How I glue a cutaway side to the headblock....

Got a new way of doing something? Or maybe an old method that needs some clarification.

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woodrat
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How I glue a cutaway side to the headblock....

Post by woodrat » Wed Aug 21, 2013 5:43 pm

I am making a new Wenge Om with a cutaway so I thought that I would show how I skin this particular cat. Firstly I make the head block by gluing a piece of WRC to the side of the head block to act as a support to the cutaway side. I use Techniglue for this as it is an end grain to end grain gluing application. Then I put both sides in the mold and I place it over a piece of paper and scribe the cutaway shape onto paper and then cut it out and overlay it on the head block and trace the shape out and then bandsaw and sand to exact shape and fit. I put it back into the mold and get it fitting perfectly and then I draw some reference lines so I can glue the head block on in the right position when I glue it out of the mold. I then make a stop so that the side does not slip off the head block and I can clamp it with confidence. I make a caul from the head block offcut and I use a piece of thin foam between the caul and the surface of the cutaway to distribute the pressure more evenly. I use the type of foam that you get when you unpack a new electrical appliance....it is fairly easy to come by anyway... Clamping is then just across the head block as per the pictures. I use Techniglue for this as well.
I know there are many ways to divest a feline of its fur and this is but one of them....I hope that it is helpful to someone....:)
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Re: How I glue a cutaway side to the headblock....

Post by GregL » Wed Aug 21, 2013 5:55 pm

Thanks for that John. I often wondered how to handle that bit (I haven't done it yet, but will one day).

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Re: How I glue a cutaway side to the headblock....

Post by Kamusur » Wed Aug 21, 2013 7:03 pm

Really love the Venetian cutaway on acoustics John, thanks for sharing the process and good luck with the build.

Steve

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Re: How I glue a cutaway side to the headblock....

Post by Bruce McC » Wed Aug 21, 2013 8:27 pm

Hi John

Missed you at the Nationals this year, have you been away?
I have never done a cutaway so thanks for this post. Apart from
saving material is there any other reason for making a composite
head block?
Bruce Mc.

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Re: How I glue a cutaway side to the headblock....

Post by woodrat » Wed Aug 21, 2013 9:58 pm

Thanks everyone! :) I hoped that It would be useful...even if just to see how someone else does it...

Bruce....I didn't go to the Nationals...I was planing to go to the UK and I decided to give it a miss this year....Would have loved to go but I couldn't make it all fit in...With regard to the head block....I use a standard dimension head block and glue on to it with WRC as it is easy to shape. The cut starts in the head block and then goes into the cedar...care must be taken to get a smooth transition between the hard and soft material but can be done with care (like all lutherie I suppose)

Steve...I am happy with this venetian....if you dont get it right it can look a bit naff...I have been working on getting the proportions right and then the bending just right....I thinned the cutaway part down to 1.5mm to make the bending easier.

Greg...they are not as hard as they may at first seem... Go for it on your next build.... :D
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Re: How I glue a cutaway side to the headblock....

Post by woodrat » Wed Aug 21, 2013 10:10 pm

... Bruce, another reason I do the head block that was is because I want to increase the glue surface area as an insurance....:)
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Re: How I glue a cutaway side to the headblock....

Post by Kamusur » Thu Aug 22, 2013 8:19 am

Yeah John, its always a balancing act getting the proportions right while solving construction issues. FWIW just my opinion i reckon the Venetian cutaway visually balances better with the round shape of the soundhole on acoustics and the Florentine sits better with the angular look of electrics and hollow body elecs with the exception of thinlines but like i said just personal preference.

Steve

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Re: How I glue a cutaway side to the headblock....

Post by woodrat » Thu Aug 22, 2013 9:08 am

...the glue up complete...
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Re: How I glue a cutaway side to the headblock....

Post by woodrat » Thu Aug 22, 2013 12:45 pm

...well all was going well...until I had a little accident on the way to the radius sanding machine... :(

I sand it in the mold and I clamp the head block and the tail block with clamps and have a stretcher at the waist. The clamps I was using are the Record bar clamps (cramps?) that you see in the pictures. Well I am not sure exactly what happened but the clamp came undone when I was not expecting it to causing the whole assembly to fall and subsequently catastrophic damage was visited upon what was a project that was coming along nicely.... :oops:
Anyway what I have learned from this experience is just how weak Wenge is in and along the grain. I know that quartersawn timber has a tendency to split along the grain but this tore like paper and the grain that was glued to the tail block just popped off leaving all the glue behind. Wenge is a favorite of some pretty high end builders at the moment but with this experience I am a bit wary of it . The Wenge I have is perfectly straight and quartersawn and about 25 years old at least. I was looking forward to using it but there you go...lesson learned...well two actually....also dont use the bar clamps use a G clamp next time!!!! :evil:
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Re: How I glue a cutaway side to the headblock....

Post by GregL » Thu Aug 22, 2013 1:02 pm

Ouch! Bad luck, John! At least you're being philosophical - if it was me, the choice words would still be flowing even now! Thanks for sharing what you did, anyway.

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Re: How I glue a cutaway side to the headblock....

Post by woodrat » Thu Aug 22, 2013 1:15 pm

GregL wrote:Ouch! Bad luck, John! At least you're being philosophical - if it was me, the choice words would still be flowing even now! Thanks for sharing what you did, anyway.

Thanks,
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...Thanks Greg....Philosophical is much better than jumping up and down as I have found from experience that that gets you nowhere! :lol:

Just started again on another rib set....:)
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Re: How I glue a cutaway side to the headblock....

Post by Kim » Thu Aug 22, 2013 5:07 pm

woodrat wrote:Philosophical is much better than jumping up and down as I have found from experience that that gets you nowhere! :lol:

..:)
Lies!!!! Filthy Lies!!!

It gets you both 'up' and 'down' again John with the only investment required being the initial launch....highly underrated IMO.. :D

Sorry to read of your troubles mate but nice tip on the cutaway glue up. 8)

Cheers

Kim

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Re: How I glue a cutaway side to the headblock....

Post by woodrat » Thu Aug 22, 2013 5:27 pm

Cheers Kim!....one shouldn't cry over spoiled wood so I didnt... I grasped the nettle, sidled up to the saddle and got back on the horse that bucked me off ! New sides bent today....hung the disaster on the wall as a reminder of what can happen! :lol:
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Re: How I glue a cutaway side to the headblock....

Post by Kamusur » Thu Aug 22, 2013 8:10 pm

That's disastrous John, wonder if it was a 'karmic' event of some sort,,,the ghosts of antique furniture past might be watching.

Steve

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Re: How I glue a cutaway side to the headblock....

Post by woodrat » Thu Aug 22, 2013 10:26 pm

Kamusur wrote:That's disastrous John, wonder if it was a 'karmic' event of some sort,,,the ghosts of antique furniture past might be watching.

Steve
Hi Steve....I like to always take a positive out of situations like this.....I learned something about Wenge that was better learned at this stage rather than later in the construction or after it was finished....I was really surprised how the side popped off the tail block...it wasn't like the thing hit the floor....I was just offering it up to my sander and the bottom of the clamp slid down the bar causing Muggins to lose control and it slipped about 6 inches to the bench the sander was on and that was the result...when I examined it I saw that the glue had either not penetrated the Wenge to any great degree or the face grain was so weak that it gave way or a combination of both...anyway enough for me to choose another timber instead....

....cut to the last scene in "the Life of Brian" ...and whistle along :)

John
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Re: How I glue a cutaway side to the headblock....

Post by Kamusur » Fri Aug 23, 2013 8:43 am

Always look on the bright, side of life..do, doo, do doodoo d.

Steve

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Re: How I glue a cutaway side to the headblock....

Post by woodrat » Fri Aug 23, 2013 8:56 am

Kamusur wrote:Always look on the bright, side of life..do, doo, do doodoo d.

Steve
Thats the one!... :wink:
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Re: How I glue a cutaway side to the headblock....

Post by ozwood » Fri Aug 23, 2013 4:52 pm

Hi John,

I'm Suprised you were not found by your dad in the Feotal position, rocking gently , Repeating "it's hapened again, It's happened again ". :cry: :cry: :cry: I'm still in thearapy after the Tiger Myrtle woodchiping incident of 2008 :x :x :x , and then the Router bearing explosion incident of 2012 , :cry: :cry: :cry: and am currently being medicated for the loose router bit while routing a truss rod grove, Incident of last weekend :( :( :( :( :( :dru .

your a good sport John, I can bet with the utmost certainty you did not even utter a swear word :wink: :wink: :wink: .

love your work , thanks for sharing , but as I always Say , "no good deed goes unpunished".

Cheers,
Paul .

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Re: How I glue a cutaway side to the headblock....

Post by woodrat » Fri Aug 23, 2013 6:34 pm

ozwood wrote:Hi John,

I'm Suprised you were not found by your dad in the Feotal position, rocking gently , Repeating "it's hapened again, It's happened again ". :cry: :cry: :cry: I'm still in thearapy after the Tiger Myrtle woodchiping incident of 2008 :x :x :x , and then the Router bearing explosion incident of 2012 , :cry: :cry: :cry: and am currently being medicated for the loose router bit while routing a truss rod grove, Incident of last weekend :( :( :( :( :( :dru .

your a good sport John, I can bet with the utmost certainty you did not even utter a swear word :wink: :wink: :wink: .

love your work , thanks for sharing , but as I always Say , "no good deed goes unpunished".

Cheers,
Hi Paul....I love how they name things in Britain...."The Great Plague of 1665" followed by "The Great Fire of 1666" and more recently "The Great Storm of 1987" and stuff like that...by that naming convention that would be "The Great Tiger Myrtle Destruction of 2008" and "The Great Router Bearing Explosion of 2012" ...I think I will call mine....."The Great Wenge Debacle of 2013" :lol:

...At least I am getting practice at doing cutaways!

Cheers Paul....

Catch up soon...

John

....
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Re: How I glue a cutaway side to the headblock....

Post by Tod Gilding » Fri Aug 23, 2013 7:51 pm

Paul is right "not a swear word " you guy's had this thread hidden away nicely :)

that's great John, I'm glad that those sorts of things don't only happen to me :lol:
Tod



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