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Good catch, @mistermikev! As the planks are wider than the actual body, a couple of screws, dowels or even bolts and nuts will definitely help lining the body pieces up. Contrary to my previous opinion gluing the top and bottom separately as large boards would help getting the crossing seams match at the ends but leveling such a large board without proper tools can be a nightmare. Drill the upper holes larger than the diameter of the screws and use screws with threads on the tip only - neck bolts are the right type. 

image.png.416bfa693e1d3a7e8730ea32f8a54963.png

 

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On 3/18/2020 at 4:59 PM, Wildman Guitarist said:

Understood, thanks.

that brings me to my next question.  When and how should I sand using poplar?  I read somewhere that prepping for paint is different than stain?

Is it best to sand everything now at the beginning?  When do I know I’m done sanding?

Regarding tools, I have a jigsaw, circular saw, electric sander (drill tip).  Though I’m not how good the sander is, may end up sanding by hand. (Friend that has tools isn’t available with this Covid 19 going on- ironically it’s the best time to do this project as my boys and I have time on our hands...

 

thanks again for all your help!

Just checking to see if anyone has any thoughts on the above sanding question.  It’s probably a basic question, but as a beginner, I’m not sure what rule of thumb to follow.

 

thanks!

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On 3/19/2020 at 4:22 AM, Bizman62 said:

Good catch, @mistermikev! As the planks are wider than the actual body, a couple of screws, dowels or even bolts and nuts will definitely help lining the body pieces up. Contrary to my previous opinion gluing the top and bottom separately as large boards would help getting the crossing seams match at the ends but leveling such a large board without proper tools can be a nightmare. Drill the upper holes larger than the diameter of the screws and use screws with threads on the tip only - neck bolts are the right type. 

image.png.416bfa693e1d3a7e8730ea32f8a54963.png

 

Thank you- input is very much appreciated.

just for clarification, you mentioned that the planks were wider than the actual body?  The planks together have an 11 inch width, with about 2 inch thickness.  I could be wrong, but I didn’t think I had much room with those dimensions...

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Oh they're that narrow! I misunderstood, I thought they were 11" each. That sure affects your design if you go for a LP junior as the lower bout is about 13" at the widest. You can make the lower bout wider by gluing the excess of the waist area to the sides. If you take the extension from the opposite side rather than just flipping the piece over the grain direction should match better. It's not a big deal but opposite grain directions will refract light differently.

In a roundish body the corners can be used for securing screws.

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Re sanding, poplar can be very soft so leaving that to a late stage might be wise. No matter what finish you're going to use, start with a  coarse grit like 100 and go finer when the marks of the previous stage have vanished. So 100, 180, 240, 320, maybe 400. Very important: DON'T PUSH TOO HARD! The weight of the sanding block and your palm is enough. Compare lawn mowing to steamrolling! No need to go higher than 400 for stain or lacquer. When you've reached the highest grit, wipe with a damp cloth and let dry to raise any grain. Then sand lightly with the highest grit only to cut the raised grain - again like mowing. Rinse and repeat several times until the moistening doesn't raise any grain.

 

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  • 3 weeks later...

Hello Again All,

Well the body is finally together.  Did it all with a Jig.  The sides glued nicely from the side as suggested.   Had to make some minor cuts.

So here are the next steps as I understand it- let me know if anything is wrong or out of place:
In order:
1.  Get Neck- place neck on body- measure for pickup, bridge and pots.

2.  Rout out holes for pickup bridge/drill holes for pots.

3.  Rout out back of body for wires, pots etc.

4.  Thoroughly sand body and paint.

5.  Install pickups, bridge and pots.

6.  Bolt on neck.

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0.8. Place neck on body, line up the centerlines and rout the neck pocket.
0.8.1 TRICK: Attach a long ruler on the fretboard along the centerline (masking tape should work) so that it extends over the body for better accuracy:

kuva.png.be711ef72bf72363cb2d139e28878dcb.png

0.9. Bolt the neck on temporarily.

1.1. Lay a long ruler alongside the neck and continue the lines on the top as guidelines for the pickups and bridge.

kuva.png.7f87a5442265de7587f7082403c9e36c.png

3.1. Temporarily attach neck, find the position for the bridge and drill the holes. Some builders do this after painting but that can cause the paint chipping if you're not extra careful. Perhaps the best time would be after you've applied the first coat before sanding it flat as the paint would make the surface a bit more dent resistant.

4.1. Don't forget to mask the neck cavity! You don't want a thick layer of paint at the end and bottom of the cavity to  change the scale length. You can leave the very edge unmasked for a tighter fitting, a mm or so is easy to fine tune with a scraper or sandpaper.

 

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