Page 4 of 6 FirstFirst ... 23456 LastLast
Results 31 to 40 of 54

Thread: StewMac ukulele kit build

  1. #31
    Join Date
    Jan 2009
    Location
    West Midlands GB
    Posts
    1,877

    Default

    Pay a lot of attention to ensuring that the neck angle is correct. Don't just assume that the pre-cut parts must align properly. The way the neck joins the body is possibly the most critical aspect of building an acoustic ukulele. Much use of steel rulers and squinting along lengths of string is called for. Consider how the strings will run in relation to the edges of the fret board, the sound hole and the bridge.

    Have fun!

    John Colter
    Last edited by ukantor; 11-05-2019 at 11:17 PM.

  2. #32
    Join Date
    Oct 2014
    Location
    Little River, California
    Posts
    2,181

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by ukantor View Post
    The way the neck joins the body is possibly the most critical aspect of building an acoustic ukulele.
    So true. Gotta get that part as perfect as you can.

  3. #33
    Join Date
    Sep 2019
    Location
    Portland OR
    Posts
    69

    Default

    Understood guys. I fitted the neck heel to the body by taping sandpaper to the body/heel area and sanding until the heel fit beautifully. Body & neck centerline lined up perfectly. And then another clamp-o-rama, glueing on the fretboard.
    Attached Images Attached Images

  4. #34
    Join Date
    Jan 2009
    Location
    West Midlands GB
    Posts
    1,877

    Default

    So you are happy with the neck position in one plane (call it horizontal) - how about the vertical?

    John Colter

  5. #35
    Join Date
    Sep 2019
    Location
    Portland OR
    Posts
    69

    Default

    I think it's looking real good both directions:
    Attached Images Attached Images

  6. #36
    Join Date
    Jan 2009
    Location
    West Midlands GB
    Posts
    1,877

    Default

    In that case, you're on the home straight!

    John Colter

  7. #37
    Join Date
    Sep 2019
    Location
    Portland OR
    Posts
    69

    Default

    Yes, I have to say that getting the vertical neck heel fit was the most time consuming process so far; it does need to fit & look good. And I agree John, the rest is relatively easy. I DO have a newfound respect for acoustic instrument builders; these seem WAY more difficult than the electric guitars I've been building over the years. I felt at times like I was handling an eggshell rather than a chunk of wood.

    Question: I don't plan to do a stained finish, just a clear wipe-on polyurethane. I use nitro lacquer on my guitars- any advice for poly? Water or oil base? Bristle or foam brush?

  8. #38
    Join Date
    Aug 2018
    Location
    Australia.
    Posts
    119

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by beerbelly View Post
    I DO have a newfound respect for acoustic instrument builders; these seem WAY more difficult than the electric guitars I've been building over the years. I felt at times like I was handling an eggshell rather than a chunk of wood.
    The transition is sort of a 'culture' shock.
    To me it meant locking the routers and power sanders in the cupboard, suddenly needing a bigger band saw, and trying to re-establish my confidence after learning a whole new set of mysterious skills that I am still struggling to master … but I get a lot more satisfaction and sense of achievement from acoustic builds.
    These days, I am reduced to a solid body 'assembler'... I find that it is far cheaper and wiser to buy the parts in (or better yet, get the commissioner to buy them in), and spend more time on finishing and set up. Quality billets of any exotic woods are expensive in this part of the word, and although we have a few nice native substitutes, most experienced players seem to prefer traditional materials.
    Some sellers are finding that non-factory built solid bodies are hard to sell unless they have a famous name on the head stock. Hand made acoustics don't seem to suffer the same shortcoming.
    This alone makes the transition worthwhile.

  9. #39
    Join Date
    Oct 2014
    Location
    Little River, California
    Posts
    2,181

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by beerbelly View Post
    Question: I don't plan to do a stained finish, just a clear wipe-on polyurethane. I use nitro lacquer on my guitars- any advice for poly? Water or oil base? Bristle or foam brush?
    I would look at Allen's posts on doing poly finishing. He gets some stunning results but he sprays. I don't do poly myself so can't give any guidance. My only advice would be to experiment on some scraps first before glooping up your beautiful build. Nice neck to body join by the way. It's a challenge.
    Last edited by sequoia; 11-07-2019 at 06:50 PM.

  10. #40
    Join Date
    Aug 2018
    Location
    Australia.
    Posts
    119

    Default

    I've been experimenting with a locally produced wipe on water based (poly) clear gloss. I've been diluting it slightly with demineralised water, and padding it on a la French Polishing. It dries very quickly making the technique bearable, and results in an attractive lustrous gloss with no extra finishing required. After two months of hardening, it seems reasonably durable and buffs out easily after being lightly gouged with a thumb nail. The thing that impresses me most, is that it is not particularly reflective, so that the grain is enhanced, but still looks natural. If a mirror finish is desired, then I'd say don't bother. It may be able to be buffed to a high gloss, but I suspect it will not be hard enough to maintain it.
    When I (eventually) apply it to a finished instrument, I'll send it to the local ukulele group for field testing. If it's too soft to survive that treatment, I'll drop the idea.
    I will not recommend the technique at this stage, but it seems to have promise. A commercial builder would have to be brave, reckless or both to implement this, but it should prove adequate for careful use.
    Time will tell.

Thread Information

Users Browsing this Thread

There are currently 1 users browsing this thread. (0 members and 1 guests)

Bookmarks

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •