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Adding Wings to a Headless Hohner body

Discussion in 'Luthier's Corner' started by ronin614, Apr 29, 2009.


  1. ronin614

    ronin614

    May 15, 2008
    New York
    Some help would be greatly appreciated. I just ordered (about 15 min ago) a Hohner B2AV headless left handed bass. My brother, who is a master carpenter, has agreed to add body wings to it for me if I can get some info for him. Does anyone have any sugestions on the best wood type to use and curing before use. Also, what method is best for attaching the wings to the body. What are the potential problems? This is a project that I've wanted to do for a long time and I would really appreciate any and all recommendations.
     
  2. I half-arsedly plan to do this too. I'm thinking ash or mahogany for the wings' core w/a top of walnut(all woods I have lying around). For attachment, I'll just use glue. I want to saw the edges square(they're tapered now)first, then glue up & clamp the wings, then surface-plane(w/a router & jig)the entire top nice and flush- also taking 1/4" off the front of the stock *body*. Then I'll add a top 1/4". I'll also strip & sand the entire bass, to be refinished w/tung oil. I might go nuts and stain/dye the defretted fingerboard and add a CA coating. If I ever get around to this I will post pics. :)
     
  3. abarson

    abarson

    Nov 6, 2003
    Santa Cruz
    Were you planning on the wings to be permanent or detachable? For permanent, bassteban is on the right course. For detachable, you'll need additional hardware to have them lock in place.
    Either way, make sure you show us what you come up with!
     
  4. ronin614

    ronin614

    May 15, 2008
    New York
    Barring a major gig mishap they'll be permanent!!! I also plan on squaring off the body before the wings are attached. I just want to make sure I do it right the first time because it's going to e done to a brand new bass, and somehow I don't think my wife will go for "But I need a new bass because I mangled the last new 1 that I bought." So please chim in with suggestions. Also, any cautionary tales are appreciated. Yes, I actually consider horror stories helpful in the 'What to watch out for" kind of way.
     
  5. abarson

    abarson

    Nov 6, 2003
    Santa Cruz
    You will need to carve and shape the wings before attaching them to the body. Keep the scrap left over from cutting out the wings to keep them in place while gluing. This is how I attached the wings to my neck-through: the principle is the same for your situation.

    DSC_0588.

    Use a joiner on the faces of the body and wings that will be glued together: it helps make that seam disappear.
    It may sound cheesy, but consider dowels to join the wing to the body after you square it. It will make gluing the wings and body easier.

    If you're planning on painting the instrument afterwards, wood choice will not be of great consequence. Poplar is cheap and works well, much like maple. Otherwise, you're going to need to find out what wood the body is made of and try to match it.
     
  6. ronin614

    ronin614

    May 15, 2008
    New York
    Thanks again for the input...
     
  7. ronin614

    ronin614

    May 15, 2008
    New York
    Here's a stock photo of the bass I'm getting. (I'll post an actual photo when I receive it...hopefully today.) The body and neck are Maple. Would it be possible to strip the finish that's on there, or is it too dark. (It's a satin stain.) If not, I might just make the wings out of Maple and then cover in a veneer. Any advice?
     

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