being honest that on inlay work,there are many better. I would do the sawdust/glue fix. If you're a little more confident than I am, you may try using a craft blade to even out the gaps and go with the black epoxy.

That's actually a really good idea, take an exact o knife or something and make the gaps around the inlay look more uniform. I may have to look into that. I tried using the sawdust and glue on a test piece and I didn't like how much the glue shrunk which made me want to try the epoxy route instead.

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Whereas the gaps on my maple pieces are really small and very uniform because I use a cam machine, I actually use clear (slight yellow tint) epoxy without coloring the glue at all. The color of the wood is seen through the glue which is lighter than mixing dust with the glue. I think this is a better look. I like to you superglue expoxy in the 20 minute cure time mixture.

You might want to experiment with this.

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  • 2 weeks later...
Whereas the gaps on my maple pieces are really small and very uniform because I use a cam machine, I actually use clear (slight yellow tint) epoxy without coloring the glue at all. The color of the wood is seen through the glue which is lighter than mixing dust with the glue. I think this is a better look. I like to you superglue expoxy in the 20 minute cure time mixture.

You might want to experiment with this.

So the epoxy comes already with a slightly yellow tint to it? Care to shoot me a link of this stuff so I can try it out?

Thanks

Chris

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So the epoxy comes already with a slightly yellow tint to it? Care to shoot me a link of this stuff so I can try it out?

Thanks

Chris

Hi Chris. It's made my superglue corporation and it's the 20 minute clear with the blue plugger. Unfortunately, I was having a problem finding it on the shelves. The last place I was buying it directly from was Home Depot. It is still in their stock numbers so some of them may still carry it.

I use so much of it that I buy in a case at a time right from superglue corp (their minimum order). Their are some web-site that carry it, but they don't stock it so the order forfillment time is really long. Some Ace Hardwares may carry it too.

Check around. It's the best stuff I have ever used and it cheap combared to like Stu-Mac or something. It's about $2.50 a tube. Highly recommended. Mixes fast, cures fast, solid as a rock, little if any bubble problem, and colors well with saw dust.

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Hi Chris. It's made my superglue corporation and it's the 20 minute clear with the blue plugger. Unfortunately, I was having a problem finding it on the shelves. The last place I was buying it directly from was Home Depot. It is still in their stock numbers so some of them may still carry it.

I use so much of it that I buy in a case at a time right from superglue corp (their minimum order). Their are some web-site that carry it, but they don't stock it so the order forfillment time is really long. Some Ace Hardwares may carry it too.

Check around. It's the best stuff I have ever used and it cheap combared to like Stu-Mac or something. It's about $2.50 a tube. Highly recommended. Mixes fast, cures fast, solid as a rock, little if any bubble problem, and colors well with saw dust.

Is this it? http://superglue.supergluecorp.com/syss.html

And to clarify you said that using that stuff alone gives a better look rather then mixing in some maple dust?

Thanks again!

Chris

Edited by factory5150
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Yep, that's the stuff. Yes if you use it by itself is doesn't dry as dark as mixing it with the dust. Making your borders less noticable.

Of course, as always, test it for yourself to be sure you like the results.

This glue really mixes well with dust like ebony and rosewood though.

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There are pearl pigments and powders that you could try mixing in with the epoxy.

Recon Stone has some good looking pearls and metallics and there is also a product called Pearl Ex thats interesting.

Here is a test piece I was playing with using some Pearl Ex Macro Pearl mixed in epoxy. Its not maple or filler around pearl, but it gives you an idea.

.

p-logo-pearl.jpg

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Whenever I'm filling with a glue/sawdust combo, I very rarely use the actual wood I'm working with, rather I look through my scrap bin for something a few shades lighter, since it always darkens up with glue. (Although if the wood is going under finish, it might not be a problem.) I make a test in some saw kerfs in scrap to see how it looks.

(Of course, with something as pale as maple, finding something a shade or lighter isn't really possible...)

I've also had good luck using tempera powders to color epoxy, and even baking soda in a pinch when I needed a more white color. Might be worth a shot? (practice on scrap, of course!)

If your gap is larger, might you be able to use wood glue to stick in a bit of a shaving, rather than dust? Often makes for a much less noticable fill.

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Whenever I'm filling with a glue/sawdust combo, I very rarely use the actual wood I'm working with, rather I look through my scrap bin for something a few shades lighter, since it always darkens up with glue. (Although if the wood is going under finish, it might not be a problem.) I make a test in some saw kerfs in scrap to see how it looks.

(Of course, with something as pale as maple, finding something a shade or lighter isn't really possible...)

I've also had good luck using tempera powders to color epoxy, and even baking soda in a pinch when I needed a more white color. Might be worth a shot? (practice on scrap, of course!)

Yup, I use a bit of white tempra paint to lighten up my epoxy mixes. Works fine for me

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This is the only place on the internet I have found the super glue...

I assume this is it right?

http://www.castlewholesalers.com/SUPER-GLU...ve-Syringe.html

Yep, that's it. Warning, buy a few because once you try this stull you won't want to use anything else. I know I don't. When Home Depot stopped carrying it, I just about freaked.

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This is the only place on the internet I have found the super glue...

I assume this is it right?

http://www.castlewholesalers.com/SUPER-GLU...ve-Syringe.html

Yep, that's it. Warning, buy a few because once you try this stull you won't want to use anything else. I know I don't. When Home Depot stopped carrying it, I just about freaked.

Luckily they wholesale only and I have to place an order for 15 lol. I will keep that site bookmarked because they are the only place on the web I have found that has the SYSS stuff. Everywhere else has the stuff in the red and black caps.

Thanks

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