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Bending Wood Binding


avengers63
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I'm in the long-term planning stage of a project I'll be working on in the Spring. I want to do an Avenger body and do multiple layers of binding. As you know, there are some serious curves on the trebel horn. I'm considering using maple for the binding. The question is how easy does it bend? If it's not very flexable, how do you bend it? Is any special tool needed to heat & bend it?

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I'm in the long-term planning stage of a project I'll be working on in the Spring. I want to do an Avenger body and do multiple layers of binding. As you know, there are some serious curves on the trebel horn. I'm considering using maple for the binding. The question is how easy does it bend? If it's not very flexable, how do you bend it? Is any special tool needed to heat & bend it?

I'm guessing a heat gun.

Just a guess though.

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I'm in the long-term planning stage of a project I'll be working on in the Spring. I want to do an Avenger body and do multiple layers of binding. As you know, there are some serious curves on the trebel horn. I'm considering using maple for the binding. The question is how easy does it bend? If it's not very flexable, how do you bend it? Is any special tool needed to heat & bend it?

John,

It really depends on how thick it is. I have cold wet bent curly maple for an acoustic with no problem. If tighter bends are needed then heat needs to be applied. My average thickness though is .060 to .040 If you want to do say .125 then heat will be needed even on an acoustic.

Just what I have experienced so far.

Mike

Edited by MiKro
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My experiments with a heat gun and wooden binding have been less than successful for anything but the thinnest of material. You really need to capture the heat - you want to bend over a heated pipe, although a heat gun may well work for the heat source for the pipe. Bending blankets should help as well, as I've noticed wooden binding has a much larger propensity to develop twist than plastic.

There are plenty of posts here - I'd look at some of the info on bending sides for acoustics - it's basically the same process. With the sharp curves of your design I think you may need to end up mitering some of your curves, but I'm no expert on these matters - I certainly haven't successfully used wooden binding.

There are plenty of plans to build devices for bending wood - although I think just buying a heat bender may be worth it.

I'm sure others with actual experience on this front will chime in, this is just my two cents, as I'm in the same position you're in.

( Edit - Mike posted while I was, with better information. )

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I've done a log of steam bending. One of the tricks is to have straight grain. It's much less likely to break. Have 3x as many strips as you need. You can always use them on another project. You need heat and moisure. Most of the time when I break something I'm trying to bend, I realize it broke before or after the section I'm heating up. I always try to go too fast.

-John

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