Saturday, July 23, 2011

More stuff (I'm running out of imaginative titles!)

I was asked awhile ago, how I was getting on with my cabinet makers vice. Well, it’s fair to say that it has transformed the way that I work; why? Quite simply you can do this!
I got mine from Rutland Tools- they often have a 15% off sale- keep an eye open!

You can see that Alan’s model 1 is now fretted and hopefully all the woodwork should be completed next week. Chris’s Hare is coming along nicely in the background and I’ve just started bracing the soundboard.

As you can see I’m not a go-bar man! At the moment, I prefer to use clamps to apply pressure. The Klemmsia clamps that I use, with their cork lined jaws and lever action, apply just the right amount of pressure, without any damage to the wood. I think that go-bars must be great if you apply a lot of braces in one go, but I prefer to do a couple at a time; shape them carefully and go on to the next ones. It might take me 4 days to fully brace a soundboard, but I’m not in a hurry!

John came up during the week to look at his Koa and discuss the guitar that I’m going to build for him at the beginning of next year. I’ve added a link to John’s YouTube channel on the side bar; he does some very entertaining comic songs. It occurred to me that I’ve not used Koa before and as it’s so expensive.............

The first of my “Standard” mandolins sold last weekend and it now lives in Scotland, with its new owner Brian, who sent me a delightful email about how pleased he is with his new mandolin. So “Standard” No. 2 is underway, and this one will have Koa back and sides!

Interesting stuff Koa it has a similar texture to teak but is much lighter. My main concern was bending the sides, but it proved to be reassuringly easy- you only have to show the Koa the bending iron and it practically bends itself!

Putting the Koa through the sander, I kept wondering why the saw marks wouldn’t go, but then realised it was the figuring. I think that once there is some finish on the wood it will look quite beautiful. I hope to complete this one during the autumn and will be offering this one for sale too.

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