How I inlay my Empire design

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

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Allen
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How I inlay my Empire design

Post by Allen » Thu May 26, 2016 5:36 pm

Was documenting a build for a muso in France today, so thought I'd share it with you. Nothing really earth shattering if you've been doing this for a while, but might be interesting if you're new to this.

The design consists of several overlapping elements that require careful planing of the steps involved in order to make the job cleaner and easier. Otherwise there are some short pieces that if you tried to fit on their own would be next to impossible.

The first element is routed and inlaid. Dry fit all pieces first, and then disassemble, apply PVA glue to the ends of the mitres and put back into place. You do this to lessen the chance that black dye from the purflings will darken the maple at the mitres. Wick CA glue along edges and allow to dry.
Empire Inlay.jpg
Scrape flush before proceeding to the next step.
Empire Inlay-2.jpg
The next elements are routed. You can see in this image that by proceeding in this order those overlapping lines with extremely short pieces are now no worries. Same procedure as the first time around. Dry fit and then pull apart, and glue.
Empire Inlay-3.jpg
Again scrape flush after drying.
Empire Inlay-4.jpg
The last elements trim the ends of the second elements making for a clean intersection. Again almost impossible to get right if you are working with such small pieces on their own. Install like the previous.
Empire Inlay-5.jpg
Allen R. McFarlen
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Nick
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Re: How I inlay my Empire design

Post by Nick » Fri May 27, 2016 6:29 am

Thanks for posting Allen, I'm sure it will be useful (and inspirational) for many and help avoid some of those little pitfalls you don't always think about when planning inlays!
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Re: How I inlay my Empire design

Post by kiwinoz62 » Fri May 27, 2016 8:44 am

Allen,
Great tutorial, nice work as always.
Thanks for your time to post and share.
cheers wayne . . .

'keep on strummin'

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Re: How I inlay my Empire design

Post by Jeremy D » Sun May 29, 2016 12:13 pm

Looks Great Allen,

When you say route, do you have some sort of jig for lining it all up or are you using a cnc machine?
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Allen
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Re: How I inlay my Empire design

Post by Allen » Sun May 29, 2016 5:54 pm

I do this on my CNC now, but previously I've done it with a fence that I lined up with the aid of pencil marks and eyeball, and used my laminate trimmer. You can even do curved inlays this way, and I did quite a few like that over the years.

Then moved onto a Milling Machine with XYZ adjustment to the tables. This method however is almost impossible to get nice curves with. Only suitable for straight lines.
Allen R. McFarlen
https://www.brguitars.com
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