Richards #37 - page 2
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A blank is laminated from three sections of maple laminated together with two leaves of jarrah as a highlight. These help no end in determining the center line of the neck

Truss rod laid into postion and the slot is marked out
The slot is cut.
Truss rod slot cut and truss in place. You can spot the fillet of maple that will cap the slot to the right.
Fillet epoxied into position and clamped.
top face cleaaned off for the last time ready for the fingerboard to glued down.
The finger board cut, dimensioned and slotted. The fret marker holes have been cut.
Fret markers glued in position and trimmed
All done and ready for the radius to be cut.
First excess material is trimmed away.
The most difficult and demanding part of the whole project is cutting a perfectly levelled and centered radius on the fingerboard. As I rarely hand cut a fingerboard i have not taken the time to builfd a radiusing jig. But, every 12 months at least one job comes in that requires a fingerboard that I cant buy. The whole time I am cutting the radius I am wishing i had taken the time to build the jig. Approx 10 hours work is involved pussing the radius beam up and down until it is perfect from fron to back.
Finally done.
All cleaned up. Whew! Glad that job's done.
In position. Next job is tapering the neck and the fingerboard will then be glued down, trimmed and fretted.
Neck blank is trimmed to where the pickup rout begins. There will be a further small shelf cut towrads the nut once the finger board position is precisely located.
Next the depth of the tenon is precisely cut. Once the neck has been tapered and trimmed there will be no square edges to cut to.
Now things get serious. The neck profile shape is roughed in on the badsaw.
The template is located precisely on the surface the finger board will be glued to.
The mplate is screwed carefully down. Dont want this to move even .001" while this job is being cut.
Two passes on the router table and it's all over. Ears will be attached to the headstock as the blank is a little narrower than the finished headstock width. This will be done once the headstock face is planed flat. It is dependant on the exact position of the fingerboard.

No matter how carefully everything is is measured and caculated it doesn't necesarily always come out exact on the workpiece. What fun would there be if it did?
Template off and it is starting to look like a bit like a neck.
The template is laid out on the center line drawn on what will become the socket template.
Time for the most crital part of the build, The neck to body mortoise and tenon joint is now to be cut. It has to be done perfectly or it will throw the neck off center to the bridge or have the neck either forward or back too far. Just like cutting a screw down removable neck socket but no wiggle room is allowable. A good fit will ensure maximum frequency transmission from the neck toi the body. A strong body to neck union no matter how it is joined is critical. I will be satisfied with nothing less than perfection here.
The size of the socket is determined thus with the center line provided by the red laser line.
The bac of the socket is blocked in. The neck will terminate at the back of the rhythm pickup rou. You can see the ruler in the foreground which tells me everything is lined up perfectly.
The socket template is cut.
The back of the neck is trimmed out. The pickup will sit on top of the rebate.
Round the corners over.
Hmm Nice fit. Not too tight so that it has to be hammered in but tight enough to have to give a push. Once glue hits the surface it swells and the last thing you want on glueup day is to have to smash it into the hole with a rubber mallett.
Most of the waste is cut using a 19mm forstner drill bit. Template in place ready to cut the socket,
Fits nice. and the sun peeps through as you can see in the background, A sunny moment in many ways for this build.
My measurements are confirmed as good, Just need to check the line up with the laser, check the hieghts and I can move onto shaping the headstock. Once that is done tapering and glueing down the fingerboard will follow. I will fret before glueing the neck in. The carve of the body edges will be done, the ferrule and control cavity cover rebates will be cut. The neck will be glued in and a trial string up can be done to check everything is right. A good time for RJ to check the neck for feel. Once finishing has begun it is too late to modify the neck.
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