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Drilling Holes In My New Neck


Ryanesque
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yesterday i used a jig saw to do the basic cutting out of my headstock shape. i didn't want to do the holes before I did this just in case something ended up closer/further away..

so, I tried using a couple of bits to get up to the size I'm using for my 11/32" ferrules, but when i tried it on a piece of the headstock that I'd cut off, the wood kept breaking like it was too brittle.

so I'm trying to decide if I should use like 5 bits to work up to the size, or if I just need to sandwich the headstock and use a sharp bit with a drill press.

It's a hard rock maple neck (with ebony fingerboard) from Carvin (and I spent a lot on it, so I'd rather not muck it up! :D )

Thanks,

Ryan

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Definitely us a drill press! Put a block of scrap wood on the back of what you are drilling...this will keep your wood from breaking out when the drill pops through.

+1

You wont need to step up through bit sizes. With a good brad point bit and a piece of scrap wood on the back you will be good to go.

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Definitely us a drill press! Put a block of scrap wood on the back of what you are drilling...this will keep your wood from breaking out when the drill pops through.

+1

You wont need to step up through bit sizes. With a good brad point bit and a piece of scrap wood on the back you will be good to go.

+ me too. If it's a decent piece of Maple use a new brad point bit, ( aka lip and spur) try a test piece first. Make sure that you use a quality bit as well.

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okay great. I'll go buy a new one...probably an irwin bit or something similar quality.

what size bit should i get for a 11/32" Kluson type ferrule for a good interference fit? I was gonna use a "W" bit I'm not sure what size that really is. I'd rather use an actual "number" bit than a letter...

Ryan

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Even with a good bit I would place a piece of scrap wood or mdf underneath the headstock as you drill to prevent chip out as it comes out the back. With a high quality bit and going slow it is still possible that it could happen, I always try to do this just in case. Anyhow, I agree with the posters grab a high quality brad point and use it on a drill press with a piece of wood underneath, it makes things nice and easy. There is this saying that I've heard, it may sound crazy but its true. Sharpness is safety. Meaning the sharper your tools the safer they are. Crazy right? But its definitely true.

Edited by jmrentis
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  • 3 weeks later...

I'm installing a set of Klusons into my wife's Les Paul build, so I'll use this as an opportunity to post a simple photo tutorial on drilling necks for tuners. The neck in question is zebrano with a wenge lamination, ziricote headplate and macassar ebony backstrap....that should be sufficient grounds for potential tearout prevention!

These are also 11/32" press-fit bushings FWIW.

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