I’ve just realised that it’s been a couple of weeks since the last post! This
week the bridge went on to John’s koa guitar and it has been strung up. What I
do nowadays, is string up an instrument and get the action and intonation just
about right and then leave it for a few days. During this period the instrument
will move under the tension of the strings and once it’s in equilibrium, the
final fettling is done. If the instrument does not move once it’s under tension
for the first time, you’ve built it too heavy!
waiting for the polish to harden, there have been other things going on. I
thought that as I’ve recently described the process of fitting a guitar neck,
I’d do the same with a mandolin for you.
I’ve gone a bit arty here-
end of the body is completely flattened and then I route a mortise into the
body. You can see how clean and accurate it is- the rule here is that this part
of the joint isn’t touched- all the adjustment is done on the tenon.
some careful marking out the tenon is roughly cut.
comes the fine fitting....
have to get the neck aligned along the centre of the body, the neck has to slope backwards
to get the correct height of strings above the soundboard and also you don’t
want any gaps between the body and the neck!
you’re happy, the neck can be glued in. Again, I don’t use clamps, just a tight
joint and gravity.
all that abalone? Well here’s one of the “N”s in a cocobolo head overlay- this
is for Sean’s twin-point mandolin as you can see he is going for my F style
little chap has been appearing in our garden and has been quite a distraction. I keep watching him munching away at daisies out of the workshop window!
Labels: Handmade mandolin, Koa guitar