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Glues, Finishes and General advice

Discussion in 'Luthier's Corner' started by Zetora, Jul 31, 2005.


  1. Zetora

    Zetora

    Aug 16, 2004
    England
    Hello,

    This is in relavance to the bass I am planning on constructing made from walnut and flamed maple, walnut is a porus wood yet maple is a none porus wood right? Would this affect what type of glue should be used for gluing them together? (for neck laminates and bond laminates)

    I've been doing some research but only come across different types of glue really. I am wondering which of these two glues would be best; Liquid hide glue or aliphatic resin glue?

    I dont have the facilities to use ground hide glue with the heating of it, but would like to know which is the better for strength and workability. This is an aspect which is stopping me from starting as I am trying to get a list of everything I need and then order it, and I can't do any profiling of wood (which I haven't got yet) until I have glued it all up obviously.

    Also something I need some help on is finishing, I'd like something I can apply prefferably without spraying as I dont have a space which is dust free to get the best finish or what I need to do it.

    So that leads to oil finishes, I was considering Teak oil, as I have read it is good for bare wood and with successive coats will give a gloss finish, of course i dont expect this to be a factory gloss finish or anything like but I know I could apply it and get hold of it easy enough. Its just would any other finishes be more recommended? Of course this is down to prefference to a point, and I'd like something with a nice smooth glossy finish but not a "tacky" finish (which i suspect would be a fault of mine in doing the finish in some cases lol)

    And (sorry for all the questions but I wanted to get this all ordered by this weekend which I know wont happen but want as much as I can done so I can order asap) As Walnut is porus, would a clear grain filler be recommended such as;
    http://www.stewmac.com/shop/Finishi...ties/1/ColorTone_Waterbase_Grain_Filler.html ?

    Also there sealers, are they required/recommended to be used? I just want to try and get this sorted in my mind and I'm greatly appreciate of all the help you are willing to give me.

    Also for refference I am from England though will be ordering from http://www.stewmac.com/
    and
    http://www.craft-supplies.co.uk/pdf/craft-supplies_soundwood_catalogue.pdf

    Thank you,

    Zetora
     
  2. nateo

    nateo Schubie Fan #1

    Mar 2, 2003
    Ottawa, Ontario
    There are loads of luthiers out there who swear by hide glue, and I'm sure it's got some great qualities. Regular wood glue, on the other hand, bonds great, is cheap, and is extremely easy to use. Titebond seems to be the biggest name around (though there's some debate as to which should be used, Titebond Originial, II, or III) but just about any decent quality wood glue should work. Just spread it out on the surface to be glued with a scrap of wood or something so that there are no dry spots, then clamp it up and wipe off the excess. I like a bit of overkill when I glue, so I usually have a lot of wiping to do.

    -Nate
     
  3. Zetora

    Zetora

    Aug 16, 2004
    England
    Thanks Nateo, I was leaning toward liquid hide glue and that is Titebond by the way. Any help with the finishes though?

    Thanks

    Zetora
     
  4. The Titebond that Nateo is referring to is the original titebond, which is alphatic resin. There is also the liquid hide glue from Titebond, but I haven't read anything on results of people using it.
     
  5. Zetora

    Zetora

    Aug 16, 2004
    England
    Oh right, my mistake, thanks Geoff, though I think you may get me giving some results on it, might as well try it, if all goes wrong I can always buy more wood if worst comes to worst, not ideal but it shouldn't go wrong.

    Still any advice on the finish please :)

    Zetora
     
  6. andvari7

    andvari7

    Aug 28, 2004
    Ennui
    Don't use the bottled hide glue. That's not strong enough for what you want to do. Titebond (not II or III) is probably the best bet (or any alphatic resin glue similar in chemistry).

    As for finish, I really like Tru-Oil for a number of reasons: 1. You don't need to buy expensive spraying equipment, which you need for nitrocellulose lacquer; 2. It's safer than lacquer, which can do significant damage to your lungs without proper ventilation and masks; 3. It's pretty easy to find (I would say look where hunting rifles are sold, but aren't they illegal in the UK?), and cheaper than lacquer; and finally, you get to use your hands to apply it. The only drawback is that you have to reapply it. I think it's annually, but I'm not sure.
     
  7. Zetora

    Zetora

    Aug 16, 2004
    England
    Thanks I'll go with the a resin similar to if not titebond.

    Also Teak has the same properties, and those reasons are good reasons, also the same as why I chose an oil instead of laqcuer, but its more of the which oil to use, Teak oil, Tur-oil, Danish-oil. between Danish and teak I think I will go for teak but can anyone give me a reason not to go for that, and I just had a look and original Titebond wood glue is what I'll be using from the looks fo things.

    Thanks

    Zetora
     
  8. Fasoldt Basses

    Fasoldt Basses

    Mar 22, 2005
    Stevens Point, WI
    Karl Thompson, Builder (Formerly Fat Karl)
    OK, would you like to hear a sad story? this past week I was gluing up a 5-piece neck blank, and I thought I'd try titebond's liquid HG. I chose it for its slow set time; it seems like on a big gluing job like that a fast set glue can be too fast. Anyway, the glueup went well, but it dried VERY slowly. 2 days after the gluing, the beads of glue were still soft. I took the clamps off after 2 1/2 days and later that afternoon one of the joints split:bawl: . I'll hopefully be able to use the blank for a shorter bolt-on neck someday(the split is just on one end). now it's off to GH to get some new wood!:cool:

    Anyway, bottom line: don't use liquid hide glue in humid weather!
     
  9. andvari7

    andvari7

    Aug 28, 2004
    Ennui
    Yeah, it's been pretty humid in Wisconsin the past week, hasn't it (I live and school in south central WI)? You might want to change your bottom line to this: Don't use liquid hide glue. Period.
     
  10. teej

    teej

    Aug 19, 2004
    Sheffield, AL 35660
    So far, I've only built one bass. I used Elmer's "ProBond" (similar to TiteBond) with great results. As for finish, I used an acrylic lacquer, which seemed to add a good pound or two in weight to the solid alder body. For the record, I'll never use it again UNLESS I'm using basswood or poplar as the body wood.
     
  11. tjclem

    tjclem Supporting Member Commercial User

    Jun 6, 2004
    Central Florida
    Owner and builder Clementbass
    Titebond Original
     
  12. Zetora

    Zetora

    Aug 16, 2004
    England
    Thanks Karl, just cleared that up fully; lots of rep for Titebond, only dismay with Liquid Hide Glue .... obvious conclusion = use hide glue.... i mean Titebond or a suitable aliphatic resin.

    Also Teej thanks for that one, the more I knock off the list the better, thoguh lacquer wasn't on it :)

    Titebond Original it is. No question onb that now. Still finishes but I think Teak oil unless someone has a sad story on that. Also Karl, thats a major bummer, you better be able to use it for something else in the future, if all else fails try to make a lil side table of some sort, can't harm can it :p

    Thanks

    Zetora
     
  13. Fasoldt Basses

    Fasoldt Basses

    Mar 22, 2005
    Stevens Point, WI
    Karl Thompson, Builder (Formerly Fat Karl)
    Oh, which school are you going to?

    Hmm, a use for all the leftovers from neck-thru blanks: table legs!:p :rolleyes:
     
  14. andvari7

    andvari7

    Aug 28, 2004
    Ennui
    Karl: Madison. And it is their facilities that I intend to exploit to build my first two basses: a six-string fretted (36" scale set neck with the neck width of a five-string AND a custom-build Kahler trem), and a six-string fretless (32" scale headless neck-thru).

    Use for leftover pieces from neck-thru blanks? Depending on how big they are, you could use them as headstocks. You should be building those separately, anyway. Or, you could use them as pickup covers or electronics cavity plates. Or neck shims for set necks. Or, depending on what kind of wood it is, you could use it as the smoke agent for smoking meats. Or even an instrument stand, again depending on the sizes and shapes.
     
  15. Fasoldt Basses

    Fasoldt Basses

    Mar 22, 2005
    Stevens Point, WI
    Karl Thompson, Builder (Formerly Fat Karl)
    :D I might take a few years to learn "cabinetmaking" skills because an A.A.S. in cabinetmaking involves about 50 credits of shop time.;) :D
    Quiet, you... you novice!:) A matter of opinion, I guess.:)
    Ahhh I bet walnut-smoked meat would be heavenly:p :D
     
  16. teej

    teej

    Aug 19, 2004
    Sheffield, AL 35660
    There's also tung oil.
     
  17. Suburban

    Suburban

    Jan 15, 2001
    lower mid Sweden
    Glues: from the manufacturers specs, I would choose aliphatic. The liquid hide glue is a little bit too unstable during the first years, due to the intrcate solvents they use.
    Whatever you do, don't use PVa glues (white wood glue), which is nice to work with, but yields over time - yuck!

    Oils: the advantage of teak oil, in furniture, is that it protects the wood and makes it shine - without building a coat! Thus, it is fairly easy to wear off from the surface, still protecting, but not from dirt.
    Tung oil does abut the same job, but builds a coat, hence protecting better from dirt.
    Boiled linseed is somewhere inbetween.
    Danish oil is any oil mixed with solvents for ease of use. Check on the bottle what oil is in it. Rustin's seem to use tung oil.

    And: don't hurry to get what you need! Be patient.
     
  18. Hi,

    I've heard Minwax Wipe-On Poly can be a good finish. No need to spray, easy to apply AFAIK. Rob Allen is using on his basses and my jaw drops every time I see their picture. I'm sure he is using on walnut too. But I've never tried it..

    You can find more info on wipe-on poly in this forum.

    Rob Allen says in his website that he uses carnauba wax over wipe-on poly too.

    Hope it will help. Good luck and may the force be with you :D
     
  19. Zetora

    Zetora

    Aug 16, 2004
    England
    Suburban & Mr M; thanks, I'll look into tung oil though I'll also keep my options open for the wipe on poly though I can't get miniwax over here in the UK, well at least where I've looked. Also its Rustins Danish oil I can get my hands straight on, Suburban, have you used this? What type of finish does it give?

    And Suburban, yes it seems like I'm rushing it I know, though I am keeping things in consideration as much as possible, its just ordering from StewMac to England isn't something I want to do often but now I've made my mind up on the wood glue, I will get the finsih from over here, anyway i couldn't get any poly over here from america because it can't be flown over as its flamable.

    Thanks though one more thing, would I need to use a sealer? I know it would eb a good idea so I wouldn't mind doing it but you can't use it under the oil can you? I would only use the sealer with the pol right?

    Thanks

    Zetora

    PS One more thing on glue, titiebond original glue is not for glueing wood to metal, so for the carbon fibre support rods would Titebond Polyurethane Glue be suitable? Thanks

    Edit; With some more researchon these boards I found a post from you Suburban, one question I have is did the Danish Oil affect the colouring of your wood much? Also have you used wax over it before? Did you like ti if you did?

    Thanks
     
  20. pilotjones

    pilotjones Supporting Member

    Nov 8, 2001
    US-NY-NYC
    Re: liquid hide glue: not good, for the reasons mentioned. Old fashioned hide glue is fine, though.
    Re: Titebond: nearly everyone uses original titebond (I) for luthiery. However, I wouldn't discount the others because:
    - titebond II is used by Ken Smith. I can think of no better endorsement.
    - AFAIK titebond III has not been around that long, and I haven't seen any pros or cons to recommend or to condemn it.