Tuesday, March 29, 2005


The Other Side

Today, on my lunch break, I bent and trimmed the other side for the cocobolo parlor guitar. I've clamped both sides in the mold so they don't relax out of shape before I get the neck and tail blocks glued in. I've got to finish setting up my friend's old 1943 Delta band saw before I can make the blocks. I don't trust my little Ryobi band saw to cut through three inch thick mahogany.

And here it is stored under the drum sander. When I build a workbench I'm going to incorporate the same type of storage.

Monday, March 28, 2005


Taking Sides

Hey, look, I finally made a guitar shaped thing! I bent a side tonight in my fox bender with heating blanket. I probably should have taken more pictures of all the steps in getting everything set for this, maybe I'll do it when I bend the other side.

The sides look noticably darker than before I bent them. I believe this is because cocobolo is a very oily wood, so the heat and moisture probably drove a bunch of oil to the surface. It should lighten up with sanding.

The side was a little too long on each end, which is on purpose. I used the centerline on the form to mark where the ends of the sides should be and then trimmed each end with a japanese dozuki saw.

On the tail end I cut the side slightly too short. It really won't matter if the ends don't meet, I'm going to put in an ebony wedge at the tail anyway, so I'll be chiseling out the ends anyway.

Saturday, March 26, 2005


Look, it's a working drum sander.

I got the drum sander stand stained and screwed in some shelf brackets on the inside. Last night I bolted the drum sander to the top and got it all set up and adjusted. This morning I assembled my new dust collector and got everything all hooked up and ready to go. I sanded two sets of sides, one cocobolo for the parlor guitar I'm working on, and a set of rosewood sides just because I wanted to keep using the thing. Works like a charm.

The Performax is a great machine, and it's very heavy, it's designation as a "benchtop" model betrays the quality and sturdiness of it. One poor aspect of it's design, though , is that the dust collection portcomes out over the exit side of the drum. So if the dust collection hose is unsupported, it will hit whatever you're sanding as it leaves the backside of the drum. So I whipped together a little plywood bracket so that the hose is supported and won't hit the work piece as it comes out. It would have been nice if there was some sort of attachment on the actual sander to hold the hose in place.

Wednesday, March 23, 2005


Drum (Sander) Roll Please

So I've had my drum sander for a while now and I still haven't used it once yet. I've been working a ton lately so I can afford to pay Uncle Sam the taxes I owe and haven't spent much time on the guitar making, which is driving me nuts. So tonight I decided that I needed to do something, so I did.

At least a month ago I had bought plywood and some locking casters with the idea of making a rolling stand for my new Performax drum sander. So tonight I hastily drew up a plan (in 3d because I'm fancy like that) and cut up the plywood to the needed sizes and started screwing the thing together. It's not pretty but it should work fine.

It's still not quite complete. I need to put in shelf rails so I can have removable shelves that slide in and out as needed. At the last minute, I had the idea of sizing the box so that my building form (as seen in a previous post) would be able to essentially become a shelf. Then I can store the body assembly out of the way when I'm working on the guitar top, and vice versa. In the pic it's sitting at the bottom of the box to give you an idea of what I'm talking about. I didn't have the right size screws to install the shelf rails, so that will have to wait for another day. I'll probably also stain it or something so it looks a little less thrown together.

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