PDA

View Full Version : Another Spanish Heel Question



ericchico
08-14-2014, 07:17 AM
My last 2 builds I followed the Hana Lima Ia manual step by step and there were a couple of steps that bugged me, one was the soundhole being cut after it being boxed up. The other is gluing the sides to the top. On my current build I cut the soundhole after the rosette and used braces around the soundhole instead of a patch so I feel better about that step.
My question is about the tailblock and sides being glued. Is it better to glue the tailblock to the top then glue the sides on like the book says OR can I glue the tailblock to the sides first. Let them dry and then proceed to glue both sides and tailblock at once.
It seemed like a mad dash when I did them seperate. Any thoughts on this would be much appreciated.

Allen
08-14-2014, 09:50 AM
I can think of no reason why you would ever cut the sound hole after the box was closed up. You do this after the rosette is installed and before braces go on.

I would always recommend to glue the tail block to the sides first. Let dry and then glue the side / tail block combo to the top as a unit.

Glue the sides and tail block of a flat surface so you have them all lined up, after drying you will likely need to very carefully run that area over a piece of sandpaper to make sure that everything is flush. Make sure that you don't undercut the sides when doing this. They are much more easy to remove material than the tail block as they are so thin.

DennisK
08-14-2014, 09:59 AM
I've done both ways, but I prefer gluing the sides to the tail block first. Easier to get them square and seamless at the tail, if I want to forgo the end graft. The advantage of the other way is that you can get the sides from hot pipe to soundboard more quickly, to make sure they don't do any spontaneous bending as they re-acclimate to room humidity.

ericchico
08-14-2014, 10:07 AM
I can think of no reason why you would ever cut the sound hole after the box was closed up. You do this after the rosette is installed and before braces go on.

I would always recommend to glue the tail block to the sides first. Let dry and then glue the side / tail block combo to the top as a unit.

Glue the sides and tail block of a flat surface so you have them all lined up, after drying you will likely need to very carefully run that area over a piece of sandpaper to make sure that everything is flush. Make sure that you don't undercut the sides when doing this. They are much more easy to remove material than the tail block as they are so thin.

Thats what I was thinking thanks. The soundhole thing is what it is thats the way they teach you. I even contacted them and asked if they still do it that way and he said yes. I did not do that this time and my stress is less. I was hoping that having the sides and tail block as one unit would make the process much easier, bead of glue, slip the sides into the heel and clamp the tail then add the remaining clamps. Thanks Allen

ericchico
08-14-2014, 10:09 AM
I've done both ways, but I prefer gluing the sides to the tail block first. Easier to get them square and seamless at the tail, if I want to forgo the end graft. The advantage of the other way is that you can get the sides from hot pipe to soundboard more quickly, to make sure they don't do any spontaneous bending as they re-acclimate to room humidity.

Duly noted thanks Dennis

Yknot
08-15-2014, 05:14 PM
If you do any "voicing" - e.g. carving of the braces to improve top response, you will want to have the soundhole already cut prior to that process. I build with a combination of a Spanish plantera and a side mold, also using a Spanish heel in many instruments (only because I am comfortable and familiar with that technique). Building the ukes in the form/plantera allows me to fit a good, tight end joint, after which I glue the sides to the top and then add the end block to reinforce the assembly. There's a bit of fiddling around to get the fit, but again, I'm familiar with the technique. My message? Try out different tricks and use what feels right to you. And kudos for building!

Yknot
08-15-2014, 05:20 PM
Another thought - I have been thinking about using the same style bent & laminated linings on my ukes that I use on other instruments. These make for an extremely stiff garland, with all the advantages thereof. If you assembled this in a form, it would be relatively easy to transfer an assembled side/lining/end block as one unit to the neck/top assembly. There would b e a bit of fiddling with the ends of the sides going into the head block slots, but that shouldn't be too hard. Good luck! Now, perhaps I should actually do what I am suggesting, lol!

ericchico
08-18-2014, 10:21 AM
This weekend I boxed the Uke up and the previous ways are out the window. From here on out when I do a Spanish Heel Uke I will always cut the soundhole before boxing it up and the sides will be glued to the tailblock before gluing to the top. It went much easier and faster this time than the last two. I do want to mention that the Hana Lima Ia book is in my opinion a great resource and is mostly for the class you take at their shop or with the kit you can buy from them. I do not want to give the impression that how they build is weird or wrong they have a system that works for them. Im just always looking for a better way to do something that works for me. I teach myself almost everything I know with the help of the internet, books and magazines and of course UU. Being your own teacher is not the ideal situation but with the help of a place like this it can become more enjoyable when people share their techniques and are willing to answer my questions, thanks again to the ones who take the time to help. Much appreciated.

Timbuck
08-18-2014, 10:41 AM
I think they prefer you to cut the soundhole after assembly. to make sure its on the centre line of the uke..I know nothing about the kits it's just a guess :cheers:

ericchico
08-18-2014, 11:43 AM
I think they prefer you to cut the soundhole after assembly. to make sure its on the centre line of the uke..I know nothing about the kits it's just a guess :cheers:

I asked them in an email if they still do it like that but i did not ask the important part "Why?". I did not have the benefit of taking the class so I could annoy them with all of my why's and what if's. I did the first with a hole saw on the drill press and went very very slowly unitl i felt like my eyes were going to cross, it worked but was not easy lining up the bit with the rosette and I was waiting for the Uke top to blow up. The second I did with a forstener bit, much easier to line up but still not comfortable with it. The latest one I did I used my Dremel and a home made circle cutting jig and it went smoothly.
In High School woodshop I got real comfortable running a lathe. One day I was turning a chunk of wood and went into it a little to fast and the chunk blew up into my face. I had glasses on but no face shield and ended up only getting a knot on my forehead. That was all I could think about when using a hole saw on the boxed up Uke:o