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Making Headplate / Neck


Well, I was pondering over the headplate of #4.
Usually it is a porblem of not enough back material for the headplate, but this time my plantilla was smaller than normal size guitar and my back material is meant for steel string which has a larger size plantilla.
End up I have a lot material left for headplate.
Here's the problem I felt that it's certainly a waste to use that much material for headplate, it can be used for a multi-piece back instead.
I left that part for quite a long time not really knowing what to do.
I even thought of using my other flamed maple back material for the headplate but thought against it in the end.
I also thought of buying a maple headplate too, but since it wont be book matched and 2ndly it wont be matching with the back so I decided against it in the end.
Finally I realised I can still have enough mater if I just cut the wings a bit.
I check against the head width and it's enough.
What I have left in the cut-off, is still good for a multi-piece back.

So I saw away the protruding wing and shoot them straight with my shooting plane.
Finally it's all set to be jointed.
The jointing is what I did previously for all my necks.
Maple is a lot easier to get a clean straight edge being softer than rosewood.

Sawing 1/2 of the headplate material from the cut-off. The left behind material can be use for a multi-piece back.

Shoot to get a straight joinery edge

Preparing for the joinery.

Just before applying hide glue.

Glued and clamped down.

After scraping away the excess glue. Looks pretty good

Finally found sometime to glue the headplate to the neck.
In between the maple headplate and the head, I glue a piece of IRW for contrast.
Again I use hide for the gluing.

Preparing to glue

Glue the IRW headplate

Followed by the maple headplate, I like those flamed patterns!


After that I plane / chisel the edges of the headplate to flush with the side of the head.
I trace the headplate template onto the headplate and drill the slot holes onto the head.
Following that I cut the nut end of the headplate to have the correct angle.

Plane the edges flush with the side

Done for one side.

The other side there is quite a bit protruding so I saw some kerfs in it.

Chisel it

And then plane it

The other side also done

Saw the nut edge of the head plate

Chisel it level

Head plate done.

Well I haven't been doing much, my mother had a fall so I had to take care of her as well as my baby.
So it's kind of busy week for me.
Anyway I managed to squeeze out sometime to meet some friends of mine which we know thru' the Delcamp forum.
Of course one of them is the one which I will be making a 10-string guitar for and the other is a talented person who is also a enthusiast hobbist maker like me.
Just that he makes bikes! (which I think is much harder than guitar.)
We had a good time together yesterday
Here is his website, feel free to take a look.

Anyway I just work abit on the neck and decide on the inlay for the headplate.

One possible inlay. This meander pattern will be on the back and end graft too. The other possibility is to make it like the rosette.

Cut kerfed slots in the neck to facilitate chiseling.

Chisel away the waste. The neck will narrow down to 52mm

Planing the slope in the head

Sawing off the excess head

The head shape roughly sawn.

Did some more shaping of the headstock using saw and chisel and rebate plane.

Saw the waste part.

Shape with my rebate plane

Almost done.

Using a freshly sharpened chisel to shape the headstock shape. Works Great!

I just plane a fresh surface for the heel block and ready to glue.
Also I plane the end grain of the heel block.
With a freshly sharpened iron, you don't even need a low angle plane.
It cut just as nice.
I measured and aligned the heel block and draw the rough heel shape.

All the heel block sized correctly and aligned. The rough heel shape is also drawn to make sure the dimension are correct.

With a freshly sharpened iron, end grain planing is nothing. You don't even need a low angle plane.

I did the inlay on the headplate with the meander tiles that I have made.
The meander tiles is bold; very bold not the typical Torres meander which has finer lines.
Anyway I decide to use the router plane instead of the router and that's a wrong decision.
I chipped out the channel at several places now I have to remedy it somehow.
Maple is much harder to route compare to spruce

Marking the edge of the channel.

Scribe thru' with a marking knife

Route the channel

Some bad chip outs...

Apply glue

Glue in the tiles

Clamp it

Here is how the neck looks after the inlay is done.
I will need to route and inlay some purfling beside the meander to cover up the tear-out.
It's not as bad as I think actually; 2 purfling strips should make it invisible.

The meander inlay; needs 2 purfling strip by the side the cover up the tear-out.

Planing down using LA block for end grain tile.

Gluing up the heel block 1st. The heel will be glued to the neck later. This is enable me to work easier on the head 1st.

I remedy the tear-out by routing purfling channel beside the meander tiles.
The set up is clamp 2 fence by the side of the head and route with the RTX
The clamping of the neck is a bit more innovative as I need to free some space for the fence
I clamp another neck below this neck and clamp this angled neck to the other neck.
This frees up the head stock area for clamping the fence.
After the purfling channel is routed; it wide enough for 2 color purfling, the next step will be to glue the purfling in.
I decide not to rush and leave it for the next time.

The set up

One side routed

Both channel routed

With the purfling

Purfling on one side is glued

Both side glued.

Unfortunately one side the purfling didn't sit in the groove properly...
So I got to redo that part or the entire left side.
I only discover it when I plane it down.
The other side was good and overall I must say it look pretty good.
It's a small fix just troublesome.

Planing down the purfling

Looking quite good minus the top left part.

Close up of the top left part.

I glued the heel stack to the neck and repair the purfling at the head too.

Gluing the heel stack to the neck

Another view

Almost done

Another view

Cutting the side slots

Both side done

I shaped the heel and drill the tuner holes for the neck
What's left is to cut the tuner slots and final shaping of the heel after assembly.

Prepare to drill the tuner holes.

My jig only can use 2 holes that's why I had to turn around and drill the after drill 2 holes. I use the spare drill bit to make sure of the correct position. According to LMI the bushing size is 10mm but I use 10.3 mm drill bit. That's why only 2 can be used.

Holes drilled

Test with the tuner

Both side in

The neck done

The heel is a thin profile heel to allow easier access to upper frets as per Torres.

Heel carved to the front. Now the shape is more pleasing

Looked from the front.