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I need to notch new Pickguards for truss access...

Discussion in 'Hardware, Setup & Repair [BG]' started by BornboreD, Jul 5, 2013.

  1. Any suggestions on how someone who is broke and for the most part tool-less can go about doing so easily and with out it being an eyesore?
  2. You could buy a nibbler tool for $10, and then use a round file for the rest.
  3. A 3/8" rat-tail file.
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  5. [​IMG]
  6. Bruce Johnson

    Bruce Johnson Supporting Member

    Feb 4, 2011
    Fillmore, CA
    Professional Luthier
    Yep, a rat-tail file will cut it quicker than you can get the nibbler out of its plastic package. Nibblers are cool, and I have a couple of them, but you don't really need them for this job.

    A tip: Find a workbench or table that has a 1" hole in it. Or a board that has a hole in it that you can clamp so it hangs off the edge of the table. Lay the pickguard down over the hole and do the filing down through the hole, holding the file vertically. That will support the pickguard, which is kind of fragile, and make it easier to see what you are doing.

    Lay some masking tape over the area and draw the lines on it. File away, following the lines. Ideally, use a coarse (Bastard) file to rough it out, and a Smooth file to smooth it. Then gently scrape the edges with the edge of a knife blade to remove the burrs. Don't try to sand the pickguard vinyl. It doesn't like that.
  7. Well, I imagine the file is cheaper than the nibbler as well, and probably a lot more useful after the fact as well. Guess I'll hit Walmart on my way into the Beer Store...
  8. A nibbler tool will cut through soft vinyl, celluloid, etc. like a hot knife through butter. Much quicker way to move through a half square-inch of material than with a file.

    I suppose it doesn't really matter to the OP, however, because he's probably only doing this once, and will still need the file to do the rounded part.
  9. mech


    Jun 20, 2008
    Check out any local pawn shops for files and other common hand tools. Even the quality stuff is normally cheap.

  10. Used a file and tried to be as careful and accurate as possible using the old guards as a template. Results are good enough. Haha.

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