making a bass without power tools

Discussion in 'Luthier's Corner' started by clef360, Sep 29, 2003.

  1. feasible? anyone ever tried it? suggestions? well, regardless, that's what i'm doing now (actually i have a dremel, but it's not helping much) The tools i have are: a saw, a dremel, an electric drill with a 1/4" or something bit, and some other hand tools(not useful for cutting wood).
  2. Not that I'm a experienced craftman or anything, but I can see myself doing it, only the body though. I'll definitely be using the spoke shave and drawnknife a lot.
  3. oh yeah i forgot to mention that i got a neck from ebay, because i coudlnt conceivably make one with the tools i have available :meh:
  4. JPJ


    Apr 21, 2001
    Chicago, IL
    There were a coupla Italian guys that made some pretty nifty stringed instruments a few hundred years ago without the aid of powertools. I think you can pull it off! ;) :D
  5. unfortunately, i was stuck with using maple for the body....hard hard maple...i think my saw is getting dull, and i'm only about 1/8 done after 3 hours of work :rolleyes:
  6. mslatter


    Apr 8, 2003
    What kind of saw are you using? I hate hand sawing and, to me, the saw makes all the difference. Teeth per inch, blade length and stiffness and (of course) sharpness all make the job easier. I think tensioned blade saws were the tool of choice for this type of work prior to the availability of bandsaws. A bowsaw (aka frame saw, but not one of those gardener's bowsaws - not enough blade tension) with a brand spanking new 700mm or longer, 6-8 tpi blade would be a good way to do it. Then saw fairly well outside the line and plane, rasp, file, scrape and sand to the final contours. Once I've done rough cuts, I don't mind hand shaping at all - it's meditative and creates a kind of emotional attachment to the piece you're working. I particularly like using card scrapers, because they're so small and simple and barely feel like using a tool at all. Then again, the airy hum of a 3HP motor has its own attraction...
  7. by bow saw, do you mean soemthing like a hacksaw or a coping saw?
  8. mslatter


    Apr 8, 2003
  9. haha, too bad(good thing) i only finished sawing out about 1/5 of it before my dad lent me his jigsaw. it took me 1 hour finish cutting it out, as opposed to the 5 hours i spent on the first 1/5.... power tools are great. Shaping will be done by hand though. Whee!:D
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