Tools and Tips
Later in March the neck for the mini was built and dovetailed to the body. The unique features of the 5-piece laminated neck are explained below. Before I do that, Woody would like to give you a tip that might be the best part of this month's journal. So this tip will come first.
Next, slice (rip) the glued-up arm and headstock seperately so that you now have six pieces. >
Woody has been putting together a small guitar (23-1/2" scale). The body was completed early in the month. It's about 90% of full size (18" body length; 13-1/2" wide; 37" total length). The guitar is noticably comfortable to hold and play.
Before gluing anything, all glue joints need to be true. These joints are long and it helps the truing process if the table sander surface is longer than the glue joint. > This is the reason for working the headstock and the arm seperately.
Once th 5-piece arm and the 5-piece headstock have been glued up, true the scarf joint and assemble just as you would without the laminates.
< When the maple cutouts are added we have 8 pieces. The headstock maple laminates (~ 20 x 180 mm) are then cut from the ends of the maple cutouts. Thus, both the arm and the headstock become 5-piece lay-ups. (I told you that this is not simple)
^ Glue up the heel and arm seperately from the glue up of the already-scarfed headstock.
Woody does his laminate neck a little differently. After the built-up heel is cut and glued to the arm, and the scarf joint for the head is cut, the entire assembly is ripped into three pieces...on a converging angle. I will try to explain what I mean in the photos below. It is not a simple process.
LEAD CAME KNIFE
Pictured below is a lead came knife. It is used by stained glass crafts people to cut the soft metal (lead) strips that hold the pieces of glass together in assembly.
This knife is ideal when used as a scraper when building guitars. The handle makes it more comfortable and useful than ordinary scrapers. Of course, one needs to square and roll the edge of the curved (stainless) blade, just as one sharpens an ordinary scraper.
OK. That's the tip. The cost is less than $10. Just Google "Cascade Lead Knife". I have no relationship with the company that sells these. My wife is a former stained glass artisan and I rescued two of these tools from a remote shelf in the garage.
As a scraper... this tool is GREAT!