Thursday, April 07, 2016

Making Paul’s neck blank

I thought that I’d show you how I put a neck blank together- although this one is for Paul’s Standard Plus mandolin, the general process is the same for any of the instruments that I make.
We start with some basic woodwork- I don’t have (or want!) a large band-saw or planer machine, so it’s down to traditional, hand skills to true up this piece of maple.
Once the maple is flat and square, the rough profile is cut-out and prepared for laminating with some rosewood veneers and a thicker piece of pau ferro.
Another piece of maple (from the same board) is prepared for the head- my bench-top band-saw is just about at its limit here!
The head is glued on- I always use a spliced head joint.
Once the head is on, two slots are routed for the carbon-fibre strips that I like to use to stiffen the neck. With CF epoxied in place, the head overlay can be glued on- this is a precious piece of beautiful chocolate brown Brazilian rosewood. It does look good enough to eat!
Next the head can be shaped and the tuner holes drilled- you also have to counter-bore the holes to take the bushes.
The head can then be inlaid with my N logo; Paul has chosen abalone for his.
And after quite a few hours work, we have the finished neck blank…..
You can also see that on the back of the head, I’ve partially carved the volute and, those tuners are some very nice handmade Robsons.

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Blogger Paul Brooker said...

looking great Gary!

3:53 AM  

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