Sunday, August 14, 2011

Grain Filing amongst other things

Grain Filing!

I’m just recovering from spending far too long filing the grain on Alan’s rosewood model 1! Well, I say far too long but it is one of those jobs that you just keep going at until it’s done and in reality time spent filing the grain, is time saved when polishing. The trouble is, that it isn’t a very interesting or challenging task and physically you can only do a few hours a day otherwise you risk RSI by constantly applying downward pressure and moving your hand with a circular motion. Ibuprofen cream is an essential part of any French polishers kit! I have tried other types of filler but the traditional pumice method still, for me, produces the best results. You can see the before and after shot above.

Alan’s guitar is now starting to look shiny!

Hare Signature II

You can see that Chris’s Hare is coming together; the body has now been assembled and next week sees the binding and purfling go on.

Standard mandolin II

Also Standard mandolin II is progressing. Those who follow my blog will know that I’m a great advocate of solid linings. I generally bend two strips of Spanish cedar which are then glued together, however, what I’ve done this time is a kind of stepped lining- still two pieces glued together but the inner strip isn’t as tall- why? I still get the surface area for gluing and the stiffness to the rim that I want, but save a little weight. Big deal, you say- but I like to progress in small degrees.

Standard II’s body also went together this week and you can also see the neck blank- I’m going for a maple neck on this one with a Koa head overlay- should look pretty! Under those mahogany fillets is carbon-fibre.
I had intended making this mandolin with a Douglas Fir soundboard- I’ve had one knocking around for years, it’s incredibly stiff so I though that it would be great for a mando. However, having thicknessed it, cut the soundhole etc resin started to come to the surface rendering the soundboard useless! I’m only too glad that I hadn’t inlaid some fancy pearl rosette! You live and learn.

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Blogger Cyrus said...

I am really enjoying going back in time reading your blog. Thanks for sharing. I was wishing I could become a good enough woodworker to call myself a luthier and the engineer in me was thinking Doug fir sound board... Our mauve Redwood since I am in California on the coast. Thanks for the inspiration!

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