Sapele Guitar & Stuff

Discussion in 'Guitar Building' started by Murkar, Nov 22, 2015.

  1. Murkar

    Murkar Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Apr 14, 2013
    Messages:
    579
    Likes Received:
    294
    EDIT: Just removed this from my handplane thread to post here because I realized it was in the off-topic section.

    Weeeeelll.....I'm actually making a guitar for once.

    It's been a long time since I was last able to actually find the time to work on a guitar.....a very long time. I've made a few handplanes but that's been about it, because I can finish those in an afternoon.

    Today I finally got started on a guitar I've been wanting to make for quite some time. I dusted off my templates and a big slab of Sapele and got to work.

    I started by rough sawing the body outline on the bandsaw. I also have nice clear acrylic templates for the J-11 model that I had laser-cut from the blueprint file. They're set up for single coils, but this guitar is going to have two humbuckers and a blend-balance knob (like the prototype I built when designing this bad boy).

    [​IMG]



    My workshop was in a pretty bad state, having not worked in here for almost two years. Half of my templates are gone, there's stuff piled everywhere, and almost all of my tools have been removed from their wall hangars and stored away. I'll be cleaning and fixing up my shop while working on this J-11.

    [​IMG]


    One tool I was happy to find was still there was my drill bit Awl (probably my favorite tool of all that I own). I did a tutorial on my blog about how to make these a while back - fun little awls to make from old drill bits, and they look great :)

    [​IMG]


    The templates have countersunk holes so they can be screwed down to the body. The holes are positioned in the same spot as the pickguard holes, so I use the pickguard screws to hold the templates in place while routing. The ones that aren't are positioned over the pickup slots so that the holes will be routed away later and there not a visible blemish on the finished product.

    [​IMG]


    Next up, used the routed to trim the rough cut body flush with the template. Tomorrow I'll start hogging material out for the electronics cavities and the neck mortise. I also rounded over the back edges with the router and a roundover bit (no pics), but I'll leave the front edges until I have the neck plane carved (since this guitar will have an angled set neck like a les paul).

    [​IMG]


    Aaaaand since I'm posting all of this in my handplane thread.....gotta make one of those of course. I don't have any handplanes any more, since I sold all of my previous ones or gave them away, so I realized I actually need one for myself. Odd to be a planemaker and not own a single handplane.

    I had this nice thick O1 steel blade from Hock Tools in my toolbox (sorry for the dark picture), so I'm gonna make a small smoother or a mitre plane tomorrow which I'll then use to carve the neck plane. I selected a nice block of striped ebony for the plane. Hopefully I'll actually keep this plane this time. :)

    [​IMG]

    More to come soon! :)
     
    Renkenstein, jkes01 and HEADKNOCKER like this.
  2. HEADKNOCKER

    HEADKNOCKER Active Member

    Joined:
    Apr 10, 2015
    Messages:
    253
    Likes Received:
    41
    I love your micro planes..

    Stamp your name in the new one & don't sell it..
     
  3. Renkenstein

    Renkenstein Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Jul 12, 2013
    Messages:
    897
    Likes Received:
    480
    Location:
    Kansas City
    Welcome back to guitar building! Missed ya, Murk!
     
  4. Murkar

    Murkar Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Apr 14, 2013
    Messages:
    579
    Likes Received:
    294
    hehe cheers man!

    Mmm.....haven't made any micro planes for a long time, I might have to do a few more soon :) I really wanted to do miniature dovetailed brass/steel infill planes, but I don't have access to a milling machine.

    Anyways; I got started this morning by assembling a handplane, which I needed to carve the neck plane. I wanted to test out an idea and see if it worked, so I used some of the scrap Sapele cutoffs from the guitar body blank to make this. In case anyone else is thinking of trying it, don't waste your time using a flattened cross pin - it's not worth the hassle, and using this plane was murder (even with a super-sharp O1 Steel blade). I'll be using that ebony to make one with a proper steel or brass bridge in a bit.

    [​IMG]


    Laid out the positioning for the electronics, neck mortise, and neck plane.

    [​IMG]


    Afterwards, I went to town on the guitar body with that Sapele plane and finished the neck plane. It's at 4.2 degrees right now, I'll make adjustments later to get it where I want once I decide on what to use for a bridge.

    [​IMG]


    Then I began hogging out material with a forstner bit for the routes.

    [​IMG]


    I also had a nice piece of perfectly quartered Sapele for the neck, so I traced the neck outline and rough cut it.

    [​IMG]


    Tomorrow I'll be starting on the fretboard and hopefully also finish up the routes so I can order electronics etc.
     
    jkes01 likes this.
  5. mux164

    mux164 New Member

    Joined:
    Aug 28, 2015
    Messages:
    16
    Likes Received:
    5
    very nice
     
  6. Murkar

    Murkar Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Apr 14, 2013
    Messages:
    579
    Likes Received:
    294
    Well.....it took me six months, but I finally got around to finishing the handplane. I'll use it to finish off this guitar as a test run to make sure it's in perfect working order and then probably sell it. I used an old rustic (ahem*rusted*ahem* - but people tell me the old-timey thing is fashionable, so I didn't use the shiny new piece of brass I had ready to go) steel bridge this time, I wanted this plane to last the owner pretty much until they either die or wear the plane out. I've also started stamping my wedges with an emblem of an anchor & rope :)

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    Next thing on my plate is to finish the electronics routing and get the neck fit to the pocket.

    Also I hope to finish the fretboard soon - but at the pace I've been going, that won't happen until I'm 75 years old.
     
    poro78 and jkes01 like this.
  7. jkes01

    jkes01 Active Member

    Joined:
    Apr 14, 2013
    Messages:
    297
    Likes Received:
    73
    Location:
    KCMO
    :welcome: back!

    Beautiful plane, love the makers mark.
     
  8. Murkar

    Murkar Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Apr 14, 2013
    Messages:
    579
    Likes Received:
    294
    hey! lol thanks, good to be back :) I've been out of the guitar making scene for too long.....my new shop is coming along though and should be ready to rock in a couple weeks :)

    Also got a friend interested in making some cabs so once my shop is up and going, might see some of his stuff on here too :p
     
  9. Murkar

    Murkar Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Apr 14, 2013
    Messages:
    579
    Likes Received:
    294
    Awwwwwwwwwwww yiss :) the new shop is almost ready to go.....atm I am making a roubo style bench.


    Looks like I am going to need to get the furnace installed soon.....

    [​IMG]


    The top is laminated out of framing lumber. It's 5.5" thick and it's damn heavy.

    [​IMG]


    Legs will be 5.25" wide and overall height around 34". The

    [​IMG]


    I am using a strange type of joinery that I've never used before, just to see how it works. Saw this on David Barron's youtube channel where he made a roubo. I can't do the full proper joint because I don't have a table saw, but I will be doing a wedged dovetail. So these square tenons will actually end up being dovetails in the end, they'll be cut and wedged so that the sides flare out and form a dovetail shape. That way the joint will be very strong, and the legs will be in there for good.

    [​IMG]
     

Share This Page