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Currently I have an ash body blank that is roughly 2 inches thick. The overall goal is between 1.75 and 2". Anyways, do you guys plane your blanks before cutting the outline or plane them after you have your body shape?

Also, during the course of normal sanding and finish, how much material should I plan on removing. In other words, Let's say that after finish I wanted my body to be exactly 1.75" thick. How thick should it be planed to such that after I sand it smooth and finish it I reach this goal?

Also, I assume a tiny bit of wiggle(corner to corner, <.030") if you lay your blank on the table and push each corner is acceptable? I highly doubt everyone starts with a perfectly flat blank but wouldn't mind confirmation.

Thanks guys.

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treat it as you would any other type of wood working project: always leave room for error as they do often occur, i cant realy say how much to leave for sanding. its realy up to you how much work you want to do sanding it and how comfident you are in your tools that they dont cause catostophic problems lol.

Personaly i try to get my baords as flat and even as possible within the limit of its thickness. (planing down to be flat and ending up with 3/4"thats ment to be 1-3/4"dont make much sense does it?).

Im no master builder or anything either. Im sure one of the vastly more experirnced builders here will be able to help you out. best of luck on your project. :D

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Absolutely plane to thickness first. Unless you have your planer set up 100% flawlessly perfect, you are going to get some snipe at the ends. With the blank still oversized, you set the template in between the sniped areas. I usually just take the blank to just a hair over 1-3/4". Unless you really want to, you don't remove that much material sanding. Unless you have tool gouges or something you really are just cleaning up the surface with 100 or 150 grit and then progressing down to 320 or 400 grit. Sanding should not take that much time to do.

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I would definitely thickness the board before I cut out the body.

Also, I don't expect to take off very much thickness at all when final sanding the body. Probably just a few thousandths really. If I wanted a 1.75 body, I'd probably plane it to 1.75. You'll lose a tiny bit with sanding, and you'll put a tiny bit back with the finish. That's just my opinion, but the body thickness isn't something that's critical to me. If it's anywhere within a 1/16" of what I wanted I'm satisfied.

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